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By Roberta L. Payne

Presents a bilingual choice of ninety-two poems via thirty-five Italian poets, together with works of classicism and passionate decadentism, examples of crepuscularism

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May I see there only that whiteness of road, that one day I must go down among tired clangings of church bells ... Hide the faraway, hide them, carry them off to the flight of the heart! May I see the cypress there, only it, there, only this vegetable garden, near which my dog naps. The Weaver I sat myself down on the little bench as though before ... how many years has it been? She, like once upon a time, moved over to make room for me on the little bench. And not the sound of a word; only a smile all mercy.

La figlia dell’aria è muta; ma la figlia del limo lontana, la rana, canta nell’ombra più fonda, chi sa dove, chi sa dove! E piove su le tue ciglia, Ermïone. Piove su le tue ciglia nere sì che par tu pianga ma di piacere; non bianca ma quasi fatta virente, par da scorza tu esca. E tutta la vita è in noi fresca aulente, il cuor nel petto è come pèsca intatta, tra le pàlpebre gli occhi son come polle tra l’erbe, i denti negli alvèoli son come mandorle acerbe. E andiam di fratta in fratta, or congiunti or disciolti (e il verde vigor rude ci allaccia i mallèoli c’intrica i ginocchi) chi sa dove, chi sa dove!

Piango, e le dico: Come ho potuto, dolce mio bene, partir da te? 12 g i ova n n i pasco li the wall that has its cracks full of valerian. Hide the faraway: things are drunken with crying! May I see the two peach trees, the two apple trees, just them, which give their sweet honeys for that black bread of mine. Hide the faraway which want me to love and to go! May I see there only that whiteness of road, that one day I must go down among tired clangings of church bells ... Hide the faraway, hide them, carry them off to the flight of the heart!

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