Bion of Smyrna Poems : Lament for Adonis

I and the Loves Adonis dead deplore;
The beautiful Adonis is indeed
Departed, parted from us. Sleep no more
In purple, Cypris, but in watchet weed,
All-wretched! beat thy breast and all aread--
'Adonis is no more.' The loves and I
Lament him. Oh! her grief to see him bleed,
Smitten by white tooth on his whiter thigh,
Out-breathing life's faint sigh upon the mountain high!

Adown his snowy flesh drops the black gore;
Stiffen beneath his brow his sightless eyes;
The rose is off his lip; with him no more
Lives Cytherea's kiss--but with him dies.
He knows not that her lip his cold lip tries,
But she finds pleasure still in kissing him.
Deep is his thigh-wound; her's yet deeper lies,
E'en in her heart. The Oreads' eyes are dim;
His hounds whine piteously, in most disordered trim.

Distraught, unkempt, unsandalled, Cypris rushes
Madly along the tangled thicket-steep;
Her sacred blood is drawn by bramble-bushes;
Her skin is torn; with wailings wild and deep
She wanders through the valley's weary sweep,
Calling her boy-spouse, her Assyrian fere.
But from his thigh the purple jet doth leap
Up to his snowy navel; on the clear
Whiteness beneath his paps the deep-red streaks appear.

'Alas for Cypris!' sigh the Loves, 'deprived
Of her fair spouse, she lost her beauty's pride;
Cypris was lovely while Adonis lived,
But with Adonis all her beauty died.'
Mountains, and oaks, and streams, that broadly glide,
Or wail or weep for her; in tearful rills
For her gush fountains from the mountain-side;
Redden the flowers from grief; city and hills
With ditties sadly wild lorn Cytherea fills.

Alas for Cypris! Dead is her Adonis,
And Echo 'dead Adonis' doth resound.
Who would not grieve for her whose love so lone is?
But when she saw his cruel, cruel wound,
The purple gore that ran his wan thigh round,
She spread her arms, and lowly murmured; 'Stay thee,
That I may find thee as before I found,
My hapless own Adonis! and embay thee,
And mingle lips with lips, whilst in my arms I lay thee.

'Up for a little! Kiss me back again
The latest kiss--brief as itself that dies
In being breathed, until I fondly drain
The last breath of thy soul, and greedywise
Drink it into my core. I will devise
To guard it as Adonis--since from me
To Acheron my own Adonis flies,
And to the drear dread king; but I must be
A goddess still and live, nor can I follow thee.

'But thou, Persephona! my spouse receive,
Mightier than I, since to thy chamber drear
All bloom of beauty falls; but I must grieve
Unceasingly. I have a jealous fear
Of thee, and weep for him. My dearest dear!
Art dead, indeed? Away my love did fly,
E'en as a dream. At home my widowed cheer
Keeps the loves idle; with thy latest sigh
My cestus perished too; thou rash one! Why, oh why

'Didst hunt? So fair, contend with monsters grim?'
Thus Cypris wailed; but dead Adonis lies;
For every gout of blood that fell from him,
She drops a tear; sweet flowers each dew supplies--
Roses his blood, her tears anemonies.
Cypris! No longer in the thickets weep;
The couch is furnished! There in loving guise
Upon thy proper bed, that odorous heap,
The lovely body lies--how lovely!--as in sleep.

Come! in those vestments softly now array him,
In which he slept the live-long night with thee;
And in the golden settle gently lay him--
A sad yet lovely sight; and let him be
High heaped with flowers; tho' withered all when he
Surceased. With essences him sprinkle o'er
And ointments; let them perish utterly,
Since he, who was thy sweetest, is no more.
He lies in purple; him the weeping Loves deplore.

Their curls are shorn; one breaks his bow; another
His arrows and the quiver; this unstrings,
And takes Adonis' sandal off; his brother
In golden urn the fountain water brings;
This bathes his thighs; that fans him with his wings.
The Loves, 'Alas for Cypris!' weeping say.
Hymen hath quenched his torches; shreds and flings
The marriage wreath away; and for the lay
Of love is only heard the doleful 'weal-away.'

Yet more than Hymen for Adonis weep
The Graces; shriller than Dione vent
Their shrieks; for him the Muses wail and keep
Singing the songs he hears not, with intent
To call him back: and would the nymph relent,
How willingly would he the Muses hear!
Hush! Hush! Today, sad Cypris! And consent
To spare thyself--no more thy bosom tear--
For thou must wail again, and weep another year.

Submited by

Thursday, April 28, 2011 - 01:02

Poesia Consagrada :

No votes yet

Bion of Smyrna

Bion of Smyrna's picture
Title: Membro
Last seen: 13 years 4 weeks ago
Joined: 04/25/2011
Points: 48

Add comment

Login to post comments

other contents of Bion of Smyrna

Topic Title Replies Views Last Postsort icon Language
Poesia Consagrada/Biography Bión de Esmirna Biografia 0 3.627 04/28/2011 - 01:13 Spanish
Poesia Consagrada/Biography Bion of Smyrna Biography 0 1.594 04/28/2011 - 01:10 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : To the Evening Star 0 1.000 04/28/2011 - 01:09 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : The Teacher Taught 0 1.229 04/28/2011 - 01:08 English
Poesia Consagrada/Love Bion of Smyrna Poems : The Power of Love 0 1.321 04/28/2011 - 01:07 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : On Hyacinthus 0 1.030 04/28/2011 - 01:06 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : The Muses 0 996 04/28/2011 - 01:05 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : Love Resistless 0 1.128 04/28/2011 - 01:04 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : Look Within 0 920 04/28/2011 - 01:03 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : Life to Be Enjoyed 0 962 04/28/2011 - 01:03 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : Lament for Adonis 0 1.193 04/28/2011 - 01:02 English
Poesia Consagrada/Friendship Bion of Smyrna Poems : Friendship 0 1.375 04/28/2011 - 01:01 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : Eros and the Fowler 0 1.060 04/28/2011 - 00:56 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : The Cruel Galatea 0 903 04/28/2011 - 00:55 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : Cleodamus and Myrson 0 932 04/28/2011 - 00:54 English
Poesia Consagrada/General Bion of Smyrna Poems : Achilles and Deïdamia 0 1.114 04/28/2011 - 00:51 English