Today I'm teaching Spain's only surviving epic poem about the Medieval hero named el Cid. There is this touching passage where el Cid is saying good-bye to his beloved wife and two little daughters. I'm still kind of weak from my sickness, so I found it hard not to cry in class while I was reading the following passage to the students:
The Cid, the nobly bearded, reached down unto the twain,
And in his arms his daughters has lifted up again,
And to his heart he pressed them, so great his love was grown,
And his tears fell fast and bitter, and sorely did he moan:
"Ximena as mine own spirit I loved thee, gentle wife;
But o'er well dost thou behold it, we must sunder in our life.
I must flee and thou behind me here in the land must stay.
Please God and sweet Saint Mary that yet upon a day
I shall give my girls in marriage with mine own hand rich and well,
And thereafter in good fortune be suffered yet to dwell,
May they grant me, wife, much honored, to serve thee then once more."I still have another section of this course to teach later today. So we'll see how it goes. I don't want to scare students with a highly emotional response to readings so early in the semester.