La Bella Simonetta
by T.S. Kerrigan
The Tuscan air was rarified
With casks of trebbiano wine,
With oranges, roasted pheasant, herbs.
I hadn’t come to drink and dine
That summer in the countryside.
Brown-eyed Venus, Brown-eyed Mary,
I came there with a lover’s plea.
I saw a pallor cloud your face
The moment when we rose to dance.
Your slender fingers left my grasp.
I knew your fate from that one glance;
My rival, Death, would take my place.
Brown-eyed Venus, brown-eyed Mary,
I felt you slip away from me.
A lutenist outside my door
Tonight plays those familiar songs
I must have heard a hundred times,
Of lovers’ virtues, lovers’ wrongs.
O Dio, let me hear no more.