Roz Kaveney (rozk) wrote,
Roz Kaveney
rozk

And another Sappho

I have a stinking cold and am not enjoying life especially, and I really don't feel like writing any of the novel right now, or working. So another riff on Sappho...


Some get excited when the mounted police
Trot past. The hoofbeats drive their hearts
To pulse and throb. It doesn’t matter if
It’s horse or rider; it all works the same
And some like squaddies, some like sailor boys
Or latex, corsetry or stocking tops.
The world’s so full of lots of things to love;
Whatever does it for you. Everyone

Gets this. And she who was most beautiful
Helen, the one that we still talk about
After so many years, she had a man,
A king of men, and she walked out on him
Without a thought
And she went off to Troy
And gave no thought to any of her kids
Or to her parents. Venus took away
What little brains she had and set her off
To chase off after that dim pretty boy
An archer who killed better men than he
From a safe distance. But she loved him so
Oh! She burned for him, like that’s an excuse
Opened hot legs and satisfied her need
And tore the world apart.

And now I think,
I have to think, of sweet Anactoris
Her swaying walk, the glimmer of her smile
And how I’d rather look at her close up
Than stand up on a balcony in furs
And watch the whole Red Army marching past
Saluting me, and killing whom I chose.
Tags: poetry translation sappho
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