The Carmina of Caius Valerius Catullus, by Catullus


Vivamus, mea Lesbia, atque amemus,

Rumoresque senum severiorum

Omnes unius aestimemus assis.

Soles occidere et redire possunt:

Nobis cum semel occidit brevis lux, 5

Nox est perpetua una dormienda.

Da mi basia mille, deinde centum,

Dein mille altera, dein secunda centum,

Deinde usque altera mille, deinde centum.

Dein, cum milia multa fecerimus, 10

Conturbabimus illa, ne sciamus,

Aut nequis malus invidere possit,

Cum tantum sciet esse basiorum.


To Lesbia, (Of Lesbos — Clodia?)

Love we (my Lesbia!) and live we our day,

While all stern sayings crabbed sages say,

At one doit’s value let us price and prize!

The Suns can westward sink again to rise

But we, extinguished once our tiny light, 5

Perforce shall slumber through one lasting night!

Kiss me a thousand times, then hundred more,

Then thousand others, then a new five-score,

Still other thousand other hundred store.

Last when the sums to many thousands grow, 10

The tale let’s trouble till no more we know,

Nor envious wight despiteful shall misween us

Knowing how many kisses have been kissed between us.

Let us live, my Lesbia, and let us love, and count all the mumblings of sour age at a penny’s fee. Suns set can rise again: we when once our brief light has set must sleep through a perpetual night. Give me of kisses a thousand, and then a hundred, then another thousand, then a second hundred, then another thousand without resting, then a hundred. Then, when we have made many thousands, we will confuse the count lest we know the numbering, so that no wretch may be able to envy us through knowledge of our kisses’ number.

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:52