Sappho: One Hundred Lyrics eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 39 pages of information about Sappho.


Hark, where Poseidon’s
White racing horses
Trample with tumult
The shelving seaboard!

Older than Saturn, 5
Older than Rhea,
That mournful music,
Falling and surging

With the vast rhythm
Ceaseless, eternal, 10
Keeps the long tally
Of all things mortal.

How many lovers
Hath not its lulling
Cradled to slumber
With the ripe flowers, 15

Ere for our pleasure
This golden summer
Walked through the corn-lands
In gracious splendour! 20

How many loved ones
Will it not croon to,
In the long spring-days
Through coming ages,

When all our day-dreams 25
Have been forgotten,
And none remembers
Even thy beauty!

They too shall slumber
In quiet places, 30
And mighty sea-sounds
Call them unheeded.


Hark, my lover, it is spring! 
On the wind a faint far call
Wakes a pang within my heart,
Unmistakable and keen.

At the harbour mouth a sail 5
Glimmers in the morning sun,
And the ripples at her prow
Whiten into crumbling foam,

As she forges outward bound
For the teeming foreign ports. 10
Through the open window now,
Hear the sailors lift a song!

In the meadow ground the frogs
With their deafening flutes begin,—­
The old madness of the world 15
In their golden throats again.

Little fifers of live bronze,
Who hath taught you with wise lore
To unloose the strains of joy,
When Orion seeks the west? 20

And you feathered flute-players,
Who instructed you to fill
All the blossomy orchards now
With melodious desire?

I doubt not our father Pan 25
Hath a care of all these things. 
In some valley of the hills
Far away and misty-blue,

By quick water he hath cut
A new pipe, and set the wood 30
To his smiling lips, and blown,
That earth’s rapture be restored.

And those wild Pandean stops
Mark the cadence life must keep. 
O my lover, be thou glad; 35
It is spring in Hellas now.


When the early soft spring wind comes blowing
Over Rhodes and Samos and Miletus,
From the seven mouths of Nile to Lesbos,
Freighted with sea-odours and gold sunshine,

Project Gutenberg
Sappho: One Hundred Lyrics from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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