Gillian Spraggs
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Fragment 16

Some say it's a force of cavalry, others of foot,
others of ships, but I say that the most beautiful thing
upon the black earth is whatever it is you desire.

It's easy enough to make this plain to all:
for she who was far more beautiful than any woman of mortal 
Helen, abandoned her husband - the best of men -

and went sailing off to Troy; she remembered neither her child
nor her much-loved parents, but Aphrodite(?)
led her astray . . .

[This] has made me think of Anactoria, who isn't here.

Her step, which stirs desire, and the bright sparkle of her 
are dearer sights to me than the chariots of Lydia,
and armed men fighting on foot.
translated by Gillian Spraggs
Published in Love Shook My Senses. Lesbian Love Poems, ed. Gillian Spraggs, London, The Women’s Press, 1998
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© Gillian Spraggs, 1998, 2006
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