Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 328 pages of information about Tales.

But how then lecture, if he dar’d not speak! —
   Now as the Justice for the war prepared,
He seem’d just then to question if he dared: 
“He may resist, although his power be small,
And growing desperate may defy us all;
One dog attack, and he prepares for flight —
Resist another, and he strives to bite;
Nor can I say, if this rebellious cur
Will fly for safety, or will scorn to stir.” 
Alarm’d by this, he lash’d his soul to rage,
Burn’d with strong shame, and hurried to engage. 
   As a male turkey straggling on the green,
When by fierce harriers, terriers, mongrels seen,
He feels the insult of the noisy train
And skulks aside, though moved by much disdain;
But when that turkey, at his own barn-door,
Sees one poor straying puppy and no more,
(A foolish puppy who had left the pack,
Thoughtless what foe was threat’ning at his back)
He moves about, as ship prepared to sail,
He hoists his proud rotundity of tail,
The half-seal’d eyes and changeful neck he shows,
Where, in its quick’ning colours, vengeance glows;
From red to blue the pendent wattles turn,
Blue mix’d with red, as matches when they burn;
And thus th’ intruding snarler to oppose,
Urged by enkindling wrath, he gobbling goes. 
   So look’d our hero in his wrath, his cheeks
Flush’d with fresh fires and glow’d in tingling streaks,
His breath by passion’s force awhile restrain’d,
Like a stopp’d current greater force regain’d;
So spoke, so look’d he, every eye and ear
Were fix’d to view him, or were turn’d to hear. 
   “My friends, you know me, you can witness all,
How, urged by passion, I restrain my gall;
And every motive to revenge withstand —
Save when I hear abused my native land. 
   “Is it not known, agreed, confirm’d, confess’d,
That, of all people, we are govern’d best? 
We have the force of monarchies; are free,
As the most proud republicans can be;
And have those prudent counsels that arise
In grave and cautious aristocracies;
And live there those, in such all-glorious state. 
Traitors protected in the land they hate? 
Rebels, still warring with the laws that give
To them subsistence?—­Yes, such wretches live. 
   “Ours is a Church reformed, and now no more
Is aught for man to mend or to restore;
’Tis pure in doctrines, ’tis correct in creeds,
Has nought redundant, and it nothing needs;
No evil is therein—­no wrinkle, spot,
Stain, blame, or blemish:  —­I affirm there’s not. 
   “All this you know—­now mark what once befell,
With grief I bore it, and with shame I tell: 
I was entrapp’d—­yes, so it came to pass,
’Mid heathen rebels, a tumultuous class;
Each to his country bore a hellish mind,
Each like his neighbour was of cursed kind;
The land that nursed them, they blasphemed; the laws,
Their sovereign’s glory, and their country’s cause: 
Project Gutenberg
Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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