Oh, Sparta -- If Only You Could Have Known
"Hear your fate, O high-dwellers of the airy, wide open
Spaces and fertile plain, your rugged and enclosed
Lands, Sparta, untouched by that of hard-grinding war".
Thus, the fraught Oracle of Delphi had so spoken.
Now only I alone am left to ponder on all that was before...
And, which, wrongly, ignorant peoples should all suppose.
But Sparta should lose in victory -- whilst noble Athens
Would become more wondrous than any could ever
Have imagined! And although I am of Sparta...I think of her
As home. For I have hunted in the sprawling woodlands
Of Phelloe, dallied with the plodding tortoise in coy Arcadia;
Alalcomenae's giant oaks offering shelter from inclement weather.
I gave up tears when listening to ancient, groaning pines
On the sandy coast of Elis, marveled at white Blackbirds
In Cyllene. Ate the dates of Aulis, tasted olive oils
From Tithorea; when sat at the table of the Gods dined
Upon wild strawberries from Helicon! The flashing roils
Of Saronic dolphins. The Six Caverns that none dares disturb!
Alas, in my distress I am more troubled than Menelaus;
And have known a hundred-fold more greater a jealous pride...
All his murderous heartaches. Same, sudden, gut-wrenching blow
At first encounter; this which serves no man any good cause...
Apart to live in melancholy. Skin as perfect as untouched snow.
A wilful deceit that can hide behind an unemotive woman's eyes.
Forgive me, Pausanias -- there is beautiful poetry in your words my friend!!
Copyright © john fleming | Year Posted 2019