Choephori Or The Libation Bearers Monologue
|Choephori Or The Libation Bearers Monologue by Aeschylus|
- ELECTRA: Ye captive women, ye who tend this home,
- Since ye are present to escort with me
- These lustral rites, your counsel now I crave.
- How, while I pour these off'rings on the tomb,
- Speak friendly words? and how invoke my Sire?
- Shall I declare that from a loving wife
- To her dear lord I bear them? from my mother?
- My courage fails, now know I what to speak,
- Pouring libations on my father's tomb.
- Or shall I pray, as holy wont enjoins,
- That to the senders of these chaplets, he
- Requital may accord, ay! meed of ill.
- Or, with no mark of honour, silently,
- For so my father perished, shall I pour
- These offerings, potion to be drunk by earth,
- Then, tossing o'er my head the lustral urn,
- (As one who loathèd refuse forth has cast,)
- With eyes averted, back retrace my steps?
- Be ye partakers in my counsel, friends,
- For in this house one common hate we share.
- Through fear hide not the feelings of your heart;
- For what is destined waits alike the free
- And him o'ermastered by another's hand;--
- If ye have aught more wise to urge, say on.
Credits: Reprinted from The Dramas of Aeschylus. Trans. Anna Swanwick. London: George Bell and Sons, 1907.