Poet of cheerful mood (based on the poetry of Anacreon) - Anacreon

Essays on literary works - 2023

Poet of cheerful mood (based on the poetry of Anacreon)

The ancient era, during which the rapid development of various types of art took place, gave the world many poets. Among the singers of military glory of the ancient Greeks, the poet Anacreon stands out. His creativity flowed in a different direction. The mood of his poetry is cheerful. Despite his advanced age, Anacreon retained a desire for pleasure. Love, wine, women are the main themes of his poetry, the poet entered the history of lyrics as "a symbol of playful, refined, cheerful eroticism":

Golden-haired Eros of me

I hit again with a purple ball —

The girl in colorful sandals now

Tells me to have fun...

(Translation A, Sodomory)

Mostly table and love songs have been preserved to this day, although it is known that the poet also created epigrams, hymns, and elegies. After all, he was the court poet of several tyrants, he experienced a lot. At the end of his years, Anacreon missed the lost years of his youth, he was afraid of inexorable death:

Gray hair covers my temples, my head turns silver,

The joyous young summers have passed; teeth become weak.

Sweet life has flown away - there is not much left.

(Translated by H. Kochur)

But the most popular were the poet's table songs, in which love and intoxicating fun signified a victorious lust for life. Unlike other contemporaries who idealized death on the battlefield, Anacreon glorified the joys of a feast, the pleasures of love surrounded by beauty and music:

Bring water, young man, and serve wine quickly,

And wreaths fragrant with flowers to fight with Eros.

Well, let's not drink like the Scythians, who sit quietly without a song.

I don't like to be bored: at a banquet with wine together

Give me a song, dear heart.

(Translated by V. Maslyuk)

Lightness, sometimes humorous content, elegance and melodious form contributed to the great popularity of Anacreon even in ancient times. His work was also referred to later, it was translated by famous poets, re-sung. Anacreontic motifs acquired a special flavor in the works of Ukrainian "neoclassicists". M. Rylskyi's poem "Tomatoes are already turning red" is illustrative:

Tomatoes are already red

And autumn walks on the grass.

What the hell is grief there,

When are our hearts alive?