BkI:V Treacherous Girl
- by Horace 37What slender boy, Pyrrha, drowned in liquid perfume,
urges you on, there, among showers of roses,
deep down in some pleasant cave?
For whom did you tie up your hair,
with simple elegance? How often he'll cry at
the changes of faith and of gods, ah, he'll wonder,
surprised by roughening water,
surprised by the darkening storms,
who enjoys you now and believes you're golden,
who thinks you'll always be single and lovely,
ignoring the treacherous
breeze. Wretched are those you dazzle
while still untried. As for me the votive tablet
that hangs on the temple wall reveals, suspended,
my dripping clothes, for the god,
who holds power over the sea.
BkI:II To Augustus
- by Horace 31The Father's sent enough dread hail
and snow to earth already, striking
sacred hills with fiery hand,
to scare the city,
and scare the people, lest again
we know Pyrrha's age of pain
when Proteus his sea-herds drove
across high mountains,
and fishes lodged in all the elms,
that used to be the haunt of doves,
and the trembling roe-deer swam
the whelming waters.
We saw the yellow Tiber's waves
hurled backwards from the Tuscan shore,
toppling Numa's Regia and
the shrine of Vesta,
far too fierce now, the fond river,
in his revenge of wronged Ilia,
drowning the whole left bank, deep,
Our children, fewer for their father's
vices, will hear metal sharpened
that's better destined for the Persians,
and of battles too.
Which gods shall the people call on
when the Empire falls in ruins?
With what prayer shall the virgins
tire heedless Vesta?
Whom will Jupiter assign to
expiate our sins? We pray you,
come, cloud veiling your bright shoulders,
or laughing Venus Erycina,
if you will, whom Cupid circles,
or you, if you see your children
you sated from the long campaign,
who love the war-shouts and the helmets,
and the Moor's cruel face among his
Or you, winged son of kindly Maia,
changing shape on earth to human
form, and ready to be named as
Don't rush back to the sky, stay long
among the people of Quirinus,
no swifter breeze take you away,
unhappy with our
sins: here to delight in triumphs,
in being called our prince and father,
making sure the Medes are punished,
lead us, O Caesar.
Poems by Horace, Horace's poems collection. Horace is a classical and famous poet (8 December 65 BC - 27 November 8 BC / Italy). Share all poems of Horace.
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