HÆc ego mente olim lævâ, studioque supino
Nequitiæ posui vana trophæa meæ.
Scilicet abreptum sic me malus impulit error,
Indocilisque ætas prava magistra fuit.
Donec Socraticos umbrosa Academia rivos [ 5 ]
Præbuit, admissum dedocuitque jugum.
Protinus extinctis ex illo tempore flammis,
Cincta rigent multo pectora nostra gelu.
Unde suis frigus metuit puer ipse Sagittis,
Et Diomedéam vim timet ipsa Venus. [ 10 ]
[A Postscript on the Elegies]
These lines are the worthless reminders of my flippancy, which I once composed in low and vile foolishness. Mischievous error seduced me and led me to it; also my youth—a vicious teacher. Until the shady Academy offered its Socratic streams, and taught me how to loosen the yoke I had been wearing. From then on the flames were quenched. My heart is now frozen, surrounded by ice, so that even Cupid fears his arrows might freeze, and Venus fears the strength of a Diomedes.