Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Italy
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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Italy: Vols. XI–XIII.  1876–79.
 
Catania
Catania
Vincenzo da Filicaja (1642–1707)
 
Anonymous translation

THOU buried city, o’er thy site I muse!—
What! does no monumental stone remain
To say, “Here yawned the earthquake-riven plain,
Here stood Catania, and here Syracuse”?
Along thy sad and solitary sand        5
I seek thee in thyself, yet find instead
Naught but the dreadful stillness of the dead.
Startled and horror-struck, I wondering stand,
And cry: O, terrible, tremendous course
Of God’s decrees! I see it, and I feel it here:        10
Shall I not comprehend and dread its force?
Rise, ye lost cities! let your ruins rear
Their massy forms on high, portentous corse,
That trembling ages may behold and fear!
 
 
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