dall'oblio                    stesure e frammenti            périodique

#20

May 2007

Gabriele DAnnunzio

Intra du Arni
e
La Pioggia nel Pineto
translation & notes by/
vertaling & noten door
Exsilio-

index

foreword 3
voorwoord 9
Intra du Arni 10
Between the two Arnos 10
Tussen de twee Arnos 10
notes 12
La Pioggia nel Pineto 14
The Rain in Pineto 14
De Regen in Pineto 14
notes 18

 

 






foreword

Unbeknowst to you would ire turn oer, a nuncio would
I return here.
                                        
James Joyce, Finnegans Wake

That being said, to many a scholar & first of all to Joyce himself the influence of DAnnunzios prose on Joyce was eminent. To unbelieving writers he was quoted as having said something like : DAnnunzio is one of the three greatest writers of our time. The source I have forgotten eventually someone like a clear Nabokov or a distinct Burges was asked his opinion on this judgement. & of course he was astonished. But Richard Ellmann definitely underlines Joyces slightly disguised debt to DAnnunzio in note 6 on page 304 of the Selected Letters (London 1992). & Stanislaus Joyce wrote in the chapter ripening of My Brothers Keeper : They [id est James & the Jesuit Charles Ghezzi, Joyces professor of Italian at University College, Dublin] had read and critized in lively disputes DAnnunzios Il Fuoco, which my brother considered the highest achievement of the novel of date. (cf. op.cit. edited and with an introduction by Richard Ellmann/ with a preface by T.S. Eliot, London 1982, p.154).

I happened to uncover the (apocryphical ?) Joyce s quote. It was not in Arthur Powers conversations, but retold without any reference by Richard Stern to Jorge Luis Burges (cf. www.kirfasto.s) : Stern : Joyce said that the three great talents of the nineteenth century were Tolstoy, Kipling and - can you guess?
Borges : No.
Stern : D'Annunzio.
Borges : That's a comedown.
Stern : I haven't read enough to say.
Borges : I've read very little D'Annunzio, and the very fact that I've read very little of him is my judgment of him. Tolstoy,

3
Kipling and D'Annunzio. I wonder how you can admire all three. He had a very catholic mind.

Jorge Luis Borges & Richard Stern in :
Jorge Luis Borges: Conversations,
edited by Richard Burgin, Mississippi 1998

Few people are allowed to afford such an absolute knowledge of literature. Of course, Burges is provocating his knowledge is limited like the one of anyone else. The trick is that he says : the very fact that I've read very little of him is my judgment of him. Yes, but what one reads is hardly ever a proof of its literary merits. & what one does not read is for the time being being unknown surely meaningless, but not necessarily futile. Anyhow, I do not feel offended & would never even think of trying to defend DAnnunzios merits.
Concerning Joyces estimation : I guess he was as a young man in Ireland in some way fascinated by what was happening on the continent & especially what had recently happened in literary activities in Italy or France. He did not choose Rome or Triest haphazardly.

Well, it goes a bit too far to describe the flaming effects of this novel in those there days. Things have changed.
All I would like to do below is to present two poems by DAnnunzio Intra du Arni & La Pioggia nel Pineto followed by two translations & some notes. Of course, there is not any pretence to cover the enormous catalogue of DAnnunzios works by this modest selection. The basic idea is to evoke by means of some lines or traces a fragment of his aesthetical universe. No more, no less.
Just alike the curator Pierre Jansen I could never present any solid reasons. I mean, it is like Proust : when he comes to speak & with reason of Jan Vermeers View of Delft (1660-1661) & the sudden attack of uraemia a kidney failure that hit Professor Bergotte definitely, there is not any explanation of the painting. Just by speaking of a yellow pan id est a section of a wall Proust makes appear Vermeer & this without any need of a full description.


4
Cf. A la recherche du temps perdu, III, dition publie sous la direction de Jean-Yves Tadi, Paris 1988, p.692) : Il mourut dans les circonstances suivantes : une crise durmie assez lgre tait cause quon lui avait prescrit le repos. Mais un critique ayant crit que dans la Vue de Delft de Ver Meer (prt par le muse de La Haye pour une exposition hollandaise), tableau quil adorait et croyait connatre trs bien, un petit pan de mur jaune (quil ne se rappelait pas) tait si bien peint quil tait, si on leregardait seul, comme une prcieuse uvre dart chinoise, dune beaut qui se suffirait elle-mme, Bergotte mangea quelques pommes de terre, sortit et entra lexposition. [] Enfin il fut devant le Ver Meer quil se rappelait plus clatant, plus diffrent de tout ce quil connaissait, mais o, grce larticle du critique, il remarqua pour la premire fois des petits personnages den bleu, que le sable tait rose, et enfin la prcieuse matire du tout petit pan de mur jaune. Ses tourdissements augmentaient ; il attachait son regard, comme un enfant un papillon jaune quil veut saisir, au prcieux petit pan de mur. Cest ainsi que jaurais d crire, disait-il. Mes derniers livres sont trop secs, il aurait fallu passer plusieurs couches de couleur, rendre ma phrase en elle-mme prcieuse, comme ce petit pan de mur jaune. Cependant la gravit de ses tourdissements ne lui chappait pas. Dans une cleste balance lui apparaissait, chargeant lun des plateaux, sa propre vie, tandis que lautre contenait le petit pan de mur si bien peint en jaune. Il sentait quil avait imprudemment donn la premire pour le second. Je ne voudrais pourtant pas, se dit-il, tre pour les journaux du soir le fait divers de cette exposition. Il se rptait : Petit pan de mur jaune avec un auvent, petit pan de mur jaune. .
Because of Prousts mentioning of an auvent id est a canopy whereas there is only a bascule bridge just under some yellow walls & roofs on the extreme right side of the painting Tadi concludes that Proust was mistaken (cf. op.cit. p.1740, n.3), but maybe Proust was thinking of the yellow roof with the skylight on the left of the two-tower building ?
I wonder how Charles Scott Moncrieff (1889-1930) translated this passage, because he finished six of the eight volumes of Remembrance of Things Past & they are still in print.

5


the pondered detail of Vermeers View of Delft

* * *

DAnnunzio was a notorious womanizer (cf. dall oblio-, #26 concerning Eleonora Duse) & Proust was quite aware of this quality. Although DAnnunzio nowhere occurs in Prousts critical writings in his correspondance he is mentioned twenty times there is a very comical fragment in Sodome et Gomorrhe, II.1, where DAnnunzios admiration for the duchess of Guermantes & the reaction of her husband are described (Cf. A la recherche du temps perdu, III, op.cit. p.66) : [] je navais encore fait que quelques pas dans les salons avec la duchesse de Guermantes quand une petite dame brune, extrmement jolie, larrta :
Je voudrais bien vous voir. DAnnunzio vous a aperue dune loge, il a crit la princesse de T*** une lettre o il dit quil na jamais rien vu de si beau. Il donnerait toute sa vie pour dix minutes dentretien avec vous. [] []

6
Le duc de Guermantes ntait pas enchant de ces offres. Incertain si Ibsen ou dAnnunzio taient morts ou vivants, il voyait dj des crivains, des dramaturges allant faire viite sa femme et la mettant dans leurs ouvrages.

But of course, Proust goes far beyond such a detail. & so does Vermeer.

* * *



Gabriele DAnnunzio alla Capponcina, id est the antique villa of the Capponi on the hill Settignano, northeast of Florence

In spite of his glorious reputation as a prominent author during his lifetime, Gabriele DAnnunzios popularity seems to have decreased eversince. Whereas in Italy his Versi damore e di gloria were in 2001 in the I Meridiani of Mondadori at their 5th impression their 1st impression dates from 1982 , it is not evident to find English or French translations of these works. For his prose this seems to be a little easier.

7
Historically DAnnunzios achievements remain incontest- able. Gabriele DAnnunzio (1863-1938), was an Italian poet, journalist, novelist, dramatist, womanizer & daredevil who went on to have a controversial role in politics as figurehead to the Italian Fascist movement & mentor to Mussolini. However, his eccentricity & controversy do not concern our purpose.
One can find a short, instructive summary of his most colourful life on the site Wikipedia & elsewhere, so there is no need to paraphrase this over here.
Intra du Arni & La Pioggia nel Pineto date from 1903 & were published in Alcyone, id est the third book of DAnnunzios Laudi del Cielo del Mare della Terra e degli Eroi. The Italian text of the two poems is taken from the edizione diretta da Luciano Anceschi, a cura di Annamaria Andreoli e Niva Lorenzini, volume II, Milano 1995, pp.463-468.

Exsilio-, Paris, September 2006

 

 

 

 


8

voorwoord

Bovenstaand foreword is uiteraard tevens voor de Nederlandse lezer geschreven. Een vertaling lijkt mij overbodig. Zo ook voor onderstaande noten.
Ongetwijfeld zijn waarschijnlik voornaamlik gedeelten van DAnnunzios proza in het Nederlands vertaald. In de verschillende compilaties van Italiaanse pozie zal zeker ook een aantal van zijn verzen opgenomen zijn. Desniettemin heb ik daar tot op heden nog nooit kennis van genomen. Daarmee wil geen oorspronklikheid van onderstaande vertalingen worden opgeist.
De enige pretentie van dit nummer van dall oblio-/ waters of oblivion is een tweetal weinig bekende gedichten van DAnnunzio te presenteren. De vertalingen zijn uitsluitend bedoeld de lezing van het origineel te vergemakkelijken.

Exsilio-, Paris, September 2006

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


9
Intra du Arni

Ecco lisola di Progne
ove sorridi
ai gridi
della ronine trace
che per le molli crete
ripete
le antiche rampogne
al re fallace,
e senza pace,
appena aggiorna,
va e torna
vigile allopra
nidace,
n si posa n si tace
se non si copra
dombra la riviera
e sera
circa lisola leggiera
di canne e di crete,
che allaulete
d flauti,
alla migrante nidi
e, se sorridi, lauti
giacigli allamor folle.
Ecco lisola molle.
Ecco lisola molle
intra du Arni,
cuna di carmi,
ove cantano lEstate
le canne virenti
ai vnti
in varii modi,
non odi ?,
quasi di nodi
prive e di midolle,
quasi inspirate
da volubili bocche
e tocche
Between the two Arnos

This is Procnes island
where you smile
at the twittering
of the thracian swallow
that by weak clay
repeats
the ancient blames
to the deceitful king,
& without rest,
hardly defers
goes & returns
busy around
the nest,
neither resting nor being still
until darkness covers river
& evening
around the ligh island
of reed & clay,
that offers the flautist
flutes,
to the nest migrant
&, if you smile, generous
straw fo passionate love.
This is the weak island.
This is the weak island
between the two Arnos,
cradle of verses,
where Summer sings
in the green reed
in the winds
in varying ways,
dont you hear ?,
almost no knots
& no medulla
almost inspired
by talkative mouths
& skilled finger
touch,
Tussen de twee Arnos

Dit is het eiland van Procne
waar jij glimlacht
om het gekweel
van de thracisiche zwaluw
die door weke klei
de antieke verwijten
tot de bedrieglike koning
herhaalt,
& zonder rust,
nauwliks verdaagt
gaat & keert terug
bezig om
het nest,
rustend noch zwijgend
tot dat duisternis rivier
& avond bedekt
over het lichte eiland
van riet & leem,
dat de fluitist
fluiten schenkt,
aan de nest-migrant
&, als jij glimlacht, weelderig
stro voor uitzinnig liefde
Dit is het weke eiland
Dit is het weke eiland
tussen de twee Arnos,
wieg van verzen,
waar Zomer zingt
in het groene riet
in de wind
op gevarieerde wijs,
hoor jij het niet ?,
bijna geen knopen
& geen merg
bijna bezield
door spraakzame monden
& kundige vinger
voeling,

10
da dita sapienti,
quasi con arte elette
e giunte insieme a schiera,
su lesempio divino,
con lino
attorto e con cera
sapida di miele,
a sette a sette,
quasi perfette
sampogne.
Ecco lisola di Progne.
almost artfully chosen
& linked together
in a row,
after a divine model,
with flax
fastened with wax
tasting of honey,
seven by seven,
almost perfect
bagpipes.
This is Procnes island.
bijna kunstig gekozen
& tesamen gebonden
in een rij,
naar godlik model,
met vlas
gebonden & met was
smakend naar honing,
zeven aan zeven,
bijna volmaakte
doedelzakken.
Dit is het eiland van Procne.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


11

notes

The theme of this poem originated in the Marina di Pisa in July 1899. On pp.1207-1209 the editors Annamaria Andreoli & Niva Lorenzini quote from the Altri taccuini (The complete works of Gabriele DAnnunzio), X, Milano 1976, pp.105 & 112 : Nel luogo detto Intra du Arni appare unisola coperta di lunghe erbe fluviali che ondeggiano e si piegano sulla corrente [] Lisoletta detta Intra du Arni ha la forma di una nave disalberata. E coperta di cannucce che bruiscono. Il battello saccosta dolcemente e la tocca .
Cf. La Tenzone , ll. 3-11 (op.cit. p.458) :

Le lodolette cantan su le pratora
di San Rossore
e le cigale cantano su i platani
dArno a tenzone.

Come lEstate porta loro in bocca,
lArno porta il silenzio alla sua foce.
Tutto il mattino per la dolce landa
quinci un cantare e quindi altro cantare ;
tace lacqua tra luna e laltra voce.

& Bocca dArno, passim & in particular ll.33-48 (cf. idem, p.461) :

Forse lanima mia, quando profonda
s nel suo canto e vede la sua gloria ;
forse lanima tua, quando profonda
s nellamore e perde la memoria
degli inganni fugaci in che silluse
ed anela con me lalta vittoria.
Forse conosceremo noi la pena
felicit dellonda
libera e delle forti ali dischiuse
e dellinno selvaggio che si sfrena.
Adora e attendi !
Adora, adora, e attendi !
Vedi ? I tuoi piedi
nudi lascian vestigi
di luce, ed a tuoi occhi prodigi
sorgon dallacque. Vedi ?

12
However, referring to the poems Gorgo & A Gorgo, the same editors state that the idea of the ode fiumale or the snella ode dates from July or August 1902.
Gorgo, ll.8-14 & A Gorgo, ll.7-8 (cf. op.cit. p.542) :

E una corona dellera e di gttice
ti reco, per unode che mi piacque
di te, che canta lisola di Progne.

Io voglio, nuda nellodor del mstice,
danzar per te sul limite dellacque
lode fiumale al suon delle sampogne.
[]
Polita come il cittolo del fiume
sei, snella come lode che ti piacque.

Re line 1 : Progne : the story is told by Ovid in the Metamorphoseon, VI.412-674. This & other contexts are given in my Waste Land revisited a finished work, but its publication is just in progress (cf. Polumnia).
Re line 45 : su lesempio divino : this concerns Pan. Bocca di Serchio, ll.205-211 Ardi to Glauco (cf. op.cit. p.529) :

Tutto divina musica e strumento
docile allinfinito soffio. Guarda
per la sabbia le rotte canne, guarda
le radici divelte, ancor frementi
di labbra curve e di leggiere dita !
I musici fuggevoli con elle
modulavano il carme fluviale.

Re line 50 : in vain I have been looking for this island at the mouth of the single Arno.

* * *


13
La Pioggia nel Pineto

Taci. Su le soglie
del bosco non odo
parole che dici
umane ; ma odo
parole pi nuove
che parlano gocciole e foglie
lontane.
Ascolta. Piove
dalle nuvole sparse.
Piove su le tamerici
salmastre ed arse,
piove su i pini
scagliosi ed irti,
piove su i mirti
divini,
su le ginestre fulgenti
di fiori accolti,
su i ginepri folti
di coccole aulenti,
piove su i nostri vlti
silvani,
piove su le nostre mani
ignude,
su i nostri vetimenti
leggieri,
su i freschi pensieri
che lanima schiude
novella,
su la favola bella
che ieri
tilluse, che oggi millude,
o Ermione.
The Rain in Pineto

Be silent. On the border
of the wood I dont hear
the human words you say ;
but I hear
newer words
that speak drops & leaves
from far.
On duty. Rain
falling from the clouds
Rain on the tamarisks
briny & singeing,
rain on the pines
scaly & bristly,
rain on the divine
myrtles,
on the glittering broom
of a bouquet,
on the thick juniper
on the scenting berries,
rain on our sylvan
faces,
rain on our bare
hands,
on our light
clothes,
on the fresh thoughts
that the new soul
encloses,
on the nice fable
that deceived you
yesterday ; that is deceiving me today,
o Hermione.
De Regen in Pineto

Weest stil. Aan de rand
Van het woud hoor ik
de menslike woorden niet
die je spreekt ; maar ik hoor
nieuwe woorden
die spreken druppels & bladeren
van verre.
Op wacht. Regen
valt uit de wolken.
Regen op de tamarisken
brak & verschroeid,
regen op de pijnbomen
schilferig & struikachtig,
regen op de godlike
mirten,
op het schitterende brem
van een boeket,
op de dichte geneverstruiken
op de geurende bessen,
regen op ons landlik gelaat,
regen op onze blote
handen,
op onze lichte
kleding,
op de frisse gedachten
die de nieuwe ziel
insluit,
op de fraaie fabel
die je gister
bedroog ; die mij vandaag bedriegt,
o Hermione.

14
Odi ? La pioggia cade
su la solitaria
verdura
con un crepito che dura
e varia nell aria
secondo le fronde
pi rade, men rade.
Ascolta. Risponde
al pianto il canto
delle cicale
che il pianto australe
non impaura,
n il ciel cinerino.
E il pino
ha un suono, e il mirto
altro suono, e il ginepro
altro ancra, stromenti
diversi
sotto innumerevoli dita.
E immersi
noi siam nello spirto
silvestre,
darborea vita viventi ;
e il tuo vlto ebro
molle di pioggia
come una foglia,
e le tue chiome
auliscono come
le chiare ginestre,
o creatura terrestre
che hai nome
Ermione.
Do you hear ? The rain is falling
on the solitary
greenery
with a rattle that lasts
& varies in the air
after the foliage
more or less sparse.
Listen. The dirge
of the cicadas
is answering the rain
the southern rain
doesnt frighten them,
the gray sky neither does
& the pinetree
has a sound & the myrtle
another sound, & the juniper
yet another one, different
instruments
under countless fingers.
& we are submerged
in the sylvan
spirit,
live the the treelike life ;
& your damp face
is soaked by the rain
like a leave,
& your hair
scents
clear broom,
o earthly creature
that you call
Hermione.
Hoor je ? De regen valt
op het eenzame
loof.
met een geruis dat voortduurt
& in de lucht varieert
naar het gebladerte
dun of dicht verspreid.
Luister. Het treurlied
van de cicaden
beantwoordt de regen
de zuidlike regen
maakt hen niet bang,
de grijze hemel evenmin
& de pijnboom
heeft een toon, & de mirte
een andere toon, & de geneverbes
weer een andere, verschillende
instrumenten
onder talloze vingers.
& wij zijn gedompeld
in de landlike
geest,
leven het boomachtige leven ;
& je benevelde gelaat
is doorweekt van regen
als een blad,
& je haar
geurt als
heldere brem,
o aards schepsel
dat je noemt
Hermione.

15
Ascolta, ascolta. Laccordo
delle aeree cicale
a poco a poco
pi sordo
si fa sotto il pianto
che cresce ;
ma un canto vi si mesce
pi roco
che di laggi sale,
dall umida ombra remota.
Pi sordo e pi fioco
sallenta, si spegne.
Sola una nota
ancor trema, si spegne,
risorge, trema, si spegne.
Non sode voce del mare.
Or sode su tutta la fronda
crosciare
largentea pioggia
che monda,
il croscio che varia
secondo la fronda
pi folta, men folta.
Ascolta.
La figlia dell aria
muta ; ma la figlia
del limo lontana,
la rana,
canta nell ombra pi fonda,
chi sa dove, chi sa dove !
E piove su le tue ciglia,
Ermione.
Listen, listen. The harmony
of the ethereal cicadas
little by little
deafer
in the increasing
rain ;
but a song mingles with this
hoarser
that over there
from a humid shadow arises.
Deafer & hoarser
it fades, it extinguishes.
Only one tone
still trembles, extinguishes,
revives, trembles, extinguishes.
One hears no voice from the sea.
Now you hear all the greenery
rattle
the silver rain
that purifies,
the rattling varies
after the foliage
more or less sparse.
Listen.
The girl from the air
is still ; but the girl
of the far silt,
the treefrog,
is singing in the deepest darkness,
who knows where, who knows where !
& it is raing on your eyelashes,
Hermione.
Luister, luister. De harmonie
van de hemelse cicaden
beetje bij beetje
dover
in de toenemende
regen ;
maar een lied mengt zich hierin
heser
dat daarginds
van een vochtige schaduw opklinkt.
Dover & heser
het zwakt af, het dooft uit.
Een enkele toon
trilt nog, sterft uit,
herleeft, trilt, sterft uit.
Men hoort geen stem van de zee.
Nu hoort men al het loof
ruisen
de zilveren regen
die zuivert,
het geruis varieert
naar het gebladerte
dun of dicht verspreid.
Luister.
Het meisje van de lucht
is stil ; maar het meisje
van het verre slijk,
de boomkikvors,
zingt in de diepste duisternis,
wie weet waar, wie weet waar !
& het regent op je wimpers,
Hermione.

16
Piove su le tue ciglia nere
s che par tu pianga
ma di piacere ; non bianca
ma quasi fatta virente,
par da scorza tu esca.
E tutta la vita in noi fresca
aulente,
il cuor nel petto come psca
intatta,
tra le plpebre gli occhi
son come polle tra lerbe,
i denti negli alvoli
son come mandorle acerbe.
E andiam di fratta in fratta,
or congiunti or disciolti
(e il verde vigor rude
ci allaccia i malloli
cintrica i ginocchi)
chi sa dove, chi sa dove !
E piove su i nostri vlti
silvani,
piove su le nostre mani
ignude,
su i nostri vestimenti
leggieri,
su i freschi pensieri
che lanima schiude
novella,
su la favola bella
che ieri
milluse, che oggi t illude,
o Ermione.
It is raining on your black eyelashes
as if you are crying
but of delight ; you are not pale
but almost verdant,
of the bark you came from
& the whole life is fresh scent
in us,
the heart in the chest is a s a peach
intact,
between the eyelids your eyes
are like springs in the grass,
the teeth in the teeth ridges
are like bitter almonds.
& we go from bush to bush,
now together then separated
(& the greenery vigorously harshly
ties the ankles,
shackles the knees)
who know where, who knows where !
It is raining on our sylvan
faces,
rain on our bare
hands,
on our light
clothes,
on the fresh thoughts
that the new soul
encloses,
on the nice fable
that deceived me
yesterday ; that is deceiving you today,
o Hermione.
Het regent op je zwarte wimpers
alsof je huilt
maar van behagen ; jij bent niet bleek
maar bijna groen,
van de schors vanwaar je kwam
& het hele leven is frisse geur
in ons,
het hart in de borst is als een perzik
intact,
tussen de oogleden zijn je ogen
als bronnen in het gras,
de tanden in de tandholten
zijn als bittere amandelen.
& wij gaan van struik tot struik,
nu samen dan gescheiden
(& het groen krachtig ruw
bindt de enkels,
kluistert de knien)
wie weet waar, wie weet waar !
Het regent op ons landlik
gelaat,
het regent op onze blote
handen,
op onze lichte
kleding,
op de frisse gedachten
die de nieuwe ziel
insluit,
op de fraaie fabel
die mij gister
bedroog ; die jou vandaag bedriegt,
o Hermione.

17

notes

manuscript of the beginning of La Poggia nel Pineto


Re line 29 favola bella : among other things the editors refer to DAnnunzios novel Il Fuoco (cf. supra & op.cit. p.1209-1210) : o questo liquescente presagio di Ermione, consegnato a une furtiva didascalia : Il suo viso sinonda di sorriso come dunacqua trepidante e molle Cf. La Gloria (1899) in : Tragedie, sogni e misteri, II, Milano 1980, p.376 & lines 56-57 :

il tuo viso ebro
molle di pioggia

Per non del Fuoco, che anticipa la poetica del naturismo alcionio con la sua favola bella: Tutti i rumori si trasformavano in voci espressive. Ascolta ! [] Ascolta ! Io distinguo un tema melodico che si perde e risorge senza avere la forza di svilupparsi [] (cf. Romanzi e racconti, II, a cura di Walter Siti e Silvia De Laude, Milano 2001, p.713).

18
Furthermore one has to think of Shelley, who wrote in the year of his death in The Recollection, lines 9-32 (cf. The Complete Poems, with notes by Mary Shelley, New York 1994, pp.707-708) :

II

We wandered to the pine forest
That skirts the Oceans foam,
The lightest wind was in its nest,
The tempest in its home.
The whispering waves were half asleep,
The clouds were gone to play,
And on the bosom of the deep
The smile of Heaven lay ;
It seemed as if the hour were one
Sent from beyond the skies,
Which scattered from above the sun
A light of Paradise.

III

We passed amid the pines that stood
The giants of the waste,
Tortured by storms to shapes as rude
As serpents interlaced,
And soothed by every azure, breath,
That under Heaven is blown,
To harmonies and hues beneath,
As tender as its own ;
Now all the tree-tops lay asleep,
Like green waves on the sea,
As still as in the silent deep
The ocean woods may be.

19
& a little further Annamaria Andreoli or Niva Lorenzini refers to Tommaseo & Petrarch (cf. op.cit. p.1211) : inoltre innegabile loculatissima distribuzione iterativa, a cominciare dagli innumerevoli piove, fino agli insisti ascolata, ascolata, al celebere diminuendo del canto della rana : sallenta, si spegne [] trema, si spegne, / risorge, trema, si spegne (vv. 76 e sgg.), o alleffetto volutamente facile della cobla capfinida dei vv. 95-97 : E piove su le tue ciglia [] Piove su le tue ciglia nere, inconcepibile senza la lunga pratica del Tommaseo dei Canti popolari, come del resto il bisticcio del ritornello : tilluse millude, milluse tillude (vv. 31 e 127). Insistentemente illusoria, dunque, la favola bella, variante, non si saprebbe dire quanto polemica, del pi querulo Petrarca : la favola breve di mia vita (esauriente, nella Noferi [LAlcyone nella stoia della poesia dannunziana, s.d., ma Firenze 1946], lesegesi delle occorrenze), visto che prima interrompe e poi chiude la danza o fuga (Contini 342 [Letteratura dellItalia unita 1861-1968, Firenze 1968]) altrimenti prorogabile allinfinito per autocompiacimento ritmico e tecnica elencatoria.
Tommaseo is indeed the collector of the Canti popolari from which Paul Heyse translated the bulk. On his turn no one but Hugo Wolf set 44 of these translations to music (cf. the bizarre but beautiful mixture of recordings by Irmagard Seefried & Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau of 1958).
Unfortunately I could consult neither Noferi, nor Contini, but the reference is interesting. As far as Petrarch is concerned one could think of several of his canzione exempli gratia 71.1, 272.1-4 & 284.1-2 (cf. Canzoniere, pp.356, 1097 & 1126):

Perch la vita breve
[]
La vita fugge, et non sarresta una hora,
et la morte vien dietro a gran giornate,
et le cose presenti et le passate
mi dnno guerra, et le future anchora ;
[]
Si breve l tempo e l penser s veloce
che mi rendon madonna cos morta,

20
Re line 32 : Ermione : Menelaus had by Helen a daughter Hermione (cf. Apollodorus, The Library, III.xi.1 [id est in volume II], with an English translation by James George Frazer, London 2002, p.28). Exciting & often contradicting stories about her are recalled by many a classical author to begin with Homer (cf. Odyssee, IV.12-14). For DAnnunzio Hermiones precise antecedents seem to be of lesser significance.

Re line 104 : cuore pesca : here DAnnunzio surely refers to Baudelaires Fleurs du Mal : Amour de mensonge, lines 9-12 (cf. uvres compltes, I, texte tabli, prsent et annot par Claude Pichois, Paris 1983, p.99) :

Je me dis : Quelle est belle !
[et bizarrement frache !
Le souvenir massif, royale et lourde tour,
La couronne, et son cur, meurtri
[comme une pche,
Est mr, comme son corps, pour le savant amour.

I do not think DAnnunzio knew this fragment of Baudelaires epistle to the editor, the count Alphonse de Bernard (cf. Correspondance, II, texte tabli, prsent et annot par Claude Pichois avec la collaboration de Jean Ziegler, Paris 1973, pp.15-16) : Hlas ! vos critiques tombent justement sur des mots, des intentions, des traits que je considrais comme tant de mes meilleurs. Il me suffira de vous indiquer brivement mes intentions. (Le mouvement implique gnralement le bruit, ce point que Pythagore attribuait une musique aux sphres en mouvement.Mais le rve, qui spare et dcompose, cre la nouveaut. Le mot royale facilitera pour lintelligence de cette mtaphore qui fait du souvenir une couronne de tours, comme celles qui inclinent le front des desses de maturit, de fcondit, et de sagesse. Lamour (sens et esprit) est niais vingt ans, il est savant quarante.) Tout cela, je vous laffirme, a t trs lentement combin.
En revanche, vous verrez que jai corrig plusieurs imperfections dplorables qui me tourmentaient beaucoup. .

21
The link with Virgil & Du Bellay is for another day. No not really. Indeed, Baudelaire could have thought of Virgils VIth book of his Aeneid, lines 781-787 (cf. Eneide, traduzione di Rosa Calzecchi Onesti, testo latino a fronte, Milano 1981, p.292):

En, huius, nate, auspiciis illa incluta Roma
Imperium terris, animos aequabit Olympo,
Septemque una sibi muro circumdabit arces,
Felix prole virum : qualis Berencyntia mater
Invehitur curru Phrygias turrita per urbes,
Laeta deum partu, centum complexa nepotes,
Omnis caelicolas, omnis supera alta tenentis.

In Drydens translation things have changed as usual, but beautifully : lines 1061-1072 (cf. Virgils Aeneid, edited by Frederick M. Keener, London 1997, p.176) :

His Sire already signs him for the Skies,
And marks the Seat amidst the Deities.
Auspicious Chief ! thy Race in times to come
Shall spread the Conquests of Imperial Rome.
Rome whose ascending Towrs shall Heavn invade ;
Involving Earth and Ocean in her Shade.
High as the Mother of the Gods in place ;
And proud, like her, of an Immortal Race.
Then when in Pomp she makes the Phrygian round ;
With Golden Turrets on her Temples crownd :
A hundred Gods her sweeping Train supply ;
Her Offspring all, and all command the Sky.

The seven hills are : the Aventinus, the Capitolinus, the Caelius, the Esquilinus, the Palatinus, the Quirinalis & the Vimenalis. Cf. Georgicon, II.535, texte tabli et traduit pas E. de Saint-Denis, Paris 1966, p.37.
Cybele, the mother of the gods, was especially worshipped on the mountain Berecynte in Phrygia.

22
& then there is Joachim du Bellay. Du Bellay (1522-1560) spent some time in Rome & this inpired him to conceive Les Antiquitez de Rome. Baudelaire might have thought about the VIIth sonnet (cf. Potes du XVI sicle, dition tablie et annote par Albert-Marie Schmidt, Paris 1979, pp.420-421) :

Telle que dans son char la Berecynthienne
Couronne de tours, et joyeuse davoir
Enfant tant de Dieux, telle se faisoit voir
En ses jours plus heureux ceste ville ancienne :

Ceste ville, qui fut plus que la Phrygienne
Foisonnante en enfas, et de qui le pouvoir
Fut le pouvoir du monde, et ne se peult revoir
Pareille sa grandeur, grandeur sinon la sienne.

Rome seule pouvoit Rome ressembler,
Rome seule pouvoit Rome faire trenbler :
Aussi navoit permis lordonnance fatale,

Quautre pouvoir humain, tant fust audacieux,
Se vantast dgaler celle qui fit gale
Sa puissance la terre, et son courage aux cieux.

This is a nice end.

 

 

 

 

 

 


23