CONSOLATIO PHILOSOPHIAE 3 metrum 5 TRUE POWER
Boethiustr. James Harpur




Qui se uolet esse potentem,
animos domet ille feroces
nec uicta libidine colla
foedis summittat habenis;
etenim licet Indica longe
tellus tua iura tremescat
et seruiat ultima Thyle,
tamen atras pellere curas
miserasque fugare querelas
non posse potentia non est.

‘All spirits are enslaved which serve things evil.’
.............................................................Shelley


To gain true power, tame your violence:
don’t let yourself be steered by vile lust.

So what if India treats you as her master
or if some distant land does what you ask her?

Unless you quit your grumbling and despair
you’ll find your power nothing but hot air.

Published in PN Review, vol. 34 no. 1

Transl. Copyright © James Harpur 2007


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