Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, LINES WRITTEN TO A TRANSLATOR OF GREEK POETRY, by MARGARET STEELE ANDERSON



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LINES WRITTEN TO A TRANSLATOR OF GREEK POETRY, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: A wild spring upland all this charmed page
Last Line: To the great voices of old tragedists!
Subject(s): Translating & Interpreting; Wellesley College


A WILD spring upland all this charmed page,
Where, in the early dawn, the maenads rage,
Mad, chaste, and lovely! This, a darker spot,
Where lone Antigone bewails her lot,
Death for her spouse, her bridal-bed the tomb.
And this, again, is some rich palace-room,
Where Phaedra pines: "O woodlands! O, the sea!"
Or some sweet walk of Sappho, beauteously
Built o'er with rose, with bloom of purple grapes!
They are all here -- the ancient Attic shapes
Of passion, beauty, terror, love, and shame;
Proud shadows, you do summon them by name:
Achaean princes -- Helen -- the young god,
Fair Dionysus -- OEdipus, who trod
Such ways of doom! Aye, these and more than these
You call across the ages and the seas!
And each one, answering, doth dream he lists
To the great voices of old tragedists!





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