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My Lady

Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz 1648 (San Miguel Nepantla) – 1695 (Mexico City)



(Español)
Perdite, señora, quiero
de mi silencio perdón,
si lo que ha sido atención
le hace parecer grosero.

Y no me podrás culpar
si hasta aquí mi proceder,
por ocuparse en querer,
se ha olvidado de explicar.

Que en mi amorosa pasión
no fue desuido, ni mengua,
quitar el uso a la lengua
por dárselo al corazón.

Ni de explicarme dejaba:
que, como la pasión mía
acá en el alma te vía,
acá en el alma te hablaba.

Y en esta idea notable
dichosamenta vivía,
porque en mi mano tenia
el fingirte favorable.

Con traza tan peregrina
vivió mi esperanza vana,
pues te pudo hacer humana
concibiéndote divina.

¡Oh, cuán loca llegué a verme
en tus dichosos amores,
que, aun fingidos, tus favroes
pudieron enloquecerme!

¡Oh, cómo, en tu sol hermoso
mi ardiente afecto encendido,
por cebarse en lo lucido,
olvidó lo peligroso!

Perdona, si atrevimiento
fue atreverme a tu ardor puro;
que no hay sagrado seguro
de culpas de pensamiento.

De esta manera engañaba
la loca esperanza mía,
y dentro de mí tenía
todo el bien que deseaba.

Mas ya tu precepto grave
rompe mi silencio mudo;
que él solamente ser pudo
de mi respeto la llave.

Y aunque el amar tu belleza
es delito sin disculpa
castígueseme la culpa
primero que la tibieza.

No quieras, pues, rigurosa,
que, estando ya declarada,
sea de veras desdichada
quien fue de burlas dichosa.

Si culpas mi desacato,
culpa también tu licencia;
que si es mala mi obediencia,
no fue justo tu mandato

Y si es culpable mi intento,
será mi afecto precito,
porque es amarte un delito
de que nunca me arrepiento.

Esto en mis afectos hallo,
y más, que explicar no sé;
mas tú, de lo que callé,
inferirás lo que callo.

My lady, I must implore
forgiveness for keeping still,
if what I meant as tribute
ran contrary to your will.

Please do not reproach me
if the course I have maintained
in the eagerness of my love
left my silence unexplained.

I love you with so much passion,
neither rudeness nor neglect
can explain why I tied my tongue,
yet left my heart unchecked.

The matter to me was simple:
love for you was so strong,
I could see you in my soul
and talk to you all day long.

With this idea in mind,
I lived in utter delight,
pretending my subterfuge
found favor in your sight.

In this strange, ingenious fashion,
I allowed the hope to be mine
that I still might see as human
what I really conceived as divine.

Oh, how mad I became
in my blissful love of you,
for even though feigned, your favor
made all my madness seem true!

How unwisely my ardent love,
which your glorious sun inflamed,
sought to feed upon your brightness,
though the risk of your fire was plain!

Forgive me if, thus emboldened,
I made bold with that sacred fire:
there's no sanctuary secure
when thought's transgressions conspire.

Thus it was I kept indulging
these foolhardy hopes of mine,
enjoying within myself
a happiness sublime.

But now, at your solemn bidding,
this silence I herewith suspend,
for your summons unlocks in me
a respect no time can end.

And, although loving your beauty
is a crime beyond repair,
rather the crime be chastised
than my fervor cease to dare.

With this confession in hand,
I pray, be less stern with me.
Do not condemn to distress
one who fancied bliss so free.

If you blame me for disrespect,
remember, you gave me leave;
thus, if obedience was wrong,
your commanding must be my reprieve.

Let my love be ever doomed
if guilty in its intent,
for loving you is a crime
of which I will never repent.

This much I descry in my feelings--
and more that I cannot explain;
but you, from what I've not said,
may infer what words won't contain.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

3:16 min read
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Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz was a Mexican writer, philosopher, composer, poet of the Baroque period, and Hieronymite nun of New Spain (Mexico). more…

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