Giuseppe Gioachino Belli

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La donna, inzino ar venti, si è contenta
Mamma, l'anni che ttiè ssempre li canta:
Ne cresce uno oggni cinque inzino ar trenta,
Eppoi se ferma lì ssino a quaranta.

Dar quarantuno impoi stenta e nun stenta,
E ne dice antri dua sino ar cinquanta;
Ma allora, che aruvina pe la scenta,
Te la senti sartà ssubbito a ottanta.

Perché, ar cresce li fiji de li fiji,
Nun potenno esse ppiù donna d'amore,
Vò ffigurà da donna de conziji.

E allora er cardinale o er monziggnore,
Che j'allisciava er pelo a li cuniji,
Comincia a recità da confessore.


Women, till the age of twenty, if mother agrees [1]
Always declare their age:
They count one every five until they are thirty,
And then they stop counting until forty.

From forty-one onwards they barely move,
Declaring two more, until they are fifty;
But then, spoilt by time,
They suddenly reach the age of eigthy.

Because, as the children of their children grow,
No longer being women of love,
They wish to appear as women of wisdom.

And then, cardinals and bishops
Who used to be in friendly terms with them [2] ,
Start playing the role of the confessor.

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