The Fall of Troy
Page: 73And first Achilles' war-impetuous son
Struck down stout Melaneus and Alcidamas,
Sons of the war-lord Alexinomus,
Who dwelt in Caunus mountain-cradled, nigh
The clear lake shining at Tarbelus' feet
'Neath snow-capt Imbrus. Menes, fleetfoot son
Of King Cassandrus, slew he, born to him
By fair Creusa, where the lovely streams
Of Lindus meet the sea, beside the marches
Of battle-biding Carians, and the heights
Of Lycia the renowned. He slew withal
Morys the spearman, who from Phrygia came;
Polybus and Hippomedon by his side
He laid, this stabbed to the heart, that pierced between
Shoulder and neck: man after man he slew.
Earth groaned 'neath Trojan corpses; rank on rank
Crumbled before him, even as parched brakes
Sink down before the blast of ravening fire
When the north wind of latter summer blows;
So ruining squadrons fell before his charge.
Meanwhile Aeneas slew Aristolochus,
Crashing a great stone down on his head: it brake
Helmet and skull together, and fled his life.
Fleetfoot Eumaeus Diomede slew; he dwelt
In craggy Dardanus, where the bride-bed is
Whereon Anchises clasped the Queen of Love.
Agamemnon smote down Stratus: unto Thrace
Returned he not from war, but died far off
From his dear fatherland. And Meriones
Struck Chlemus down, Peisenor's son, the friend
Of god-like Glaucus, and his comrade leal,
Who by Limurus' outfall dwelt: the folk
Honoured him as their king, when reigned no more
Glaucus, in battle slain,—all who abode
Around Phoenice's towers, and by the crest
Of Massicytus, and Chimaera's glen.
So man slew man in fight; but more than all
Eurypylus hurled doom on many a foe.
First slew he battle-bider Eurytus,
Menoetius of the glancing taslet next,
Elephenor's godlike comrades. Fell with these
Harpalus, wise Odysseus' warrior-friend;
But in the fight afar that hero toiled,
And might not aid his fallen henchman: yet
Fierce Antiphus for that slain man was wroth,
And hurled his spear against Eurypylus,
Yet touched him not; the strong shaft glanced aside,
And pierced Meilanion battle-staunch, the son
Of Cleite lovely-faced, Erylaus' bride,
Who bare him where Caicus meets the sea.
Wroth for his comrade slain, Eurypylus
Rushed upon Antiphus, but terror-winged
He plunged amid his comrades; so the spear
Of the avenger slew him not, whose doom
Was one day wretchedly to be devoured
By the manslaying Cyclops: so it pleased
Stern Fate, I know not why. Elsewhither sped
Eurypylus; and aye as he rushed on
Fell 'neath his spear a multitude untold.
As tall trees, smitten by the strength of steel
In mountain-forest, fill the dark ravines,
Heaped on the earth confusedly, so fell
The Achaeans 'neath Eurypylus' flying spears—
Till heart-uplifted met him face to face
Achilles' son. The long spears in their hands
They twain swung up, each hot to smite his foe.
But first Eurypylus cried the challenge-cry;
"Who art thou? Whence hast come to brave me here?
To Hades merciless Fate is bearing thee;
For in grim fight hath none escaped mine hands;
But whoso, eager for the fray, have come
Hither, on all have I hurled anguished death.
By Xanthus' streams have dogs devoured their flesh
And gnawed their bones. Answer me, who art thou?
Whose be the steeds that bear thee exultant on?"