E (480 – 406 / Greece)

Troy

No more, O Troy, thy dreaded name
Conspicuous in the lists of fame,
Midst fortresses impregnable shall stand,
In such thick clouds an armed host
Pours terrors from the Grecian coast,
And wastes thy vanquish'd land:
Shorn from thy rampir'd brow the crown
Of turrets fell; thy palaces o'erspread
With smoke lie waste, no more I tread
Thy wonted streets, my native town.
II
I perish'd at the midnight hour,
When, aided by the banquet's power,
Sleep o'er my eyes his earliest influence shed;
Retiring from the choral song
The sacrifice and festive throng,
Stretched on the downy bed
The bridegroom indolently lay,
His massive spear suspended on the beam,
No more he saw the helmets gleam,
Or nautic troops in dread array.
III
While me the golden mirror's aid,
My flowing tresses taught to braid
In graceful ringlets with a fillet bound,
Just as I cast my robe aside,
And sought the couch; extending wide
Thro' every street this sound
Was heard; 'O when, ye sons of Greece,
This nest of robbers levell'd with the plain,
Will ye behold your homes again?
When shall these tedious labours cease?'
IV
Then from my couch up starting, dressed
Like Spartan nymph in zoneless vest,
At Dian's shrine an ineffectual prayer
Did I address; for hither led,
First having view'd my Husband dead,
Full oft I in despair,
As the proud vessel sail'd from land,
Look'd back, and saw my native walls laid low,
Then fainting with excess of woe
At length lost sight of Ilion's strand.
V
Helen, that Sister to the sons of Jove,
And Paris, Ida's swain,
With my curses still pursuing,
For to them I owe my ruin,
Me they from my country drove,
Never to return again,
By that detested spousal rite
On which Hymen never smil'd,
No, 'twas some Demon who with lewd delight
Their frantic souls beguil'd:
Her may ocean's waves no more
Waft to her paternal shore.

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