Sonnets on Love XIII

"Give me a place to stand," Archimedes said, 
"and I can move the world." Paradoxical, clever, 
his remark which first explained the use of the lever 
was an academic joke. But if that dead

sage could return to life, he would find a clear 
demonstration of his idea, which is not 
pure theory after all. That putative spot 
exists in the love I feel for you, my dear.

What could be more immovable or stronger? 
What becomes more and more secure, the longer 
it is battered by inconstancy and the stress

we find in our lives? Here is that fine fixed point 
from which to move a world that is out of joint, 
as he could have done, had he known a love like this.

From Sonnets of Love and Death by Jean de Sponde, translated by David R. Slavitt. Copyright © 2001 by Northwestern University Press. Used with permission. All rights reserved.