Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Spain, Portugal, Belgium, and Holland: Vols. XIV–XV. 1876–79.

Portugal: Mondego, the River


By Luís de Camões (c. 1524–1580)

Translated by William Herbert

EVER gliding to the sea

Flow the waters fair and free

Of clear Mondego tranquil through the plain:

Anxious thoughts and growing care

Bound my youthful bosom there,

And slowly fixed their ever-during reign.

Along the pleasant margin green,

Where now I mourn the altered scene,

First did my eyes a nymph behold,

Brighter than snow and pure as gold;

Sweet smiles serene; and grace so well displayed,

That from my heart its form will never fade.

In this country decked with flowers

Blithely rolled my peaceful hours,

In calm contentment, unalloyed with sighs.

Then I gloried in my cares;

Rapture sweetened e’en the tears

Drawn by the beam of those love-darting eyes.

Time flowed, nor I its lapse perceived,

Long by delusive hope deceived;

I sported in life’s cheerful ray,

And dreamed of bliss from day to day.

What now avail those joys, too quickly flown!

Those eyes, that with unrivalled lustre shone!