As we approach Thanksgiving week, we can listen to Horace teaching us gratitude.
Here is Dryden translating Horace in Ode 3.29:
Happy the man, and happy he alone,
He, who can call to day his own:
He, secure within, can say
To morrow do thy worst, for I have liv'd to day.
Be fair, or foul, or rain, or shine,
The joys I have possest, in spight of fate are mine.
Not Heav'n it self upon the past has pow'r;
But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour.
And modern poet Charles Tomlinson translates the same lines:
Happy the man who to himself can say
"Whatever awaits me now, I've lived today.
Let tomorrow's sky be filled
With cloud or sunshine--why should I
Discount the happiness I've had:
Fate itself cannot undo what's done
Or take away that hour's content
That came and went, yet lives within the mind.
Both translations are quoted from Horace The Odes: New Translations by Contemporary Poets, ed. J.D. McClatchy (Princeton Univ. Press, 2002), pp. 5, 241.
Each of us has that hour of magical gratitude. As for me, I fondly recall an extended holiday in the very middle of Spain with my children.
(Image below under Creative Commons License, Wikimedia Commons)