antonia

She ceased, and turn’d upon her pillow; pale
She lay, her dark eyes flashing through their tears,
Like skies that rain and lighten; as a veil,
Waved and o’ershading her wan cheek, appears
Her streaming hair; the black curls strive, but fail,
To hide the glossy shoulder, which uprears
Its snow through all; – her soft lips lie apart,
And louder than her breathing beats her heart.

Lord Byron

fate

The waters of the Jumna are as dark
as full blown sapphires. Who would find
a snake there in the color of black ointment,
if the jewels of his curving hood,
as bright as stars, did not show the way?
The qualities that lead a man to glory
may lead him also to his fall.

Bharthari

to the tune of bodhisatva barbarians

Everyone is full of praise for the beauty of the South;
What can I do but end my days an exile in the South?
The spring river is bluer than the sky;
As it rains, in a painted barge I lie.

Bright as the moon is she who serves the wine;
Like frost or frozen snow her white wrists shine.
I’m not old yet: let me not depart!
For going home will surely break my heart!

Wen T’ing-yun

Δώρια

Be in me as the eternal moods
of the bleak wind, and not
As transient things are—
gaiety of flowers.

Have me in the strong loneliness
of sunless cliffs
And of grey waters.
Let the gods speak softly of us

In days hereafter,
The shadowy flowers of Orcus
Remember thee.

Ezra Pound