Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Bernardim Ribeiro

Second Eclogue

Between the rivers Tagus
and Guadiana, there lived,
it’s said, a shepherd lost
in love for one Joana.
The maiden kept ducks
along the Tagus’s banks,
her father’s house nearby.
The shepherd’s name was Jano,    
he hailed from Alentejo.            

When famine swept the land,
laying it all to waste,
the shepherd, seeking refuge,
fled Torrão, his village.
He took with him the remnants
of his once-great flock,
the rest dead of exhaustion.
The drought-struck Alentejo
was rather poor in pasture.

Everywhere was the piteous
sight of barren fields!
Only in the Tagus’s
meadows could his flock
find relief. And so Jano,            
to save his dwindling herd,
set out for land to graze on.
The heart he held was troubled,
and trouble was waiting ahead.            

The day that he arrived    
with goats and sheep in tow,
he pitched camp at the edge            
of a wood. The next morning,
while taking his flock to feed
along the river’s margins,
he laid eyes on Joana,
out picking the flowers
that lined the Tagus’s banks.    

The dress she wore was white,
her cheeks were lightly flushed,
To Jano, his eyes agog,
she looked fair and lovely.
Though smitten at first sight,
he crouched behind the reeds,
admiring her from a distance.
Joana gathered flowers,

in Jano passion gathered.    
After she had collected
her flowers and selected
the various shades, weaving
the blossoms together with roses,
she made a garland, and let
her hair fall: those  tresses
were as long as she was tall.
Every lock of her hair
was awakening Jano’s desire.
                                    
As Joana tidied her hair,
her flock of hens waddled
into the cool water,
guided by a huge mallard.
They swam, now upriver,
all in one direction,
now swiftly swam downstream,
together in single file.

Joana placed the garland
on her head, stroking it
with her hands to see if
all sat perfectly in place. 
Not quite satisfied
with what her fingers revealed,
straight away she went  
to where the river formed
a cove of placid water.

No sooner had she reached
the bank than her ducks came
flocking towards her, one after
the other, splashing wildly.
Initially she’d delighted
in these shows of affection,
quickly her heart grew heavy.    
Flinging rocks and jeers,
she shooed the ducks away.

Once they were all gone,
and the water calm again,
Joana tucked her skirt up,
preparing for a swim.        
She sat upon the bank,         
carefully removing her slippers,            
placing each on the ground.        
Then into the water she went,
and deep into Jano’s heart.                

As Joana took delicate
steps into the river,
Jano kept utterly still,
ablaze with desire and fear.
Whether to speak, run,
stay put — he didn’t know.
Love demanded boldness,    
and yet the very thought of
losing her stirred up dread.     
                
All this time Joana
stood gazing at her reflection.
Staring at her bosom,        
she gave a sigh and said:            
“What torment! A keeper             
of ducks, I should be kept.                 
Where is my life going?
What cruel sense of harmony:
to be fair and drudging away!
                             
Hearing these words Jano
couldn’t contain himself.
Having no other choice,
he burst out the grassy bank.
Joana, feeling the thunderous        
crash of Jano’s footsteps,             
turned and saw his face.
Sensing the danger at hand,                     
she swiftly ran toward home.
                
The house where her father lived
was near, which plunged Jano
further into the despair
born of their encounter.
The same fear that had urged
Joana’s feet forward  
also completely seized
her hands — and in her haste
she grabbed only one slipper.

Looking around Jano
saw there was no remedy,
turning his gaze to where
Joana had studied her image.
When he spotted her slipper
on top the pebbly shore,
he raced over to retrieve it.
Squeezing it in his arms,
he felt his sorrow grow,

And began to weep, bathing
his chest and the slipper in tears.
Many were the reasons
for his anguished weeping.
Leaning against his staff,
holding the slipper tightly,
Jano paused for a moment
then he spoke from the heart,
exhausted and teary-eyed.

Jano
“O remnant of the fairest
thing that I’ve ever seen,
to my eyes you are a rose,        
and to my heart, thistles.
Slipper cruelly forgotten,         
remembering cruel passion,                
who left you sweeps me away—
what an unfair exchange!
Alas, that’s the way it must be.     

“In my twenty-one years            
I can’t remember feeling
even a pang of sorrow,    
my flock’s troubles aside.     
Today, by some strange fate,
— I don’t know when exactly—,
I was racked by a yearning        
that eclipsed my other cares,
becoming estranged myself.
        
“Before this present sorrow,            
which only multiplies,
although I had my cares,
the caring didn’t kill me.
But now it’s far too late,
I sense the change within,
my fate’s already sealed.
I do not grasp my anguish,        
and languish of this passion.  
 
 “All I think is riddled
with glaring contradictions:
I oppose what I desire,
while desiring the opposite.
What I feel is so muddled,
I’m at odds with myself.     
Where might I look for relief?
I know the danger is grave—
graver is my confusion.                
                
“Who brought me to this strange
land, where an all-out war 
awaited me and where I had
my hope taken away?        
I scarcely can believe it:
Here I am, reduced
to tears, passion’s slave.
The eyes with which I glimpsed
my beloved are taking revenge.        


“My sorrow is greater still:
I brought this all on myself,
culprit and victim of infinite        
suffering. Had I only
stayed hidden in the reeds,    
I would have feasted my eyes
on her beauty, and then —
since it has to be this way —,
at least I’d have my memory.        

“Disaster upon disaster!
Yesterday I came here,
thinking my troubles gone.
Oh how I was mistaken!
Though I’d begun to hope
that, with my flock restored,
some good might come my way,
sadly, Fortune willed
that I should suffer on.

“Accursed love! Who made me
love's prisoner knows none.
My sad, lonely eyes,
having met her gaze
on the banks of this river    
that stretches unto infinity,
carrying water to sea:    
you’ll be the faithful witnesses
to all my weighty sorrows.
    
author
Having said these words,                    
transported by his passion,    
Jano fell on the sand,
like a man starved of air.                 
After some time had gone by,
Jano still lying senseless,
a shepherd he used to know
passed by, noting the man
fast asleep on the ground. 

Franco of Sandovir
was his name—searching
for a flute he had lost
but loved better than life,        
this shepherd was adored
by none less than Celia,        
that finest of nymphs who bathed
in the Mondego’s waters,
hers the sweetest of voices.

She gave the flute to Franco         
when he was leaving for exile
—imposed on him for his love—,
he weeping as she wept.            
He had come here to live,
finding the landscape appropriate
for his aching heart:    
rugged hills on all sides,
open fields to gaze on.    

Born to very little
in villages far apart,
these two shepherds had been
friends in bygone days.
For this reason Franco
turned to take another  
look at the man lying
on the ground, sensing
that something was amiss.
                            
Franco struggled greatly          
deciding what to do—
Were he to leave Jano
behind, his heart would ache.
Nor did he think it wise             
to rouse his friend awake.
With Jano being asleep
in an unfamiliar place,
he feared that he might startle.

Franco wrestling with doubt,
Jano turned on his back.
Heaving a sigh, he said,
“All I do is suffer!”
When he heard these words,    
Franco turned around
in astonishment, noticing
the slipper tucked gingerly
beneath Jano’s left arm.

He suspected what it was,         
for he too was in love.
In Jano’s bitter words
he’d all the proof he needed.    
Jano, now fully alert,
realizing it was Franco,
stared in bewildered silence.
Franco greeted him warmly
and with these words began:    

Franco
“Why Jano, I had thought
you lived in other parts.
I feared, for you and your flock,
the year might go this way.
When I caught word of the drought
now sweeping Alentejo,
I hoped I’d see you here,
though certainly not in this state.

“Tell me what harm’s been done
that you should be so changed?     
What trouble found? Thing lost?
If there’s a cure, you’ll have it.”
When Jano, still quite weak,
tried to get up but stumbled,
Franco held out his hand.
Leaning against the trunk
of an ash tree Jano said:

Jano
“I came to the fields before me
to give life to my flock.
I slaked one desire only            
to know greater thirst.
To my cattle I gave life,
having taken my own!        
The prophecy’s been fulfilled,
as revealed by Pierio,        
when my first beard came in.

Author
“Among shepherds,”  said Franco,
“His reputation precedes him.
He considers all his friends;    
He’s given, they say, to affairs.
Now, Jano, tell me this,          
if he warned you in advance,        
why this present hardship?
I hear he’s an honest friend                    
to men and women both.”

Jano
“Franco, I’ve grown so weary,        
of the sorrow I’ve found
since coming to this place,        
I can feel the strain in my voice.
Whatever fortune brings,
A man can’t resist his fate,
What will be, will be—
There’s no escaping it, no point
fighting it, no hiding away.

“But with you, dear Franco,
I can freely vent my pain.
Knowing you to be a friend,
I wish to tell you everything.
I don’t ask that you provide
comfort or remedy, Franco.
Fr I can’t hope to be saved            
from the trouble I’m in,
at least not till I die.

“It was a saint’s day feast:
all the people huddled
together, pilgrims come
from far and wide to see.
That day I remember dressing
in all new clothes, draped on
my shoulder was a woolen
hood coveted by the crowd.
In my hand I held my staff.
        
“Taking me by the arm,    
Pierio led me some distance,
to a well-shaded grove.
Telling me to take a seat
and sitting down next to me,
he paused and stared a while,
not saying a word, looking
on the verge of tears.

Pierio
“Jano,” he said, “I see
you don’t lack for worldly goods.
But with each passing year
my outlook grows more grim.    
I see a black cloud looming.
now that you’re of age,
I see you stripped of freedom,
in exile far from home,
still farther from your will.     

“In a land you’ve yet to see,
you’ll catch sight of something             
that fills your heart with sorrow
for the rest of your days.
You’ll die of an affliction
that’s now just a distant threat.
Live, therefore, in fear,
for no man knows the hour 
when love will choose to strike.    

“Jano, the things I’ve said
can’t be very far away:
I see the down on your lip;
Look at how you’re acting.            
You’ll travel to a strange land
so as not to lose your flock,
enduring bitter hardships            
for the briefest of pleasures,    
so you’ll see, should you choose.”        
                     
Pierio shook his head,
a stern look on his face.
“Now, for your own sake,
act with manly honor,
and etch onto your heart
the words I’m about to say.
Some hard days lie ahead,
Jano, I must remind you.
May God prove me wrong!”

“In trying to save your flock,
you’ll become lost to yourself—
a loss that’s beyond repair
by the time it registers.
In the fields by the river,    
among valleys, there lurks                
your suffering’s first cause.
Elsewhere you’ll meet your demise:

“Her dainty mannerisms,
her wavy blonde hair
will subject your heart and mind
to never-ending punishment.    
Words laced with disdain,      
words uttered in scorn,  
a vast array of injuries —
it’ll all make you complain
so bitterly, you’d rather die.”

Jano
“Nearly all that I’ve said            
happened as predicted.
What’s not yet come to pass,
the past has set in motion.
Just a short while ago,
I caught sight of a lady
my eyes keep searching for.
My life and soul, she’s gone,
having deemed me unworthy.”
                    

Author            
While Jano spoke, a bloodhound
belonging to Franco found
the missing flute, clutching it
with its teeth. When he saw,
bursting with joy, Franco
ran to retrieve the flute.
Standing on its hind legs,
the dog placed it in his hands,
proceeding to roll on its back.

Franco turned to Jano,
then he said these words:
“When he sees what he’s pined for,
a man forgets all else.
I cut your story short—
for that you’ll have to blame
whom I can’t, or forgive me
yourself, Jano. You know
what it means to be in love.”     
 

“That flute must be dear to you
as few things are,” said Jano.
“Indeed, nothing’s dearer,”    
Franco said in response.
“Whoever gave you that        
must have you in her debt,”
Jano said to Franco,
“Truly you must play well ,
unless the dog got it wrong.”
                        
“Sing something, Franco,
sadness loves a song!                
Let us see if your music
can’t soothe my bitter sorrow.”
“Of course,” Franco said,
“I will sing for you, Jano,
as one sings for an ailing man.
Although truth be told,    
my song is but a wail.”            

“I would like for you to hear
the song I sang last night,
after I had lost my flute,
left with only my voice.
When at last I went to bed,
I wasn’t tired of searching,
but weary of finding nothing.
Now, Jano, I mean it,
I couldn’t shut my eyes.”

“There, in the deep of night,
when all was utterly still,
I belted out my song,
an owl kept me company.    
From his faraway perch,
—perhaps I only imagined it—
the owl would respond with sighs
as heavy as my own.
At any rate, here goes.”

SONG
Wandering in exile I ask:
What to do, where to go?
After the deepest despair,
I’ve found the greatest sorrow.

The anguish! I’m a roving
stranger in remote lands,
to which I came in search
of refuge for my flock!
I, to whom cruel fortune        
affords no consolation,              
fear that, being ill-fated,
I will one day be made
to die by my own hand.

How to explain myself
to one not here to ask me?          
How to beg forgiveness
of one who cannot hear me?
O gift of my beloved,
whose absence shrouds the night,         
My flute, lost forever!    
Make a grave and bury me:
I perished long ago… 
And upon my tombstone,
let these words be written:        
In her heart lies my soul.    

If on a distant day
in years to come, Celia,
wherever she may be,
having heard the smallest
portion of all I suffered,
were to fall to pieces,
unable to hold back tears—
then would my soul be sated,
or whatever remains of me.

Though I ask for nothing,
since I suffer so greatly,
let my eyes drift in reverie.
                                                        
Day after day slips by.    
These lonely nights were made
for anguished spirits like ours.         
                    
“That’s the song, dear Jano,
I believed it was my last;
I confess I hoped it’d mark
the end of all my suffering.
If mind and soul don’t perish            
with the body, my sorrow            
will remain. Let us go,
It’s time the flock grazed,    
Torment too has its season.”    

Écloga Segunda

Écloga Segunda

Dizem que havia um pastor
antre Tejo e Odiana,
que era perdido de amor
por uma moça Joana:
Joana  patas guardava
pela ribeira do Tejo
seu pai acerca morava
e o pastor, de Alentejo
era: e Jano se chamava

Quando as fomes grandes foram
que Alentejo foi perdido
da aldeã que chamam Torrão
foi este pastor fogido:
Levava um pouco de gado
que lhe ficou de outro muito
que lhe morreu de cansado
que Alentejo era enxuto
d’água, e mui seco de prado

Toda a terra foi perdida
no campo do Tejo só
achava o gado guarida
ver Alentejo era um dó:
E Jano, pera salvar
o gado que lhe ficou,
foi esta terra buscar,
e um cuidado levou,
outro foi ele lá achar

O dia que ali chegou
com seu gado e com seu fato
com tudo se agasalhou
em uma bicada de um mato:
E levando-o a pascer
o outro dia à ribeira
Joana acertou de ir ver,
que andava pela ribeira
do Tejo: a flores colher

Vestido branco trazia
um pouco afrontada andava
fermosa bem parecia
aos olhos de quem na olhava:
Jano em vendo-a foi pasmado
mas por ver que ela fazia
escondeu-se antre um prado:
Joana flores colhia
Jano colhia cuidado

Despois que ela teve as flores
já colhidas e escolhidas,
as desvariadas cores
com rosas entremetidas:
fez delas uma capela
e soltou os seus cabelos
que eram tão longos como ela
e de cada um a Jano em vê-los
lhe nascia uma querela

E em quanto aquisto fazia
Joana: o seu gado andava
por dentro da água fria
todo após quem o guiava:
Dum pato grande era guia
e todo junto em carreira
ora rio acima ia,
ora, na mesma maneira
o rio abaixo descia

Joana como assentou
a capela: foi com a mão
à cabeça, e atentou
se estava em boa feição:
Não ficando satisfeita
do que da mão presumia
partiu-se dali direita
para onde o rio fazia
d’água: uma mansa, colheita

Chegando à beira do rio,
as patas logo vieram
todas uma e uma, em fio,
que toda a água moveram:
De quanto ela já folgou
com aquestes gasalhados
Tanto entonces lhe pesou
e com pedras e com brados
d’ali longe as enxotou

Depois que elas foram idas
e que a água assossegou
Joana as abas erguidas
entrar pel’água ordenou,
E assentando-se então
as çapatas descalçou
e pondo-as sobre o chão
por dentro d’água entrou
E a Jano polo coração

Em quanto com passos quedos
Joana pela água ia
antre uns desejos e medos
Jano onde estava ardia:
Não sabia se falasse
se saísse, se estivesse
que o amor mandava que ousasse
e por que a não perdesse
fazia que arreceasse

Dizem que naqueste meo
se esteve Joana olhando
e descobrindo o seu seo
olhou-se, e dixe um ai dando:
Eu guardo patas coitada
não sei onde isto há de ir ter
mais era eu pera guardada
que concerto foi este ser
fermosa, e mal empregada

Em aquisto Jano ouvindo
não se pôde em si sofrer
que d’antre as ervas saindo
se não lançasse a correr:
Joana quando sentiu
os estrompidos de Jano
e que se virou e o viu
temor do presente dano
lhe deu pés com que fugiu

Mui perto estava o casal
Onde vivia o pai dela
que fez ir mais longe o mal
que Jano teve de vê-la:
Mas o medo que causou
Joana partir-se assi
tanto as mãos lhe embaraçou
que a çapata esquerda ali
com a pressa lhe ficou

Jano quando viu, e olhou
Que nenhum remédio havia
pera o lugar se tornou
aonde ela n’água se via:
E vendo a çapata estar
no areal, à beira d’água
foi correndo a abraçar
tomando-a cresceu-lhe a mágoa
e começou de chorar

Toda a çapata e os peitos
em lagrimas se banharam
muitos foram os respeitos
que tanto choro causaram:
Encostado ao seu cajado
a çapata na outra mão
despois de um longo cuidado
de dentro do coração
começou falar cansado

Jano
Despojo da mais fermosa
cousa, que viram meus olhos
pera eles sois uma rosa
e pera o coração abrolhos:
Çapata deixada aqui
pera mal de outro mor mal
quem te leixou, leva a mi,:
que troca tão desigual
mais pois assi é seja assim

Agora hei vinte e um anos
E nunca inda ‘té agora
Me acorda de sentir danos
Os deste meu gado em fora:
E hoje per caso estranho
não sei em que hora aqui vim
cobrei cuidado tamanho,
que aos outros todos pôs fim
eu mesmo a mim mesmo estranho

Antes que este mal viesse
que me tantos vai mostrando
que alguns cuidados tivesse
não me matavam cuidando,
Agora por meus pecados
e segundo em mi vou vendo
não podem ser outros fados
meus cuidados não entendo
e moiro-me assi de cuidados

Dentro de meu pensamento
há tanta contrariedade
que sento contra o que sento
vontade, e contra vontade:
Estou em tanto desvairo,
que não me entendo comigo
donde esperarei repairo
que vejo grande o perigo
E muito mor o contrario

Quem me trouxe a esta terra
alhea, onde guardada
me estava tamanha guerra  
e a esperança levada:
comigo me estou espantado
como em tão pouco me dei
mas cuidando nisto estando,
os olhos com que outrem olhei
de mim, se estavam vingando

E por meu mal ser mor: inda
de mim tenho o agravo mor
que da minha mágoa infinda
eu fui parte e causador,
Que se me não alevantara
d’antre as ervas onde estava
mais dos meus olhos gozara
e já que assi se ordenava
isto ao menos me ficara

Desastres cuidava eu já,
quando eu ontem aqui cheguei
que a vós e á ventura má,
ambos acabava e errei:
Triste que me parecia
que o meu gado remediado
comigo bem me haveria
e estava-me ordenado
est’outro mal que inda havia

O mal, não vos sabe a vós
quem me vos a mim causou
tristes dos meus olhos sós
que trouveram aonde estou:
Olhos: acerto, lugar
ribeira mor das ribeiras
que levam as águas ao mar
vós me sereis verdadeiras
testemunhas do pesar

Autor
E em dizendo isto parece
trasportou-se no seu mal
e como a quem o ar falece
caiu naquele areal:
Grande espaço se passou
que esteve ali sem sentido
e neste meo chegou
um pastor seu conhecido
e que dormia cuidou

Franco de Sandovir era
o seu nome, e buscava
uma frauta que perdera
que ele mais que a si amava:
Este era aquele pastor
a quem Celia muito amou
ninfa do maior primor
que em Mondego se banhou
e que cantava milhor

E a frauta sua era aquela
que lhe Celia dera, quando
o desterraram por ela,
chorando ele, ela chorando:
Viera ele ali mora
porque achou aquelas terras
mais conformes ao cuidar
d’ambas partes cercam serras,
no meu campos para olhar

Doutro tempo conhecidos
estes dous pastores eram
d’estranhas terras nascidos,
Não no bem que se quiseram;
E por aquesta razão
Tornou Franco a lhe notar
Como jazia no chão
e deu-lhe que suspeitar
o lugar e a feição

Muito esteve duvidando
o que aqui Franco faria
indo-se e Jano deixando
o coração lhe doía:
Também pera o acordar
não sabia se acertava
que Jano era no lugar
novo, e arreceava
em cabo de o anojar

Naquesta dúvida estando
Jano estava emborcado
dixe um suspiro dando
ai cuidado, e mais cuidado:
ouvindo-lhe isto dizer
Franco se ficou pasmado
e tornando-o milhor ver
de sob seu esquerdo lado
viu-lh’a çapata ter

Suspeitou logo o que era,
(que era também namorado)
e no que Jano dixera
se houve por certificado
Naquisto Jano acordou
Quando viu Franco estar
Sem fala um pouco ficou
Franco, após o saudar
Falar-lhe assi começou

Franco Cuidava eu agora Jano
Que estavas em outra parte
E polo teu, aqueste ano
me pesava ir por esta arte:
Dessejava ver-te aqui
quando me contava alguém
a seca grande que hai
em Alentejo, e porém
não quisera eu ver-te assi

Conta-me que mal foi este
que tão demudado estás
ou que houveste ou perdeste
se há remédio  havê-lo-ás:
Faz Jano então por se erguer
não podendo de cansado
foi-lhe a mão, Franco, estender
e a um freixo encostado
lhe começou responder

Jano
Vim a estes campos que vejo
por dar vida a este meu gado
vi acabado um desejo,
outro maior começado:
Às minhas vacas dei vida
e a mim a fui tirar
a profecia é cumprida
que me Pierio foi dar
vendo-me a barba pungida

Autor
De Pierio vai grã fama
(dixe Franco) antre os pastores
todos por amigos chama
e dizem que é dado a amores,
Rogo-te Jano me digas
pois te ele avisou primeiro
como cobraste fadigas
que ouço que é mui verdadeiro
pera amigos e amigas

Jano
Tão cansado, respondeu
de um cuidado, Franco, me acho
que m’agora aqui nasceu
que até na voz tenho empacho,
Aos que hão de aquecer
não pode homem resistir
que o há de ser, há de ser
não se lhe pode fugir,
defender, nem esconder

Mas por que Franco, contigo
desabafo eu em falar
por que sei que és meu amigo
tudo te quero contar:
Nem remédio nem conforto
não te hei Franco de pedir
que do mal em que estou posto
não me espero de remir
senão despois que for morto

Dia era de um grão vodo
que a um santo se fazia
onde ia o povo todo
por ver e por romaria,
Lembra-me que andava eu então
vestido todo de novo
ao ombro um chapeirão
que pasmava todo o povo
com um cajado na mão

Tomando-me pelo braço
Pierio, então me levou
d’ali um grande pedaço
onde milhor sombra achou:
E mandando-me assentar
ele também se assentou
e antes de começar
pera mim um pouco olhou
e a voltas de chorar

Pierio
Vejo-te (me dixe) Jano,
dos bens do mundo abastado
Mas contando ano e ano
fico de todo cortado:
Vejo-te lá pela idade
de nuve negra cercado
vejo-te sem liberdade
de tua terra desterrado
e mais de tua vontade

Em terra que inda não viste,
pelo que nela hás de ver,
vejo-te o coração triste
pera em dias que viver,
Hás de morrer de uma dor
de que agora andas bem fora
por isso vive em temor
que não sabe homem aquela hora
em que lhe há de vir o amor

Não pode já longe vir
Jano aquisto que te digo
vejo-te a barba pungir
olha como andas contigo:
À terra estranha irás
por teu gado não perderes
longos males passarás
por uns mui breves prazeres
que verás ou não verás

(E dando um pouco á cabeça,
Á maneira d’anojado)
por teu bem porém te cresça
a barba (dixe) de honrado:
Treslada-o no coração
isto que te aqui direi
que ainda que te aqui direi
que ainda alguns tempos virão
Jano, que te alembrarei
mande Deus que seja em vão

Por cobrares a fazenda
a ti mesmo perderás
perda que não tem emenda
despois quando o saberás:
Nos campos de uma ribeira
onde vales há a lugares
te está guardada a primeira
causa destes teus pesares
noutra parte a derradeira

Jeitos em cousas pequenas
louros cabelos ondados
porão pera sempre em penas
a ti e a teus cuidados:
Falas cheas de desdém
de presunção cheas delas
cousas que outras cousas têm
te causarão as querelas
de que morrer te convém

De todo o que te hei contado
todo casi aconteceu
que o que ainda não é passado
Polo passado se creu:
Agora dantes pouco há
viram meus olhos que foram
quem mos leva após si lá
a alma a vida se me foram
desprezaram-se de mi já

Autor
Um cão que Franco trazia
de grande faro entramentes
deu com a frauta onde jazia
e trouxe-a então antre os dentes:
Vendo-a Franco alvoroçou-se
e foi correndo ai cão
que nos pés alevantou-se
e deu-lhe a frauta na mão
e após aquilo espojou-se

Franco
Escontra Jano tornou
Então Franco assi dizendo
quem vê o que dessejou,
não se alembra de al em o vendo:
Fui-te a palavra cortar
mas d’aquisto dá tu a culpa
a quem a eu não posso dar
Ou Jano por ti me desculpa
pois sabes que é dessejar

Jano
De cousa que muito queiras
deve essa frauta de ser,
dixe Jano, são primeiras,
Lhe tornou Franco a dizer:
Quem te tal dom otorgou,
lhe dixe Jano após isto
a muito a ti te obrigou
a la fé grão mestre nisto
deves ser, se o cão não errou

Canta, Franco, alguma cousa
ama a musica a tristeza
veremos se me repousa
onde a mágoa tem firmeza;
Dixe Franco certamente
cantarei pola vontade
te fazer como a doente
inda Jano que à verdade,
a minha é chorar somente

Franco Quero-te cantar aquela
que ontem, depois que perdi
a frauta cantei sem ela
à noite quando me vi,
Cansado de não na achar
mais muito que de buscá-la
me fui eu ontem lançar
mas Jano faço-te fala
que não pude olho cerrar

Lá despois da noute mea,
quando tudo se calava
comecei em fala chea,
um moucho me acompanhava:
De longe me parecia
não sei se me enganava eu
que ele a mim não me respondia
com um ai! grande como o meu
mas o canto assi dizia

Cantiga
Perdido e desterrado
que farei onde me irei
depois de desesperado
outra mor mágoa achei

Desconsolado de mim
em terra alhea alongado
onde por remédio vim
e repairo do meu gado:
Mas Ó mal aventurado
de mim sem consolação
temo que há de ser forçado
pois que fui tão mal fadado
matar-me com minha mão

Que conta darei eu agora
a quem não me ha de pedir
que desculpa porei ora
a quem não me há de ouvir:
Frauta dom da mais querida
que cobre esta noute escura
frauta minha sois perdida
façam-me uma sepultura
que muito ha que estou sem vida

E ponham na sepultura
letras que digam desta arte
a da alma está em outra parte

Se aprouver aos longos anos
e aos tempos que hão de vir
que destes graves meus danos
venha Celia parte ouvir:
Lá onde triste estiver
se ela consigo apartada
lágrimas ter não puder
será minha alma pagada
ou o que então de mim houver

Inda que não queira nada
tudo é menos de passar
que lá os olhos soem levar

Fugiram contando os dias,
Fizeram-se as noutes sós
pera os tristes como nós

Jano esta é a cantiga,
ca a derradeira cri que era
e por sair de fadiga
confesso-te que o quisera:
Mas se a lama e entendimento
não morrem com o corpo, a mágoa
me ficará: vamo-nos que sento
que é tempo do gado ir à água
também tem tempo o tromento
Close

Second Eclogue

Between the rivers Tagus
and Guadiana, there lived,
it’s said, a shepherd lost
in love for one Joana.
The maiden kept ducks
along the Tagus’s banks,
her father’s house nearby.
The shepherd’s name was Jano,    
he hailed from Alentejo.            

When famine swept the land,
laying it all to waste,
the shepherd, seeking refuge,
fled Torrão, his village.
He took with him the remnants
of his once-great flock,
the rest dead of exhaustion.
The drought-struck Alentejo
was rather poor in pasture.

Everywhere was the piteous
sight of barren fields!
Only in the Tagus’s
meadows could his flock
find relief. And so Jano,            
to save his dwindling herd,
set out for land to graze on.
The heart he held was troubled,
and trouble was waiting ahead.            

The day that he arrived    
with goats and sheep in tow,
he pitched camp at the edge            
of a wood. The next morning,
while taking his flock to feed
along the river’s margins,
he laid eyes on Joana,
out picking the flowers
that lined the Tagus’s banks.    

The dress she wore was white,
her cheeks were lightly flushed,
To Jano, his eyes agog,
she looked fair and lovely.
Though smitten at first sight,
he crouched behind the reeds,
admiring her from a distance.
Joana gathered flowers,

in Jano passion gathered.    
After she had collected
her flowers and selected
the various shades, weaving
the blossoms together with roses,
she made a garland, and let
her hair fall: those  tresses
were as long as she was tall.
Every lock of her hair
was awakening Jano’s desire.
                                    
As Joana tidied her hair,
her flock of hens waddled
into the cool water,
guided by a huge mallard.
They swam, now upriver,
all in one direction,
now swiftly swam downstream,
together in single file.

Joana placed the garland
on her head, stroking it
with her hands to see if
all sat perfectly in place. 
Not quite satisfied
with what her fingers revealed,
straight away she went  
to where the river formed
a cove of placid water.

No sooner had she reached
the bank than her ducks came
flocking towards her, one after
the other, splashing wildly.
Initially she’d delighted
in these shows of affection,
quickly her heart grew heavy.    
Flinging rocks and jeers,
she shooed the ducks away.

Once they were all gone,
and the water calm again,
Joana tucked her skirt up,
preparing for a swim.        
She sat upon the bank,         
carefully removing her slippers,            
placing each on the ground.        
Then into the water she went,
and deep into Jano’s heart.                

As Joana took delicate
steps into the river,
Jano kept utterly still,
ablaze with desire and fear.
Whether to speak, run,
stay put — he didn’t know.
Love demanded boldness,    
and yet the very thought of
losing her stirred up dread.     
                
All this time Joana
stood gazing at her reflection.
Staring at her bosom,        
she gave a sigh and said:            
“What torment! A keeper             
of ducks, I should be kept.                 
Where is my life going?
What cruel sense of harmony:
to be fair and drudging away!
                             
Hearing these words Jano
couldn’t contain himself.
Having no other choice,
he burst out the grassy bank.
Joana, feeling the thunderous        
crash of Jano’s footsteps,             
turned and saw his face.
Sensing the danger at hand,                     
she swiftly ran toward home.
                
The house where her father lived
was near, which plunged Jano
further into the despair
born of their encounter.
The same fear that had urged
Joana’s feet forward  
also completely seized
her hands — and in her haste
she grabbed only one slipper.

Looking around Jano
saw there was no remedy,
turning his gaze to where
Joana had studied her image.
When he spotted her slipper
on top the pebbly shore,
he raced over to retrieve it.
Squeezing it in his arms,
he felt his sorrow grow,

And began to weep, bathing
his chest and the slipper in tears.
Many were the reasons
for his anguished weeping.
Leaning against his staff,
holding the slipper tightly,
Jano paused for a moment
then he spoke from the heart,
exhausted and teary-eyed.

Jano
“O remnant of the fairest
thing that I’ve ever seen,
to my eyes you are a rose,        
and to my heart, thistles.
Slipper cruelly forgotten,         
remembering cruel passion,                
who left you sweeps me away—
what an unfair exchange!
Alas, that’s the way it must be.     

“In my twenty-one years            
I can’t remember feeling
even a pang of sorrow,    
my flock’s troubles aside.     
Today, by some strange fate,
— I don’t know when exactly—,
I was racked by a yearning        
that eclipsed my other cares,
becoming estranged myself.
        
“Before this present sorrow,            
which only multiplies,
although I had my cares,
the caring didn’t kill me.
But now it’s far too late,
I sense the change within,
my fate’s already sealed.
I do not grasp my anguish,        
and languish of this passion.  
 
 “All I think is riddled
with glaring contradictions:
I oppose what I desire,
while desiring the opposite.
What I feel is so muddled,
I’m at odds with myself.     
Where might I look for relief?
I know the danger is grave—
graver is my confusion.                
                
“Who brought me to this strange
land, where an all-out war 
awaited me and where I had
my hope taken away?        
I scarcely can believe it:
Here I am, reduced
to tears, passion’s slave.
The eyes with which I glimpsed
my beloved are taking revenge.        


“My sorrow is greater still:
I brought this all on myself,
culprit and victim of infinite        
suffering. Had I only
stayed hidden in the reeds,    
I would have feasted my eyes
on her beauty, and then —
since it has to be this way —,
at least I’d have my memory.        

“Disaster upon disaster!
Yesterday I came here,
thinking my troubles gone.
Oh how I was mistaken!
Though I’d begun to hope
that, with my flock restored,
some good might come my way,
sadly, Fortune willed
that I should suffer on.

“Accursed love! Who made me
love's prisoner knows none.
My sad, lonely eyes,
having met her gaze
on the banks of this river    
that stretches unto infinity,
carrying water to sea:    
you’ll be the faithful witnesses
to all my weighty sorrows.
    
author
Having said these words,                    
transported by his passion,    
Jano fell on the sand,
like a man starved of air.                 
After some time had gone by,
Jano still lying senseless,
a shepherd he used to know
passed by, noting the man
fast asleep on the ground. 

Franco of Sandovir
was his name—searching
for a flute he had lost
but loved better than life,        
this shepherd was adored
by none less than Celia,        
that finest of nymphs who bathed
in the Mondego’s waters,
hers the sweetest of voices.

She gave the flute to Franco         
when he was leaving for exile
—imposed on him for his love—,
he weeping as she wept.            
He had come here to live,
finding the landscape appropriate
for his aching heart:    
rugged hills on all sides,
open fields to gaze on.    

Born to very little
in villages far apart,
these two shepherds had been
friends in bygone days.
For this reason Franco
turned to take another  
look at the man lying
on the ground, sensing
that something was amiss.
                            
Franco struggled greatly          
deciding what to do—
Were he to leave Jano
behind, his heart would ache.
Nor did he think it wise             
to rouse his friend awake.
With Jano being asleep
in an unfamiliar place,
he feared that he might startle.

Franco wrestling with doubt,
Jano turned on his back.
Heaving a sigh, he said,
“All I do is suffer!”
When he heard these words,    
Franco turned around
in astonishment, noticing
the slipper tucked gingerly
beneath Jano’s left arm.

He suspected what it was,         
for he too was in love.
In Jano’s bitter words
he’d all the proof he needed.    
Jano, now fully alert,
realizing it was Franco,
stared in bewildered silence.
Franco greeted him warmly
and with these words began:    

Franco
“Why Jano, I had thought
you lived in other parts.
I feared, for you and your flock,
the year might go this way.
When I caught word of the drought
now sweeping Alentejo,
I hoped I’d see you here,
though certainly not in this state.

“Tell me what harm’s been done
that you should be so changed?     
What trouble found? Thing lost?
If there’s a cure, you’ll have it.”
When Jano, still quite weak,
tried to get up but stumbled,
Franco held out his hand.
Leaning against the trunk
of an ash tree Jano said:

Jano
“I came to the fields before me
to give life to my flock.
I slaked one desire only            
to know greater thirst.
To my cattle I gave life,
having taken my own!        
The prophecy’s been fulfilled,
as revealed by Pierio,        
when my first beard came in.

Author
“Among shepherds,”  said Franco,
“His reputation precedes him.
He considers all his friends;    
He’s given, they say, to affairs.
Now, Jano, tell me this,          
if he warned you in advance,        
why this present hardship?
I hear he’s an honest friend                    
to men and women both.”

Jano
“Franco, I’ve grown so weary,        
of the sorrow I’ve found
since coming to this place,        
I can feel the strain in my voice.
Whatever fortune brings,
A man can’t resist his fate,
What will be, will be—
There’s no escaping it, no point
fighting it, no hiding away.

“But with you, dear Franco,
I can freely vent my pain.
Knowing you to be a friend,
I wish to tell you everything.
I don’t ask that you provide
comfort or remedy, Franco.
Fr I can’t hope to be saved            
from the trouble I’m in,
at least not till I die.

“It was a saint’s day feast:
all the people huddled
together, pilgrims come
from far and wide to see.
That day I remember dressing
in all new clothes, draped on
my shoulder was a woolen
hood coveted by the crowd.
In my hand I held my staff.
        
“Taking me by the arm,    
Pierio led me some distance,
to a well-shaded grove.
Telling me to take a seat
and sitting down next to me,
he paused and stared a while,
not saying a word, looking
on the verge of tears.

Pierio
“Jano,” he said, “I see
you don’t lack for worldly goods.
But with each passing year
my outlook grows more grim.    
I see a black cloud looming.
now that you’re of age,
I see you stripped of freedom,
in exile far from home,
still farther from your will.     

“In a land you’ve yet to see,
you’ll catch sight of something             
that fills your heart with sorrow
for the rest of your days.
You’ll die of an affliction
that’s now just a distant threat.
Live, therefore, in fear,
for no man knows the hour 
when love will choose to strike.    

“Jano, the things I’ve said
can’t be very far away:
I see the down on your lip;
Look at how you’re acting.            
You’ll travel to a strange land
so as not to lose your flock,
enduring bitter hardships            
for the briefest of pleasures,    
so you’ll see, should you choose.”        
                     
Pierio shook his head,
a stern look on his face.
“Now, for your own sake,
act with manly honor,
and etch onto your heart
the words I’m about to say.
Some hard days lie ahead,
Jano, I must remind you.
May God prove me wrong!”

“In trying to save your flock,
you’ll become lost to yourself—
a loss that’s beyond repair
by the time it registers.
In the fields by the river,    
among valleys, there lurks                
your suffering’s first cause.
Elsewhere you’ll meet your demise:

“Her dainty mannerisms,
her wavy blonde hair
will subject your heart and mind
to never-ending punishment.    
Words laced with disdain,      
words uttered in scorn,  
a vast array of injuries —
it’ll all make you complain
so bitterly, you’d rather die.”

Jano
“Nearly all that I’ve said            
happened as predicted.
What’s not yet come to pass,
the past has set in motion.
Just a short while ago,
I caught sight of a lady
my eyes keep searching for.
My life and soul, she’s gone,
having deemed me unworthy.”
                    

Author            
While Jano spoke, a bloodhound
belonging to Franco found
the missing flute, clutching it
with its teeth. When he saw,
bursting with joy, Franco
ran to retrieve the flute.
Standing on its hind legs,
the dog placed it in his hands,
proceeding to roll on its back.

Franco turned to Jano,
then he said these words:
“When he sees what he’s pined for,
a man forgets all else.
I cut your story short—
for that you’ll have to blame
whom I can’t, or forgive me
yourself, Jano. You know
what it means to be in love.”     
 

“That flute must be dear to you
as few things are,” said Jano.
“Indeed, nothing’s dearer,”    
Franco said in response.
“Whoever gave you that        
must have you in her debt,”
Jano said to Franco,
“Truly you must play well ,
unless the dog got it wrong.”
                        
“Sing something, Franco,
sadness loves a song!                
Let us see if your music
can’t soothe my bitter sorrow.”
“Of course,” Franco said,
“I will sing for you, Jano,
as one sings for an ailing man.
Although truth be told,    
my song is but a wail.”            

“I would like for you to hear
the song I sang last night,
after I had lost my flute,
left with only my voice.
When at last I went to bed,
I wasn’t tired of searching,
but weary of finding nothing.
Now, Jano, I mean it,
I couldn’t shut my eyes.”

“There, in the deep of night,
when all was utterly still,
I belted out my song,
an owl kept me company.    
From his faraway perch,
—perhaps I only imagined it—
the owl would respond with sighs
as heavy as my own.
At any rate, here goes.”

SONG
Wandering in exile I ask:
What to do, where to go?
After the deepest despair,
I’ve found the greatest sorrow.

The anguish! I’m a roving
stranger in remote lands,
to which I came in search
of refuge for my flock!
I, to whom cruel fortune        
affords no consolation,              
fear that, being ill-fated,
I will one day be made
to die by my own hand.

How to explain myself
to one not here to ask me?          
How to beg forgiveness
of one who cannot hear me?
O gift of my beloved,
whose absence shrouds the night,         
My flute, lost forever!    
Make a grave and bury me:
I perished long ago… 
And upon my tombstone,
let these words be written:        
In her heart lies my soul.    

If on a distant day
in years to come, Celia,
wherever she may be,
having heard the smallest
portion of all I suffered,
were to fall to pieces,
unable to hold back tears—
then would my soul be sated,
or whatever remains of me.

Though I ask for nothing,
since I suffer so greatly,
let my eyes drift in reverie.
                                                        
Day after day slips by.    
These lonely nights were made
for anguished spirits like ours.         
                    
“That’s the song, dear Jano,
I believed it was my last;
I confess I hoped it’d mark
the end of all my suffering.
If mind and soul don’t perish            
with the body, my sorrow            
will remain. Let us go,
It’s time the flock grazed,    
Torment too has its season.”    

Second Eclogue

Between the rivers Tagus
and Guadiana, there lived,
it’s said, a shepherd lost
in love for one Joana.
The maiden kept ducks
along the Tagus’s banks,
her father’s house nearby.
The shepherd’s name was Jano,    
he hailed from Alentejo.            

When famine swept the land,
laying it all to waste,
the shepherd, seeking refuge,
fled Torrão, his village.
He took with him the remnants
of his once-great flock,
the rest dead of exhaustion.
The drought-struck Alentejo
was rather poor in pasture.

Everywhere was the piteous
sight of barren fields!
Only in the Tagus’s
meadows could his flock
find relief. And so Jano,            
to save his dwindling herd,
set out for land to graze on.
The heart he held was troubled,
and trouble was waiting ahead.            

The day that he arrived    
with goats and sheep in tow,
he pitched camp at the edge            
of a wood. The next morning,
while taking his flock to feed
along the river’s margins,
he laid eyes on Joana,
out picking the flowers
that lined the Tagus’s banks.    

The dress she wore was white,
her cheeks were lightly flushed,
To Jano, his eyes agog,
she looked fair and lovely.
Though smitten at first sight,
he crouched behind the reeds,
admiring her from a distance.
Joana gathered flowers,

in Jano passion gathered.    
After she had collected
her flowers and selected
the various shades, weaving
the blossoms together with roses,
she made a garland, and let
her hair fall: those  tresses
were as long as she was tall.
Every lock of her hair
was awakening Jano’s desire.
                                    
As Joana tidied her hair,
her flock of hens waddled
into the cool water,
guided by a huge mallard.
They swam, now upriver,
all in one direction,
now swiftly swam downstream,
together in single file.

Joana placed the garland
on her head, stroking it
with her hands to see if
all sat perfectly in place. 
Not quite satisfied
with what her fingers revealed,
straight away she went  
to where the river formed
a cove of placid water.

No sooner had she reached
the bank than her ducks came
flocking towards her, one after
the other, splashing wildly.
Initially she’d delighted
in these shows of affection,
quickly her heart grew heavy.    
Flinging rocks and jeers,
she shooed the ducks away.

Once they were all gone,
and the water calm again,
Joana tucked her skirt up,
preparing for a swim.        
She sat upon the bank,         
carefully removing her slippers,            
placing each on the ground.        
Then into the water she went,
and deep into Jano’s heart.                

As Joana took delicate
steps into the river,
Jano kept utterly still,
ablaze with desire and fear.
Whether to speak, run,
stay put — he didn’t know.
Love demanded boldness,    
and yet the very thought of
losing her stirred up dread.     
                
All this time Joana
stood gazing at her reflection.
Staring at her bosom,        
she gave a sigh and said:            
“What torment! A keeper             
of ducks, I should be kept.                 
Where is my life going?
What cruel sense of harmony:
to be fair and drudging away!
                             
Hearing these words Jano
couldn’t contain himself.
Having no other choice,
he burst out the grassy bank.
Joana, feeling the thunderous        
crash of Jano’s footsteps,             
turned and saw his face.
Sensing the danger at hand,                     
she swiftly ran toward home.
                
The house where her father lived
was near, which plunged Jano
further into the despair
born of their encounter.
The same fear that had urged
Joana’s feet forward  
also completely seized
her hands — and in her haste
she grabbed only one slipper.

Looking around Jano
saw there was no remedy,
turning his gaze to where
Joana had studied her image.
When he spotted her slipper
on top the pebbly shore,
he raced over to retrieve it.
Squeezing it in his arms,
he felt his sorrow grow,

And began to weep, bathing
his chest and the slipper in tears.
Many were the reasons
for his anguished weeping.
Leaning against his staff,
holding the slipper tightly,
Jano paused for a moment
then he spoke from the heart,
exhausted and teary-eyed.

Jano
“O remnant of the fairest
thing that I’ve ever seen,
to my eyes you are a rose,        
and to my heart, thistles.
Slipper cruelly forgotten,         
remembering cruel passion,                
who left you sweeps me away—
what an unfair exchange!
Alas, that’s the way it must be.     

“In my twenty-one years            
I can’t remember feeling
even a pang of sorrow,    
my flock’s troubles aside.     
Today, by some strange fate,
— I don’t know when exactly—,
I was racked by a yearning        
that eclipsed my other cares,
becoming estranged myself.
        
“Before this present sorrow,            
which only multiplies,
although I had my cares,
the caring didn’t kill me.
But now it’s far too late,
I sense the change within,
my fate’s already sealed.
I do not grasp my anguish,        
and languish of this passion.  
 
 “All I think is riddled
with glaring contradictions:
I oppose what I desire,
while desiring the opposite.
What I feel is so muddled,
I’m at odds with myself.     
Where might I look for relief?
I know the danger is grave—
graver is my confusion.                
                
“Who brought me to this strange
land, where an all-out war 
awaited me and where I had
my hope taken away?        
I scarcely can believe it:
Here I am, reduced
to tears, passion’s slave.
The eyes with which I glimpsed
my beloved are taking revenge.        


“My sorrow is greater still:
I brought this all on myself,
culprit and victim of infinite        
suffering. Had I only
stayed hidden in the reeds,    
I would have feasted my eyes
on her beauty, and then —
since it has to be this way —,
at least I’d have my memory.        

“Disaster upon disaster!
Yesterday I came here,
thinking my troubles gone.
Oh how I was mistaken!
Though I’d begun to hope
that, with my flock restored,
some good might come my way,
sadly, Fortune willed
that I should suffer on.

“Accursed love! Who made me
love's prisoner knows none.
My sad, lonely eyes,
having met her gaze
on the banks of this river    
that stretches unto infinity,
carrying water to sea:    
you’ll be the faithful witnesses
to all my weighty sorrows.
    
author
Having said these words,                    
transported by his passion,    
Jano fell on the sand,
like a man starved of air.                 
After some time had gone by,
Jano still lying senseless,
a shepherd he used to know
passed by, noting the man
fast asleep on the ground. 

Franco of Sandovir
was his name—searching
for a flute he had lost
but loved better than life,        
this shepherd was adored
by none less than Celia,        
that finest of nymphs who bathed
in the Mondego’s waters,
hers the sweetest of voices.

She gave the flute to Franco         
when he was leaving for exile
—imposed on him for his love—,
he weeping as she wept.            
He had come here to live,
finding the landscape appropriate
for his aching heart:    
rugged hills on all sides,
open fields to gaze on.    

Born to very little
in villages far apart,
these two shepherds had been
friends in bygone days.
For this reason Franco
turned to take another  
look at the man lying
on the ground, sensing
that something was amiss.
                            
Franco struggled greatly          
deciding what to do—
Were he to leave Jano
behind, his heart would ache.
Nor did he think it wise             
to rouse his friend awake.
With Jano being asleep
in an unfamiliar place,
he feared that he might startle.

Franco wrestling with doubt,
Jano turned on his back.
Heaving a sigh, he said,
“All I do is suffer!”
When he heard these words,    
Franco turned around
in astonishment, noticing
the slipper tucked gingerly
beneath Jano’s left arm.

He suspected what it was,         
for he too was in love.
In Jano’s bitter words
he’d all the proof he needed.    
Jano, now fully alert,
realizing it was Franco,
stared in bewildered silence.
Franco greeted him warmly
and with these words began:    

Franco
“Why Jano, I had thought
you lived in other parts.
I feared, for you and your flock,
the year might go this way.
When I caught word of the drought
now sweeping Alentejo,
I hoped I’d see you here,
though certainly not in this state.

“Tell me what harm’s been done
that you should be so changed?     
What trouble found? Thing lost?
If there’s a cure, you’ll have it.”
When Jano, still quite weak,
tried to get up but stumbled,
Franco held out his hand.
Leaning against the trunk
of an ash tree Jano said:

Jano
“I came to the fields before me
to give life to my flock.
I slaked one desire only            
to know greater thirst.
To my cattle I gave life,
having taken my own!        
The prophecy’s been fulfilled,
as revealed by Pierio,        
when my first beard came in.

Author
“Among shepherds,”  said Franco,
“His reputation precedes him.
He considers all his friends;    
He’s given, they say, to affairs.
Now, Jano, tell me this,          
if he warned you in advance,        
why this present hardship?
I hear he’s an honest friend                    
to men and women both.”

Jano
“Franco, I’ve grown so weary,        
of the sorrow I’ve found
since coming to this place,        
I can feel the strain in my voice.
Whatever fortune brings,
A man can’t resist his fate,
What will be, will be—
There’s no escaping it, no point
fighting it, no hiding away.

“But with you, dear Franco,
I can freely vent my pain.
Knowing you to be a friend,
I wish to tell you everything.
I don’t ask that you provide
comfort or remedy, Franco.
Fr I can’t hope to be saved            
from the trouble I’m in,
at least not till I die.

“It was a saint’s day feast:
all the people huddled
together, pilgrims come
from far and wide to see.
That day I remember dressing
in all new clothes, draped on
my shoulder was a woolen
hood coveted by the crowd.
In my hand I held my staff.
        
“Taking me by the arm,    
Pierio led me some distance,
to a well-shaded grove.
Telling me to take a seat
and sitting down next to me,
he paused and stared a while,
not saying a word, looking
on the verge of tears.

Pierio
“Jano,” he said, “I see
you don’t lack for worldly goods.
But with each passing year
my outlook grows more grim.    
I see a black cloud looming.
now that you’re of age,
I see you stripped of freedom,
in exile far from home,
still farther from your will.     

“In a land you’ve yet to see,
you’ll catch sight of something             
that fills your heart with sorrow
for the rest of your days.
You’ll die of an affliction
that’s now just a distant threat.
Live, therefore, in fear,
for no man knows the hour 
when love will choose to strike.    

“Jano, the things I’ve said
can’t be very far away:
I see the down on your lip;
Look at how you’re acting.            
You’ll travel to a strange land
so as not to lose your flock,
enduring bitter hardships            
for the briefest of pleasures,    
so you’ll see, should you choose.”        
                     
Pierio shook his head,
a stern look on his face.
“Now, for your own sake,
act with manly honor,
and etch onto your heart
the words I’m about to say.
Some hard days lie ahead,
Jano, I must remind you.
May God prove me wrong!”

“In trying to save your flock,
you’ll become lost to yourself—
a loss that’s beyond repair
by the time it registers.
In the fields by the river,    
among valleys, there lurks                
your suffering’s first cause.
Elsewhere you’ll meet your demise:

“Her dainty mannerisms,
her wavy blonde hair
will subject your heart and mind
to never-ending punishment.    
Words laced with disdain,      
words uttered in scorn,  
a vast array of injuries —
it’ll all make you complain
so bitterly, you’d rather die.”

Jano
“Nearly all that I’ve said            
happened as predicted.
What’s not yet come to pass,
the past has set in motion.
Just a short while ago,
I caught sight of a lady
my eyes keep searching for.
My life and soul, she’s gone,
having deemed me unworthy.”
                    

Author            
While Jano spoke, a bloodhound
belonging to Franco found
the missing flute, clutching it
with its teeth. When he saw,
bursting with joy, Franco
ran to retrieve the flute.
Standing on its hind legs,
the dog placed it in his hands,
proceeding to roll on its back.

Franco turned to Jano,
then he said these words:
“When he sees what he’s pined for,
a man forgets all else.
I cut your story short—
for that you’ll have to blame
whom I can’t, or forgive me
yourself, Jano. You know
what it means to be in love.”     
 

“That flute must be dear to you
as few things are,” said Jano.
“Indeed, nothing’s dearer,”    
Franco said in response.
“Whoever gave you that        
must have you in her debt,”
Jano said to Franco,
“Truly you must play well ,
unless the dog got it wrong.”
                        
“Sing something, Franco,
sadness loves a song!                
Let us see if your music
can’t soothe my bitter sorrow.”
“Of course,” Franco said,
“I will sing for you, Jano,
as one sings for an ailing man.
Although truth be told,    
my song is but a wail.”            

“I would like for you to hear
the song I sang last night,
after I had lost my flute,
left with only my voice.
When at last I went to bed,
I wasn’t tired of searching,
but weary of finding nothing.
Now, Jano, I mean it,
I couldn’t shut my eyes.”

“There, in the deep of night,
when all was utterly still,
I belted out my song,
an owl kept me company.    
From his faraway perch,
—perhaps I only imagined it—
the owl would respond with sighs
as heavy as my own.
At any rate, here goes.”

SONG
Wandering in exile I ask:
What to do, where to go?
After the deepest despair,
I’ve found the greatest sorrow.

The anguish! I’m a roving
stranger in remote lands,
to which I came in search
of refuge for my flock!
I, to whom cruel fortune        
affords no consolation,              
fear that, being ill-fated,
I will one day be made
to die by my own hand.

How to explain myself
to one not here to ask me?          
How to beg forgiveness
of one who cannot hear me?
O gift of my beloved,
whose absence shrouds the night,         
My flute, lost forever!    
Make a grave and bury me:
I perished long ago… 
And upon my tombstone,
let these words be written:        
In her heart lies my soul.    

If on a distant day
in years to come, Celia,
wherever she may be,
having heard the smallest
portion of all I suffered,
were to fall to pieces,
unable to hold back tears—
then would my soul be sated,
or whatever remains of me.

Though I ask for nothing,
since I suffer so greatly,
let my eyes drift in reverie.
                                                        
Day after day slips by.    
These lonely nights were made
for anguished spirits like ours.         
                    
“That’s the song, dear Jano,
I believed it was my last;
I confess I hoped it’d mark
the end of all my suffering.
If mind and soul don’t perish            
with the body, my sorrow            
will remain. Let us go,
It’s time the flock grazed,    
Torment too has its season.”    
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