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Enheduanna Translations

Enheduanna is the first writer we know by name. She created the first poetry anthology and hymnal, circa 2250 BC, in ancient Sumer. She was the daughter of King Saragon the Great. Lament to the Spirit of War by Enheduanna loose translation by Michael R. Burch You hack down everything you see, War God! Rising on fearsome wings you rush to destroy the land, descending like a raging storm, howling like a hurricane, screaming like a tempest, thundering, raging, ranting, drumming, whiplashing whirlwinds! Men falter at your approaching footsteps. Tortured dirges scream on your lyre of despair. Like a fiery Salamander you poison the land: growling over the earth like thunder, vegetation collapsing before you, blood gushing down mountainsides. Spirit of hatred, greed and vengeance! Dominatrix of heaven and earth! Your ferocious fire consumes our land. Whipping your stallion with furious commands, you impose our fates. You triumph over all human rites and prayers. Who can explain your tirade, why you carry on so? Temple Hymn 15 to the Gishbanda Temple of Ningishzida by Enheduanna loose translation by Michael R. Burch Most ancient and terrible shrine, set deep in the mountain, dark like a mother's womb... Dark shrine, like a mother's wounded breast, blood-red and terrifying... Though approaching through a safe-seeming field, our hair stands on end as we near you! Gishbanda, like a neck-stock, like a fine-eyed fish net, like a foot-shackled prisoner's manacles... your ramparts are massive, like a trap! But once we’re inside, as the sun rises, you yield widespread abundance! Your prince is the pure-handed priest of Inanna, heaven's Holy One, Lord Ningishzida! Oh, see how his thick, lustrous hair cascades down his back! Oh Gishbanda, he has built this beautiful temple to house your radiance! He has placed his throne upon your dais! The Exaltation of Inanna: Opening Lines and Excerpts by Enheduanna loose translation by Michael R. Burch Lady of all divine powers! Lady of the resplendent light! Righteous Lady adorned in heavenly radiance! Beloved Lady of An and Uraš! Hierodule of An, sun-adorned and bejeweled! Heaven’s Mistress with the holy diadem, Who loves the beautiful headdress befitting the office of her own high priestess! Powerful Mistress, seizer of the seven divine powers! My Heavenly Lady, guardian of the seven divine powers! You have seized the seven divine powers! You hold the divine powers in your hand! You have gathered together the seven divine powers! You have clasped the divine powers to your breast! You have flooded the valleys with venom, like a viper; all vegetation vanishes when you thunder like Iškur! You have caused the mountains to flood the valleys! When you roar like that, nothing on earth can withstand you! Like a flood descending on floodplains, O Powerful One, you will teach foreigners to fear Inanna! You have given wings to the storm, O Beloved of Enlil! The storms do your bidding, blasting the unbelievers! Foreign cities cower at the chaos You cause! Entire countries cower in dread of Your deadly South Wind! Men cower before you in their anguished implications, raising their pitiful outcries, weeping and wailing, beseeching Your benevolence with many wild lamentations! But in the van of battle, everything falls before You, O Mighty Queen! My Queen, You are all-conquering, all-devouring! You continue Your attacks like relentless storms! You howl louder than the howling storms! You thunder louder than Iškur! You moan louder than the mournful winds! Your feet never tire from trampling Your enemies! You produce much wailing on the lyres of lamentations! My Queen, all the Anunna, the mightiest Gods, fled before Your approach like fluttering bats! They could not stand in Your awesome Presence nor behold Your awesome Visage! Who can soothe Your infuriated heart? Your baleful heart is beyond being soothed! Uncontrollable Wild Cow, elder daughter of Sin, O Majestic Queen, greater than An, who has ever paid You enough homage? O Life-Giving Goddess, possessor of all powers, Inanna the Exalted! Merciful, Live-Giving Mother! Inanna, the Radiant of Heart! I have exalted You in accordance with Your power! I have bowed before You in my holy garb, I the En, I Enheduanna! Carrying my masab-basket, I once entered and uttered my joyous chants ... But now I no longer dwell in Your sanctuary. The sun rose and scorched me. Night fell and the South Wind overwhelmed me. My laughter was stilled and my honey-sweet voice grew strident. My joy became dust. O Sin, King of Heaven, how bitter my fate! To An, I declared: An will deliver me! I declared it to An: He will deliver me! But now the kingship of heaven has been seized by Inanna, at Whose feet the floodplains lie. Inanna the Exalted, who has made me tremble together with all Ur! Stay Her anger, or let Her heart be soothed by my supplications! I, Enheduanna will offer my supplications to Inanna, my tears flowing like sweet intoxicants! Yes, I will proffer my tears and my prayers to the Holy Inanna, I will greet Her in peace ... O My Queen, I have exalted You, Who alone are worthy to be exalted! O My Queen, Beloved of An, I have laid out Your daises, set fire to the coals, conducted the rites, prepared Your nuptial chamber. Now may Your heart embrace me! These are my innovations, O Mighty Queen, that I made for You! What I composed for You by the dark of night, The cantor will chant by day. Now Inanna’s heart has been restored, and the day became favorable to Her. Clothed in beauty, radiant with joy, she carried herself like the elegant moonlight. Now to the Noble Hierodule, to the Wrecker of foreign lands presented by An with the seven divine powers, and to my Queen garbed in the radiance of heaven ... O Inanna, praise! Keywords/Tags: poet, goddess, heaven, temple, hymn, spirit, Sumer, Ur, Akkad, Babylon, love, war, faith, praise, worship, moon, poetess

Copyright © | Year Posted 2019

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Book: Shattered Sighs