S’eo mordo ‘l grasso, tu ne sugi ‘l lardo

Cecco Angiolieri, Sonnet CII, addressed to Dante:

Dante Alighier, s’i’ so bon begolardo,
tu mi tien’ bene la lancia a le reni,
s’eo desno con altrui, e tu vi ceni;
s’eo mordo ‘l grasso, tu ne sugi ‘l lardo;
s’eo cimo ‘l panno, e tu vi freghi ‘l cardo:
s’eo so discorso, e tu poco raffreni;
s’eo gentileggio, e tu misser t’avveni;
s’eo so fatto romano, e tu lombardo.

Sì che, laudato Deo, rimproverare
poco pò l’uno l’altro di noi due:
sventura o poco senno cel fa fare.
E se di questo vòi dicere piùe,
Dante Alighier, i’ t’averò a stancare;
ch’eo so lo pungiglion, e tu se’ ‘l bue.


Dante, if I’m a garrulous fool, I swear
You run a tilt against me quite as hard;
If I dine out with friends, you supper there,
And if I chew the fat, you suck the lard.
I shear the cloth, the nap is yours to raise;
And if I go too far, you’re much too free;
If I have noble, you have learned ways;
If I’m for Rome, well, you’re for Lombardy.
Then, thank the Lord, there’s little to be said
By one against the other as things stand:
From want of wit or luck we take our knocks.
And if you’ve more to say upon this head,
Dante, I’ll wear you down; just understand;
That I’m the gadfly now and you’re the ox.

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