Saturday, December 23, 2017


Keeping in Touch

Greek Anthology 9.401 (by Palladas; tr. Tony Harrison):
Loving the rituals that keep men close,
Nature created means for friends apart:

pen, paper, ink, the alphabet,
signs for the distant and disconsolate heart.
The Greek:
Ἡ φύσις ἐξεῦρεν, φιλίης θεσμοὺς ἀγαπῶσα,
    τῶν ἀποδημούντων ὄργανα συντυχίης,
τὸν κάλαμον, χάρτην, τὸ μέλαν, τὰ χαράγματα χειρός,
    σύμβολα τῆς ψυχῆς τηλόθεν ἀχνυμένης.
W.R. Paton's translation:
Nature, loving the duties of friendship, invented instruments by which absent friends can converse, pens, paper, ink, handwriting, tokens of the heart that mourns afar off.

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