Giacomo Leopardi: The Infinite

THIS lonely hill to me was ever dear,
This hedge, which shuts from view so large a part
Of the remote horizon. As I sit
And gaze, absorbed, I in my thought conceive
The boundless spaces that beyond it range,
The silence supernatural, and rest
Profound; and for a moment I am calm.
And as I listen to the wind, that through
These trees is murmuring, its plaintive voice
I with that infinite compare;
And things eternal I recall, and all
The seasons dead, and this, that round me lives,
And utters its complaint. Thus wandering
My thought in this immensity is drowned;
And sweet to me is shipwreck on this sea.


Written between 1819 an 1821. Translation by Frederick Townsend, published 1887.

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