To the Release of the Grape-Press
translated by Catherine Proppe
December 10, 2014
Κλῦθι, μάκαρ, Διὸς υἷ', ἐπιλήνιε Βάκχε, διμάτωρ,
I call blessed Dios’ child of the wine-press, Bacchos twice- mothered
σπέρμα πολύμνηστον, πολυώνυμε, λύσιε δαῖμον,
Seed of many memories, multi-realmed liberating power
κρυψίγονον μακάρων ἱερὸν θάλος, εὔιε Βάκχε,
Mysteriously born, blessed, holy offspring, infant Bacchos
εὐτραφές, εὔκαρπε, πολυγηθέα καρπὸν ἀέξων,
Well-nurtured good fruit, plentiful divine Ge’s fruitful growth
ῥηξίχθων, ληναῖε, μεγασθενές, αἰολόμορφε,
Rending earth’s surface, grapes-pressed, powerfully strong, eternally changing form
παυσίπονον θνητοῖσι φανεὶς ἄκος, ἱερὸν ἄνθος,
Pausing mortal toil, revealing remedy’s holy bloom
χάρμα βροτοῖς φιλάλυπον, ἐπάφιε, καλλιέθειρε,
Charm of mortals, friend of grief, grazing beautiful tillage
λύσιε, θυρσομανές, βρόμι', εὔιε, πᾶσιν ἐύφρων,
Release thyrsos-manic, loud-sounding child of all wisdom
οἷς ἐθέλεις θνητῶν ἠδ' ἀθανάτων ἐπιφαύσκων
Grant mortals sweet immortality upon illumination.
νῦν σε καλῶ μύσταισι μολεῖν ἡδύν, φερέκαρπον.
Now, beautiful mystae, come, sweetly bearing fruit.
 Dios is here a reference to Zeus, the immortal God of lightning storms.
 Dionysos/Bacchos’ two mothers are the mortal Semele, who died in a blaze of Zeus’ lightning, and Zeus, who sewed the fetus into his own thigh to complete gestation. Dionysos/Bacchos was then entrusted to the care of Nymphs on Mount Nysa. Dionysos/Bacchos is the immortal God of wine and its effects.
 Ge is the immortal Goddess of generative Earth.
 The thyrsos is a fennel stalk wrapped with grape leaves and topped with a pine cone. It is carried by Dionysos/Bacchos and his devotees.
 Mystae are initiates into the Mysteries.