Babylonian and Assyrian Literature eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 283 pages of information about Babylonian and Assyrian Literature.
Like moans of mighty powers in misery,
They bring the tale with awful minstrelsy. 
And Earth her mists wrapped round her face in woe,
While icy pangs through all her breast deep flow. 
Her bosom sobbing wails a mighty moan,
“Alas! forever my sweet queen hath flown!”
With shrieks of hurricane, and ocean’s groan,
And sobbing of the winds through heights unknown,
Through mountain gorges sweep her wails of woe,
Through every land and seas, her sorrows flow: 
Oh, moan! oh, moan! dear mountains, lakes, and seas! 
Oh, weep with me dear plants, and flowers, and trees! 
Alas! my beauty fading now will die! 
Oh, weep, ye stars, for me in every sky! 
Oh, Samas, hide thy face!  I am undone! 
Oh, weep with me Ur-ru,[2] my precious son. 
Let all your notes of joy, my birds, be stilled;
Your mother’s heart with dread despair is filled: 

“Come back, my flowerets, with your fragrant dews;
Come, all my beauties, with your brightest hues;
Come back, my plants and buds and youngling shoots! 
Within your mother’s bosom hide your roots. 
Oh, children, children!  Love hath fled away,
Alas! that life I gave should see this day! 
Your queen lies dying in her awful woe,
Oh, why should she from us to Hades go?”

Wide Nature felt her woe, and ceased to spring,
And withered buds their vigor lost, and fling
No more their fragrance to the lifeless air;
The fruit-trees died, or barren ceased to bear;
The male plants kiss their female plants no more;
And pollen on the winds no longer soar
To carry their caresses to the seed
Of waiting hearts that unavailing bleed,
Until they fold their petals in despair,
And dying, drop to earth, and wither there. 
The growing grain no longer fills its head,
The fairest fields of corn lie blasted, dead. 
All Nature mourning dons her sad attire,
And plants and trees with falling leaves expire. 
And Samas’ light and moon-god’s soothing rays
Earth’s love no more attracts; recurring days
Are shortened by a blackness deep profound
That rises higher as the days come round. 
At last their light flees from the darkened skies,
The last faint gleam now passes, slowly dies. 
Upon a blasted world, dread darkness falls,
O’er dying nature, crumbling cities’ walls. 
Volcanoes’ fires are now the only light,
Where pale-faced men collect around in fright;
With fearful cries the lurid air they rend,
To all the gods their wild petitions send.

[Footnote 1:  “Mam-nu-tu,” goddess of fate.]

[Footnote 2:  “Ur-ru,” the moon-god.]

COLUMN III

PAPSUKUL, THE GOD OF HOPE, AND HERALD OF THE GODS, FLIES FROM THE EARTH
AND INTERCEDES FOR THE RELEASE OF ISHTAR, AND HEA GRANTS HIS PRAYER

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Project Gutenberg
Babylonian and Assyrian Literature from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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