La pietra scontenta della sua vita solitaria

 

Di Leonardo da Vinci

 

Una pietra novamente per l’acque scoperta, di bella grandezza, si stava sopra un certo loco rilevata, dove terminava un dilettevole boschetto sopra una sassosa strada, in compagnia d’erbette, di vari fiori di diversi colori ornata, e vedea la gran somma delle pietre che nella a sé sottoposta strada collocate erano. Le venne desiderio di la giù lasciarsi cadere, dicendo con seco: “Che fo qui con queste erbe? Io voglio con queste mie sorelle in compagnia abitare”. E giù lassatosi cadere infra le desiderate compagne, finì il suo volubile corso; e stata alquanto cominciò a essere da le rote de’ carri, dai piè de’ ferrati cavalli e de’ viandanti, a essere in continuo travaglio; chi la volta, quale la pestava, alcuna volta si levava alcuno pezzo, quando stava coperta dal fango o sterco di qualche animale, e invano riguardava il loco donde partita s’era, innel loco della soletaria e tranquilla pace.

Così accade a quelli che nella vita soletaria e contemplativa vogliano venir a abitare nelle città, infra i popoli pieni d’infini[ti] mali.

The rock who disliked her solitary life

 

By Leonardo da Vinci

 

A large rock, which re-emerged once the waters receded, rose on a lofty spot surrounded by meadows dotted with an array of multi-coloured flowers.  She stood on the edge of a lovely wood that overlooked a rocky road. From the lofty heights she could see the multitude of rocks lying below, and she was overcome with the desire to roll down to the road, saying to herself: “What am I doing up here among the grasses? I want to be living with my sisters.” And she let herself drop until she reached her sought-after companions down below. She had only just reached her destination that she was subjected to the continually trying heavy wheels of wagons, the shod hooves of horses and the feet of rovers. As she was trampled upon time and time again, she began to lose bits and pieces; she was covered in mud and dung; and, in vain, she would look up at the peaceful, solitary place she had left behind.

So is the life of those who want to leave a solitary life of contemplation to live in the city, among wicked men and infinite trials.

Translation by ©Matilda Colarossi

Leonardo’s work can be found here: http://www.liberliber.it/libri/l/leonardo/index.php

The drawing, A Rocky Ravine, is, obviously, by Leonardo da Vinci. Photograph: 2011, (Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II/The Royal Collection).

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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