ards reformation; it governs, in turn, and more
rudely and imperiously than the other; it lets me not an hour alone,
sleeping or waking, but is always preaching to me death, patience, and
repentance. I now defend myself from temperance, as I have formerly done
from pleasure; it draws me too much back, and even to stupidity. Now I
will be master of myself, to all intents and purposes; wisdom has its
excesses, and has no less need of moderation than folly. Therefore, lest
I should wither, dry up, and overcharge myself with prudence, in the
intervals and truces my infirmities allow me:
"Mens intenta suis ne seit usque malis."
["That my mind may not eternally be intent upon my ills."
--Ovid., Trist., iv. i, 4.]
I gently turn aside, and avert my eyes from the stormy and cloudy sky I
have before me, which, thanks be to God, I regard without fear, but not
without meditation and study, and amuse myself in the remembrance of my