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CHORUS.

Oh sweeter far
Than is the music of an Asian lyre
Would be the news of Polypheme destroyed.

ULYSSES.

Delighted with the Bacchic drink, he goes
To call his brother Cyclops—who inhabit
A village upon Ætna not far off.

CHORUS.

I understand : catching him when alone,
You think by some measure to dispatch him,
Or thrust him from the precipice.

ULYSSES.

O no;

Nothing of that kind; my device is subtle.

CHORUS

How then? I heard of old that thou wert wise.

ULYSSES.

I will dissuade him from this plan, by saying
It were unwise to give the Cyclopses
This precious drink, which if enjoyed alone
Would make life sweeter for a longer time.
When vanquished by the Bacchic power, he sleeps,
There is a trunk of olive-wood within,
Whose point, having made sharp with this good sword,
I will conceal in fire, and when I see
It is alight, will fix it, burning yet,
Within the socket of the Cyclops' eye,
And melt it out with fire—as when a man
Turns by its handle a great auger round,
Fitting the frame-work of a ship with beams,

So will I in the Cyclops' fiery eye
Turn round the brand, and dry the pupil up.

CHORUS.

Joy! I am mad with joy at your device.

ULYSSES.

And then with you, my friends, and the old man,
We'll load the hollow depth of our black ship,
And row with double strokes from this dread shore.

CHORUS.

May I, as in libations to a God,
Share in the blinding him with the red brand ?
I would have some communion in his death.

ULYSSES.

Doubtless; the brand is a great brand to hold.

CHORUS.

Oh! I would lift a hundred waggon-loads,
If like a wasp's nest I could scoop the eye out
Of the detested Cyclops.

ULYSSES.

Silence now!
Ye know the close device—and when I call,
Look ye obey the masters of the craft.
I will not save myself and leave behind
My comrades in the cave: I might escape,
Having got clear from that obscure recess,
But 'twere unjust to leave in jeopardy
The dear companions who sailed here with me.

CHORUS.

Come! who is first, that with his hand
Will urge down the burning brand

Through the lids, and quench and pierce The Cyclops' eye so fiery fierce?

SEMI-CHORUS I. Song within.
Listen! listen! he is coming,
A most hideous discord humming,
Drunken, museless, awkward, yelling,
Far along his rocky dwelling;
Let us with some comic spell
Teach the yet unteachable.
By all means he must be blinded,
If my counsel be but minded.

SEMI-CHORUS II.

Happy those made odorous
With the dew which sweet grapes weep,
To the village hastening thus,
Seek the vines that soothe to sleep,
Having first embraced thy friend,
There in luxury without end,
With the strings of yellow hair,
Of thy voluptuous leman fair,
Shall sit playing on a bed !-
Speak, what door is opened?

CYCLOPS.

Ha! ha! ha! I'm full of wine,
Heavy with the joy divine,
With the young feast oversated.
Like a merchant's vessel freighted
To the water's edge, my crop
Is laden to the gullet's top.
The fresh meadow grass of spring
Tempts me forth, thus wandering
To my brothers on the mountains,

Who shall share the wine's sweet fountains.
Bring the cask, O stranger, bring!

CHORUS.
One with eyes the fairest
Cometh from his dwelling;
Some one loves thee, rarest,
Bright beyond my telling.
In thy grace thou shinest
Like some nymph divinest,
In her caverns dewy ;-
All delights pursue thee,
Soon pied flowers, sweet-breathing,
Shall thy head be wreathing.

ULYSSES.

Listen, O Cyclops, for I am well skilled
In Bacchus, whom I gave thee of to drink.

CYCLOPS.

What sort of God is Bacchus then accounted ?

ULYSSES.

The greatest among men for joy of life.

CYCLOPS.

I gulpt him down with very great delight.

ULYSSES.

This is a God who never injures men.

CYCLOPS.

How does the God like living in a skin?

ULYSSES.

He is content wherever he is put.

CYCLOPS.

Gods should not have their body in a skin.

ULYSSES.

If he give joy, what is his skin to you ?

CYCLOPS.

I hate the skin, but love the wine within.

ULYSSES.

Stay here ; now drink, and make your spirit glad.

CYCLOPS.

Should I not share this liquor with my brothers ?

ULYSSES.

Keep it yourself, and be more honoured so.

CYCLOPS.

I were more useful, giving to my

friends.

ULYSSES.

But village mirth breeds contests, broils, and blows.

CYCLOPS.

When I am drunk none shall lay hands on me.

ULYSSES.

A drunken man is better within doors.

CYCLOPS.

He is a fool, who drinking loves not mirth.

ULYSSES.

But he is wise, who drunk, remains at home.

CYCLOPS.

What shall I do, Silenus ? Shall I stay?

SILENUS.

Stay-for what need have you of pot companions ?

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