Monday, 24 December 2007

deserving punishment is worse

The gods delight in instances of such testimony,

since they, thereby, give witness of their powers.

They often ease punishments and restore the sight

they've taken, when they see true penitence for sin.

Oh, I repent! If anything the wretched say's believed,

I repent, and feel the real torment of my actions.

Though exile is grief, my offence is more so:

and deserving punishment's worse than suffering it.

If the gods favoured me, and he most visible of them

should annul my sentence, the fault still exists forever.

At least death will make me, when it comes, no longer an exile:

but death can't arrange things so I never offended either.

So it's no wonder if my mind's decaying,

melting like water dripping from the snow.

(Ovid: Ex Ponto I. Ovid was banished to Tomis on the Pontus Euxinus - nowadays the Romanian town of Constanta on the Black Sea. He died in exile, after spending no less than ten years in sad solitude).

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