Monteverdi's Fourth Book of Madrigals
English Translations 
 
         
          Oh sorrowful parting! Oh my life’s end!

My love, this leaving leaves me wintering;
what once was warmed a bitter wind now bends,
where joys grew all is bare and nothing sings.
I do not die and yet I live the sorrow
of that final leaving – I mean Death
whose curlew cries, curling and uncurling, follow
through the half-light calling on cold breath.
Deathless dying, sick child of this leaving,
why now mother pain and nourish sadness?
Why give them life by suckling them with tears
and so condemn my heart to wander here,
forever dying in this wilderness
and far away from her forever grieving?

 

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

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