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138. Close and still the serpent holds Him,
While in brief repose He lies ;
Deep the slumber that enfolds Him,
Veild awhile from mortal eyes :
Slumber such as needs must be
After hard-won victory.
No coward fear
My courage or my love of glory quells:
But now my blood is lazy, dull’d by age,
My strength enfeebled. Could I but recall
The youth, which yonder varlet boldens thus,
No prize-bull needed I to tempt me here. 140. Thou see'st how little shakes the kings whose power
Hath long been 'stablish'd ; how a single day
Casts one man from his envied height, and lifts
Another up. For wealth hath wings, and them
Who erst were rich, from their presumptuous hopes
Deject, and prostrate in the dust, I view. 141.
O gentle bird,
Guide and companion of my dangerous way,
Friend and sole solace of my solitude,
How can I pay thee benefits like these?
Ask what thou wilt that I can give,
The poor return will leave me debtor still ! 142. Lo! from the dread immensity of space
Returning with accelerated course,
The rushing comet to the sun descends,
And as he sinks below the shading earth
With awful train projected o'er the heavens,
The guilty nations tremble.
143. Almighty Jove, if yet thou dost not hate
All Ilium's race, if ancient pity looks
On human grief, oh save the ships from fire,
From ruin snatch the fallen state of Troy ;
Or, what remains, if I deserve thy wrath,
Me let thy lightnings blast, thine arm destroy. 144. What can men need but these two things, the fruits
Which Ceres yields, and the refreshing spring,
Ever at hand, by bounteous nature giv'n
To nourish us? We from this plenty rise
Dissatisfied, and yielding to th' allurements
Of luxury, search out for other viands. 145. But if your resolutions be like mine,
We will yet give our sorrows a brave end.
Justice is for us, so may fortune be:
I am a proof of her inconstancy.
But if no god will lend us any aid,
Let us be gods and fortune to ourselves. 146. I buried sorrow for his death
In the grave with him. I did never think
· He was immortal; though I vow I grieve,
And see no reason why the vicious
And virtuous, valiant and unworthy, men
Should die alike.
147. Grieve not, Philänis, though condemn'd to die
Far from thy parent soil and native sky;
Though stranger's hands must raise thy funeral pile,
And lay thy ashes in a foreign isle:
To all on death's last dreary journey bound
The road is equal, and alike the ground. 148. Umbræ Creontis et penates Labdaci
Et nuptiales impii (Edipodæ faces,
Nunc solita nostro fata conjugio date.
Nunc, nunc, cruentæ regis Ægypti nurus,
Adeste, multo sanguine infectæ manus :
Deest una numero Danais : explebo nefas. 149. This plant is sacred. Passenger, beware :
From every wound a mortal pang I bear.
My tender limbs support a virgin rind,
Not the rude bark that shields the forest hind:
And e'en in these dark glens and pathless glades
Their parent sun protects his poplar maids.
150. L. C'est blesser ma pudeur que me flatter ainsi.
E. Non, non, n'affectez point de modestie ici.
D. Enfin, tout notre bien est en votre puissance.
E. C'est de vous dépend notre unique espérance.
D. Trouverons-nous en vous quelques difficultés ?
E. Tous nos voux, dites-moi, seront-ils rejetés ? 151. Sister, no more delay; the fates prevail
Against me: let us follow, where the gods
And cruel Fortune call. Resolv'd am I
To combat with Æneas, to endure
Whate'er in death is bitter. Thou no more
Shalt witness my dishonour: yet, I pray,
Suffer me first this madness to indulge. 152. I am a brazen maiden, lying here
Upon the tomb of Midas. And as long
As water flows, as trees are green with leaves,
As the sun shines, and eke the silver moon;
As long as rivers flow, and billows roar
So long will I, upon this much-wept tomb,
Tell passers by, Midas lies buried here. 153. Not I, but my sagacious mother taught
That heaven and earth at first were intermingled,
And wore one form ; but when they from each other
Were separated, they to all things gave
A birth, and into light produced trees, birds,
Beasts of the forests, fishes in the waves
Of ocean nourish’d, with man's nobler race.
154. O stay, stay but awhile, and take me with thee.
Come, Death, let me embrace thee; thou that wert
The worst of all my fears, art now the best
Of all my hopes. But Fate, why hast thou added
This curse to all the rest, the love of life?
We love it, and yet hate it: death we loathe
And yet desire, fly to it and yet fear it. 155. I envy not the happy ones alone,
But even the wretched who have left the light
Of upper air ; the maiden whose stern sire
Hath turn’d the torch of Hymen from her path,
And widow on whose bridal bed there hang
The withering garlands : grief that death has
Time in the course of nature bears away.
156. He scarce allow'd the Senior to compose
His weary limbs, but raising a great shout,
Upon him rush'd, and as he lay reclin'd
Bound him with shackles. He, on the other side,
Forgetting not his art, transform'd himself
Into all shapes, most wonderful to view,
A fire, a savage beast, a running stream. 157. If you would know of what frail stuff you're made,
Go to the tombs of the illustrious dead.
There rest the bones of kings, there tyrants rot;
There sleep the rich, the noble, and the wise!
There pride, ambition, beauty's fairest form,
All dust alike, compound one common mass :
Reflect on these, and in them see yourself. 158. Around my javelin let the spider weave
Her subtle threads, while I grow old in peace.
Attune the song, and on my koary head
A verdant chaplet bind, the Thracian shield
Suspending o'er the columns which adorn
Minerva's temple, and with studious care
Expound the mystic writings of the wise.
159. Knowest thou not the day when all should sing
Pæan and Io Pæan? Shunnest thou
The Lord of all, whom all the earth adores,
Giver of light and gladness, warmth and song ?
And willest thou that Dryops stand above
Admetus, from thy sight thus banishing,
And shutting from thy fold, the son of Jove ? 160. Amaz’d he stands, nor voice nor body stirs ;
Words had no passage, tears no issue found;
For sorrow shut up words, wrath kept in tears:
Confus'd effects each other do confound.
Oppress’d with grief, his passions had no bound;
Striving to tell his woes, words would not come:
For light cares speak when mighty griefs are dumb.
Oh, if the boon
Thy words refuse to grant, thine heart intend,
And life to Turnus yet may be prolong'd!
Now doth an undeserv'd and cruel death
Await him, or my prescient heart deceives me.
O that my fears were vain, and Jupiter,
Who can do all, would change his harsh decrees ! 162.
I stand like one
Has lost his way, and no man near t’ inquire of:
Yet there's a Providence above that knows
The roads which all men tread, and can direct
Inquiring justice : passengers that travel
In the wide ocean, where no paths are,
Look up, and leave their conduct to a star. 163.
And whither fly ye, cowards ?
What other bulwark or defence remains ?
For shame, companions! Will ye let one man
Shut in the city, slay our noblest youth,
Make rout and havoc with impunity ?
For great Æneas have ye no regard ?
: None for your country and your ancient Gods?
164. I see those who are lifted highest
Upon the hill of honour, nearest to
The blasts of envious fortune; whilst the low