Beatrice looked at me with eyes so full
of the radiance of love and so divine
that, overcome, my power of sight faded and fled
and, eyes cast down, I almost lost my senses.
‘If I flame at you with a heat of love
beyond all measure known on earth
so that I overcome your power of sight
do not wonder, for this is the result
of perfect vision which, even as it apprehends
moves its foot toward the apprehended good.
‘I see clearly now, reflected in your mind,
the eternal light that, once beheld,
alone and always kindles love, is shining.
And, if anything beguiles your mortal love,
it is nothing but a remnant of that light, which,
incompletely understood, still shines in it.’
Dante Alighieri, Divine Comedy, Paradiso, IV, 139- 142; V,1-12