Some time ago a boyfriend sent me part of a poem. But I don't know what it is, by whom or where and he wouldn't tell me. It might be a latin or greek translation or possibly from the book of solomon. I've been search so long now! Please tell me if you know what it is or have any ideas! Here it is,
Like a god she seems to be
or even more may I dare say
who sitting by your side
watches and listens to your gentle laughter
when I look at you my dear
my whole heart loses courage
my senses fail me
and darkness over come me....
There was a suggestion that it might be Sappho, but if it is I can't find it!
Thanks a mil! You don't know it that its complete form or an unusual translation? Or where I might get it?! I appreciate it! Thanks!
Say what? You lost me.
She wants to know if that is the entire poem's translation and where she might find it in print.
exactly! If anybody knows I'd really appreciate it!
I'm still befuddled. The link I posted had several translations of the original work. I feel sure there are hundreds of copies in many books, both translations and in her original language. I don't read Greek, so I did not go looking, but likely a Greek-enhanced browser could chase some down.
"a Greek-enhanced browser"
I saw that phrase out of context and loved it.
Only fragments are left of her poetry. so often a poem ends strange, and probably it had more, but unfortunately that's irrecoverably lost. I assume the same goes for this poem.
Aaahhh, I see! I'm so slow! Sorry Hugh, I didin't see the attachment before now! All is clear! Thanks very much!
I believe this poem in the original Greek is one of Sappho's poems that does survive almost complete. I have a copy in Greek (which I can't read, and can't post here), comprising four stanzas, in the Appendix to a book of poems of Catullus. He translated most of it into three stanzas of Latin, imitating her metre and format, as follows [punctuation added]:
ille mi par esse deo videtur,
ille, si fas est, superare divos,
qui sedens adversus identidem te
spectat et audit
dulce ridentem, misero quod omnes
eripit sensus mihi: nam simul te,
Lesbia, aspexi, nihil est super mi
vocis in ore;
lingua sed torpet, tenuis sub artus
flamma demanat, sonitu suopte
tintinant aures, gemina teguntur
As Hugh said, many translations have been made. One I like better than any of those on the link that Hugh posted is the following by F.L.Lucas:
Him I hold as happy as God in Heaven,
Who can sit and gaze at your face before him,
Who can sit and hear from your lips that sweetest
Music you utter––
Hear your lovely laughter, that sets a-tremble
All my heart with flutterings wild as terror.
Ah, when I behold you an instant, straightway
All my words fail me,
Helpless halts my tongue, a devouring fever
Runs like fire through every vein within me,
Darkness veils my vision, my ears are deafened,
Beating like hammers;
Cold the sweat runs down me; a sudden trembling
Leaves my limbs a-quiver; my face grows paler
Than the summer-grasses; I see beside me
Death stand, and madness.
Post Edited (12-07-03 15:44)
Yes, excellent. Swinburne on Sapphics:
A friend of mine invented "fragments" of Sappho for a humor magazine in college. This was my favorite:
Aphrodite is bored.