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THE BATTLE OF BLENHEIM.-Southey.
It was a summer evening,
Roll something large and round, Which he beside the rivulet
In playing there had found; He came to ask what he had found, That was so large and smooth and round.
Old Kaspar took it from the boy,
And then the old man shook his head,
"'Tis some poor fellow's skull," said he, "Who fell in the great victory."
"I find them in the garden,
For there's many here about; And often when I go to plough,
The plough-share turns them out! For many thousand men," said he, "Were slain in that great victory.' "Now tell us what 'twas all about," Young Peterkin, he cries; And little Wilhelmine looks up
With wonder-waiting eyes. Now tell us all about the war, And what they killed each other for." "It was the English," Kaspar cried, "Who put the French to rout;
But what they killed each other for,
"My father lived at Blenheim then,
So with his wife and child he fled,
"With fire and sword the country round
"They say it was a shocking sight
For many thousand bodies here
But things like that, you know, must be
"Great praise the Duke of Marlboro' won, And our good Prince Eugene." "Why 'twas a very wicked thing!" Said little Wilhelmine. "Nay-nay-my little girl," quoth he, "It was a famous victory."
"And every body praised the Duke Who this great victory did win." "But what good came of it at last?" Quoth little Peterkin.
"Why that I cannot tell," said he, "But 'twas a famous victory."
THE ISLES OF GREECE.- -Byron.
The hero's harp, the lover's lute,
And Marathon looks on the sea;
I dream'd that Greece might still be free; For, standing on the Persian's grave, I could not deem myself a slave. A king sat on the rocky brow
Which looks o'er sea-born Salamis, And ships, by thousands, lay below, And men in nations ;-all were his! He counted them at break of day-W And when the sun set where were they??
And where are they? and where art thou,
The heroic bosom beats no more!
Though link'd among a fettered race,
For what is left the poet here!
Must we but weep o'er days more bless'd?
What silent still? and silent all?
Ah! no-the voices of the dead Sound like a distant torrent's fall,
And answer, "Let one living head,
But one arise, we come, we come!" 'Tis but the living who are dumb.
In vain-in vain: strike other chords;
Where is the Pyrrhic phalanx gone?
The nobler and the manlier one? You have the letters Cadmus gave— Think ye he meant them for a slave? Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
We will not think of themes like these! It made Anacreon's song divine :
He served but served Polycrates-
Was freedom's best and bravest friend; That tyrant was Miltiades!
Oh! that the present hour would lend
Another despot of the kind!
Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
Such as the Doric mothers bore; And there, perhaps, some seed is sown, The Heracleidan blood might own. Trust not for freedom to the Franks
They have a king who buys and sells. In native swords, and native ranks,
The only hope of courage dwells; But Turkish force and Latin fraud, Would break your shield, however broad. Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
Our virgins dance beneath the shadeI see their glorious black eyes shine :
But gazing on each glowing maid, My own the burning tear-drop laves, To think such breasts must nourish slaves. Place me on Sunium's marble steep
Where nothing, save the waves and I, May hear our mutual murmurs sweep;
There, swan-like, let me sing and die : A land of slaves shall ne'er be mineDash down your cup of Samian wine!
ODE TO MADNESS.-Penrose.
Sound the clarion, sweep the string,
Let wood and dale, let rock and valley ring, 'Tis madness, self inspires.