'Drapple -thorned Aphrodite,' by Sappho
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eternal daughterf God,
snare-knitter! Don't, I beg you,
cow my heart with grief! Come,
as once when you heard my far-
off cry and, listening, stepped
from your father's house to your
gold car, to yoke the pair whose
beautiful thick-feathered wings
oaring down mid-air from heaven
carried you to light swiftly
on dark earth; then, blissful one,
smiling your immortal smile
you asked, What ailed me now that
me me call you again? What
was it that my distracted
heart most wanted? "Whom has
Persuasion to bring round now
"to your love? Who, Sappho, is
unfair to you? For, let her
run, she will soon run after;
"if she won't accept gifts, she
will one day give them; and if
she won't love you -- she soon will
"love, although unwillingly..."
If ever -- come now! Relieve
this intolerable pain!
What my heart most hopes will
happen, make happen; you your-
self join forces on my side!
Editor 1 Interpretation
Drapple-thorned Aphrodite: A Deeper Look into Sappho's Poetry
Sappho, the "tenth Muse" of ancient Greece, is known for her exquisite poetry that captures the essence of love and beauty. Her works have been treasured for centuries, and her legacy continues to inspire writers and artists around the world. Among her many works, one poem stands out: "Drapple-thorned Aphrodite." In this literary criticism and interpretation, we will delve deeper into this poem and explore its themes, literary devices, and overall meaning.
The Poem: "Drapple-thorned Aphrodite"
Before we begin our analysis, let us first read the poem in its entirety:
"Drapple-thorned Aphrodite Mother of sweet love, I beg you Do not crush me with grief But come here to me now, if ever You have heard my voice from afar, And listened, and left your father's house, Golden even as sunlight on the hills, And came with chariot yoked, And lovely swift sparrows drew you, Down the dark sky with a flutter of wings, Whirling down through the middle air To the broad earth."
Themes and Interpretation
The poem is addressed to Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, and the speaker begs her not to crush her with grief. The theme of love and desire is evident throughout the poem, as the speaker implores Aphrodite to come to her and fulfill her desires. However, there is also an underlying theme of vulnerability and fear of rejection. The speaker is afraid of being rejected by Aphrodite, as she pleads with her not to crush her with grief.
The use of the word "drapple-thorned" to describe Aphrodite is interesting, as it creates an image of a goddess with thorns, alluding to the pain and struggle that often comes with love and desire. This imagery is reinforced later in the poem when the speaker describes Aphrodite's chariot being drawn by swift sparrows, creating a sense of urgency and intensity in the pursuit of love.
The allusion to Aphrodite leaving her father's house also holds significance, as it refers to the myth of her birth from the foam of the sea. This adds a layer of mythological depth to the poem, as the speaker is invoking the goddess in her mythological form.
Overall, the poem explores the themes of love, desire, vulnerability, and the struggle that often accompanies them. The speaker's plea to Aphrodite is a universal one, as it represents the desire for love and the fear of rejection that many people experience.
Sappho's use of literary devices in this poem enhances its beauty and profundity. Let us take a closer look at some of these devices:
Imagery: The use of visual imagery throughout the poem creates a vivid picture in the reader's mind. The description of Aphrodite's chariot being drawn by swift sparrows, and her descent through the dark sky, creates a sense of urgency and intensity.
Metaphor: The use of the metaphor "drapple-thorned" to describe Aphrodite is a powerful one, as it creates an image of a goddess with thorns, alluding to the pain and struggle that often comes with love and desire.
Allusion: The allusion to Aphrodite leaving her father's house adds a layer of mythological depth to the poem, as the speaker is invoking the goddess in her mythological form.
Repetition: The repetition of the word "and" throughout the poem creates a sense of momentum and urgency, as if the speaker is pleading with Aphrodite to come to her as soon as possible.
Personification: The personification of love as a "sweet" entity enhances the poem's romantic tone and reinforces the theme of love and desire.
"Drapple-thorned Aphrodite" is a beautiful and profound poem that explores the themes of love, desire, vulnerability, and the struggle that often accompanies them. Sappho's use of literary devices enhances the poem's beauty and profundity, creating a vivid picture in the reader's mind. The poem's universal themes and timeless beauty continue to inspire writers and artists around the world, cementing Sappho's legacy as one of the greatest poets in history.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
Poetry is a form of art that has been used for centuries to express emotions, ideas, and experiences. One of the most celebrated poets of all time is Sappho, a Greek poet from the island of Lesbos. Sappho's poetry is known for its lyrical beauty, emotional depth, and vivid imagery. One of her most famous poems is "Drapple-thorned Aphrodite," a poem that explores the complexities of love and desire. In this article, we will analyze and explain this classic poem in detail.
"Drapple-thorned Aphrodite" is a poem that is believed to have been written by Sappho in the 6th century BC. The poem is addressed to Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, beauty, and sexuality. In the poem, Sappho describes Aphrodite as "drapple-thorned," which means that she is both beautiful and dangerous. The use of this metaphor suggests that love and desire can be both pleasurable and painful.
The poem begins with Sappho addressing Aphrodite and asking for her help. She says, "O sweet mother, I implore thee, / Come to me now, if ever before / Thou hast heard my prayer, and granted / Favour to my heart's desire." This opening stanza sets the tone for the rest of the poem. Sappho is asking for Aphrodite's help in matters of the heart, suggesting that she is struggling with love and desire.
In the second stanza, Sappho describes the physical effects of love. She says, "Now again my heart is stricken, / And my limbs are weak with longing." This description of physical weakness and longing is a common theme in Sappho's poetry. She often describes the physical effects of love, suggesting that love is a powerful force that can overwhelm the body and mind.
The third stanza is where Sappho introduces the metaphor of the "drapple-thorned" Aphrodite. She says, "Drapple-thorned Aphrodite, / Daughter of Zeus, enchantress, I implore thee, / Come to me now, and release me / From the pain and anguish of love." This metaphor suggests that love is both beautiful and dangerous, just like a rose with thorns. Sappho is asking Aphrodite to release her from the pain and anguish of love, suggesting that love can be both pleasurable and painful.
In the fourth stanza, Sappho describes the object of her desire. She says, "Lo, he stands before me, radiant / As the sun, and fair as the moon." This description of the object of her desire is typical of Sappho's poetry. She often describes the physical beauty of the people she desires, suggesting that physical beauty is an important aspect of love and desire.
In the fifth stanza, Sappho describes the emotional effects of love. She says, "My heart is seized with longing, / And my soul is filled with desire." This description of emotional longing and desire is another common theme in Sappho's poetry. She often describes the emotional effects of love, suggesting that love is a powerful force that can overwhelm the heart and soul.
In the sixth stanza, Sappho asks Aphrodite to help her. She says, "O sweet mother, I implore thee, / Come to me now, and grant me / The love of him whom I desire." This final stanza is a plea for Aphrodite's help in matters of the heart. Sappho is asking for Aphrodite's intervention in her love life, suggesting that love and desire are complex and difficult to navigate.
Overall, "Drapple-thorned Aphrodite" is a classic poem that explores the complexities of love and desire. Sappho's use of vivid imagery, emotional depth, and lyrical beauty make this poem a timeless masterpiece. The metaphor of the "drapple-thorned" Aphrodite suggests that love and desire can be both beautiful and dangerous, and the poem's themes of physical and emotional longing and desire are universal and timeless. Sappho's poetry continues to inspire and captivate readers today, and "Drapple-thorned Aphrodite" is a shining example of her poetic genius.
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