The Fall of Troy (book 1 - 6)
Low to her own soul bitterly murmured she:
"Ah hapless! why with arrogant heart dost thou
Speak such great swelling words? No strength is thine
To grapple in fight with Peleus' aweless son.
Nay, doom and swift death shall he deal to thee.
Alas for thee! What madness thrills thy soul?
Fate and the end of death stand hard by thee!
Hector was mightier far to wield the spear
Than thou, yet was for all his prowess slain,
Slain for the bitter grief of Troy, whose folk
The city through looked on him as a God.
My glory and his noble parents' glory
Was he while yet he lived -- O that the earth
Over my dead face had been mounded high,
Or ever through his throat the breath of life
Followed the cleaving spear! But now have I
Looked -- woe is me! -- on grief unutterable,
When round the city those fleet-footed steeds
Haled him, steeds of Achilles, who had made
Me widowed of mine hero-husband, made
My portion bitterness through all my days."
So spake Eetion's lovely-ankled child
Low to her own soul, thinking on her lord.
So evermore the faithful-hearted wife
Nurseth for her lost love undying grief.
Then in swift revolution sweeping round
Into the Ocean's deep stream sank the sun,
And daylight died. So when the banqueters
Ceased from the wine-cup and the goodly feast,
Then did the handmaids spread in Priam's halls
For Penthesileia dauntless-souled the couch
Heart-cheering, and she laid her down to rest;
And slumber mist-like overveiled her eyes [depths
Like sweet dew dropping round. From heavens' blue
Slid down the might of a deceitful dream
At Pallas' hest, that so the warrior-maid
Might see it, and become a curse to Troy
And to herself, when strained her soul to meet;
The whirlwind of the battle. In this wise
The Trito-born, the subtle-souled, contrived:
Stood o'er the maiden's head that baleful dream
In likeness of her father, kindling her
Fearlessly front to front to meet in fight
Fleetfoot Achilles. And she heard the voice,
And all her heart exulted, for she weened
That she should on that dawning day achieve
A mighty deed in battle's deadly toil
Ah, fool, who trusted for her sorrow a dream
Out of the sunless land, such as beguiles
Full oft the travail-burdened tribes of men,
Whispering mocking lies in sleeping ears,
And to the battle's travail lured her then!
But when the Dawn, the rosy-ankled, leapt
Up from her bed, then, clad in mighty strength
Of spirit, suddenly from her couch uprose
Penthesileia. Then did she array
Her shoulders in those wondrous-fashioned arms
Given her of the War-god. First she laid
Beneath her silver-gleaming knees the greaves
Fashioned of gold, close-clipping the strong limbs.
Her rainbow-radiant corslet clasped she then