On this present day, excellent and august men, I must advance in the poetic tradition; and, therefore, I have drawn my proposal not from anywhere other than from the poetic scriptures.  Moreover, on account of the same reason also: with these most insignificant distinctions cut back until the present, [these distinctions] by which, as they are accustomed to in theological declamations; with the favour of the divine name invoked, however, which in order to deserve to obtain that greeting of the Virgin gloriously, in this, despite longed-for conciseness, I believe that I must not forget. I shall disclose the remaining things as briefly as possible. Hail Mary, and the rest.
“Sweet love takes me through the lonely hills of Parnassus.”
These words were written by the most illustrious and greatest poet of all, in the third Georgics: the first part of which indicates that it is not an easy task of my intention, the second unites a not commonplace passion of the mind eagerly. It appears that the first from this with respect to “me through the lonely hills of Parnassus”, where it is necessary to note in place of “Parnassus” about “hills”, and in place of “lonely”.  (It appears that) the second from this with respect to “sweet love takes”, where it is to be paid attention in place of “love” and “sweet love” and “love being strong takes”.  And doubtless the consequence is this connection also depends on the one from the other: for whoever desires to climb through the lonely hills of Parnassus has a necessity to love what he desires; whoever loves is doubtlessly more prepared by his eagerness, which he loves with his mind, to go on climbing, since eagerness without love and without some great effort of mind and a certain desire does not produce the desired results, as it is able to be gathered from that Peripathetic opinion which is taken elegantly from Cicero in Tusculans III, and it is clear from the definition of this study, which is nothing other than the “constant and vigorous occupation applied to a particular thing with great pleasure, as of philosophy, of poetry” and of the remaining arts, which definition he puts in the first book of On Invention.  Therefore I shall deliver in brief, what both I promised you and as befits my profession, I say first what is difficult, of my task, certainly, three things are principally magnified: evidently, the very nature of the thing; for me, fortune is always relentless, hard, and turned away from these studies; and the concern of my times. One word about something.  How great, I say, the difficulty of my task naturally is, from this it is apparent what, although in other arts it is able to be reached at the end through eagerness and effort, in poetic art it is otherwise, in which nothing is performed without a certain interal and divinely poured force in the soul of the poet.  do not believe me, but Cicero, who, in an oration in support of Aulus Licinius Archias, talking about poets, uses such words: we have heard from most learned and educated men this (thus): that studies of remaining things depends on talent, learning, and skill, the poet is strong by nature itself and is stirred by the force of his mind and as if it is inspired by a certain divine spirit, as our famous Ennius, not without cause, names poets sacred in their own certain right, they seem with respect to this to be recommended to us by the gift of the gods;” Cicero (says) these things.  Certainly in this mention of most learned men, I believe he (Cicero) was thinking about Marcus Varro, the most learned man of all the Romans, who is believed to put this same opinion in the first book On Poets.  Of course, considering this difficulty, the Satirist says:
The work of a great mind, not thunderstruck by buying a blanket,
Is to see the chariots and the horses, and the faces of the gods,
And what sort of Rutulian the fury confuses.
 Considering this same opinion, Lucan exclaimed in his ninth (book):
O sacred and great is the work of the poets!
 Doesn’t the natural difficulty of my task sufficiently seem to you to have been asserted by appropriate witnesses, which certainly is such that human effort is unable to overcome it, although it is written by the poet about the rest generally that:
Immoderate work conquers all things.
In his first book of Georgics.  Doubtless from this fountain come those mockeries of those working up to the outer time of their life uselessly and ineffectually in this skill, some of which things we read in the books about scholastic discipline. and these things about the first.