The Versified Life of Saint Francis  - 435 

185What happens he'll not return without making plenty of money.a
Francis on hearing of his going for the purpose of gain,
His habitual fire of cupidity fanned all the more,
Wants to join him on the journey and be his partner
In wealth. All things set up for traveling, retiring

190Hour comes, and twilight leads into the night.
One purpose persists in the pair: to go to Apulia
With the dawning of day. To bed they betake themselves,
Drowsy sleep takes over their limbs, while the eyes
Of their minds are fixed on their fortune.

195As to that citizen, God only knows what befell him.
As for Francis, celestial grace carries on the merciful work
It began, healing his hardness of heart, Mt 19:8 the distress In his brain.
Seeds spring up, left by that rooted-out
Sickness, scars reappear in the wounds. But He who poured

200Wine in, now applies oil. Lk 10:34b So the one He tested with
Violence, He might now tempt with sweetness, to move him
By coaxing when He could not by scourging, and that he who
Resisted when pressured, of his own will now might obey.
As sleep dulls his feelings, and his unhampered

205Mind examines his venture, Francis is carried out
Of himself. 2 Cor 12:2 His own house he sees filled with divers
Weapons: breastplates, axes glittering for use, polished
Swords, pointed spears, jeweled helmets, shields
With golden sheen. Astonished delight is his

210As in gladness he looks upon objects so many and precious.
For a wonted sight in his home Weapons of might never were,
But articles only of apparel soft and unwarlike
That either Flanders or fair Britain delivered.c




Legenda Sancti Francisci Versificata, Fontes Franciscani, p.

190Se putat eventu, quin plurima lucra reportet.
Audito Franciscus eum debere lucratum
Ire, magis solito flagrante cupidinis igne,
Vult comes esse viae propter consortia lucri.
Omnibus aptatis ad iter spectantibus, instat

195Hora recedendi ducuntque crepuscula noctem.
Cuius in aurora mens una duobus eundi
Perstat in Apuliam; recubant, lentoque sopore
Artubus immisso, mentes sua fata tuentur.
Sed quidquid de cive Deus providerit illo,

200Circa Franciscum caelestis gratia coeptum
Prosequitur pietatis opus, dignata mederi
Cordis duritiae o capitisque tumultibus, in quo
Sponte reviviscunt abscissae semina pestis,
Iamque cicatrices redeunt in vulnera; sed qui

205Vina preinfudit, oleum p superadicit, et quem
Vi praetentarat, dulcedine tentat, ut ipsum
Blanditiae moveant, quem non movere flagella,
Et qui restiterat compulsus, obediat ultro.
Sensibus oppressis somno, dum libera rerum

210Perspicit eventus purae speculatio mentis,
Extra se rapitur Franciscus, eique videtur
Quod domus ipsius sit plena quibuslibet armis,
Ut puta loricis, aceris candentibus usu,
Ensibus extersis et acumen habentibus hastis,

215Gemmatis galeis clipeisque nitentibus auro.
Tot pretiosa videns delectatusque videndo,
Gaudet et obstupefit; nec enim robusta solebat
Arma videre domi, sed quos aut Flandria molles
Mittit et imbelles aut flava Britannia cultus.

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 435