Lascivia

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This is part 2 of 3. Part 1 is here. Part 3 is here.

Est qui nequitiam locus exigat; omnibus illum
deliciis imple, stet procul inde pudor!
hinc simul exieris, lascivia protinus omnis
absit, et in lecto crimina pone tuo.
illic nec tunicam tibi sit posuisse pudori
nec femori impositum sustinuisse femur;
illic purpureis condatur lingua labellis,
inque modos Venerem mille figuret amor;
illic nec voces nec verba iuvantia cessent,
spondaque lasciva mobilitate tremat!
indue cum tunicis metuentem crimina vultum,
et pudor obscenum diffiteatur opus;
da populo, da verba mihi; sine nescius errem,
et liceat stulta credulitate frui!
Cur totiens video mitti recipique tabellas?
cur pressus prior est interiorque torus?
cur plus quam somno turbatos esse capillos
collaque conspicio dentis habere notam?
tantum non oculos crimen deducis ad ipsos;
si dubitas famae parcere, parce mihi!
mens abit et morior quotiens peccasse fateris,
perque meos artus frigida gutta fluit.
tunc amo, tunc odi frustra quod amare necesse est;
tunc ego, sed tecum, mortuus esse velim!
(Ovid, Am. 3.14.17-40)

If there’’s a place demands naughtiness: then fill it with all delights, let shame be far away! Likewise when you leave off, straightaway forget all lasciviousness: leave the sin there, in your bed. There, don’’t let your slip make you over-shy, or not allow your thigh to press against a thigh: there, let my tongue be buried between your rosy lips, and let desire shape a thousand ways to love: there, don’’t let your words and sounds of delight cease, let the naughty bed tremble at your agility! Then, with your dress, put on the face that fears sin, and let shame disown the works of obscenity: Tell me, tell people anything: let me err without knowing, and let me enjoy a fool’’s credulity! Why do I see so many notes received and given? Why are the pillow and the sheet wrinkled? Why do I have to see such obvious love-bites on your neck, and your hair disturbed by more than sleep? You only hide the sin itself from my eyes: If you hesitate to spare your reputation, well spare me! My mind’’s gone, I’’m dying, when you confess your crimes, and the blood runs cold in my whole body. Then I love, and hate, in vain, what I have to love: then I wish, with you, that I was dead! (tr. Tony Kline)

2 thoughts on “Lascivia”

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