Poetry Tuesday: On the Advice of Praxilla

By the one and only Aristophanes of Byzantium, 257-180 BCE.

On the advice of Praxilla,
we are asked to look
under every stone
for a hiding scorpion.

The proverb sounds all right.
But, turning stones,
poets also bite.



Poetry Tuesday: Whose Baggage From Land to Land

Palladas, a relatively ancient Greek, wrote this in the early fifth century.

Whose baggage from land to land is despair,
Life’s voyages sail a treacherous sea.
Many founder piteously
With fortune at the helm. We keep
A course this way and that, across the deep,
From here to nowhere. And back again.
Blow foul, blow fair
All come to anchor finally in the tomb.
Passengers armed, we travel from room to room.


Poetry Tuesday: Here Lies Archeanassa

By Asclepiades (c. 275-265 BCE). Some things never change.

Here Lies Archeanassa
the courtesan from Colophon
whose old and wrinkled body
was still Love’s proud domain.

you lovers who knew her youth
in its sweet piercing splendor
and plucked those early blooms–
through what a flame you passed!