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

Spain: Valladolid


By Luis de Góngora (1561–1627)

Translated by Edward Churton

VALLADOLID, thou art the Vale of Tears;

Whose are the eyes that weep, I need not say;

The Vale of Josaphat for gloom all day,

A gloom which light of judgment never clears:

A sham each hearer deems it, when he hears

That thou dost hold Spain’s Court; he wonders how

Thy burly form should play the courtier now,

Who wast so fine a clown in other years.

Thy titled Counts we know them to our cost,

Well may the Andalusian say, who rests

In lodging dark as purgatory-shade;

While no good Earl of Fairlight plays the host,

But evermore Lord Knox, and, winter guests,

Count Rainham, Snowdown, and Lord Slough and Slade.