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- "Odi et (od et) amo. quare id (quar id) faciam, fortasse requiris?
- nescio, sed fieri sentio et (senti et) excrucior."
- I hate and I love. Why I do this, perhaps you ask?
- I do not know, but I feel it happening and I am being torn apart.
Its declaration of conflicting feelings "I hate and I love" (in Latin, Odi et amo) is renowned for its force and brevity.
The meter of the poem is the elegiac couplet.