Hero and Leander
by Steven Clotzman

Three sisters were they,
two married and beyond her,
when the father to his shame
found that youngest dishonored.
He gazed at this brunette
and withdrew his lance
but with the fair face of a flower
just sent her to the coast of France.

T'was deep in the ocean
he built a great tower,
for his sweet daughter,
this sweet little flower.
The stone rose into the sky
with windows all around
and she was left to weep there,
never to be found.

A young man heard this story
and he began to swim
following the scent of her tears
carried on the wind.
Though she lay in deep sleep,
she recognized his call
and threw him down her tresses
and hauled him up that wall

Adapted from a Ladino romance (see The Sephardic Tradition by Moshe Lazar, Norton, 1972)


© 1993 & 2005 Steven Clotzman - all rights reserved