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The Lanis you loved, Markos, isn't here

in the tomb you come to weep by, lingering hours on end.

the Lanis you loved you've still got close to you

in your room at home when you look at his portrait -

the portrait that still keeps something of what was valuable in him,

something of what you used to love.

Remember, Markos, that time you brought in

the famous Kyrenian painter from the Proconsul's palace?

What artistic subtlety he used trying to persuade you both,

the minute he saw your friend,

that he absolutely must do him as Hyacinth -

in that way his portrait would come to be better known.

But your Lanis didn't hire out his beauty like that:

reacting strongly, he told him to paint

neither Hyacinth nor anyone else,

but Lanis, son of Rametichos, an Alexandrian.

  - C. P. Cavafy, Tomb of Lanis