Percy Bysshe Shelley

(1792-1822 / Horsham / England)

From Vergil's Tenth Eclogue


Melodious Arethusa, o'er my verse
Shed thou once more the spirit of thy stream:
Who denies verse to Gallus? So, when thou
Glidest beneath the green and purple gleam
Of Syracusan waters, mayst thou flow
Unmingled with the bitter Doric dew!
Begin, and, whilst the goats are browsing now
The soft leaves, in our way let us pursue
The melancholy loves of Gallus. List!
We sing not to the dead: the wild woods knew
His sufferings, and their echoes...
Young Naiads,...in what far woodlands wild
Wandered ye when unworthy love possessed
Your Gallus? Not where Pindus is up-piled,
Nor where Parnassus’ sacred mount, nor where
Aonian Aganippe expands...
The laurels and the myrtle-copses dim.
The pine-encircled mountain, Maenalus,
The cold crags of Lycaeus, weep for him;
And Sylvan, crowned with rustic coronals,
Came shaking in his speed the budding wands
And heavy lilies which he bore: we knew
Pan the Arcadian.
...
'What madness is this, Gallus? Thy heart's care
With willing steps pursues another there.'

Submitted: Thursday, April 01, 2010

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