The Versified Life of Saint Francis  - 429 

And displayed in your flesh when dying.a Accept for yourself
This work of your poet, and deign to hear humble Minerva

20Do the honors in song to your princely campaign!
Moreover you, holy father, good shepherd, Gregory Ninthb
Making orison for gregarian sin, Sir 3:4 watching over congregational
Pastures, you fill the measure of so great a namec
Prithee be gentle with med and deign to accept in your kindness

25This smallest of gifts, O greatest of mortals!e
Francis's native soil bathes in his light like the sun,
Shining in new refulgencef as she glories in her great scion,
Veteran Assisi,g in the upper reaches of Spoleto vale,
Clings to a rocky peak's sloping flanks,

30With serried ranks of olive-trees
All covered from head to toe. Mt 27:51h
The boy's mother was upright, unpretentious and kind;
His merchant father violent and sly.i
O what a monster we've fashioned! Fickle nature's bad, consisting

35Of opposing factors. Not to be excused as though it were rhetorical
Verbal inversion,j our perverted state of affairs is such it upsets
And confuses everything. Honor is subjected to might;
Honor dominates to become liegeman in us;
The irresolute overrides the courageous,

40The earthy, the celestial, the mortal, the durable.




Legenda Sancti Francisci Versificata, Fontes Franciscani, p.

Et moriens in carne palam, Francisce, tulisti,
Vatis opus tibi sume tui, celsaeque canendis

20Militiae titulis humilem dignare Minervam!
At tu, sancte pater, bone pastor, None Gregori,
Qui pro peccato gregis orans, qui gregis oris
Invigilans tanti mensuram nominis imples,
Da mihi te placidum, precor, oblatamque libenter

25Suscipe dignanter minimam rem, maxime rerum!
Francisci natale solum perfunditur huius
Luce quasi solis, tantique refloret alumni
Illustrata novis fulgoribus urbs veterana
Assisium, quae valle tenus protensa Spoleti

30Pendet oliviferae corivexa cacumine rupis,
Tecta subalternans a summis usque deorsum.
Mater honesta fuit pueri, pater institor: illa
Simplex et clemens, hic subdolus et violentus.
O nostri monstrum figmenti! quam male constat

35Inconstans ex oppositis essentia rebus!
Non excusandus per hyperbaton, omnia turbat,
Omnia confundit nostri praeposterus ordo.
Imperio pars digna subest, et digna subesse
Imperat in nobis, et vincit lubrica fortem,

40Terrea caelestem, corruptibilisque perennem.

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 429