Monteverdi's Fourth Book of Madrigals
English Translations 
 
 
Beneath a sky-wide silence, when like a priest
the dark has closed the evening’s dying eyes,
and the world lies still and cold within its night,
a young man, sick with love, tilting his heart’s
small cup, pours out his sorrow to the stars.
Gazing up he cries:
Distant lights,
images of the idol I adore,
whose beauty brings each dusk a thousand souls
rushing soundlessly through corridors
to stare astonished from the floors of Heaven,
call softly to her through these quiet seas,
so looking up she too may glimpse the fires
of paradise, and seeing how I burn,
cup her hands and bathe my love with tears.

 

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Other Translations
 
(Book 5)
 
(Book 5)
 
(Book 5)
 
(Book 8)
 
(Book 3)

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