|Electra Monologue by Sophocles|
- ELECTRA: Well, it is strange that you, being his child
- Who was your sire, should have regard for her,
- Your mother, and have quite forgotten him!
- All this good counsel you bestow on me
- Is of her teaching; and of your own self
- You can say nothing. Therefore take your choice;
- Either to be of evil mind, or else
- Well minded to forget those dear to you;
- Who said but now, if you could get the power,
- You would show plain the hate you have for them;
- And yet, while I am doing everything
- To avenge our father, do not take your part,
- And seek to turn me from it, who take mine!
- Danger! Is their not cowardice as well?
- Come, answer me, what should it profit me
- To cease my mourning? Or else hear me speak;
- Do I not live? Unprosperously I know,
- But well enough for me; to them, the while,
- I am a torment, and so render honour
- To him that's gone, if there be service there!
- You--madam hatress--you pretend to hate,
- But really take your father's murderers' side!
- For my part, I well never bend to them;
- Not though a man should come and offer me
- These gauds of yours, in which you glory now!
- Yours be the full-spread board, the cup o'erflowing;
- For me--be it my only sustenance
- Not to offend my conscience. Thus,
- I do not ask to share your dignities,
- And were you well-advised, no more would you!
- But now, though it be in your power to be called
- Your father's child--the foremost of mankind,
- Be called--your mother's! So you shall appear
- In most men's eyes unmeritoriously,
- False to your friends, and to your father's shade.
Credits: Reprinted from Dramas. Sophocles. London: J.M. Dent & Sons, 1906.