Monday, October 24, 2011

Eight of Ten

With flames as manifold resplendent all
Was the eighth Bolgia, as I grew aware
As soon as I was where the depth appeared

And such as he who with the bears avenged him
Beheld Elijah's chariot at departing
What time the steeds to heaven erect uprose

For with his eye he could not follow it
So as to see aught else than flame alone,
Even as a little cloud ascending upward,

Thus each along the gorge of the intrenchment
Was moving; for not one reveals the theft,
And every flame a sinner steals away.

I stood upon the bridge uprisen to see,
So that, if I had seized not on a rock,
Down had I fallen without being pushed.

And the Leader, who beheld me so attent
Exclaimed: With the fires the spirits are;
Each swathes himself with that wherewith he burns.

'My Master, I replied, by hearing thee
I am more sure; but I surmised already
It might be so, and already wished to ask thee

Who is within that fire, which comes so cleft
At the top, it seems uprising from the pyre
Where was Eteocles with his brother placed.

He answered me: Within there are tormented
Ulysses and Diomed, and thus together
They unto vengeance run as unto wrath

And there within their flame do they lament
The ambush of the horse, which made the door
When issued forth the Romans' gentle seed;

Therein is wept the craft, for which being dead
Deidamia still deplores Achilles,
And pain for the Palladium there is borne.

There in the Eighth Bolgia are condemned to fire, those who gave fraudulent and evil counsel. They are not liars, merely those who used positions of respect to counsel others to ill deeds.