Giacomo Leopardi Canti XIV Alla Luna (To the Moon)

Translated by Steven J. Willett

This is the original manuscript of Alla Luna 1st. ed. 1819





O gracious moon, I can remember

that, now as the year turns, how on this hill

I came full of anguish to contemplate you:

and you, suspended then over these woods

as you are now, illumined everything.

But nebulous and trembling from the tears

that rose from my eyelids, to my view

appeared your face, so full of torment 

my life was: and is, and stays unchanged,

O my beloved moon. And yet still helps me

remembrance, and reckoning the age

of my sorrow. Oh how welcome comes

in youthful time, while long once more

is hope and memory brief in course,

the reminiscence of those past events—

though sad, and though agony endures.

O graziosa luna, io mi rammento
Che, or volge l’anno, sovra questo colle
Io venia pien d’angoscia a rimirarti:
E tu pendevi allor su quella selva
Siccome or fai, che tutta la rischiari.
Ma nebuloso e tremulo dal pianto
Che mi sorgea sul ciglio, alle mie luci
Il tuo volto apparia, che travagliosa
Era mia vita: ed è, né cangia stile,
O mia diletta luna. E pur mi giova
La ricordanza, e il noverar l’etate
Del mio dolore. Oh come grato occorre
Nel tempo giovanil, quando ancor lungo
La speme e breve ha la memoria il corso,
Il rimembrar delle passate cose,
Ancor che triste, e che l’affanno duri!

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2 Responses to Giacomo Leopardi Canti XIV Alla Luna (To the Moon)

  1. Steve says:

    Have you seen the detective series “Commisario Montalbano”?
    Filmed in Sicily.

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