Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, EUROPA AND THE BULL, by MOSCHUS

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EUROPA AND THE BULL, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: She spoke and laughed, his back she sat upon
Last Line: Lifting the maiden like a ship in sail.

SHE spoke and laughed, his back she sat upon;
the rest made ready, but the bull was gone.
Away with prize he leapt to the sea side,
But she turned round and to her playmates cried
With outstretched hands; yet none of them could reach.
Lithe as a dolphin, seaward from the beach
He skims the wide waves, plunging with dry hooves,
And all the sea grows calmer as he moves.
Sea monsters at the feet of Zeus now gambol,
Dolphin leaves deep for jolly surface tumble,
And from the sea there rise in order due,
Perched on the monsters' backs, the Nereid crew.
Himself, earth-shaker loud and ocean's lord,
Levelled the wave and for his brother scored
The salt sea path; and Tritons, round him clustered,
Gruff hautboy music of the ocean blustered.
On conches long they wedding strain produce,
While she, still riding the bull's back of Zeus,
Holds in one hand the taper horn, and holds
Her bright robe in the other by the folds,
Lest in the grey sea waters wet they trail.
From shoulders' height deep-bellying fly the folds,
Lifting the maiden like a ship in sail.

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