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Das verhängnisvolle Gedicht des Ovid (88 Aufrufe)
Γραικύλος schrieb am 03.05.2021 um 18:27 Uhr (Zitieren)
Im Jahre 8 u.Z. ist der Dichter P. Ovidius Naso von Augustus in die Stadt Tomi am Schwarzen Meer exiliert worden. Der Hintergrund ist unklar, vermutet wird seine Verwicklung in einen Skandal, der die kaiserliche Familie betraf. John Williams geht davon aus, daß dieser Skandal sich um die ebenfalls verbannte Julia, die Tochter des Augustus, drehte und daß Ovids Beteiligung in einem Gedicht auf Julia, als der neuen Venus, bestanden hatte. Dieses nicht erhaltene Gedicht hat er nachempfunden.
Restless, and wandering aimlessly, I pass temples and groves where
Gods live – Gods who invite passers to worship as they
Pause in the ancient groves where no ax has, in our memory’s
Mortal endurance, bit hungrily branches or shrubs.
Where might I pause? Janus watches unmoving as I approach him,
And as I pass him by – quicker than any discerns
Save he. Now: here is Vesta – reliable, nice in her own way,
I think; so I call out. She does not answer me, though.
Vesta is tending her flame - no doubt she is cooking for someone.
She waves carelessly, still bending above her hot stove.
Sadly, I shake my head and move on. And now Jupiter thunders,
Eyes crackling light at me. What? Does he insist that I swear
Something that might change my ways? “Ovid,” he thunders, “is there no
End to this love-making life? trivial versing? your vain
Posturing?” I try answering; no pause comes in the thunder.
“Look to the years, poor poet; put on the senator’s robes,
Think of the state – or at least try to.” Deafened by thunder, I cannot
Hear more. Sadly, I pass. Now at the Temple of Mars,
Weary, I halt; and I see, more fearsome than any – his left hand
Sowing a field and his right slashing a sword through the air –
Ultimate Mars! old father of living and dying! I call him
Joyfully, hoping at last I will be welcomed. But no.
He who protects and gives name to his March, to this month of my own birth,
Will not receive me. I sigh; is there no place for me, Gods?
Now in despair, and ignored by the most ancient Gods of my ancient
Country, I wander beyond all of their precincts, and let
Various breezes carry me where they will. And at last – soft,
Distant, and sweet – sounds come: oboe and tambour and flute;
Music of laughter; the wind; bird songs; leaves rustling in
twilight.
Now it’s my hearing that leads; I have to follow, so that
Eyes may glimpse what the music has promised. And suddenly,
Open before me, a stream, gushing with springs that invade
Cavern and grotto, and idly meander through lilies that tremble
As if suspended in air; surely, I say to myself,
Surely there dwells here divinity – one that I haven’t before known.
Nymphs in their gossamer gowns celebrate spring and the night;
Yet, above all, high, radiant in beauty, a Goddess, to whom turn
All eyes. Worshiped in joy, prayed to by gaiety, she smiles,
Brightening the twilight, more gently than does our Aurora; her beauty
Outshines that of the high Juno. I think: It’s a new
Venus come down from her high place; no one has seen her before, yet all
Know they must worship her. Hail, Goddess! we leave the old Gods
Safe in their groves. Let them scowl at the world, let them scold who will listen;
Here a new season is born; here a new country is found,
Deep in the soul of that Rome we loved of old. We must welcome the new, and
Live in its joy, and be gay; soon will the night come on; soon,
Soon we will rest. But for now we are granted this beauty around us,
Granted this Goddess who gives life to this sacred grove.

(John Williams: Augustus. London 2003, pp. 229 sq.)

Die "neue Venus" wird's gefreut haben; ihr Vater, als er sich mit ihr ob ihres Lebenswandels überworfen hat, "was not amused".
 
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