< Prev | Next >

Act I

[Scene 2]

Enter Don Antonio and his sister Marcela

Don Antonio You are persistent, sister!
I love, but I will not say whom!
She who can make me happy is absent—
I know not where—145
and all my melancholy
is born of that absence.
They have hidden her in some place
unknown in earth or heaven.
Jealousy wages war on me,150
and touches my faith,
but not so as to diminish it.
Irrational jealousy provides care
with endless material.
It is the fuel of the great fire155
that love kindles in the soul,
a wind whose fierceness
whips up anxiety.

Quiñones [aside] They haven’t even noticed we are here.

Don Antonio Leave us.160

Cristina [aside] Exit obedience!

Exeunt Quiñones and Cristina

Marcela Will you not even tell me the
name of the lady?

Don Antonio Her name is the same as yours…

Marcela As mine?165

Don Antonio …and what is more she resembles you closely.

Marcela [aside] Dios mio! What’s all this?
What if this love is incestuous?
I am struggling with all kinds of suspicions.
[to D. Ant.] Is she beautiful?170

Don Antonio As beautiful as you,
and extolled for it.

Marcela [aside] My brother has lost his wits! God save him!

Enter Don Francisco, a friend of Don Antonio

Don Francisco Is the sea of your thoughts swelling up?

Don Antonio [to Marcela] Go to your room.175
Leave us alone, sister.
Retire, my dear.

Marcela May God improve your intentions!

Exit Marcela

Don Antonio Do you bring misfortune,to make me lament,
or good fortune,that I might laugh.180

Don Francisco I have tried bribery and wily schemes
to equal those of Sinon 5 and his Trojan horse
My diligence borders on the superhuman.
I have posted spies far and wide,
Invisible and eagle-eyed,185
but neither wisdom nor cunning can show
where they have taken Marcela.
It is a thing to make one wonder.
I can only imagine
that one night her father took her away,190
but whence I cannot guess.

Don Antonio Could an astrologer determine it?

Don Francisco I do not intend to consult one.
I hold science to be fools’ gold,
not because of the science,195
but because of how it is used
by the fools who enter into it
without knowledge or experience.
If perhaps Marcela was some lost jewel,
I would seek a different way200
of resolving the problem.
There are twenty auxiliary saints, or more—
I do not know how many—
but the saints would not wish us
to cure ourselves of love’s ills.205
Heaven always favours a just petitioner.

Don Antonio Well is not my intention just?
Is it not extremely righteous?
Am I looking for Marcela
for any other reason210
than to make her my wife?
Am I seeking anything else from her?

Don Francisco Either speak softly or we must go—
you do not know who’s listening

Don Antonio Let us go my friend.215
I am entrusting my life and death
to your considerable discretion.

Exeunt Don Antonio and Don Francisco

< Prev | Next >