Boiardo Tarocchi Poem: End
Veggio il mio error, pur il commun inganno
Sieguo, e stimo il mio fallo assai minore,
Ché errar con la piu parte è mancho errore
Che sol salvarsi in un publico danno.
Lor stessi, in farsi parer corte l’ore:
Onde, per far l'inganno anchor magiore,
Questo gioco ho composto e i' stesso il danno.
Che 'l tempo è tanto pretioso e caro,
Via manda, come corda d'archo un strale.
E il fuggir tedio è instincto naturale,
Scusomi anch'io si da natura imparo.
SONNET OF EXCUSE
I see my error, but I follow
The common deception, and I esteem this to be a small fault,
Because being wrong together with the majority of people is better
Than saving oneself in case of a public damage.
And try to make hours seem short to them:
So, in order to make the deception even greater,
I have made this game, and I am the first to condemn it.
That time, which is so precious and dear,
Sends away, like the string of a bow sends an arrow.
And escaping tedium is a natural instinct,
I excuse myself for learning from nature.
There is a difficulty with this verse. I follow Viti, because the general meaning of the sonnet seems clearer:
Lor stessi in farsi tal hor tor l'honore: (Viti: Lor stessi, in farsi parer corte l’ore:)
And let their honour be taken from them: (And try to make hours seem short to them)
With Viti, the first tercine is less obscure. Still, those verses are not clear to me.
The overall meaning is: the poet sees that looking for pastimes is a common error, and chooses to follow the other people in this error. He has invented this card game, which is a pastime. Time is like an arrow: you cannot stop it. Let's learn from nature and follow the natural instinct of avoiding boredom.