This is by Cavafy as translated by Stratis Haviaras. The setting is about 175 BC. The Greek original is in Haviaras’ book, Cavafy, The Canon. I recommend it. It’s ecphrastic in a very important sense.
Craftsman of Wine Krateres
On this wine krater fashioned from purest silver—
custom-made for the house of Herakleides,
where taste of the highest order reigns supreme—
regard the delicate flowers, the streams, the thyme,
within which I’ve set a lovely young man,
sensual and naked, a leg yet dangling in the water.
O memory, I implored, guide well my efforts
as I render this young face I loved as it once was.
The undertaking, as it turned out, was difficult, in that
nearly fifteen years had passed since the day
he died, a soldier fallen in the defeat at Magnesia.
Last edited by Allen Tice; 04-26-2022 at 11:14 AM.