Capitolo 17

Veronica Franco Under Revision

(A reproach to a disloyal lover.)

This letter your Veronica writes to you,
ungrateful lord and disloyal lover,
she who lives in constant mistrust of you.
Faithless man, you know full well
how many ways I've assured you of my love,
ways I never revealed to anyone else.
I deny in no way the merit you possess
in wisdom, "in courage, and in gentility,
and in the liberal arts, in which you're so skilled;
but my charm and my beauty,
whatever it may really be worth,
is still prized and valued by many noble souls.
Perhaps it is just good luck that this is so;
or perhaps I don't lack what is required
to lead willing spirits to catch on fire.
At least I don't have an unbending mind,
a foe to all pity; nor, like you, a heart
treacherous and cruel through and through.
Yet against all reason I feel love for you:
what you should rightly do for me
I do for you wrongly, knowing I do wrong......

[ll. 1-21; pp. 173]

If you have any suggestions or questions regarding these poems please email me

Franco, Veronica Poems and Selected Letters.
2010 Selected Poetry
The Poets Garret
Tir Na nOg Poetry Community