LUGETE, O VENERES CUPIDINESQUE ...
LOVERS OF LOVING AND ITS SPELL ...
Catullus (Gaius Valerius Catullus) trans. Christopher Pilling

Lugete, o Veneres Cupidinesque,
et quantum est hominum uenustiorum!
passer mortuus est meae puellae,
passer, deliciae meae puellae,
Quem plus illa oculis suis amabat.
Nam mellitus erat suamque norat

ipsam tam bene quam puella matrem;
nec sese a gremio illius mouebat,
sed circumsiliens modo huc modo illuc
ad solam dominam usque pipiabat.
Qui nunc it per iter tenebricosum
illuc, unde negant redire quemquam.

At vobis male sit, malae tenebrae
Orci, quae omnia bella deuoratis;
tam bellum mihi passerem abstulistis.
O factum male! o miselle passer!
Tua nunc opera meae puellae
flendo turgiduli rubent ocelli.

Lovers of loving and its spell,
Venus, all you Cupids too - shed
a tear for the pet she loved so well ...
Lesbia's darling sparrow's dead.

Dearer to her than any lover,
sweeter than honeycomb, it knew
its mistress as a baby its mother;
chirruping to her all day through,

hopping and flitting in her lap,
- it would not stray and cause concern,
but is hopping now down the dark dark path
up which none they say return.

Curse you, you shades of Orcus; go!
You swallow up each lovely thing,
you've robbed her of a pretty sparrow
and her eyes are puffy, red with crying.

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