Monday, November 6, 2017
Francisco de Quevedo
Quevedo developed a style of poetry called conceptismo, which began with a conceit — similar to his English contemporary John Donne — that would expand into an elaborate poem-length metaphor. Quevedo’s style features condensed simple language, as opposed to the ornate style of Luis de Góngora. Unfortunately, the rivalry between the two styles became a personal battle between the two men.
Francisco de Quevedo is known for the novel The Life Story of the Sharper, called Don Pablos — a precursor to the satirical novels of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
The following was translated by Michael Smith
from On The Anvil – LVII
Adam in Eden, You in a garden;
He in all honour, You in your agony;
He sleeps and his company ill-watches;
You pray wide awake as yours slumbers.
His act was the first of disharmonies;
You composed our primordial day;
You drink the cup your Father sends;
He eats defiance and lives as dead.
The sweat of his brow is his sustenance;
That of yours is our glory:
The guilt was his, the affront yours.
He bequeathed horror; You leave us a memory;
His, a blind deceit; yours, a prime bargain.
How different the story you leave us!
This post was suggested by my friend Burl Horniachek.
Entry written by D.S. Martin. His latest poetry collection, Conspiracy of Light: Poems Inspired by the Legacy of C.S. Lewis, is available from Wipf & Stock as is his earlier award-winning collection, Poiema.