Favourite Forever: Percy Bysshe Shelley/ January-Feburay 16

The World’s Wanderers
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Tell me, thou Star, whose wings of light
Speed thee in thy fiery flight,
In what cavern of the night
Will thy pinions close now?

II.
Tell me, Moon, thou pale and gray
Pilgrim of Heaven’s homeless way,
In what depth of night or day
Seekest thou repose now?

III.
Weary Wind, who wanderest
Like the world’s rejected guest,
Hast thou still some secret nest
On the tree or billow?

 

 

 

 

The Wandering Jew’s Soliloquy

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Is it the Eternal Triune, is it He
Who dares arrest the wheels of destiny
And plunge me in the lowest Hell of Hells?
Will not the lightning’s blast destroy my frame?
Will not steel drink the blood-life where it swells?
No—let me hive where dark Destruction dwells,
To rouse her from her deeply caverned lair,
And, taunting her cursed sluggishness to ire,
Light long Oblivion’s death-torch at its flame
And calmly mount Annihilation’s pyre.
Tyrant of Earth! pale Misery’s jackal Thou!
Are there no stores of vengeful violent fate
Within the magazines of Thy fierce hate?
No poison in the clouds to bathe a brow
That lowers on Thee with desperate contempt?
Where is the noonday Pestilence that slew
The myriad sons of Israel’s favoured nation?
Where the destroying Minister that flew
Pouring the fiery tide of desolation
Upon the leagued Assyrian’s attempt?
Where the dark Earthquake-daemon who engorged
At the dread word Korah’s unconscious crew?
Or the Angel’s two-edged sword of fire that urged
Our primal parents from their bower of bliss
(Reared by Thine hand) for errors not their own
By Thine omniscient mind foredoomed, foreknown?
Yes! I would court a ruin such as this,
Almighty Tyrant! and give thanks to Thee–
Drink deeply—drain the cup of hate; remit this–I may die.

 

 

 

 

Ozymandias

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I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: `Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
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.’

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