Lest as the immortal gods is he,
The youth who fondly sits by thee,
And hears and sees thee, all the while,
Softly speaks and sweetly smile.
‘Twas this deprived my soul of rest,
And raised such tumults in my breast;
For, while I gazed, in transport tossed,
My breath was gone, my voice was lost;
My bosom glowed; the subtle flame
Ran quick through all my vital frame;
O’er my dim eyes a darkness hung;
My ears with hollow murmurs rung;
In dewy damps my limbs were chilled;
My blood with gentle horrors thrilled:
My feeble pulse forgot to play;
I fainted, sunk, and died away.
Sappho was a female ancient Greek poet who wrote lyrical poetry famous for its intense passion and description of love. Born on the Isle of Lesbos, in the town of Eresos. Her poems were written in Aeloic Greek dialect, as this dialect was quite rare, it explains why her poems became increasingly lost as fewer people were able to translate them. Little is known of her actual life, though she was born around 620BC, and died approximately 50 years later.
Translated by Ambrose Philips, 1893