Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Another Ancient Poem

No, I did not mention to the kids the name of Sappho's home island. All I told them is that this poem was found written on a crumbling piece of parchment, and that the first and last verses are probably missing. Some words are the translator's best guess because pieces of the original material were actually torn away.

Ancient Greek Poem
Sappho (circa 600 b.c.e.)

Now she shines forth among the Lydian
Ladies, when as the sun sinks low,
The rosy-fingered Moon
Surpasses all the stars.

The light spreads over the salty sea
As over the many flowered fields
The delicate dew falls, they bloom ----
The roses and tender anthrusca and
The flowering honey-lotus.

And she, often wandering back and forth
Remembers gentle Atthis with longing
And eats away at her tender heart for your fate.

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