by Ada Negri (1870 - 1945)
Translation © by Mario Giuseppe Genesi

Il Segno della Croce
Language: Italian (Italiano) 
Available translation(s): ENG
-"Ho sonno. Fammi il Segno della Croce,
Mamma"-. -"In nome del Padre, del Figliuolo,
Dello Spirito Santo"-. -"Amor mio solo,
Ecco, e t'addormi alla sommessa voce"-

Come calmo il tuo sonno!... Or che non senti,
Piangere posso, bimba, al tuo guanciale.
Ho tanto male al cuore, ho tanto male,
Che la mia vita strazierei coi denti.

V'è un modo per fuggir l'affanno atroce...
Ma tu mi tieni col tuo dolce laccio,
Tu che non puoi dormir s'io non ti traccio 
In fronte, a sera, il Segno della Croce.


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, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Mario Giuseppe Genesi) , title 1: "The Sign of the Cross", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Mario Giuseppe Genesi

This text was added to the website: 2016-04-27
Line count: 12
Word count: 88

The Sign of the Cross
Language: English  after the Italian (Italiano) 
-"I feel sleepy, Mother; do to me the Sign of the Cross"-
-"In the name of the Father, of the Son, 
And of the Holy Spirit"-. You, my only love,
You feel asleep as my voice softens away.

How calmly you sleep!... Now you won't hear me, so
I can cry, my little child, by your pillow.
My heart aches, it really aches,
That nearly I'd lacerate my own soul with my teeth.

I'd know the way to escape from these atrocious worries...
But you anchor my life to yours,
You that won't fall asleep in the evening time, if I won't trace
On your forehead, the Sign of the Cross.


  • Translation from Italian (Italiano) to English copyright © 2016 by Mario Giuseppe Genesi, (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.

Based on


This text was added to the website: 2016-04-27
Line count: 12
Word count: 111