Friday, May 2, 2014

Callimachus: Hymn to Artemis

 "Pray give me eternal virginity;
as many names as my brother Apollo;
a bow and arrows like his;
the office of bringing light;
a saffron hunting tunic with a red hem reaching to my knees;
sixty young ocean nymphs from Amnisus in Crete,
to take care of my buskins and feed my hounds
when I am not out shooting
 all the mountains in the world;
and, lastly, any city you care to choose for me,
but one will be enough,
because I intend to live on mountains most of the time.
Unfortunately, women in labor will often be invoking me,
since my mother Leto carried and bore me without pains,
and the Fates have therefore made me
patroness of child-birth."

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