poem 174

[Although in vain, she wishes to convert the sufferings of a jealous man
to a rational process.]

What’s this, Alcino? How could your good sense
allow its own defeat by jealousy,
and show the world, in wild extremes of rage,
this spectacle of one gone mad or worse?
Now how has Celia hurt you, if she grieves?
Again, why do you blame Love of deceit
if he has never promised, for all his power,
lasting possession of such loveliness?
Our possession of temporal things
is temporal, my friend; it is abuse
to wish to guard them always as they were.
Your ignorance or your error I accuse,
because both Fate and Love, of things like these,
have given us not ownership, but use.

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

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poem 164

She answers suspicions in the rhetoric of tears

My love, this evening when I spoke with you,
and in your face and actions I could read
that arguments of words you would not heed,
my heart I longed to open to your view.
In this intention, Love my wishes knew
and, though they seemed impossible, achieved:
pouring in tears that sorrow had conceived,
with every beat my heart dissolved anew.
Enough of suffering, my love, enough:
let jealousy’s vile tyranny be banned,
let no suspicious thought your calm corrupt
with foolish gloom by futile doubt enhanced,
for now, this afternoon, you saw and touched
my heart, dissolved and liquid in your hands.

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

poem 161 (III)

Inés, dear, with your love I am enraptured,
and as object of your love, I am enthralled
when gazing on your beauty I am captured,
but when I find you jealous, want to bawl.
I die of jealousy if others you entangle,
I tremble at your grace, your step sublime,
because I know, Inés, that you could mangle,
the humors of my systematic chyme.
When I hold your dainty hand, I am aquiver,
in your anger, feel that I must soon expire,
if you venture from your home I am adither,
so I say, Inés, to one thing I aspire,
that your love and my good wine will draw you hither,
and to tumble you to bed I can conspire.

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

*One of five burlesque sonnets in which the poetess was circumscribed
by rhymes which had been determined; composed in a moment of relaxation