Monday, December 13, 2021

Hellenic Sequel

Read "Hellenic Sequel" at The Eldritch Dark:

This recollection of a dream awash in the verdant glories of Ancient Greece is simply beautiful, describing a setting that must have held an almost spiritual power for Clark Ashton Smith (CAS).

The first stanza has a visual focus, as the colors introduced in the two opening lines ("verd-antique" and "murex-tinted") anticipate the "Flowering grape that clasped and crowned".

With the second stanza, there is an immediate switch to an aural focus, built around these near-perfect lines relating the music of a naiad: "Sweeter than silence was her song, / Sweeter than sleep her answer".

Having spent the last few months reading haiku from CAS, it is a rewarding change for me to delve back into his longer work in verse, and "Hellenic Sequel" is a perfect example of the subtle magic of his mature output (he was in his early fifties when this poem was written).

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