poem 166

She resolves the question of which
be the more trying role in conflicting
relationships: to love or to abhor

That Fabio does not love me, though adored,
is grief unmatched by any I have known,
a lesser hurt, though no less bothersome,
is that Silvio loves me, he in turn abhorred.
What patience, sorely tried, would not deplore,
what ringing ear, assaulted, not bemoan,
the ever-plaintive sighs of one disowned,
the arrogance of a vain conqueror.
If I am bored by Silvio’s submission,
it bores Fabio to tears that I submit;
if from Fabio I forever court permission,
Silvio seeks from me what I permit;
if dual torment is to be my one condition,
both of loving and being loved I would be quit.

Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz

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