Tuesday, November 17, 2015

This is a thriller night (15)

[7: 128]

Sì come cerva ch'assetata il passo
Mova a cercar d'acque lucenti e vive
Ove un bel fonte distillar d'un sasso
O vide un fiume tra frondose rive,
S'incontra i cani all'hor che 'l corpo lasso
Ristorar crede a l'onde, a l'ombre estive,
Si rivolge fuggendo, e sua paura
La stanchezza oblïar face e l'arsura
. . .

As a very thirsty doe who wanders
Looking for shining, living waters
Where she noticed a spring that leaks
Through rocks or a river between trees,
And meets hounds when she thought
She was about to enjoy waves and shadow,
So she turns and runs, and fear makes
Her forget about weariness and thirst
. . .

The whole stanza paraphrases the very beginning of Psalm 42 in a typical Tassean way, that is, 1. By adding details and stressing feelings, 2. By shifting the whole to a completely different context, 3. By enriching the text with literary cross-references, in this case the myth of Actaeon; 4. By giving the episode a tragical end.