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Your wrinkles, Philinna, are preferable

to the juice of all youthful prime, and I desire

more to clasp in my hands your apples

nodding with the weight of their clusters,

than the firm breasts of a young girl.

Your autumn excels another's spring,

and your winter is warmer than another's summer.


Why find fault with my locks grown grey so early

and my eyes wet with tears? These are the pranks

my love for thee plays ; these are the care-marks

of unfulfilled desire ; these are the traces the arrows left ;

these are the work of many sleepless nights.

Yes, and my sides are already wrinkled

all before their time, and the skin hangs loose

upon my neck. The more fresh and young the flame is,

the older grows my body devoured by care.

But take pity on me, and grant me thy favour,

and at once it will recover its freshness

and my locks their raven tint.