Chloë, Darling

After Horace, Odes, 1, 23

Chloë, darling, please don’t run away!
You shun me like a fawn lost in the hills
who’s searching for her timid mother; frightened even of the wind,
the darkness in the woods: a foolish fear.
Her heart is thumping and her limbs are shaky.
She’s a-quiver like the insubstantial leaves when spring approaches;
like green lizards when they push aside the brambles.

You think I’m a savage tiger or a lion out of Africa.
You think I want to hunt you down and break you. Moi? How could you?
Let me tell you what I think: it’s time to leave your mother; you’re ready for a man.

Listen to this poem — read by Peter Hetherington

Horace, Odes, 1, 23

Vitas hinnuleo me similis, Chloë,
quaerenti pavidam montibus aviis
  matrem non sine vano
    aurarum silvae metu.

nam seu mobilibus veris inhorruit
adventus foliis, seu virides rubum
  dimovere lacertae
    et corde et genibus tremit.

atqui non ego te tigris ut aspera
Gaetulusve leo frangere persequor:
  tandem desine matrem
    tempestiva sequi viro.