Friday, November 11, 2011

Ulysses and the Siren


Siren. Come, worthy Greek! Ulysses, come,
Possess these shores with me:
The winds and seas are troublesome,
And here we may be free.
Here may we sit and view their toil 5
That travail in the deep,
And joy the day in mirth the while,
And spend the night in sleep.

Ulysses. Fair Nymph, if fame or honour were
To be attain'd with ease, 10
Then would I come and rest me there,
And leave such toils as these.
But here it dwells, and here must I
With danger seek it forth:
To spend the time luxuriously 15
Becomes not men of worth.

Siren. Ulysses, O be not deceived
With that unreal name;
This honour is a thing conceived,
And rests on others' fame: 20
Begotten only to molest
Our peace, and to beguile
The best thing of our life—our rest,
And give us up to toil.

Ulysses. Delicious Nymph, suppose there were 25
No honour nor report,
Yet manliness would scorn to wear
The time in idle sport:
For toil doth give a better touch
To make us feel our joy, 30
And ease finds tediousness as much
As labour yields annoy.
—Samuel Daniel

1: As always, best practice with cycling YouTube videos is to not listen to the soundtrack. Generic pounding electronica must be a byproduct of carbon fiber and lycra, I'm afraid.

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