Gaius Valerius Catullus

(84-54 BC / Verona, Gaul)

Advice: To Himself - Poem by Gaius Valerius Catullus

Sad Catullus, stop playing the fool,
and let what you know leads you to ruin, end.
Once, bright days shone for you,
when you came often drawn to the girl
loved as no other will be loved by you.
Then there were many pleasures with her,
that you wished, and the girl not unwilling,
truly the bright days shone for you.
And now she no longer wants you: and you
weak man, be unwilling to chase what flees,
or live in misery: be strong-minded, stand firm.
Goodbye girl, now Catullus is firm,
he doesn’t search for you, won’t ask unwillingly.
But you’ll grieve, when nobody asks.
Woe to you, wicked girl, what life’s left for you?
Who’ll submit to you now? Who’ll see your beauty?
Who now will you love? Whose will they say you’ll be?
Who will you kiss? Whose lips will you bite?
But you, Catullus, be resolved to be firm.

Comments about Advice: To Himself by Gaius Valerius Catullus

  • Ronnie Heaven (9/18/2018 2:23:00 PM)

    We've all been there! Intensely relatable and readable. (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • Bernard F. Asuncion (9/21/2017 5:37:00 PM)

    Such a great poem worth reading....: . (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis (9/21/2017 1:07:00 PM)

    Who now will you love? . Thanks for sharing this poem with us. (Report) Reply

  • Subhas Chandra Chakra (9/21/2017 10:14:00 AM)

    A great poem of the ancient age, well interpreted to the modern mind.
    Thanks poet.
    (Report) Reply

  • Kumarmani Mahakul (9/21/2017 9:58:00 AM)

    Catullus was a latin poet whose full name is Gaius Valerious Catullas. His poem are interesting and haunting. Thanks and congratulations to his soul for being selected this poem as the poem of the day. (Report) Reply

  • Sylvia Frances Chan (9/21/2017 4:25:00 AM)

    My comments haven't come up yet, but I will make a small note here that I have commented on the Beautiful Poetry of CATULLUS. I used to read him, I love to read CATULLUS when I was still studying the English Language-and-Literature. And it seems that I can still enjoy this Special Poem of him by him. I oft write poems to the self, easiest: no men would become angry nor offended. Ha! Magnificent poetry by CATULLUS, my fav. orator. (Report) Reply

  • Sylvia Frances Chan (9/21/2017 4:10:00 AM)

    WOW! A poem of THE Catullus, how impressing! L love to read CATULLUS when I was still studying, What is better than to give advice to the self? Wonderful poetry. A TEN for Catullus. (Report) Reply

  • Lantz Pierre (9/21/2017 3:45:00 AM)

    Quite a sage piece. I'm always a bit put off my third person references to the self, glad to see that confirmed in the latin Farinelli posted below. It comes off okay here, part of a stern talking to to the self. Seeing the Latin below, and this obviously meaningful translation I yearn to have Louis Zukofsky's translation as yet another point of reference. From ancient to modernist. If anyone has access to it please post it, I think it would be greatly informative. (Report) Reply

  • Susan Williams (9/21/2017 1:45:00 AM)

    This was written sometime between 84-54 BC- - -some things never change, do they? People break their hearts and will turn around and break their hearts again. Amazing how the language doesn't seem stilted or awkward- -must be a good interpreter. (Report) Reply

  • (3/29/2006 9:45:00 AM)

    VIII. ad se ipsum

    MISER Catulle, desinas ineptire,
    et quod uides perisse perditum ducas.
    fulsere quondam candidi tibi soles,
    cum uentitabas quo puella ducebat
    amata nobis quantum amabitur nulla.
    ibi illa multa cum iocosa fiebant,
    quae tu uolebas nec puella nolebat,
    fulsere uere candidi tibi soles.
    nunc iam illa non uult: tu quoque impotens noli,
    nec quae fugit sectare, nec miser uiue,
    sed obstinata mente perfer, obdura.
    uale puella, iam Catullus obdurat,
    nec te requiret nec rogabit inuitam.
    at tu dolebis, cum rogaberis nulla.
    scelesta, uae te, quae tibi manet uita?
    quis nunc te adibit? cui uideberis bella?
    quem nunc amabis? cuius esse diceris?
    quem basiabis? cui labella mordebis?
    at tu, Catulle, destinatus obdura.
    (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: girl, kiss, sad, beauty

Poem Submitted: Thursday, January 1, 2004

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