Category Archives: Poetry

Giacomo Leopardi Canti XIV All Luna (To the Moon)

Translated by Steven J. Willett This is the original manuscript of Alla Luna 1st. ed. 1819 O gracious moon, I can remember that, now as the year turns, how on this hill I came full of anguish to contemplate you: … Continue reading

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Leonidas of Tarentum on Life with a Mouse

Leonidas Elegy on Impoverished Life with a Mouse Anth. Gr. 6.302 (G-P 37) Translated by Steven J. Willett Roman mosaic of remnants thrown on the floor at a wealthy man’s feast. This is what Leonidas would love to enjoy, but … Continue reading

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Leonidas of Tarentum Says Lyric Poets are Cicadas

Leonidas of Tarentum Epigram (6.120) G-P 91 on Lyric Poets Translated by Steven J. Willett ἐξ ἡρέων ἡ γὰρ παρθένος αὐλοθέτει. Not only do I know, perching on a lofty tree, how To sing, as I am scorched by midsummer … Continue reading

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Hölderlin Ode Des Morgens (In the Morning)

Translated by Steven J. Willett Drawing by Louise Keller, 1842 From dew the grass is glistening; more agilely The stream awakened rushes; the beech inclines    Her slender head and in the leafage       Rustles and shimmers; and … Continue reading

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Tibullus Elegy II.4 in Agonizing Love of a Courtesan

Translated by Steven J. Willett This 5th-century red-figure cup image shows a client trying to bribe a courtesan with a bag of coins while she stands back a little doubtful while gazing at her beauty in a mirror. Note: In … Continue reading

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Tibullus Elegy II.2 on Love That Gives True Marriage

Translated by Steven J. Willett This is a Roman plaque that depicts a marriage with the husband holding the contract and a representative of each family observing the ceremony. Note: The elegy is a birthday present for Tibullus’ good friend … Continue reading

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Horace Ode II.14 on Indomitable Death

Translated by Steven J. Willett Hades and Cerebus 2nd-century AD, Archaeological Museum of Heraklion, Crete Note: Hades was the eldest male child of Cronus and Rhea. His brothers were Zeus and Poseidon. He was later known to the Greeks as … Continue reading

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Hölderlin “Go Down, Beautiful Sun” (Geh unter, schöne Sonne…

Translated by Steven J. Willett Jadwiga Łuszcenska portrayed as lecturing Diotima in the 1855 painting by Józef Simmler A 1st-century bronze plaque that depicts Diotima, Eros and Socrates Note: Diotima (stressed in English Diotíma from Greek Διοτίμα) was the pseudonym Plato … Continue reading

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Horace Ode II.1 on Pollio’s History of Civil War

Horace Ode II.1 Translated by Steven J. Willett A Roman bust of C. Asinius Pollio 76BC~4AD Note: Pollio fought with Caesar during the Civil War 49 to 45BC serving as his legate in Africa and Spain. After Caesar’s assassination in … Continue reading

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Hölderlin Ode An die Parzen (To the Fates)

Hölderlin’s Ode An die Parzen (To the Fates) Translated by Steven J. Willett One summer only grant me you mighty Fates, And just one autumn mellow for songs to me,    So that my heart more willingly, sweet     … Continue reading

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