Archilochos: To His Soul



Soul, my soul, don't let them break you,

all these troubles. Never yield:

though their force is overwhelming,

up! attack them shield to shield,


nor victorious rise exalted,

vaunting you can never fall,

nor defeated lie in endless

grieving, as if loss were all.


Take the joy and bear the sorrow,

looking past your hopes and fears:

learn to recognize the measured

dance that orders all our years.



translated from the Greek by Jon Corelis