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"Tis done but yesterday a King!
And arm'd with Kings to strive--
So abject-yet alive!
Who strew'd our Earth with hostile bones,
And can he thus survive?
Since he, miscall'd the Morning Star,
Nor man nor fiend hath fallen so far.
Ill-minded man! why scourge thy kind
Who bow'd so low the knee? By gazing on thyself grown blind,
Thou taught'st the rest to see. With might unquestion'd, - power to save-Thine only gift hath been the grave
To those that worshipp'd thee; Nor till thy fall could mortals
guess Ambition's less than littleness!
Thanks for that lesson—it will teach
To after-warriors more
And vainly preach'd before.
the minds of men Breaks never to unite again,
That led them to adore
Those Pagod things of sabre-sway,
The triumph, and the vanity,
The rapture of the strife (1)
To thee the breath of life;
Wherewith renown was rife-
The Desolator desolate!
The Victor overthrown !
The Arbiter of others' fate
A Suppliant for his own! Is it some yet imperial hope That with such change can calmly cope?
Or dread of death alone ?
To die a prince-or live a slave-
He (2) who of old would rend the oak,
Dream'd not of the rebound;
Chain'd by the trunk he vainly broke
Alone-how look'd he round?
Thou in the sternness of thy strength
And darker fate hast found:
He fell, the forest-prowlers prey;
The Roman, (3) when his burning heart
Was slaked with blood of Rome, Threw down the dagger—dared depart,
In savage grandeur, home. -
Yet left him such a doom !
His only glory was that hour
The Spaniard, (4) when the lust of
sway Had lost its quickening spell, Cast crowns for rosaries away,
An empire for a cell;
His dotage trifled well:
Yet better had he neither known
A bigot's shrine, nor despot's throne.
But thou—from thy reluctant hand
The thunderbolt is wrung-
To which thy weakness clung;
To see thine own unstrung;
The footstool of a thing so mean;