The Fall of Troy
Page: 56Thereon were seen two serpents flickering
Black tongues from grimly jaws: they seemed in act
To dart; but Hercules' hands to right and left—
Albeit a babe's hands—now were throttling them;
For aweless was his spirit. As Zeus' strength
From the beginning was his strength. The seed
Of Heaven-abiders never deedless is
Nor helpless, but hath boundless prowess, yea,
Even when in the womb unborn it lies.
Nemea's mighty lion there was seen
Strangled in the strong arms of Hercules,
His grim jaws dashed about with bloody foam:
He seemed in verity gasping out his life.
Thereby was wrought the Hydra many-necked
Flickering its dread tongues. Of its fearful heads
Some severed lay on earth, but many more
Were budding from its necks, while Hercules
And Iolaus, dauntless-hearted twain,
Toiled hard; the one with lightning sickle-sweeps
Lopped the fierce heads, his fellow seared each neck
With glowing iron; the monster so was slain.
Thereby was wrought the mighty tameless Boar
With foaming jaws; real seemed the pictured thing,
As by Aleides' giant strength the brute
Was to Eurystheus living borne on high.