Hortus: Sapphic Odes


Sapphic Odes

Hortus Sapphus fecundum deliciarum est (the garden of Sappho is full of delights). This lyric form was named after Sappho, its Greek creator.

Catullus popularized the form in Latin, and Horace perfected it.

Apud ArboresAmong the Trees
Hic cubo fagos apud has apertas,
Ut levetur mens mea, meque nemo
Vexat, ut fagos apud has apertas,
Mens relevatur.
Here, among the naked trees,
I rest, to put my mind at ease;
I don't care if passersby
Pass by me, as long as I
Can set my weary mind at ease,
Here, among the naked trees.
Autumn
Volvitur Vertumnus, acerque pictum
Nudat; et nemus, folio cadente
primulo, lente dryadum revelat,
Ipse silescens.

Filiam Ceres miseram relinquit
Inferis; vitat segetes in aris,
atque terrarum niveum per orbem
Diva vagatur.
(carmen non perfectum)

Primavera
Trans agros vernus niveos it aer,
Fluminisque aquae gelidi liquescunt;
Germen e gelu exoritur novum, dum
Ripa tumescit.

Nunc feras redire vocat Diana
Ad nemus sacrum, et vigilans Priapus
Rusticos ornatus in hortulos, cum
Falce patescit.

E domo villam ad viridem venimus;
Atrio subter pluviam videmus,
Primulo veris fruiti die, dum
Terra calescit.
(I ended the third line of these stanzas with a monosyllable, which, according to the rules, is not allowed - I like it, but it might make a Roman wince)


 

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