Sonnet 89

Estre indigent et donner tout le sien,
Se feindre un ris, avoir le cœur en pleinte,
Haïr le vray, aimer la chose feinte,
Posseder tout et ne jouir de rien :
Estre delivre et trainer son lien,
Estre vaillant et couarder de crainte,
Vouloir mourir et vivre par contrainte,
Et sans profit despendre tout son bien :
Avoir tousjours pour un servil hommage
La honte au front, en la main le dommage :
A ses pensers d’un courage hautain
Ourdir sans cesse une nouvelle trame,
Sont les effets qui logent en mon ame
L’espoir douteux et le tourment certain.
                                                                            To be poor yet give everything you own,
                                                                            To simulate a smile, while your heart is grieving,
                                                                            To hate the truth and like dissimulation,
                                                                            To possess everything and enjoy nothing;
                                                                            To be freed yet to keep your bonds,
                                                                            To be brave yet shiver with fear,
                                                                            To wish to die yet be forced to live,
                                                                            And profitless to spend all your goods;
                                                                            To have always, as your slave-like act of homage,
                                                                            Shame on your brow, loss in your hand ;
                                                                            In her thoughts, with proud courage,
                                                                            Endlessly to hear new intrigues:
                                                                            These are the things which lodge in my heart
                                                                            Uncertain hope and sure torture.



An extended and virtuoso collection of contrasting opposites. And, another contrast, one that ROnsard did not try to improve in later editions! Blanchemain and Marty-Laveaux print the same text.

About fattoxxon

Who am I? Lover of all sorts of music - classical, medieval, world (anything from Africa), world-classical (Uzbek & Iraqi magam for instance), and virtually anything that won't be on the music charts... Lover of Ronsard's poetry (obviously) and of sonnets in general. Reader of English, French, Latin & other literature. And who is Fattoxxon? An allusion to an Uzbek singer - pronounce it Patahan, with a very plosive 'P' and a throaty 'h', as in 'khan')

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