Communicator (communicator) wrote,

phainetai moi kenos isos theoisin

For National Poetry Day I am joining in the blog-poetry ring (as proposed and co-ordinated by Nick at What you can get away with)

Here is a link to 26 translations of one poem: Sappho's poem 'He seems to me like a god', including the famous translation by Catullus 'Ille mi par esse deo videtur', and loads of translations by English writers such as Sidney, Byron Tennyson etc. So many ways of expressing the same painful but delightful sensation.

Here is my version.

Who does he think he is? God's gift?
What are you saying to him?
I can't make out the words
Only your soft laughter.

My heart is crashing
When I look at you
I'm tongue-tied.

There's fire under my skin
My ears are roaring
I'm blind now

I'm weak and trembling
Paler than grass
I'm half dead.

He appears to me, that one, equal to the gods,
the man who, facing you,
is seated and, up close, that sweet voice of yours
he listens to

And how you laugh your charming laugh. Why it
makes my heart flutter within my breast,
because the moment I look at you, right then, for me,
to make any sound at all won’t work any more.

My tongue has a breakdown and a delicate
— all of a sudden — fire rushes under my skin.
With my eyes I see not a thing, and there is a roar
that my ears make.

Sweat pours down me and a trembling
seizes all of me; paler than grass
am I, and a little short of death
do I appear to me.

  • Phew what a scorcher

    I see Gove has backed down on climate change and it's back in the curriculum again.

  • GCSE Computer Science

    My book is now for sale

  • LJ Settings

    At the moment I have set up this journal so that only friends can comment. I hate doing this, but I was just getting too much Russian spam.

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