16. On the Track
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1 6 The name is Orestes* On the track, on the track again, on the track, how many times around, how many bloodied laps, how many black rows; the people who watch me, who watched me when, in the chariot, I raised my hand glorious, and they roared triumphantly. The froth of the horses strikes me, when will the horses tire? The axle creaks, the axle burns, when will the axle burst into flame? When will the reins break, when will the hooves tread flush on the ground on the soft grass, among the poppies where, in the spring, you picked a daisy. They were lovely, your eyes, but you didn't know where to look nor did I know where to look, I, without a country, I who go on struggling here how many times around? and I feel my knees give way over the axle over the wheels, over the wild track knees buckle easily when the gods so will it, no one can escape, there's no point in being strong, you can't 22 escape the sea that cradled you and that you search for at this time of trial, with the horses panting, with the reeds that used to sing in autumn to the Lydian mode the sea you cannot find no matter how you run no matter how you circle past the black, bored Eumenides, unforgiven. 23 ...



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