If you had wings, a bow, and arrows too,
I’d not think Cupid Venus’ son, but you.


a sailor on the beach

Who art thou, O shipwrecked stranger ?
Leontichus found thee here a corpse upon the beach,
and covered thee in this tomb, with tears for his own hazardous life.
For no quiet life is his either, but restless as the gull
he roams the sea.


inscription for a picture

You sleep there upon the leaf-thrown earth,
good Daphnis, and rest your weary frame,
while your netting-stakes are left planted
on the hillside.
But Pan is after you, and Priapus also,
with the yellow ivy about his jolly head;
they are going side by side into your cave.
Quick then, put off the lethargy that is shed of sleep,
and up with you and away.


the wine cup

Drink deep, boy-lover. Bacchus, bringer of
Oblivion, will soothe your hopeless love.
Drink deep, and as you drain the wine-filled bowl
Purge all the bitter anguish from your soul.


on the death of a poet

One told me, Heracleitus, of thy death
and brought me to tears,
and I remembered how often
we two in talking put the sun to rest.
Thou, methinks, Halicarnasian friend,
art ashes long and long ago; but thy nightingales live still,
whereon Hades, snatcher of all things, shall not lay his hand.