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11 February 2021

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mcohen

Good stuff this.thanks for posting

"so that he'd finally leave the holy
island and plant
a city of fine chariots
on a chalky breast of earth,"

Barbara Ann

"Hera kindled in these demigods
allsuasive sweet desire
for the ship Argo, that none be left behind
lingering by his mother’s side
to coddle long a life devoid of danger,
but to discover with his agemates,
even at the price of death,
the fairest way to achieve his own exploits"

Fabulous. Hera would have her work cut out making Argonauts out of today's demigods I think.

A difficult read overall, but my unfamiliarity with the details of the story are solely to blame for that. Great to see more of your work posted here Mr Willett.

mcohen

a parable from ancient times

a parable written on cloth
lay before me on the table
an ancient token of troth
for those wise and able

there was a light between the lines
that shone brightly through
with this rod one divines
what is false and what is true

in a desert land far away
a man came upon a stream
in the heat of the day
of this did I dream

in the night as i rest
under a starry sky
this gift of sight
is the reason why

with closed eyes one sees
when all is still
a man falling to his knees
to drink his fill.

the next day i arose early
the desert air was cool
continued on my journey
to solomon's pool

There before me stood a man
in clothes dusty and worn
where a stream once ran
from times before I was born.

He greeted me with a smile
like an old friend
this final mile
at journey's end


,

English Outsider


Thank you for this translation.

When all your work is done, and you return, maybe a side glance at Cavafy? I got a Greek friend to read some for me. Wanted to know if those evocative throwaway final lines were a product of translation or in the piece itself. He was perhaps a little reluctant - I gather Cavafy is very much old hat and no one reads him today. But he read well and I think they're in the piece. Do you find him bogus or does he ring true to the scholar?

The Pindar is indeed a difficult read. But worth it.

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