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The Fall of Troy (book 7 - 14)   


Round them the wide sea thundered, the dark earth
Quaked 'neath immortal feet. Rang from them all
Far-pealing battle-shouts; that awful cry
Rolled up to the broad-arching heaven, and down
Even to Hades' fathomless abyss:
Trembled the Titans there in depths of gloom.
Ida's long ridges sighed, sobbed clamorous streams
Of ever-flowing rivers, groaned ravines
Far-furrowed, Argive ships, and Priam's towers.
Yet men feared not, for naught they knew of all
That strife, by Heaven's decree. Then her high peaks
The Gods' hands wrenched from Ida's crest, and hurled
Against each other: but like crumbling sands
Shivered they fell round those invincible limbs,
Shattered to small dust. But the mind of Zeus,
At the utmost verge of earth, was ware of all:
Straight left he Ocean's stream, and to wide heaven
Ascended, charioted upon the winds,
The East, the North, the West-wind, and the South:
For Iris rainbow-plumed led 'neath the yoke
Of his eternal ear that stormy team,
The ear which Time the immortal framed for him
Of adamant with never-wearying hands.
So came he to Olympus' giant ridge.
His wrath shook all the firmament, as crashed
From east to west his thunders; lightnings gleamed,
As thick and fast his thunderbolts poured to earth,
And flamed the limitless welkin. Terror fell
Upon the hearts of those Immortals: quaked
The limbs of all -- ay, deathless though they were!
Then Themis, trembling for them, swift as thought
Leapt down through clouds, and came with speed to them --
For in the strife she only had no part
And stood between the fighters, and she cried:
"Forbear the conflict! O, when Zeus is wroth,
It ill beseems that everlasting Gods
Should fight for men's sake, creatures of a day:
Else shall ye be all suddenly destroyed;
For Zeus will tear up all the hills, and hurl
Upon you: sons nor daughters will he spare,
But bury 'neath one ruin of shattered earth
All. No escape shall ye find thence to light,
In horror of darkness prisoned evermore."

Dreading Zeus' menace gave they heed to her,
From strife refrained, and cast away their wrath,
And were made one in peace and amity.
Some heavenward soared, some plunged into the sea,
On earth stayed some. Amid the Achaean host
Spake in his subtlety Laertes' son:
"O valorous-hearted lords of the Argive host,
Now prove in time of need what men ye be,
How passing-strong, how flawless-brave! The hour
Is this for desperate emprise: now, with hearts
Heroic, enter ye yon carven horse,
So to attain the goal of this stern war.
For better it is by stratagem and craft
Now to destroy this city, for whose sake
Hither we came, and still are suffering
Many afflictions far from our own land.
Come then, and let your hearts be stout and strong
For he who in stress of fight hath turned to bay
And snatched a desperate courage from despair,
Oft, though the weaker, slays a mightier foe.

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