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The Iliad of Homer

Page: 127

Confused and silent, for his frown they fear'd.
He saw their soul, and thus his word imparts:
"Pallas and Juno! say, why heave your hearts?
Soon was your battle o'er: proud Troy retired
Before your face, and in your wrath expired.
But know, whoe'er almighty power withstand!
Unmatch'd our force, unconquer'd is our hand:
Who shall the sovereign of the skies control?
Not all the gods that crown the starry pole.
Your hearts shall tremble, if our arms we take,
And each immortal nerve with horror shake.
For thus I speak, and what I speak shall stand;
What power soe'er provokes our lifted hand,
On this our hill no more shall hold his place;
Cut off, and exiled from the ethereal race."
Juno and Pallas grieving hear the doom,
But feast their souls on Ilion's woes to come.
Though secret anger swell'd Minerva's breast,
The prudent goddess yet her wrath repress'd;
But Juno, impotent of rage, replies:
"What hast thou said, O tyrant of the skies!
Strength and omnipotence invest thy throne;
'Tis thine to punish; ours to grieve alone.
For Greece we grieve, abandon'd by her fate
To drink the dregs of thy unmeasured hate.
[pg 155]
From fields forbidden we submiss refrain,
With arms unaiding see our Argives slain;
Yet grant our counsels still their breasts may move,
Lest all should perish in the rage of Jove."
The goddess thus; and thus the god replies,
Who swells the clouds, and blackens all the skies:
"The morning sun, awaked by loud alarms,
Shall see the almighty Thunderer in arms.
What heaps of Argives then shall load the plain,
Those radiant eyes shall view, and view in vain.
Nor shall great Hector cease the rage of fight,
The navy flaming, and thy Greeks in flight,
Even till the day when certain fates ordain
That stern Achilles (his Patroclus slain)
Shall rise in vengeance, and lay waste the plain.
For such is fate, nor canst thou turn its course
With all thy rage, with all thy rebel force.
Fly, if thy wilt, to earth's remotest bound,
Where on her utmost verge the seas resound;
Where cursed Iapetus and Saturn dwell,
Fast by the brink, within the streams of hell;
No sun e'er gilds the gloomy horrors there;
No cheerful gales refresh the lazy air:
There arm once more the bold Titanian band;
And arm in vain; for what I will, shall stand."
Now deep in ocean sunk the lamp of light,
And drew behind the cloudy veil of night:
The conquering Trojans mourn his beams decay'd;
The Greeks rejoicing bless the friendly shade.
The victors keep the field; and Hector calls
A martial council near the navy walls;
These to Scamander's bank apart he led,
Where thinly scatter'd lay the heaps of dead.
The assembled chiefs, descending on the ground,
Attend his order, and their prince surround.
A massy spear he bore of mighty strength,
Of full ten cubits was the lance's length;
The point was brass, refulgent to behold,
Fix'd to the wood with circling rings of gold:

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