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CHILDE HAROLD'S PILGRIMAGE.
CANto the SEcond.
I. CoME, blue-eyed maid of heaven!—but thou, alas! Didst never yet one mortal song inspire— Goddess of Wisdom! here thy temple was, And is, despite of war and wasting fire, And years, that bade thy worship to expire: But worse than steel, and flame, and ages slow, Is the dread sceptre and dominion dire Of men who never felt the sacred glow That thoughts of thee and thine on polish'd breasts bestow.
II. Ancient of days! august Athena! where, Where are thy men of might? thy grand in soul? Gone—glimmering through the dream of things that Were: First in the race that led to Glory's goal, They won, and pass'd away—is this the whole? A schoolboy's tale, the wonder of an hour! The warrior's weapon and the sophist's stole Are sought in vain, and o'er each mouldering tower, Dim with the mist of years, gray flits the shade of power.
Why even the worm at last disdains her shatter'd cell! |-