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To lend our hearts and spirits wholly

To the influence of mild-minded melancholy:
To muse and brood and live again in memory,
With those old faces of our infancy

Heap'd over with a mound of grass,

Two handfuls of white dust, shut in an urn of brass!

Dear is the mem'ry of our wedded lives,

And dear the last embraces of our wives

And their warm tears: but all hath suffer'd change:
For surely now our household hearths are cold:
Our sons inherit us: our looks are strange:
And we should come like ghosts to trouble joy:
Or else the island-princes over-bold

Have eat our substance, and the minstrel sings
Before them of the ten-years' war in Troy,
And our great deeds, as half-forgotten things.
Is there confusion in the little isle?

Let what is broken so remain.
The Gods are hard to reconcile:
"Tis hard to settle order once again.
There is confusion worse than death,
Trouble on trouble, pain on pain,
Long labour unto aged breath,

Sore task to hearts worn out with many wars,

And eyes grown dim with gazing on the pilot-stars.

σὲ, δέσποιν' ἀγάνοφρον, αἰνεῖν,
τὰν λωτοφάγοις φίλαν, Κατηφεί-
α· βυσσόφρονι πολλὰ θυμῷ
εἴδωλα πάλαι θανόντων,

οἷσιν βρέφη σύνη-
μεν, νῦν σποδὸν ἐξίτηλον
χαλκέλατον ἄγγος ἔνδον
χώμασι τυμβοχόοις

εἴργει, φαντασίαις πάλιν προσαυδῶν.

15 αδύ τι

κουριδίων ἐνθυμεῖσθαι ὑμεναίων,

φίλαι χερῶν περιπτυχαὶ,

καὶ δακρύων μνήμη· τὰ δὲ πανταχοῦ ἠλλοίωται· ἡμῶν γὰρ ἐφέστιον οὖδας

κληρονόμον κατέχει γένος, ἢ ξένων

ὶς ὑπερηνορίᾳ· παρὰ δ ̓ ἄμναστον πολέμου λόγον ἔργα τ ̓ ἀριστήων, διός τις ἀοιδὸς ἐφυμνεῖ


ἡμεῖς λυγρὸν ἰδεῖν, ὡς τις παλίνορσος ἀφ ̓ Αΐδου. τὰ δ ̓ ἐῤῥέτω δυσέξοδα,

Θεοὶ μάλ ̓ ἀμείλικτοι, νήσῳ δ ̓ ἔνι κόσμος ἄκοσμος ἔστιν θανάτου τι χέρειον,

ἄλγος ἐπ ̓ ἄλγεσι γῆρας ἐπ ̓ ἔσχατον,



ἦ θυμῷ κακὸν ἄχθος ἄδην πολέμοις κεκορημένῳ, ὄμμασί τ ̓ ἀμβλυνθεῖσι πρὸς ἄστροισιν φιλοναύταις.

13 Soph. Ed. Tyr. 151–166.

14 Scott-Liddell Lex. in voc.

But, propt on beds of amaranth and moly,

How sweet, while warm airs lull us, breathing lowly,

With half-dropt eyelids still,

Beneath a heaven dark and holy,

To watch the long bright river drawing slowly

His waters from the purple hill—

To hear the dewy echoes calling

From cave to cave thro' the thick-twined vine—

To hear the em'rald-colour'd water falling
Thro' many a wov'n acanthus-wreath divine!

Only to hear and see the far-off sparkling brine,

Only to hear were sweet, stretch'd out beneath the pine.

The Lotos blooms below the flow'ry peak:

The Lotos blows by every winding creek:

All day the wind breathes low with mellower tone:
Thro' ev'ry hollow cave and alley lone

Round and round the spicy downs the yellow Lotos-dust

is blown.

15 μῶλυ κάτ', εἴτ' αμαραν τίναν στιβάδ ̓ εὔστρωτον, ὑπνώσσουσι βλεφάροις, λεπτὰ Ζεφύρων πνεόντων, ὑπό τ ̓ οὐρανοῦ κνέφας ἀμβροσίου, δολιχὰς ποταμίας ὁρᾷν

ἦκα ῥεούσας ἀπὸ πορφυρωδῶν
βούνων ὑπὲκ προχοάς· τὰ δ ̓ Ἀχους
κελεύσμαθ ̓ ὑγρᾶς ἐπάλληλα

σπέσσιν ἐν ἀντιτύποις

λαν διὰ καλλίβοτρυν,

ἤ που κυάνεον ὧδ

ὕδωρ μετ ̓ ἀκανθίνοισι

πολυδαιδάλοις πλοκαῖς

θεσπεσίοις κελάρυ

ζον, ἀπόνως κλύειν

πόῤῥωθεν ἅλμαν ἐσιδεῖν φαεννάν,
ὑψαύχεν ̓ εἴθ ̓ ὑπὸ δένδρ ̓ ἀκούειν
τούτοις βίον ἔστι ποιμαίνειν.

παρά τ ̓ εὐανθῶν κορυφὰς πρώνων
πορθμῶν τ ̓ ἐσόδους αιολομόρφων
λώτου θαλερὸν γάνος ἀκμάζει
πνεῖ παννῆμαρ μαλθακὸς ἀήρ
κοίλα κατ ̓ ἄντρα καὶ οἰόπολ ̓ ἄγκη,
περὶ λειμώνων πλάτος εὐόσμων,
ξανθοῦ σπέρματα

λώτου φέρεται πολυδινῆ.

15 Eur. Hippol. 121-140.



We have had enough of action, and of motion we, Roll'd to starboard, roll'd to larboard, when the surge

was seething free,

Where the wallowing monster spouted his foam-fountains

in the sea.

Let us swear an oath, and keep it with an equal mind, In the hollow Lotos-land to live and lie reclin'd

On the hills like Gods together, careless of mankind : For they lie beside their nectar, and the bolts are hurl'd Far below them in the valleys, and the clouds are lightly curl'd

Round their golden houses, girdled with the gleaming


Where they smile in secret, looking over wasted lands, Blight and famine, plague and earthquake, roaring deeps and fiery sands,

Clanging fights, and flaming towns, and sinking ships, and praying hands.

But they smile, they find a music centred in a doleful


Steaming up, a lamentation and an ancient tale of wrong, Like a tale of little meaning though the words are strong;

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