Passer, Carmen II Passer, deliciae meae puellae, quicum ludere, quem in sinu tenere, cui primum digitum dare appetenti et acris solet incitare morsus, cum desiderio meo nitenti carum nescio quid lubet iocari et solaciolum sui doloris, credo ut tum gravis acquiescat ardor: tecum ludere sicut ipsa possem et tristis animi levare curas! Sparrow, delight of my girl, with whom she is accustomed to play, which (she is accustomed) to hold in her lap, to whom, attacking, (she is accustomed) to give her finger tip and to arouse sharp bites, when it is pleasing for my shining desire to play at something dear and a little comfort of her pain, I believe, that then her heavy passion lessens: would that I were able to play with you as she herself does and soothe the sad cares of (my) mind!
Sappho Mutata, Carmen LI Ille mi par esse deo videtur, ille, si fas est, superare divos, qui sedens adversus identidem te spectat et audit dulce ridentem, misero quod omnis eripit sensus mihi: nam simul te, Lesbia, aspexi, nihil est super mi vocis in ore, lingua sed torpet, tenuis sub artus flamma demanat, sonitu suopte tintinant aures, gemina teguntur lumina nocte. Otium, Catulle, tibi molestum est: otio exsultas nimiumque gestis: otium et reges prius et beatas perdidit urbes. That man seems to me to be a god, that man, if it is right, surpasses the gods, who sitting opposite (you) again and again sees and hears you sweetly laughing, (a thing) which tears all senses from wretched me: for as soon as I have caught sight of you, Lesbia, there is nothing of a voice left in my mouth, but my tongue grows numb, a thin flame runs down under my limbs, my ears ring with their own sound, my lights are covered with a twin night. Leisure, Catullus, is a bother to you; you rejoice and exult too much in leisure; leisure has ruined both kings and beautiful kingdoms before.
Basia, Carmen V Vivamus mea Lesbia, atque amemus, rumoresque senum severiorum omnes unius aestimemus assis! soles occidere et redire possunt: nobis cum semel occidit brevis lux, nox est perpetua una dormienda. da mi basia mille, deinde centum, dein mille altera, dein secunda centum, deinde usque altera mille, deinde centum. dein, cum milia multa fecerimus, conturbabimus illa, ne sciamus, aut ne quis malus inuidere possit, cum tantum sciat esse basiorum. Let us live, my Lesbia, and let us love, and let us value all the rumors of the too harsh old men at one penny! Suns are able to set and return; as soon as the brief light sets for us, one perpetual night must be slept. Give me a thousand kisses, then a hundred; then another thousand, then a second hundred; still another thousand, then a hundred. Then, when we have made many thousands, we will confuse them, lest we know, or lest some evil man can envy, when he knows how many kisses there are.
Carmina LXXXVII, LXX, LXXXV Nulla potest mulier tantum se dicere amatam vere, quantum a me Lesbia amata mea est. Nulla fides ullo fuit umquam foedere tanta, quanta in amore tuo ex parte reperta mea est Nulli se dicit mulier mea nubere malle quam mihi, non si se Iuppiter ipse petat. dicit: sed mulier cupido quod dicit amanti, in vento et rapida scribere oportet aqua. Odi et amo. Quare id faciam, fortasse requiris. nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior. No woman can call herself as truly loved as my Lesbia has been loved by me. No faith in any contract has ever been so great as has been found on my part in my love for you. My woman says that she prefers to wed no one than me, not if Jupiter himself would seek her. She says: but what a woman says to a desiring lover she ought to write in wind and swift water. I hate and I love. How do I do this, perhaps you ask. I do not know, but I feel it happening, and I am tortured.
Miser Catulle, Carmen VIII Miser Catulle, desinas ineptire, et quod vides perisse perditum ducas. Fulsere quondam candidi tibi soles, cum ventitabas quo puella ducebat amata nobis quantum amabitur nulla. Ibi illa multa cum iocosa fiebant, quae tu volebas nec puella nolebat, fulsere vere candidi tibi soles. Nunc iam illa non vult: tu quoque impotens noli, nec quae fugit sectare, nec miser vive, sed obstinata mente perfer, obdura. Vale puella, iam Catullus obdurat, nec te requiret nec rogabit invitam. At tu dolebis, cum rogaberis nulla. Scelesta, uae te, quae tibi manet uita? Quis nunc te adibit? cui videberis bella? Quem nunc amabis? Cuius esse diceris? Quem basiabis? Cui labella mordebis? At tu, Catulle, destinatus obdura. Wretched Catullus, stop being a fool, consider lost what you see has been lost. Bright suns once shone for you when you used to come frequently to where your girl was leading, loved by us as no woman will be loved; then when those many jokes were made, which you wished for nor did your girl did not want, bright suns truly shone for you. Now that woman does not want; you too, powerless one, do not want! Neither chase what flees, nor live miserable, but with obstinate mind, endure, be firm! Goodbye girl, now Catullus is firm, neither will he miss you, nor will he ask you unwilling. But you will grieve when you will not be asked. Wicked woman, woe to you! What life remains for you? Who will approach you now? To whom will you seem beautiful? Whom will you love now? Whose will you be said to be? Whom will you kiss? Whose lips will you bite? But you, Catullus, stubborn, be firm.