Sonnet 96: To Laura in Life


Those pious lines wherein are finely met
Proofs of high genius and a spirit kind.
Had so much influence on my grateful mind
That instantly in hand my pen I set
To tell you that death's final blow-which yet
Shall me and every mortal surely find-
I have not felt, though I too nearly join'd
The confines of his realm without regret;
But I turn'd back again because I read
Writ o'er the threshold that the time to me
Of life predestinate was not all fled,
Though its last day and hour I could not see.
Then once more let your sad heart comfort know,
And love the living worth which dead it honoured so.

Francesco Petrarca: Translated by MacGregor


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