#QueerHeroes Day 15 – Sappho

#QueerHeroes Day 15 – Sappho

Very little is known about Sappho’s life. She was born around 615 BC on the island of Lesbos and soon became one of the foremost poets and teachers of Ancient Greece, with Plato referring to her as “the tenth muse.”

Her face appeared on currency and she remains immortal for being one of the only ancient female poets whose work remains commonly discussed today.

Her poems only survive in fragments, but they’re still arresting.

“Fragment 31 V

He seems to me to be like the gods–
whatever man sits opposite you
and close by hears you
talking sweetly

And laughing charmingly, which
makes the heart within my breast take flight;
for the instant I look upon you, I cannot anymore
speak one word,

But in silence my tongue is broken, a fine
fire at once runs under my skin,
with my eyes I see not one thing, my ears
buzz,

Cold sweat covers me, trembling
seizes my whole body, I am more moist than grass;
I seem to be little short
of dying…

But all must be ventured….”

 

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