The Reproach

You have betrayed me, Eros.

You have sent me

my true love.


On a high hill you made

his clear gaze;

my heart was not

so hard as your arrow.


What is a poet

without dreams?

I lie awake; I feel

actual flesh upon me

meaning to silence me –

Outside, in the blackness

over the olive trees,

a few stars.


I think this is a bitter insult:

that I prefer to walk

the coiled paths of the garden

to walk beside the river

glittering with drops

of mercury. I like to lie

in the wet grass beside the river,

running away, Eros,

not openly, with other men,

but discreetly, coldly –


All my life

I have worshiped the wrong gods.

When I watch the trees

on the other side,

the arrow in my heart

is like one of them,

swaying and quivering.


Louise Gluck


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