No Comment — February 2, 2008, 4:03 am

Góngora – for El Greco


Esta en forma elegante, oh peregrino,
de pórfido luciente dura llave,
el pincel niega al mundo más süave,
que dio espíritu a leño, vida a lino.

Su nombre, aún de mayor aliento dino
que en los clarines de la Fama cabe,
el campo ilustra de ese mármol grave;
venéralo y prosigue tu camino.

Yace el Griego. Heredó Naturaleza
Arte; y el Arte, estudio. Iris, colores.
Febo, luces (si no sombras, Morfeo).

Tanta urna, a pesar de su dureza,
lágrimas beba, y cuantos suda olores
corteza funeral de árbol sabeo.

This in graceful form, oh pilgrim,
a solid key of porphyry gleaming brightly
denies the world the softest brush
which ever wood gave soul, or canvas gave life.

His name, deserving even greater breath
than Fame needs for her clarion fanfare,
this field of marble amplifies:
venerate it and be on your way.

Here lies the Greek. to Nature he bequeathed Art,
To Art, learning.
To the Rainbow, colors.
To Phoebus, the bright, to Morpheus his somber tones.

May this great urn, despite its hardness,
drink tears and all the odors in the sweat
of the funereal bark of the Arabian tree.

Luís de Góngora, Inscripción para el sepulcro
de Domínico Greco
(1610)(S.H. transl.)

Single Page

More from Scott Horton:

Context, No Comment August 28, 2015, 12:16 pm

Beltway Secrecy

In five easy lessons

From the April 2015 issue

Company Men

Torture, treachery, and the CIA

Six Questions October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm

The APA Grapples with Its Torture Demons: Six Questions for Nathaniel Raymond

Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.

Get access to 165 years of
Harper’s for only $45.99

United States Canada



October 2015

Lives by Omission

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Lifting as We Climb

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Cattle Calls

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

Getting Jobbed

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

view Table Content


Means of Dissent·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“One of the peculiar things about economic inequality is that the people who are most articulate about it are not poor, while the poor themselves have said little, at least in print, about their situation.”
Photograph © Reuters/Brendan McDermid
Residence on Earth·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“It would be nice to get through this review without recourse to the term ‘writer’s writer.’ The thing is, in the case of Joy Williams, I have seen the cliché made flesh.”
Illustration by Steven Dana
Pakistan in Miniatures·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“Miniatures originated in Persia and were brought to the Indian subcontinent when the Mughals conquered it in the sixteenth century. They could take on almost any subject: landscapes or portraits; stories of love, war, or play.”
Painting by by Imran Qureshi.
Cattle Calls·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“The business of being a country veterinarian is increasingly precarious. The heartland has been emptying of large-animal vets for at least two decades, as agribusiness changed the employment picture and people left the region.”
Photograph by Lance Rosenfield
Getting Jobbed·

= Subscribers only.
Sign in here.
Subscribe here.

“Rosie and her husband had burned through their small savings in the first few months after she lost her job. Now their family of five relied on his minimum-wage paychecks, plus Rosie’s unemployment and food stamps, which, combined, brought them to around $2,000 per month, just above the poverty line.”
Illustrations by Taylor Callery

Factor by which male life-scientists are more likely to patent their findings than are their female counterparts:


Scientists in Singapore developed a urine-powered paper battery the size of a credit card.

A gas-like smell that prompted authorities to evacuate a train in France was discovered to originate from fermented meat in a passenger’s bag.

Subscribe to the Weekly Review newsletter. Don’t worry, we won’t sell your email address!


Subways Are for Sleeping


“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”

Subscribe Today