The Madness of Hercules
Dana Gioia's translation of The Madness of Hercules (Hercules Furens) was included in Seneca: The Tragedies, Volume II, published by Johns Hopkins , 1995. This volume also includes a monograph-length essay by Dana Gioia on Seneca and European tragedy.
"Juno Plots Her Revenge" is also included in Interrogations at Noon, Dana Gioia's newest volume of poetry.
Juno Plots Her Revenge
Thebes at night under the stars. The Goddess speaks.
Call me sister of the thunder god.
That is the only title I have left.
Once I was wife and queen to Jupiter,
But now, adandoned by his love and shamed
By his perpetual adultery,
I leave my palace to his mistresses.
Why not choose earth when heaven is a whorehouse?
Even the Zodiac has now become
A pantheon of prostitutes and bastards.
Look at Callisto shining in the north,
That glittering slut now guides the Argive fleet.
Or see how Taurus rises in the south,
Not only messenger of spring's warm nights
But the gross trophy of Europa's rape!
Or count the stormy Pleiadesthose nymphs
Who terrorized the waves, once warmed Jove's bed.
Watch young Orion swaggering with his sword,
A vulgar upstart challenging the gods,
While gaudy Perseus flaunts his golden star.
Gape at the constellations Jove awarded
Castor and Pollux, his twin bastard sons.
And now not only Bacchus and his mother
Parade their ill-begotten rank in heaven,
But my husband, lord of lechery,
Discarding his last shred of decency,
Has crowned his drunken bastard's slut with stars!