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Ah me!-honourest more than thy lover, O Antigone!
A dead, ignorant, thankless corpse.
Nor was the love untrue
Which the Dawn- Goddess bore
And coming flush'd over the stormy frith
Saw and snatch'd, wild with love,
Of Parnes, where thy waves,
The Hunter of the Tanagræan Field.13
But him, in his sweet prime,
By severance immature,
By Artemis' soft shafts,
She, though a Goddess born,
Saw in the rocky isle of Delos die.
For she desired to make
Immortal mortal man,
And blend his happy life,
Far from the Gods, with hers;
To him postponing an eternal law.
But like me, she, wroth, complaining,
Nor, though enthroned too high
To fear assault of envious Gods, His beloved Argive seer would Zeus retain From his appointed end
In this our Thebes; but when
To cross the steep Ismenian glen,
The broad earth open'd, and whelm'd them and him, And through the void air sang
At large his enemy's spear.
And fain would Zeus have saved his tired son
The fraudulent oath which bound
But he preferr'd Fate to his strong desire.
And scared Etæan snows,
To achieve his son's deliverance, O my child!
FRAGMENT OF CHORUS OF A
O FRIVOLOUS mind of man,
Light ignorance, and hurrying, unsure thoughts!
Though man bewails you not,
How I bewail you!
Little in your prosperity
Do you seek counsel of the Gods.
Proud, ignorant, self-adored, you live alone.
In profound silence stern,
Among their savage gorges and cold springs,
The great oracular shrines.
Thither in your adversity
Do you betake yourselves for light,
But strangely misinterpret all you hear.
For you will not put on
New hearts with the enquirer's holy robe,
And him on whom, at the end
Of toil and dolour untold,
At last shall descend undisturb'd
Him you expect to behold
In an easy old age, in a happy home;
But him, on whom, in the prime
Unworn, undebased, undecay'd,
Mournfully grating, the gates
Of the city of death have for ever closedHim, I count him, well-starr'd.
EARLY DEATH AND FAME.
FOR him who must see many years,
Out of the light and mutely; which avoids.
But, when immature death
Let him live, let him feel: I have lived.
Triple his pulses with fame!
HARK! ah, the nightingale
Hark, from that moonlit cedar what a burst!
What triumph! hark!-what pain!
O wanderer from a Grecian shore,
Still, after many years, in distant lands,
That wild, unquench'd, deep-sunken, old-world pain – ||
Say, will it never heal?
And can this fragrant lawn
Dost thou to-night behold,
Here, through the moonlight on this English grass,
With hot cheeks and sear'd eyes
The too clear web, and thy dumb sister's shame?
Dost thou once more assay
Thy flight, and feel come over thee,
Poor fugitive, the feathery change
Once more, and once more seem to make resound
With love and hate, triumph and agony,
Lone Daulis. and the high Cephissian vale?
How thick the bursts come crowding through the