Dangerous Thoughts The Canon
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Said Myrtias (a Syrian student
at Alexandria; in the reign of Augustus
Constans and Augustus Constantius;
partly a pagan and partly christianizing)
“Fortified as I shall be by theory and study
I shall not, like the timorous, stand in fear of my passions.
I shall deliver my body to pleasures,
to the joys of which one dreams,
to the boldest erotic desires,
to the lustful promptings of the flesh,
without any fear, because whenever I wish—
and I shall have the will fortified
as I shall be by theory and study—
whenever the crisis comes I shall regain
a spirit ascetic as before.

Translated by George Valassopoulo

(Unpublished draft from the Cavafy Archive)
Transcribed and edited by Katerina Ghika

- Original Greek Poem

- Translation by Edmund Keeley/Philip Sherrard

- Translation by John Cavafy