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Should great Ulysses stern appear in arms,
Then, with a rustling sound, the’assembly bend
shores. There, as the waters o'er his hands he shed, The royal suppliant to Minerva pray'd. .
O goddess! who descending from the skies Vouchsafed thy presence to my wondering eyes; By whose commands the raging deeps I trace, And seek my sire through storms and rolling seas ! Hear from thy heavens above, O warrior-maid! Descend once more, propitious to my aid. Without thy presence, vain is thy command; Greece, and the rival train, thy voice withstand.'
Indulgent to his prayer, the goddess took Sage Mentor's form, and thus like Mentor spoke
• O prince! in early youth divinely wise, Born the Ulysses of thy age to rise ! If to the son the father's worth descends, O’er the wide waves success thy ways attends: To tread the walks of death he stood prepared, And what he greatly thought, he nobly dared. Were not wise sons descendant of the wise, And did not heroes from brave heroes rise,
Vain were my hopes : few sons attain the praise
She spoke: to his high dome the prince returns, And as he moves, with royal anguish mourns. 'Twas riot all, among the lawless train; Boar bled by boar, and goat by goat lay slain. Arrived, his hand the gay Antinous press’d, And, thus deriding, with a smile address'd:
Grieve not, O daring prince! that noble heart; Ill suits gay youth the stern heroic part. Indulge the genial hour, unbend thy soul, Leave thought to age, and drain the flowing bowl. Studious to ease thy grief, our care provides The bark, to waft thee o'er the swelling tides.'
• Is this (returns the prince) for mirth a time? When lawless gluttons riot, mirth's a crime; The luscious wines, dishonour’d, lose their taste; The song is noise, and impious is the feast. Suffice it to have spent with swift decay The wealth of kings, and made my youth a prey. But now the wise instructions of the sage, And manly thoughts inspired by manly age, Teach me to seek redress for all my woe, Here, or in Pyle—in Pyle, or here, your foe. Deny your vessels, ye deny in vain ; A private voyager I pass the main. Free breathe the winds, and free the billows flow, And where on earth I live, I live your
foe.' He spoke and frown'd, nor longer deign'd to stay, Sternly his hand withdrew, and strode away. Meantime, o'er all the dome, they quaff, they
feast, Derisive taunts were spread from guest to guest, And each in jovial mood his mate address’d.
• Tremble ye not, O friends! and coward fly, Doom'd by the stern Telemachus to die? To Pyle or Sparta, to demand supplies, Big with revenge the mighty warrior flies : Or comes from Ephyra with poisons fraught, And kills us all in one tremendous draught!'
• Or who can say (his gamesome mate replies) But while the dangers of the deeps he tries, He, like his sire, may sink deprived of breath, And punish us unkindly by his death? What mighty labours would he then create, To seize his treasures, and divide his state, The royal palace to the queen convey, Or him she blesses in the bridal day!
Meantime the lofty rooms the prince surveys, Where lay the treasures of the’ Ithacian race: Here ruddy brass and gold refulgent blazed ; There polish'd chests embroider’dvestures graced; Here jars of oil breathed forth a rich perfume; There casks of wine in rows adorn'd the dome (Pure flavorous wine, by gods in bounty given, And worthy to exalt the feasts of heaven). Untouch'd they stood, till, his long labours o'er, The great Ulysses reach'd his native shore. A double strength of bars secured the gates : Fast by the door the wise Euryclea waits ; Euryclea, who, great Ops! thy lineage shared, And watch'd all night, all day; a faithful guard, To whom the prince~ Othou, whose guardian
[air; Nursed the most wretched king that breathes the Untouch'd and sacred may these vessels stand Till great Ulysses views his native land. But by thy care twelve urns of wine be fillid, Next these in worth, and firm those urns be seal'd; And twice ten measures of the choicest flour Prepared, ere yet descends the evening hour. For when the favouring shades of night arise, And peaceful slumbers close my
mother's eyes, Me from our coasts shall spreading sails convey, To seek Ulysses through the watery way.'
While yet he spoke,she fill'd the walls with cries, And tears ran trickling from her aged eyes. - O whither, whither flies my son? (she cried) To realms, that rocks and roaring seas divide? In foreign lands thy father's days decay'd, And foreign lands contain the mighty dead. The watery way ill fated if thou try, All, all must perish, and by fraud you die!
Then stay, my child! storms beat, and rolls the
main; O beat those storms, and roll the seas in vain!' • Far hence (replied the prince) thy fears be driven;
[Heaven. Heaven calls me forth; these counsels are of But by the powers that hate the perjured, swear To keep my voyage from the royal ear, Nor uncompelld the dangerous truth betray, Till twice six times descends the lamp of day: Lest the sad tale a mother's life impair, And grief destroy what time a while would spare.'
Thus he. The matron with uplifted eyes Attests the all-seeing sovereign of the skies. Then stụdious she prepares the choicest flour, The strength of wheat, and wines an ample store, While to the rival train the prince returns, The martial goddess with impatience burns; Like thee, Telemachus, in voice and size, With speed divine from street to street she flies, She bids the mariners prepared to stand, When night descends, embodied on the strand. Then to Noëmon swift she runs, she flies, And asks a bark: the chief a bark supplies. And now, declining with his sloping wheels, Down sunk the sun behind the western hills. The goddess shoved the vessel from the shores, And stow'd within its womb the naval stores. Full in the openings of the spacious main It rides: and now descends the sailor train.
Next, to the court, impatient of delay, With rapid step the goddess urged her way: There every eye with slumberous chains she bound, And dash'd the flowing goblet to the ground,