SiStan ChapLee

Friday, October 28, 2016

Whatcha gonna do now, Tancred? (14)

[16: 46]

Qual infermo talhor, ch'in sogno scorge
Drago o cinta di fiamme alta chimera,
Se ben sospetta, e 'n parte anco s'accorge
Che simulacro sia, non forma vera,
Pur desia di fuggir, tanto gli porge
Spavento la sembianza horrida e fera;
Tal il timido amante a pien non crede
A' falsi incanti, e pur s'arretra e cede.

As a sick man who in his dreams sees
A dragon or a tall, flaming chimera,
Even if he doubts and partly realizes
That that is appearance, not a true shape,
Yet he wants to flee, so great is the scare
Aroused by that horrid and fierce image;
The shocked lover, while not fully believing
In such magic illusions, keeps withdrawing.

Psychology, indeed an already Freudian psychology is one of the strong points of Tasso's modern approach to traditional literary subjects.