Leave, But Remember Me

Saphho, fr. 94 [=P. Berol. 9722 fol. 2]

“I just want to die.
She left me, weeping,
And said this:

“We have suffered so terribly,
Sappho. It is not my choice
To leave you”. And I responded,

“Leave and be well, but remember me
Since you know how I cherished you.
If you can’t, I want to remind you
And of all the beautiful things we shared.

You came with many garlands
Of roses and violets with me
And then you sat by my side,
And placed many garlands
Woven from flowers around your
Soft neck–

Then you graced yourself
With perfume for a queen
And on a soft bed
You would encounter,
Gentle desire…”

τεθνάκην δ᾿ ἀδόλως θέλω·
ἄ με ψισδομένα κατελίμπανεν
πόλλα καὶ τόδ᾿ ἔειπ [μοι·
῾ὤιμ᾿ ὠς δεῖνα πεπ[όνθ]αμεν,
Ψάπφ᾿, ἦ μάν σ᾿ ἀέκοισ᾿ ἀπυλιμπάνω.᾿
τὰν δ᾿ ἔγω τάδ᾿ ἀμειβόμαν·
῾χαίροισ᾿ ἔρχεο κἄμεθεν
μέμναισ᾿, οἶσθα γὰρ ὤς σε πεδήπομεν·
αἰ δὲ μή, ἀλλά σ᾿ ἔγω θέλω
ὄμναισαι [ . . . . ] . [ . . . ] . . αι
. . [ ]καὶ κάλ᾿ ἐπάσχομεν.
π[λλοις γὰρ στεφάν]οις ἴων
καὶ βρ[όδων κρο]ίων τ᾿ ὔμοι
κα . . [ ] πὰρ ἔμοι περεθήκαο,
καὶ π[λλαις ὐπα]θύμιδας
πλέκ[ταις ἀμφ᾿ ἀ]πάλαι δέραι
ἀνθέων [βαλες] πεποημμέναις,
καὶ π[ ]. μύρωι
βρενθείωι. [ ]υ[ . . ]ν
ἐξαλείψαο κ[ὶ βασ]ληίωι,
καὶ στρώμν[αν ἐ]πὶ μολθάκαν
ἀπάλαν πα . [ ] . . . ων
ἐξίης πόθ[ν ] . νίδων

red figure vase. A woman stands holding alyre looking to the right where we can see part of a man holding one too
Alcaeus and Sappho. Side A of an Attic red-figure kalathos, ca. 470 BC. From Akragas (Sicily). Beazley, ARV2, 385, 228

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