c. 590 BC | Lesbos

Lest We Forget

Sappho will be remembered.

You may forget but
Let me tell you
this: someone in
some future time
will think of us

I have no complaint

Prosperity that
the golden Muses
gave me was no
delusion: dead, I
won’t be forgotten.


© 1985 by the Regents of the University of California. Used with permission of University of California Press.



Two poem fragments. Regarded by Plato as the “Tenth Muse,” Sappho composed much of her poetry in the form of choral songs meant to be performed with a lyre. Only one of her extant poems, an ode to Aphrodite, is complete, running a mere twenty-eight lines. The next longest intact fragment is sixteen lines.