There Once Was A Man From Phthia
A limerick translation of Iliad 1. 1-17
by D. W. Frierson Stifler '08
Muse, Sing of the Wrath Achillean-
So much grief did it cause those Achaeans!
Heroes' souls did it throw
Down to Hades below,
While their flesh was by birds and dogs eaten.
That is how Zeus' will was made good,
When in contest these two men first stood:
That great lord Atreides,
And godlike Peleiades,
Who struggled as no others could.
Which god set that duo to war?
'Twas the son Zeus and Leto both bore;
In his rage at the king
A disease did he bring,
And all through the Greek army it tore.
The god thought the insult most grave
That Atreides to priest Chryses gave,
When that old cleric bore
To swift ships by the shore
A great ransom, his daughter to save.
A wreath he was toting in hand,
With Apollo Farstriker's gold brand,
And implored the Achaeans
And the brothers Atrean.
Here follows his humble demand: