I welcome now, my hatred o’er,
A grandson in the child of wrong,
Him whom the Trojan priestess bore.
Receive him, Mars! the gates of flame
May open: let him taste forgiven
The nectar, and enrol his name
Among the peaceful ranks of Heaven.
Let the wide waters sever still
Ilium and Rome, the exiled race
May reign and prosper where they will:
So but in Paris’ burial-place
The cattle sport, the wild beasts hide
Their cubs, the Capitol may stand
All bright, and Rome in warlike pride
O’er Media stretch a conqueror’s hand.
Aye, let her scatter far and wide
Her terror, where the land-lock’d waves
Europe from Afric’s shore divide,
Where swelling Nile the corn-field laves—
Of strength more potent to disdain
Hid gold, best buried in the mine,
Than gather it with hand profane,
That for man’s greed would rob a shrine.
Whate’er the bound to earth ordain’d,
There let her reach the arm of power,
Travelling, where raves the fire unrein’d,
And where the storm-cloud and the shower.
Yet, warlike Roman, know thy doom,
Nor, drunken with a conqueror’s joy,
Or blind with duteous zeal, presume
To build again ancestral Troy.
Should Troy revive to hateful life,
Her star again should set in gore,
While I, Jove’s sister and his wife,
To victory led my host once more.
Though Phoebus thrice in brazen mail
Should case her towers, they thrice should fall,
Storm’d by my Greeks: thrice wives should wail
Husband and son, themselves in thrall.”
—Such thunders from the lyre of love!
Back, wayward Muse! refrain, refrain
To tell the talk of gods above,
And dwarf high themes in puny strain.
Come down, Calliope,
Breathe on the pipe a strain of fire;
Or if a graver note thou love,
With Phoebus’ cittern and his lyre.
You hear her? or is this the play
Of fond illusion? Hark! meseems
Through gardens of the good I stray,
’Mid murmuring gales and purling streams.
Me, as I lay on Vultur’s steep,
A truant past Apulia’s bound,
O’ertired, poor child, with play and sleep,
With living green the stock-doves crown’d—
A legend, nay, a miracle,
By Acherontia’s nestlings told,
By all in Bantine glade that dwell,
Or till the rich Forentan mould.
“Bears, vipers, spared him as he lay,
The sacred garland deck’d his hair,
The myrtle blended with the bay: