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Happily now on classical soil I feel inspiration.
Voices from present and past speak here evocatively.
Heeding ancient advice, I leaf through the works of the Ancients
With an assiduous hand. Daily the pleasure's renewed.
Throughout the night, in a different way, I'm kept busy by Cupid—
If erudition is halved, rapture is doubled that way.
Do then I not become wise when I trace with my eye her sweet bosom's
Form, and the line of her hips stroke with my hand? I acquire,
As I reflect and compare, my first understanding of marble,
See with an eye that feels, feel with a hand that sees.
While my beloved, I grant it, deprives me of moments of daylight,
She in the nighttime hours gives compensation in full.
And we do more than just kiss; we prosecute reasoned discussions
(Should she succumb to sleep, that gives me time for my thoughts).
In her embrace—it's by no means unusual—I've composed poems
And the hexameter's beat gently tapped out on her back,
Fingertips counting in time with the sweet rhythmic breath of her slumber.
Air from deep in her breast penetrates mine and there burns.
Cupid, while stirring the flame in our lamp, no doubt thinks of those days when
For the triumvirs he similar service performed.