Love’s a fire that burns out of sight;
It’s a wound, yet a painless torment;
It’s a discontent sense of contentment;
It’s a pang, yet unbearably slight.
It’s caring with just enough intent;
It’s feeling lonely among the crowd;
It’s an unfulfilled sense of contentment;
It’s losing and yet being proud;
It’s being a slave ‘n submitting willingly;
It’s being the winner ‘n wanting to serve;
It’s confronting your foe with loyalty.
But how can it be possibly deserve
To find in human hearts amity,
So self-contradictory being Love?
Luis de Camões (c. 1524 – 1580)
“A Little Anthology of Portuguese Poems”
Translated by Ana-Maria Chaves