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Mikołaj Sęp Szarzyński
- SONG I
- SONG II
- SONG III
- SONG IIII
- SONG V
- SONG VI
- SONG VII
- SONG VIII
- SONG IX
- AN EPIGRAM ON THE SAME...
Mikołaj Sęp Szarzyński - SONG VII - TO STEFAN BATHORY, KING OF POLAND
TO STEFAN BATHORY, KING OF POLAND
To a great King, Caminae, a Hymn we'd sing!
First to God - but for God, values be naught:
He created, He doth rule, He illumines him,
With life, lot and glory. The King so sees Him,
And this be his rule's aim. In a first homeland,
Whilst the godless error gained, he opposed
Lest faith universal expire. Thence, a tool
Of His grace, in peace and war, the Lord made him,
One above both fortunes. With his only hope
Heaven's aid, a dam he dared be to Pannonia's
Tempest; and strewing midst endless streams
A foe's carrion, thy fish, Danube, he fattened.
But since each land hath its fate foreseen,
God hither brought thee where defence not vain
Might thy valor yet be, O King invincible,
By thy nature a king, not only by crown!
For who than thee's not less? No equal there be
In council, speech, wit or sense of mean!
Who equally just? or gracious! Ay, but alack,
Who'd be suited to sing thy merits so perfect,
Might well the sea's roar o'erwhelm! Yet present
Time's brought that in war thou art best:
If thy tactics, if thy judgment we weigh;
To whom an army, to whom a force thou entrust;
Or thy manly pluck and swift hand, thy patience
Or readiness we see - thee, 'tis thee we proclaim
Finest King, Hetman, Knight, soldier and lancer;
Thy fortune routs armies, defence walls it smashes!
Abroad and at home treason quick thou dost mark;
Rueful Hyadies by thine example were suffered,
So were hunger, sleep, dust, mud and forest,
As well as the near-frigid zones thou spurned.
Thou hast roused our glory, for a peace sweet only
To base hearts thou didst rebuke; thou dost waken
To war a lacking desire that, by indolence's
Poison o'ercome, long cared little it enriched
The treasonous Tartar and the Muscovite too,
Grasping, ruthless, half-pagan himself.
Today, thy name keeps the Infidel in hold;
The feared tyrant knows fear, shame and hurt;
Fear, shame, hurt he feels; but may goodly God grant,
Should prophecy be not vain, that from a just
Side his undoing he'd know; and once routed,
At thy sceptre fair, sound, famous, a realm he'd lay.
O, would they but tarry in heaven to fit a crown
Worth thy virtue! More than a gilded age
In thy Poland we'd see, but by our Christ's
Cross, a fali well befitting the bloody Mohammedan!
Translated by Richard Sokoloski