Monday’s Verse, 10-27

Hi all, sorry I’m late I have like ZERO time this week…

You know, we don’t know much about Sappho, which means I needn’t try to make a biographical sketch here, and I suspect her name was a bit of a gag anyway during our Bob Dylan guessing game. Her work has generally come to us in fragments, and may say as much about the translator as it does about her and her worldview. Weltenschaung, for the pedants out there. So here are five versions of one of her fragments, and the question is, which one do you like best? -ed.
The moon has set,
And the Pleiades. It is
Midnight. Time passes.
I sleep alone.

(Kenneth Rexroth)


The Pleiades disappear,
the pale moon goes down.

After midnight, time blurs:
sleepless, I lie alone.


(Sam Hamill)


Tonight I’ve watched

The moon and then
the Pleiades
go down

The night is now
half-gone; youth
goes; I am

in bed alone


(Mary Barnard)


The moon has set, and the Pleiades.
It is the middle of the night,
Hour follows hour. I lie alone.

(Guy Davenport)


Moon has set
and Pleiades: middle
night, the hour goes by,
alone I lie.

(Anne Carson)

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