The Divine Comedy

English

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The Dark Forest. The Hill of Difficulty. The Panther, the Lion, and the Wolf. Virgil.

 

Midway upon the journey of our life

I found myself within a forest dark,

For the straight-forward pathway had been lost.

Ah me! how hard a thing it is to say

What was this forest savage, rough, and stern,

Which in the very thought renews the fear.

So bitter is it, death is little more;

But of the good to treat, which there I found,

Speak will I of the other things I saw there.

I cannot well repeat how there I entered,

So full was I of slumber at the moment

In which I had abandoned the true way.

But after I had reached a mountain's foot,

At that point where the valley terminated,

Which had with consternation pierced my heart,

Upward I looked, and I beheld its shoulders,

Vested already with that planet's rays

Which leadeth others right by every road.

Then was the fear a little quieted

That in my heart's lake had endured throughout

The night, which I had passed so piteously.

And even as he, who, with distressful breath,

Forth issued from the sea upon the shore,

Turns to the water perilous and gazes;

So did my soul, that still was fleeing onward,

Turn itself back to re-behold the pass

Which never yet a living person left.

After my weary body I had rested,

The way resumed I on the desert slope

Dante Alighieri - Данте Алигьери - دانتي أليغييري

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Dante Alighieri · English

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