In a small patch of heaven

In a small patch of heaven
I saw the sun unseam,
become two shining stars
and these had black beams.

They shine and serve
as the Venus stars:
at dawn the morning star,
the evening star at night.

Their shapes rimmed in gold,
a miracle is worked:
the dark becomes fair,
not the fair dark.

Rays that are the keys
to this sea's port
if ports become a sea
all gulfs and straits.

Eyes with no such mercy—
but yet they have, look!
The rays they don in mourning
for so many lives wrecked.

Luis de Góngora y Argote, 1585
Translator: Michael Smith


Letrillas, romances...
Original version