Obrazy na stronie

For that, in frantic theft, The nectar cup he reft,

And to his mortal peers in feasting poured
For whom a sin it were

With mortal life to share

The mystic dainties of th' immortal board:
And who by policy

Can hope to 'scape the eye

Of him who sits above by men and gods adored?

For such offence, a doom severe,
Sent down the sun to sojourn here
Among the fleeting race of man;—
Who, when the curly down began
To clothe his cheek in darker shade,
To car-borne Pisa's royal maid(2)
A lover's tender service paid.—
But, in the darkness first he stood
Alone, by ocean's hoary flood,
And raised to him the suppliant cry,
The hoarse earth-shaking deity.—

Nor called in vain, through cloud and storm Half-seen, a huge and shadowy form,

The god of waters came.—

He came, whom thus the youth addressed"Oh thou, if that immortal breast

Have felt a lover's flame,

A lover's prayer in pity hear,
Repel the tyrant's brazen spear

That guards my lovely dame!— ·
And grant a car whose rolling speed
May help a lover at his need;
Condemned by Pisa's hand to bleed
Unless I win the envied meed
In Elis' field of fame!-

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Beheld a stock of warriors spring,
Six valiant sons, as legends sing.—
And now, with fame and virtue crowned,
Where Alpheus' stream in wat'ry ring,
Encircles half his turfy mound,
He sleeps beneath the piled ground;(3)
Near that blest spot where strangers move
In many a long procession round

The altar of protecting Jove.—
Yet chief, in yonder lists of fame,
Survives the noble Pelop's name;
Where strength of hands and nimble feet
In stern and dubious contest meet;
And high renown and honeyed praise,
And following length of honoured days,
To victor's weary toil repays.—

But what are past or future joys?
The present is our own!
And he is wise who best employs

The passing hour alone.


To crown with knightly wreath the king, (A grateful task,) be mine; And on the smooth Æolian string

To praise his ancient line!

For ne'er shall wandering minstrel find
A chief so just,-a friend so kind;
With every grace of fortune blest;
The mightiest, wisest, bravest, best!—

God, who beholdeth thee and all thy deeds,(4)
Have thee in charge, king Hiero!—so again
The bard may sing thy horny-hoofed steeds
In frequent triumph o'er the Olympian plain;
Nor shall the Bard awake a lowly strain,
His wild notes flinging o'er the Cronian steep
Whose ready muse, and not invoked in vain,
For such high mark her strongest shaft shall keep.

Each hath his proper eminence!
To kings indulgent, Providence
(No farther search the will of Heaven)
The glories of the earth hath given.—
Still may'st thou reign! enough for me
To dwell with heroes like to thee,
Myself the chief of Grecian minstrelsy.—



O SONG! whose voice the harp obeys,
Accordant aye with answering string;
What god, what hero wilt thou praise,
What man of godlike prowess sing ?—
Lo, Jove himself is Pisa's king;
And Jove's strong son the first to raise
The barriers of th' Olympic ring.-
And now, victorious on the wing


Of sounding wheels, our bards proclaim
The stranger Theron's honoured name,
The flower of no ignoble race,(5)
And prop of ancient Agragas!-

His patient sires, for many a year,
Where that blue river rolls its flood,
Mid fruitless war and civil blood

Essayed their sacred home to rear,— Till time assigned, in fatal hour, Their native virtues, wealth and power; And made them from their low degree, The eye of warlike Sicily.

And, may that power of ancient birth,
From Saturn sprung, and parent Earth,
Of tall Olympus' lord,

Who sees with still benignant eye
The games' long splendour sweeping by
His Alpheus' holy ford :-
Appeased with anthems chanted high,
To Theron's late posterity

A happier doom accord!—

Or good or ill, the past is gone,
Nor time himself, the parent one,
Can make the former deeds undone

But who would these recall,— When happier days would fain efface The memory of each past disgrace, And, from the gods, on Theron's race

⚫ Unbounded blessings fall?—

Example meet for such a song,
The sister queens of Laius' blood;
Who sorrow's edge endured long,
Made keener by remembered good!—
Yet now, she breathes the air of Heaven
(On earth by smouldering thunder riven.)
Long-haired Semele :-

To Pallas dear is she;-
Dear to the sire of gods, and dear
To him, her son, in dreadful glee
Who shakes the ivy-wreathed spear.-

And thus, they tell that deep below
The sounding ocean's ebb and flow,
Amid the daughters of the sea,
A sister nymph must Ino be,
And dwell in bliss eternally:-

But, ignorant and blind,
We little know the coming hour;
Or if the latter day shall lower;
Or if to nature's kindly power

Our life in peace resigned,
Shall sink like fall of summer eve,
And on the face of darkness leave
A ruddy smile behind.--
For grief and joy with fitful gale
Our crazy bark by turns assail,

And, whence our blessings flow,

That same tremendous Providence Will oft a varying doom dispense,

And lay the mighty low.

To Theban Laius that befell,

Whose son, with murder dyed,
Fulfilled the former oracle,

Unconscious parricide!—
Unconscio-yet avenging hell
Pursued th' offender's stealthy pace,
And heavy, sure, and hard it fell,
The curse of blood, on all his race!-
Spared from their kindred strife,
The young Thersander's life,
Stern Polynices' heir, was left alone:
In every martial game,

And in the field of fame,

For early force and matchless prowess known:-
Was left, the pride and prop to be

Of good Adrastus' pedigree.

And hence, through loins of ancient kings,
The warrior blood of Theron springs;

Exalted name! to whom belong

The minstrel's harp, the poet's song,

In fair Olympia crowned;

And where, mid Pythia's olives blue,
An equal lot his brother drew:
And where his twice-twain coursers flew

The isthmus twelve times round.-
Such honour, earned by toil and care,
May best his ancient wrongs repair,

And wealth, unstained by pride,
May laugh at fortune's fickle power,
And blameless in the tempting hour
Of syren ease abide:-

Led by that, star of heavenly ray,
Which best may keep our darkling way
O'er life's unsteady tide!—

For, whoso holds in righteousness the throne,
He in his heart hath known
How the foul spirits of the guilty dead,
In chambers dark and dread,
Of nether earth abide, and penal flame
Where he, whom none may name,(6)
Lays bare the soul by stern necessity;
Seated in judgment high;

The minister of God whose arm is there,
In heaven alike and hell, almighty every where!

But, ever bright, by day, by night,
Exulting in excess of light;
From labour free and long distress,
The good enjoy their happiness.-

No more the stubborn soil they cleave,

Nor stem for scanty food the wave;
But with the venerable gods they dwell:-
No tear bedims their thankful eye,
Nor mars their long tranquillity;
While those accursed howl in pangs unspeakable

But, but who the thrice-renewed probation
Of either world may well endure;
And keep with righteous destination
The soul from all transgression pure;
To such and such alone is given,
To walk the rainbow paths of heaven,
To that tall city of almighty time,
Where Ocean's balmy breezes play,
And, flashing to the western day,
The gorgeous blossoms of such blessed clime,
Now in the happy isles are seen
Sparkling through the groves of green;
And now, all glorious to behold,
Tinge the wave with floating gold.—

Hence are their garlands woven-hence their hands

Filled with triumphal boughs; the righteous


Of Rhadamanthus, whom, o'er these his lands,
A blameless judge in every time to come,
Chronos, old Chronos, sire of gods hath placed;
Who with his consort dear,
Dread Rhea, reigneth here,

On cloudy throne with deathless honour graced.

And still, they say, in high communion,
Peleus and Cadmus here abide;
And, with the blest in blessed union,
(Nor Jove has Thetis' prayer denied.)(7)
The daughter of the ancient sea
Hath brought her warrior boy to be;
Him whose stern avenging blow
Laid the prop of Ilium low,
Hector, trained to slaughter, fell,
By all but him invincible;-

And sea-born Cycnus tamed; and slew
Aurora's knight of Ethiop hue.-

Beneath my rattling belt I wear
A sheaf of arrows keen and clear,
Of vocal shafts, that wildly fly,

Nor ken the base their import high,
Yet to the wise they breathe no vulgar melody.
Yes, he is wise whom nature's dower

Hath raised above the crowd.-
But, trained in study's formal hour,
There are who hate the minstrel's power,(8)
As daws who mark the eagle tower,

And croak in envy loud!-
So let them rail! but thou, my heart!
Rest on the bow thy levelled dart;

Nor seek a worthier aim

For arrow sent on friendship's wing,
Than him the Agragantine king

Who best thy song may claim.-
For, by eternal truth I swear,
His parent town shall scantly bear
A soul to every friend so dear,
A breast so void of blame;

Though twenty lustres rolling round
With rising youth her nation crowned,
In heart, in hand, should none be found
Like Theron's honoured name.-
Yes! we have heard the factious lie!-
But let the babbling vulgar try
To blot his worth with tyranny.-

Seek thou the ocean strand!-
And when thy soul would fain record
The bounteous deeds of yonder lord,
Go-reckon up the sand!



MAY my solemn strain ascending
Please the long-haired Helen well,
And those brave twins of Leda's shell
The stranger's holy cause defending!
With whose high name the chorus blending
To ancient Agragas shall rise,
And Theron for the chariot prize

Again, and not in vain, contending.
The muse, in numbers bold and high,
Hath taught my Dorian note to fly,
Worthy of silent awe, a strange sweet harmony.
Yes!-as I fix mine eager view

On yonder wreath of paly blue,
That olive wreath, whose shady round
Amid the courser's mane is bounded;
I feel again the sacred glow
That bids my strain of rapture flow,
With shrilly breath of Spartan flute,
The many-voiced harp to suit;
And wildly fling my numbers sweet,
Again mine ancient friend to greet.-
Nor, Pisa, thee I leave unstrung;
To men the parent of renown.
Amid whose shady ringlets strung,
Etolia binds her olive crown;
Whose sapling root from Scythia down
And Ister's fount Alcides bare,(9)
To deck his parent's hallowed town;
With placid brow and suppliant prayer
Soothing the favoured northern seed,
Whose horny-hoofed victims bleed
To Phœbus of the flowing hair.

A boon from these the hero prayed:
One graft of that delightful tree;
To Jove's high hill a welcome shade,
To men a blessed fruit to be,
And crown of future victory.-

For that fair moon, whose slender light
With inefficient horn had shone,
When late on Pisa's airy height
He reared to Jove the altar stone;

Now, through the dappled air, alone,
In perfect ring of glory bright,
Guided her golden-wheeled throne;
The broad and burning eye of night.-
And now the days were told aright,
When Alpheus, from his sandy source,
Should judge the champion's eager might,
And mark of wheels the rolling force.—
Nor yet a tree to cheer the sight
The Cronian vale of Pelops bore ;-
Obnoxious to the noonday weight
Of summer suns, a naked shore.-
But she who sways the silent sky,
Latona's own equestrian maid,
Beheld how far Alcides strayed,
Bound on adventure strange and high:
Forth from the glens of Arcady
To Istrian rocks in ice arrayed
He urged th' interminable race,
(Such penance had Eurystheus laid,)
The golden-horned hind to chase,
Which, grateful for Diana's aid,
By her redeemed from foul embrace,
Old Atlas' daughter hallowed.-(10)
Thus, following where the quarry fled,
Beyond the biting North he past,
Beyond the regions of the blast,
And, all unknown to traveller's tread,
He saw the blessed land at last.—
He stopt, he gazed with new delight,
When that strange verdure met his sight;
And soft desire enflamed his soul

(Where twelve-times round the chariots roll,) To plant with such the Pisan goal.

But unseen to mortal eyes,

He comes to Theron's sacrifice;
And with him brings to banquet there
High-bosomed Leda's knightly pair.-
Himself to high Olympus bound,
To these a latest charge he gave,
A solemn annual feast to found,
And of contending heroes round

To deck the strong, the swift, the brave.-
Nor doubt I that on Theron's head,
And on the good Emmenides,
The sons of Jove their blessings shed;
Whom still, with bounteous tables spread,
That holy tribe delight to please;
Observing with religious dread
The hospitable god's decrees.-

But, wide as water passeth earthy clay,
Or sun-bright gold transcendeth baser ore;
Wide as from Greece to that remotest shore
Whose rock-built pillars own Alcides' sway;
Thy fame hath past thine equals!-To explore
The further ocean all in vain essay,

Or fools or wise ;-here from thy perilous way
Cast anchor here, my bark! I dare no more!-



OH, urging on the tireless speed
Of Thunder's elemental steed,
Lord of the world, Almighty Jove!
Since these thine hours have me forth
The witness of thy champions' worth,
And prophet of thine olive grove ;-
And since the good thy poet hear,
And hold his tuneful message dear ;-
Saturnian Lord of Etna hill!—
Whose storm-cemented rocks encage
The hundred-headed rebel's rage;
Accept with favourable will

The Muses' gift of harmony;

The dance, the song, whose numbers high
Forbid the hero's dame to die,
A crown of life abiding still!-
Hark! round the car of victory,
Where noble Psaumis sits on high,

The cheering notes resound;
Who vows to swell with added fame
His Camarina's ancient name;

With Pisan olive crowned.—
And thou, oh father, hear his prayer!
For much I praise the knightly care

That trains the warrior steed:-
Nor less the hopitable hall

Whose open doors the stranger call;-
Yet, praise I Psaumis most of all

For wise and peaceful rede,
And patriot love of liberty.-

-What?-do we wave the glozing lie?—
Then whoso list my truth to try,
The proof be in the deed!—

To Lemnos's laughing dames of yore,
Such was the proof Ernicus bore,(11)
When, matchless in his speed,
All brazen-armed the racer hoar,
Victorious on the applauding shore,

Sprang to the proffered meed ;-
Bowed to the queen his wreathed head;-
"Thou seest my limbs are light," he said;
"And, lady, may'st thou know,
That every joint is firmly strung,
And hand and heart alike are young;
Though treacherous time my locks among
Have strewed a summer snow!"



ACCEPT of these Olympian games the crown,
Daughter of Ocean, rushy Camarine!—
The flower of knightly worth and high renown,
Which car-borne Psaumis on thy parent shrine

(Psaumis, the patriot, whom thy peopled town
Its second author owns,) with rite divine
Suspends!-His praise the twice six altars tell
Of the great gods whom he hath feasted well
With blood of bulls; the praise of victory,
Where cars and mules and steeds contest the prize;
And that green garland of renown to thee
He hallows, virgin daughter of the sea!
And to his sire and household deities—
Thee too, returning home from Pelops' land,
Thee, guardian Pallas, and thy holy wood,
He hails with song; and cool Oanus' flood;
And of his native pool the rushy strand;
And thy broad bed, refreshing Hipparis,
Whose silent waves the peopled city kiss;
That city which hath blest his bounteous hand,
Rearing her goodly bowers on high.—(12)
That now, redeemed from late disgrace,
The wealthy mother of a countless race,
She lifts her front in shining majesty.—

"Tis ever thus! by toil, and pain,
And cumbrous cost, we strive to gain
Some seeming prize whose issues lie
In darkness and futurity.

And yet, if conquest crown our aim,
Then, foremost in the rolls of fame,

Even from the envious herd a forced applause we claim.

O cloud-enthroned, protecting Jove,
Who sitt'st the Cronian cliffs above,

And Alpheus' ample wave,

And that dark gloom hast deigned to love
Of Ida's holy cave!

On softest Lydian notes to thee

I tune the choral prayer,

That this thy town, the brave, the free,
The strong in virtuous energy,

May feel thine endless care.—

And, victor thou, whose matchless might
The Pisan wreath hath bound;
Still, Psaumis, be thy chief delight
In generous coursers found.-
Calm be thy latter age, and late

And gently fall the stroke of fate,

Thy children standing round!—

And know, when favouring gods have given
A green old age, a temper even,

And wealth and fame in store,

The task were vain to scale the heaven;-
-Have those immortals more?



WHO seeks a goodly bower to raise,
Conspicuous to the stranger's eye,
With gold the lintel overlays,
And clothes the porch in ivory.-

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