Reply to Sonnet 10
by Mary Freeman
The Harvard dons sang Julia’s last chorus;
They plucked the ancient strings of her city,
Her Cambridge, Rome—though none sang of Clytie,
A sort of Grecian Isis or Horus.
But Julia kept the tale in Flora’s trust.
The words she wrote, devoid of self pity,
Those words of ironic nobility,
Those not sent to Joe—she kept just for us.
Golden Apollo made Clytie’s heart ache.
Her ever abundant throes of pure love
Left unrequited, she soon learned the part
The heliotropic blue flowers take,
Turning their heads to Apollo above,
Giving her passion and love to her art.
Copyright © 2011 by Mary Freeman.
This poem is a reply to Sonnet 10 in the sequence “Replies to Petrarch’s Sonnet 107” by Julia Budenz.