The Things I would Be For You To Walk All Over Me

Anacreonta 22

“Once upon a time
Tantalos’ daughter stood,
A stone on Phrygian river banks;
And Pandion’s daughter flew,
A bird, a swallow.

I wish I could become a mirror
So you would always look at me–
I wish I could become a robe
So you would always carry me–
I wish I could become water,
So I could wash over your skin;
I wish I could be perfume
So I could decorate you, my love.

To be support for your breasts
Or pearls for your neck or
Even a sandal I would be,
just for you to touch me with your feet.”

ἡ Ταντάλου ποτ᾿ ἔστη
λίθος Φρυγῶν ἐν ὄχθαις,
καὶ παῖς ποτ᾿ ὄρνις ἔπτη
Πανδίονος χελιδών.

ἐγὼ δ᾿ ἔσοπτρον εἴην,
ὅπως ἀεὶ βλέπῃς με·
ἐγὼ χιτὼν γενοίμην,
ὅπως ἀεὶ φορῇς με.
ὕδωρ θέλω γενέσθαι,
ὅπως σε χρῶτα λούσω·
μύρον, γύναι, γενοίμην,
ὅπως ἐγώ σ᾿ ἀλείψω.

καὶ ταινίη δὲ μασθῷ
καὶ μάργαρον τραχήλῳ
καὶ σανδαλον γενοίμην·
μόνον ποσὶν πάτει με.

Aphrodite and Eros. Inner decoration of a Greek folding mirror.
Gilt bronze, from Tarquinia, c. 350 BCE. The Louvre, Paris.