Tuesday, August 29, 2006

A Jarifa en una orgía

During my brief excursion into secondary school teaching, I was lucky enough to enjoy the friendship of a teacher of Spanish who introduced me to the poetry of José de Espronceda, and in particular, the poem at the head of this posting. The teacher rejoiced in the splendid name of Luigi Carlo Francesco Sassi, even though he was an Englishman born and bred.
In the poem, the jaded poet laments to his houri, Jarifa, during an orgy, how he no longer gets pleasure from pleasure. I still remember one stanza:

Yo quiero amor, quiero gloria,
Quiero un deleite divino,
Como en mi mente imagino,
Como en el mundo no hay

Think about it: you are so jaded that you cry out for some love or passion which in fact doesn't exist - "como en el mundo no hay".
I read this poem at an impressionable age, and it scared me so much that I tried thereafter to contain my satisfactions within the pleasures that are accessible. Mind you, I still look wistfully sometimes at pleasures which are no longer available to me!

No comments: