1706 / Campidoglio Square (Scanned version) / Rome


3 thoughts on “1706 / Campidoglio Square (Scanned version) / Rome

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  1. “How very happy I am here in Rome when I think of the bad days
    Far back there in the north, wrapped in a grayish light.
    Over my head there the heavens weighed down so dismal and gloomy;
    Colorless, formless, that world round this exhausted man lay.
    Seeking myself in myself, an unsatisfied spirit, I brooded,
    Spying out pathways dark, lost in dreary reflection.
    Here in an ather more clear now a luster encircles my forehead.
    Phoebus the god evokes forms, clear are his colors by day.
    Bright with the stars comes the evening, ringing with songs that are tender,
    And the glow of the moon, brighter than northern sun.
    What blessedness mortals may know! Am I now dreaming? Or welcomes
    Jupiter, Father, as guest—me, to ambrosial halls?
    See, I lie here extending my arms toward your knees. I am praying:
    Hospitality’s god, Jupiter Xenius! Hear:
    How I am come to this place I no longer can say—I was
    Seized up by Hebe. ‘Twas she led to this sacred hill.
    Did you command her a hero to seek and deliver before you ?
    May be she erred. Then forgive. Let her mistake profit me!
    Does not Fortuna, your daughter, when strewing her glorious presents,
    After the manner of girls, yield to each passing whim?
    You, O hospitable god, will by no means now banish a stranger
    From your Olympian heights back to the base earth again.
    “Poet, come to your senses!”—Forgive me, Jupiter, is not
    Rome’s Capitoline Hill second Olympus to you?
    Suffer me, Jupiter, here and let Hermes guide me at last then
    Past Cestius’ Tomb gently to Orkus below…”

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