Epithalamion

Original Text: 
Collected Poems, ed. J. C. Squire (New York: Doubleday, Page, 1916): 168-69. PR 6011 L4A17 Robarts Library
2Bright and white as the summer snow,
5So long ago when, heart aflame,
6The grave and gentle Peleus came
8To wed the maiden of his devotion,
9The dancing lady with sky-blue eyes,
10Thetis, the darling of Paradise,
11The daughter of old Ocean.
12Seas before her rise and break,
13Dolphins tumble in her wake
14Along the sapphire courses:
17From the glimmering house where her Father dwells
18She drives his white-tail horses!
19And the boys of heaven gowned and crowned,
21Aphrodite with hair unbound
22Her silver breasts adorning.
23Her long, her soft, her streaming hair,
24Falls on a silver breast laid bare
25By the stir and swing of the sealit air
26And the movement of the morning.

Notes

1] Based on Catallus LXIV. Back to Line
3] young King: Peleus (6), son of Aeacus, king of Phthia in Thessaly. Back to Line
4] Thetis: a Nereid, daughter of Nereus and Doris, and a sea-goddess. Achilles was born of her union with Peleus. Back to Line
7] halcyon: a sea bird, the kingfisher, which calmed the waves. Back to Line
15] Tritons: large sea mollusks with a long, conical shell, after whom was named the son of Neptune and Amphitrite, a half-man, half-dolphin usually depicted blowing on a triton. Back to Line
16] plash: splash. Back to Line
20] Aphrodite: Venus. Because, of all the goddesses, only Eris or Discord was not invited to the wedding, she took revenge on the company by throwing among the party an apple labelled "To the most fair," which was immediately claimed by Hera, Athene, and Aphrodite. Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
1911
Publication Notes: 
The Nation 9 (Oct. 7, 1911): 22
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
RPO Edition: 
RPO 1999.