The Poems of Henry Van Dyke eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 381 pages of information about The Poems of Henry Van Dyke.
still lives he’ll follow her,
    And so we may ensnare him.  Harm her not! 
    Bind her!  Away with her to Rimmon’s House! 
    Is all this carrion dead?  There’s one that moves,—­
    A spear,—­fasten him down!  All quiet now? 
    Then back to our Damascus!  Rimmon’s face
    Shall be made bright with sacrifice.

[Exeunt, forcing RUAHMAH with them.  Musical
interlude.  A wounded soldier crawls from a
dark corner of the tent and finds the chain
with NAAMAN’S seal, which has fallen to the
ground in the struggle.]

WOUNDED SOLDIER: 
    The signet of my lord, her amulet! 
    Lost, lost!  Ah, noble lady,—­let me die
    With this upon my breast.

[The tent is dark.  Enter NAAMAN and his company
in haste, with torches.]

NAAMAN: 
                              What bloody work
    Is here?  God, let me live to punish him
    Who wrought this horror!  Treacherously slain
    At night, by unknown hands, my brave companions: 
    Tsarpi, my best beloved, light of my soul,
    Put out in darkness!  O my broken lamp
    Of life, where art thou?  Nay, I cannot find her.

WOUNDED SOLDIER:  [Raising himself on his arm.]
    Master!

NAAMAN:  [Kneels beside him.]
            One living?  Quick, a torch this way! 
    Lift up his head,—­so,—­carefully! 
    Courage, my friend, your captain is beside you. 
    Call back your soul and make report to him.

WOUNDED SOLDIER: 
    Hail, captain!  O my captain,—­here!

NAAMAN: 
    Be patient,—­rest in peace,—­the fight is done. 
    Nothing remains but render your account.

WOUNDED SOLDIER: 
    They fell upon us suddenly,—­we fought
    Our fiercest,—­every man,—­our lady fought
    Fiercer than all.  They beat us down,—­she’s gone. 
    Rezon has carried her away a captive.  See,—­
    Her amulet,—­I die for you, my captain.

NAAMAN:  [He gently lays the dead soldier on the ground, and rises.]
    Farewell.  This last report was brave; but strange
    Beyond my thought!  How came the High Priest here? 
    And what is this? my chain, my seal!  But this
    Has never been in Tsarpi’s hand.  I gave
    This signet to a captive maid one night,—­
    A maid of Israel.  How long ago? 
    Ruahmah was her name,—­almost forgotten! 
    So long ago,—­how comes this token here? 
    What is this mystery, Saballidin?

SABALLIDIN: 
    Ruahmah is her name who brought you hither.

NAAMAN: 
    Where then is Tsarpi?

SABALLIDIN: 
                          In Damascus. 
    She left you when the curse of Rimmon fell,—­
    Took refuge in his House,—­and there she waits
    Her lord’s return,—­Rezon’s return.

NAAMAN: 
                                        ’Tis false!

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The Poems of Henry Van Dyke from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.