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Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things, The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed. And on the pedestal these words appear:
'My name is Ozymandias, king, of kings: Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away."
TO THE LORD CHANCF.LLOR.
Of that foul, knotted, many-headed worm
Masked resurrection of a buried form I
Thy country's curse is on thee! Justice sold,
Truth trampled, Nature's landmarks overthrown,
And heaps of fraud-accumulated gold,
Plead, loud as thunder, at Destruction's throne.
And, whilst that slow sure Angel which aye stands
Watching the beck of Mutability Delays to execute her high commands,
And, though a nation weeps, spares thine and thee;
Oh let a father's curse be on thy soul,
And both on thy grey head a leaden cowl
By hopes long cherished and too lately lost; By gentle feelings thou couldst never prove;
By griefs which thy stern nature never crossed;
By those infantine smiles of happy light
Which were a fire within a stranger's hearth,
Quenched even when kindled, in untimely night
By those unpractised accents of young speech,
To gentlest lore such as the wisest teach.
Thou strike the lyre of mind! Oh grief and shame!
That undeveloped flower of budding years,
Source of the sweetest hopes and saddest fears:
Of dull constraint and bitter heaviness,—
Sadder than orphans yet not fatherless !—
By the false cant which on their innocent lips
By the dark creeds which cover with eclipse
By thy most impious hell, and all its terrors;
By all the grief, the madness, and the guilt Of thine impostures, which must be their errors,
That sand on which thy crumbling power is built;
By thy complicity with lust and hate,
Thy thirst for tears, thy hunger after gold,
The ready frauds which ever on thee wait,
And—for thou canst outweep the crocodile—
By all the scorn which kills a father's care;
Nature's high bounds; by thee; and by despair;—
xv. Yes, the despair which bids a father groan,
And cry, "My children are no longer mine; The blood within those veins may be mine own,
But, tyrant, their polluted souls are thine !"—
I curse thee, though I hate thee not. O slave!
If thou couldst quench the earth-consuming hell Of which thou art a demon, on thy grave
This curse should be a blessing. Fare thee well!
TO WILLIAM SHELLEY.
Darkly strew the gale.
They have taken thy brother and sister dear,
They have withered the smile and dried the tear
To a blighting faith and a cause of crime
They have bound them slaves in youthly time;
And they will curse my name and thee
Because we fearless are and free.
iII. Come thou, beloved as thou art!
Another sleepeth still
Which thou with joy wilt fill,
Fear not the tyrants will rule for ever,
Or the priests of the evil faith;
Whose waves they have tainted with death.
v. Rest, rest, shriek not, thou gentle child I
The rocking of the boat thou fearest,
There I sit between us two, thou dearest,—
This hour will in thy memory
Be a dream of days forgotten;
Of serene and golden Italy,
That time is dead for ever, child,
The stream we gazed on then rolled by;
ON FANNY GODWIN.
Her voice did quiver as we parted;
Yet knew I not that heart was broken
Heeding not the words then spoken.
LINES TO A CRITIC.
Or silk from the yellow bee?
As soon as hate in me.