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CARMEN LXIII.-ATYS.

Atys borne in swiftly-flying bark over depths unfathomable Reached the Phrygian grove with eager footstep hurrying

passionately, And approached the haunt of Cybele girt about with forests

darkening There with furious madness raging all his mind bewildered

wandering He with flintstone sharpened cut and dashed to the ground his

part of manhood : Then a woman made, she felt her limbs grow weak with

effeminacy, While the ground with gore bedabbled showed the red blood

stain freshly shed, She with snow-white hands the timbrel seized, O thou mighty

mother Cybele, Thine the timbrel, thine the trumpet, symbols of thy initiation, And with tender fingers smiting on the hollow resonant bull's

hide, Thus began to her companions with wild tones thrillingly

quivering: Come ye Gallæ, me attend ye to the groves of great Cybele, Go ye, too, wild wandering herds of our dread goddess Din

dymian, Ye who, as a tribe of exiles seek far regions inhospitable,

Have my rule and guidance followed, O my comrades to me

devoted, Who have crossed careering billows, and the boisterous waste

of sea,

And from utter hate of Venus have your bodies emasculated. Now rejoice our mighty mistress with your gyrations impetuous, Thoughts of slow delay abandon, come, and follow me as your

guide, To the Phrygian home of Cybele, to the Phrygian goddess'

grove, Where the clash of cymbals call you, where the timbrels echo

afar, Where the Phrygian through the curved reed whistles low

with his droning flute, Where the Mænads wildly dancing toss abroad their heads

ivy-crowned, Where they ply their hallowed mysteries with ear-piercing

ululations, Where the train of great Cybelle flit like birds wheeling aerially, Thither must we hasten, thither in quick-dancing mystic

measure.” Thus she sung to her companions, Atys the woman newly

made. Of a sudden all the rout with quivering tongues began their

yelling, Bellow back the timbrels light, the hollow cymbals echoing ring, And with eager feet the chorus rush to ascend green Ida's

hill. With them raging, breathless, wandering, all her mind dis

traught with madness Atys with the timbrel hurries through all darkening groves

their guide, As the steer unbroken flees the burden ponderous of the yoke. Her their leader quick the Gallæ follow with feet rapidly

hastening, So o'erwearied, spent with labour, reach they Cybele's

sanctuary, Then they sink in heavy slumber, fasting, fainting with a dire

hunger. O’er their eyes a drowsy torpor sinks with languor over

powering, Rest in placid sleep their bosoms from the fury which had

possessed them. But when rose the golden sun with bright orb gleaming

radiantly, Lighting up the æther white, hard ground, and sea ruthlessly

ravening Trampling out the shades of night with his fresh horses

thunderous-hoofed, Atys woke, and sleep departed, rapidly vanishing away, And Pasithea's trembling bosom once more received the

drowsy god. (1)

Then thus wakened from her quiet rest her raging frenzy

assuaged To her mind the act of madness, all the deed she had done

returned, Then unblinded saw she where her dwelling, what her

ignominy, Bent again her footsteps seaward, her soul seething piteously. Then with streaming eyes beholding ocean's plain illimitable, Thus with mournful voice addressed her country, moaning

miserably, “O my country who didst bear me, thou my country who

didst beget me, I, poor wretch, I thee abandoned, as his lord a fugitive slave, And to wooded heights and groves of Ida hurried precipitously, There to dwell in snowy regions, ice-frozen haunts of beasts

wild-roving All their savage lairs to visit, driven by madness deliriously. Where art thou my country, 'neath what point of sky shall I

picture thee? For my very eyeballs long to bend their agonized gaze towards

thee, While my mind from raging frenzy is but a moment respited. Far from home I loved so dearly shall I then through these

forests wander From my country, wealth, and friends, and parents ever

separated,

Parted from the forum's triumphs, from the race course ever

and aye,

Parted, too, from the palæstra, from the gymnasium, ah, the

misery! Woe on woe, my soul must ever pour forth in anguish

lamentations, All the charms of manly beauty once were mine, my body

gracing Youth and boyhood, age and manhood all were forms most

lovely in me. (2) Me the flower of the palæstra, me the gymnasium's pride and

glory. Mine the portals crowded ever, mine the thresholds

hospitable, Mine the house o’erhung with garlands, lovers' flowery

memorials, When the sun arose in heaven, and from my chamber forth I

sallied. Now shall I to gods devoted stray the bondsman of Cybele? I be Maenas, half my old self, I a man unfruitful, barren ? I inhabit wooded Ida clothed with chilling mantle of

snow? I drag out a weary lifetime under the lofty Phrygian hill-crags ? Where the forest deer inhabit, and boar savage woodland-ranger. Now I feel my shame, at last now sharp remorse with

misery racks me.”

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