Reading Dante

"The ideal way of reading The Divine Comedy would be to start at the first line and go straight through to the end, surrendering to the vigour of the story-telling and the swift movement of the verse, and not bothering about any historical allusions or theological explanations which do not occur in the text itself." [...]

Longfellow

Included with the Longfellow translation of The Divine Comedy on Project Gutenberg are six sonnets. Here are the first two. I Oft have I seen at some cathedral door A laborer, pausing in the dust and heat, Let down his burden, and with reverent feet Enter, and cross himself, and on the floor Kneel to [...]