Muse of the golden throne, my griefs assuage


    Κεῖνον, ὦ χρυσόθρονε Μοῦς’, ἔνισπες
    ὕμνον, ἐκ τᾶς καλλιγύναικος ἐσθλᾶς
    Τήιος χώρας ὅν ἄειδε τερπνῶς
        πρέσβυς ἀγαυός·

    MUSE of the golden throne, my griefs assuage - 
        Not with fresh gift of verse— 
    A listener at thy knees I would remain, 
        So thou rehearse 
        To me that strain 
        Sung by the poet-sage, 
    Manful, and crisp, and free, 
        Of so undaunted style, 
        It can command 
        And move to clemency 
        The tyrant, yet the terse, 
        Clear song one feels the while, 
    Ah, once was fashioned in a goodly land 
        Of women fair, 
    With voices soft as wood-doves' through the air. 

    O Muse, 'tis for Anacreon's lyre I sigh : 
        Thou knowest how 
    'Neath the twin burthen of desire and song 
        My heart doth bow ; 
        But he was strong

        Dark Eros to defy,
        And my tossed bosom oft 
        Turns to his sweet refrain 
            Of sunny truth,

        Jocund, melodious, soft— 
        " Dear life hath bliss enow, 
        Despite of age and pain, 
    To give us temper of eternal youth, 
        Hath it not, friend ? " 
    Sappho smiles credence till the music end. 

    The reverend elder ! Ah, how sweetly he 
        Was wont to sing in those 
    Plane-shaded noons of lovely, common things, 
        Idalia's rose, 
        Or the soft wings 
        Of that bright bird that she 
        Bartered for just a hymn 
        Straight from the poet's lips, 
        And breathed alone 
        To her amid her dim, 
        Dusk myrtles. Oh, she chose 
        A favour to eclipse 
    All heavenly honour unto mortals shown 
        Who gave her dove 
    To win from Teos' bard one song of love. 

    Ah me ! how deftly could he handle such 
        Rare token from the sky ; 
    Around the tender, glistening iris-neck 
        He loved to tie 
        His odes, and check 
        The pinions with a touch ; 
        Triumphant as a man 
        O'er the fond goddess coy, 
        Nathless her bliss 
        He prized, and with love's span 
        Measured time wantonly— 
        "Wealth will not bring you joy ; 
    Toil not for that; win the beloved's kiss ! " 
        Counselled the bold 
    Guardian of life, and squanderer of his gold. 

    Love him, ye bards, who would not even resign 
        In age the poet's thrill, 
    To whom his lyre through the slow, lingering night 
        Was never still 
        From whispering quite. 
        O feed his tomb with wine, 
        And let joy penetrate 
        The darkness, ivy-leaved, 
        That guards his breast 
        Whom Eros made so great 
        A lord o'er human ill 
        That, his full term achieved 
    Of years, he kept youth with him for his guest, 
        As a broad tree 
    Feels the sap course through its antiquity.