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At least he feels it, and some say he sees,

Because he runs before it like a pig;
Or, if that simple sentence should displease,

Say, that he scuds before it like a brig,
A schooner, or— but it is time to ease

This Canto, ere my Muse perceives fatigue. The next shall ring a peal to shake all people, Like a bob-major from a village steeple.


Hark! through the silence of the cold, dull night,

The hum of armies gathering rank on rank ! Lol dusky masses steal in dubious sight

Along the leaguer'd wall and bristling bank Of the arm'd river, while with straggling light

The stars peep through the vapours dim and dank, Which curl in curious wreaths:-how soon the smoke Of Hell shall pall them in a deeper cloak !


Here pause we for the present -as even then

That awful pause, dividing life from death, Struck for an instant on the hearts of men,

Thousands of whom were drawing their last breath! A moment—and all will be life again !

The march ! the charge! the shouts of either faith! Hurra! and Allah ! and—one moment moreThe death-cry drowning in the battle's roar.

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(1) [This Canto is almost entirely filled with the taking of Ismail by storm. It would be absurd to attempt, in prose, even a feeble outline of the varied horrors which marked that celebrated scene of ruthless and indiscriminate carnage; the noble writer has depicted them with all that vivid and appalling fidelity, which, on such a theme, might be expected from his powerful muse; and, if any thing can add to the shuddering sensation we experience in reading these terrific details, it is the consideration, that poetry, in this instance, instead of dealing in fiction, must necessarily relate a tale that falls short of the truth. - CAMPBELL.]




Oh blood and thunder and oh blood and wounds !

These are but vulgar oaths, as you may deem, Too gentle reader and most shocking sounds:

And so they are; yet thus is Glory's dream Unriddled, and as my true Muse expounds

At present such things, since they are her theme, So be they her inspirers! Call them Mars, Bellona, what you will — they mean but wars.


All was prepared — the fire, the sword, the men

To wield them in their terrible array. The army, like a lion from his den,

March'd forth with nerve and sinews bent to slay, A human Hydra, issuing from its fen

To breathe destruction on its winding way, Whose heads were heroes, which cut off in vain Immediately in others grew again.

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