Words cannot say what she was in her prime,
This Laïs, now a specimen of Time.
She used to laugh to see so many men,
Not one of whom she’ll ever see again.
Goddess, to you I yield my useless mirror—
What can it do but verify Time’s error?
It will not show me as I used to be,
And what it will show I refuse to see.

This article originally appeared in The New Criterion, Volume 17 Number 5, on page 39
Copyright © 2017 The New Criterion | www.newcriterion.com
newcriterion.com/issues/1999/1/laas-dedicates-to-aphroditecirc-the-tools-of-her-trade