Cupio dissolvi. Upon the death of a Star

The Dutch poet Constantijn Huygens wrote a poem about a missing star. Is this a loved one or just a star? This is the poem Cupio dissolvi. Upon the death of a Star.

Constantijn HuygensAbout the poet

Constantijn Huygens (1596-1687) was a diplomat, a secretary for the Dutch princes Frederick Henry and William II, musician, architect and poet.

He was born on September 4 1596 in The Hague. He would eventually die in that city on March 28 1687. He considered himself to be a lesser poet, than a musician. He found music to be more important.

His name is connected to the Dutch literature prize “De Constantijn Huygensprijs.”

About the poem

This poem has two titles. The original name is Cupido dissolve. Op de dood van Sterre. The poet asks himself, why the star he used to watch is gone. The star isn’t really a star. It is a metaphor. Huygens had to say goodbye to a loved one.

This poem was first published in 1658.

Cupio dissolvi. Upon the death of a Star

Cupio dissolvi. Upon the death of a Star

Either I am dreaming, and it is night, or my Star disappeared?
I wake, and it is high noon, and I don’t see my Star.
O heaven, that forbids her countenance to be showed to me,
speak human language and tell, where is my Star gone?
The heaven strikes a sound, I can hear it through my stones,
and tells me, my Star is in the holy sphere,
where she sees the deity, where the deity sees upon her,
and, fills the laughter there, laughs at my vain cries.

Now, dead, now gasp, immediately shown and beyond,
now, passing of a stone, of the stone of life,
thin preservation, stand near, I’ll thank to forgive thee;
I yearn to see in the eternal light, forever flowing together
my salvation, my love, my body, my god, my Star and me.

— Constantijn Huygens

The Dutch version

Click here for the Dutch version.

Cupio dissolvi. Upon the death of a Star
Article Name
Cupio dissolvi. Upon the death of a Star
A poem written about a love that has gone. Written by the seventeenth century poet Constantijn Huygens.
Publisher Name
The Ministry of Poetic Affairs
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