Fantasy Poetry posted June 11, 2018

This work has reached the exceptional level
An Alluring Contradiction

Secret Alphabet

by Air Spirit

You graciously serve Aphrodite,
     "sly eternal daughter of Zeus,"
          who swims in your thoughts            
               like an Olympian...

She walks with you on your journey,
     silent companion 
          that guides your heart
               like footsteps.

Your acquisitive starved-heart 
     clings to mother's breast,
          wailing wanton willing
               for needs unmet.  

Your desires feed on
     milk-white gowns
          porcelain skin
               frail thyme.

Budding roses in midnight hair
               with abandon
     sweet sister,
          I embrace you
               and your Gods.

I taste your
          visit your home
               in my dreams...


Sappho painting:
Aphrodite painting:


Information about the ancient Greek poet known as Sappho, her career and background have been subject to much conjecture. Sappho was a highly acclaimed poet of her times known for her viscerally sensual themes and may have been held in the same esteem as Homer. She is alleged to have been born on the island of Lesbos, with estimated birth dates ranging from 640 - 610 B.C.

She was an exalted artist who created lyrical poems and her work expressed love for both men and women and paid homage to the deities of the times. Her poems were created to be placed to music, specifically the lyre. Sappho's songs were also thought to be geared toward the tutelage of groups of young women known as thiasos. Though philosopher Plato reputedly had a limited taste for poetry, he nonetheless referred to Sappho as the "10th Muse", a statement that spoke to her important cultural stature.

Some of her surviving verses, including a hymn to Aphrodite, (Goddess of Love and Beauty) prominently showcase same-sex desire. Sappho thus eventually developed a reputation of representing romance between women, with her home island of Lesbos having inspired the term "lesbian" (though the word had different connotations in ancient times). However, history suggests that Sappho was probably wealthy, married a man named Cercylas, and had a daughter called Cleis after her mother. This was inferred in allusions she made in her poetry, but as we know, poetry and autobiography are often two different things. Most of her poetry is lost. Today, fewer than 1,000 lines survive.

What is documented, is from the Parian Chronicle, a history of Greece inscribed on a block of marble, which says that Sappho and her family were exiled to Sicily during a political tumult in Lesbos.

Here is a video of one of Sappho's poems set to music. This poem is also about Aphrodite. Hope you enjoy:

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