by Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475 - 1564)
Translation © by Carl Johengen

Tu sa, ch'io so, signor mie, che tu sai
Language: Italian (Italiano) 
Available translation(s): ENG FRE SPA
Tu sa, ch'io so, signor mie, che tu sai
Ch'i [veni]1 per goderti più da presso;
E sai ch'i' so, che tu sa' c'i' son desso:
A che più indugio a salutarci omai?
Se vera è la speranza che mi dai,
Se vero è 'l [buon]2 desio che m'è concesso,
Rompasi il mur fra l'uno e l'altro messo;
Chè doppia forza hann' i celati guai.
S'i' amo sol di te, signor mie caro,
Quel che di te più ami, non ti sdegni;
Che l'un dell'altro spirto s'innamora,
Quel che nel tuo bel volto bramo e 'mparo,
E mal compres' è degli umani ingegni,
Chi 'l vuol [veder]3, convien che prima mora.

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View original text (without footnotes)
1 K. Sorabji: "vengo"
2 K. Sorabji: "gran"
3 K. Sorabji: "saper"


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Poom Andrew Pipatjarasgit [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 14
Word count: 111

Sonnet LV
Language: English  after the Italian (Italiano) 
 You know that I know, my lord, that you know
 I have come to take pleasure in your presence;
 and you know that I know that you know I am constant.
 Why then do we hesitate to greet one another?
 If it is true, this hope that you give me,
 if these desires are true which come over me,
 break down the wall between one and the other;
 hidden sorrows have twice the force.
 If I love only in you, my dear lord,
 that which you love most, do not be angry;
 let love spring up between our two souls.
 That which in your noble face I seek
 is but ill-understood by humankind,
 and he who wishes to see it must first die.


  • Translation from Italian (Italiano) to English copyright © by Carl Johengen, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.

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This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 14
Word count: 124