“Dawn,” William-Adolphe Bouguereau, 1881, WikiArt.

Part 4: Lenera, Whimsical Sprite

And so our odyssey began, Ixia and Lenara,
Upon mountain trails and paths, descending
Into olive groves and pasturelands, ocean
Coastline roads, Abdera our destination,
Merchant ship, captain, crew awaiting for
Seas and Isles unknown. As days passed,
I realized Lenara was neither human nor
Of this world. She sang and thought aloud,
Draped in sheer gown, wind-flowing,
She strove Attic countryside, her marble-
Pale body never fully covered, no warmth
Offered on chilly nights.

Whilst Lenara never knew wind nor rain,
These she relished with delight, but none
More so than sleeping, on massive sun-
Warmed stones, chameleon-like, rocky
Form she became, as if to Sosibios urn,
Lenara had returned. Alas! Her true loves,
Stars and planets, from evening hour to
Twilight morn, she gazed, reaching for
Treetops as they passed with orbing wings.
In sing-song sway, she confessed love of
Ethereal companions, heavens reflected in
Clear eyes, beaming face. O! Fanciful child,
Starry firmament loves thee in return.

If not for voices entombed so beckoning,
Pushing us toward Abdera, I would have
Spent my days caring for Lenara, my sprite
Romping across sunny fields, stream-
Splashing naked, alight with whimsical
Melodies. Beauty-divine commingled in
Female form, naïve to ways of flesh, she
Clung to me at night, face upon my breast,
Kisses on my cheek, for these I yearned,
My love for Lenara sincere, sans restraint
Or modesty, until silly wisp, climbed upon
Broad stone, waving, she froze in place.

“Storming Seas with Sailing Vessels,” Jacob van Ruisdael, 1668, WikiArt.

Days of merriment, we reached hills over-
Looking Abdera, wide-flowing Nestos River,
Merchant ships awaiting, voices in my head
Thrumming, to isle of goats, tomb of marble
Half-buried, single window looking out,
Bones of ancient deity. Sea voyage for Lenara
And myself, few coins for safe passage. I felt
Guiding presence of Æëtia. Premonition,
Our cheerful days of fruit and honeyed
Bread were lost to foam-streaked waves,
Scudding clouds. Lo! By fates, Lenera
And I were thrust to storming seas.

Poem about mænad Lenera, we learn more of enigmatic sprite, follower of
Dionysus, who once occupied a place on John Keat’s urn sculpted by Sosibios.
For more, see this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ode_on_a_Grecian_Urn

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