Euripides

(480 – 406 / Greece)

The Exile's Song - Poem by Euripides

Th' immoderate Loves in their career,
Nor glory nor esteem attends,
But when the Cyprian Queen descends
Benignant from her starry sphere,
No Goddess can more justly claim
From man the grateful prayer.
Thy wrath, O Venus, still forbear,
Nor at my tender bosom aim
That venom'd arrow, ever won t' inspire,
Wing'd from thy golden bow, the pangs of keen desire.
II
May I in modesty delight,
Best present which the Gods can give,
Nor torn by jarring passions live
A prey to wrath and canker'd spite,
Still envious of a rival's charms,
Nor rouse the endless strife
While on my soul another Wife,
Impresses vehement alarms:
On us, dread Queen, thy mildest influence shed,
Thou who discern'st each crime that stains the nuptial bed.
II
My native land, and dearest home!
May I ne'er know an exil'd state,
Nor be it ever my sad fate,
While from thy well-known bourn I roam,
My hopeless anguish to bemoan.
Rather let death, let death
Take at that hour my forfeit breath,
For surely never was there known
On earth a curse so great, as to exceed
From his lov'd country torn, the wretched exile's need.
III
These eyes attest thy piteous tale,
Which not from fame alone we know;
But, O thou royal Dame, thy woe
No generous city doth bewail,
Nor one among thy former friends.
Abhorr'd by Heaven and Earth,
Perish the wretch devoid of worth,
Engross'd by mean and selfish ends,
Whose heart expands not, those he lov'd, to aid;
Never may I lament attachments thus repaid.


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Poem Submitted: Saturday, September 22, 2012



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