One Girl | Sappho #Poetry

I have been reading (and loving a lot) Square Haunting: Five Women, Freedom and London Between the War by Francesca Wade. Last week I featured a poem by the first woman, H. D. and I had hoped to do the same for each of the five woman. But Dorothy L. Sayers poetry was way too religious for my tastes and Jane Harrison does not appear to have written any (although she probably translated some along the way). Harrison was accused of ‘advocating “free love” among Newnham women by teaching Sappho‘ so I decided that a poem attributed to Sappho would be the perfect way to celebrate this week’s chapters.

Portrait of a girl, previously thought to represent Sappho the ancient Greek poetess, with tablets and pen, She is also known as Meditation. Italy. Roman. c 75 AD. Pompeii.
Like the sweet apple which reddens upon the topmost bough,
Atop on the topmost twig, — which the pluckers forgot, somehow, —
Forget it not, nay; but got it not, for none could get it till now.

Like the wild hyacinth flower which on the hills is found,
Which the passing feet of the shepherds for ever tear and wound,
Until the purple blossom is trodden in the ground.

One Girl: Translated by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

This post is part of A Poem For a Thursday with Jennifer @Holds Upon Happiness.

6 thoughts on “One Girl | Sappho #Poetry

  1. I was so lucky: I signed up for a course on Great Books at Melbourne Uni a couple of years ago and one of the lectures was about Sappho, presented by Germaine Greer, It was just wonderful:)


  2. I must get back to Square Hunting. I jumped forward to read the Dorothy L Sayers chapter and I’ve not read the rest!


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