Lovely Enarda! young and old
All quarrel with me daily:
Because I write to thee they scold,
Perhaps sweet verses gaily.
«A judge should be more grave», they say,
As each my song accuses;
«From such pursuits should turn away
As trifling with the Muses».
«How wofully you waste your time!»
Preach others; but, all slighting,
The more they scold, the more I rhyme;
Still I must keep on writing.
Enarda’s heart and mind to praise,
All others far excelling,
My rustic pipe its note shall raise,
In well-toned measures telling.
I wish, extolling to the skies,
Her beauty’s high perfection
To sing, and all her witcheries
Of feature and complexion:
With master pencil to portray
Her snowy neck and forehead,
And eyes that round so roguish play,
And lips like carmine florid.
And let the Catos go at will,
To where they most prefer it,
Who withering frowns and sneerings still
Give me for my demerit.
In spite of all, with wrinkled pate,
The censures each rehearses,
Enarda I will celebrate
For ever in my verses.
Gaspar Melchor de Jovellanos
Translated by James Kennedy
James Kennedy. "Modern poets and poetry of Spain" (1860). Produced by Cornell University Library, 1992.