Love teaches me to feed on flames and tears;
to turn withered hope green through desire;
to re-enslave my heart each time Love frees
his noble face from that heavy disdain;
Love also teaches me to bear his weight
when I dream he’s there alluring, touching
me, and in the sweet encounter the pain’s
gone and my beloved enjoys my languors;
Sweet are these tears, delicious this passion.
How is this—that I have lost all hope saves
me—in the back of my mind the sense I
can renounce the desire coursing through
my body—that people honor torment
when you smile serenely. Thus Love teaches me.
- Vittoria Colonna