Serenus

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Quisquis volet perennem
cautus ponere sedem
stabilisque, nec sonori
sterni flatibus Euri,
et fluctibus minantem
curat spernere pontem:
montis cacumen alti,
bibulas vitet harenas.
illud protervus Auster
totis viribus urget,
hae pendulum solutae
pondus ferre recusant.
fugiens periculosam
sortem sedis amoenae
humili domum memento
certus figere saxo.
quamvis tonet ruinis
miscens aequore ventus,
tu conditus quieti
felix robore valli,
duces serenus aevum,
ridens aetheris iras.
(Boëthius, De Consolatione Philosophiae 2.4 metrum)

Who wants to build in prudence
Everlasting foundations,
Sure-footed, not to be leveled
By the loud-moaning East Wind;
Who longs to scorn the deep sea,
Waves that threaten disaster –
He must reject the summits
And the parched sands of the seashore.
The one the brawling South Wind
Smashes with all its forces;
The other, noncohesive,
Won’t bear settling structures.
Run away from all these dangers,
Fatal, pleasant locations;
On humble rock, remember,
Build your home in complete trust.
Though winds may roil the oceans,
Thunder, rain down destruction –
Still you, concealed in silence,
Blessed with powerful ramparts,
Will pass a tranquil lifetime,
Will deride the air’s anger.
(tr. Joel C. Relihan)

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