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XLI. Three hosts combine to offer sacrifice; Three tongues prefer strange orisons on high ; Three gaudy standards fout the pale blue skies, The shouts are France, Spain, Albion, Victory! The foe, the victim, and the fond ally That fights for all, but ever fights in vain, Are met-as if at home they could not die
To feed the crow on Talavera's plain, And fertilize the field that each pretends to gain.
XLII. There shall they rot-Ambition's honour'd fools ! Yes, Honour decks the turf that wraps their clay! Vain Sophistry! in these behold the tools, The broken tools that tyrants cast away By myriads, when they dare to pave their way With human hearts-to what ?-a dream alone. Can despots compass aught that hails their sway?
Or call with truth one span of earth their own. Save that wherein at last they crumble bone by bone ?
XLIII. Oh, Albuera! glorious field of grief ! As o'er thy plain the Pilgrim prick'd his steed, Who could foresee thee, in a space so brief, A scene where mingling foes should boast and
bleed! Peace to the perish'd ! may the warrior's meed And tears of triumph their reward prolong! Till others fall where other chieftains lead
Thy name shall circle round the gaping throng, And shine in worthless lays, the theme of transient song?
XLIV. Enough of Battle's minions ! let them play Their game of lives, and barter breath for fame : TOL, I,
Fame that will scarce reanimate their clay, Though thousands fall to deck some single name. In sooth 'twere sad to thwart their noble aim Who strike, blest birelings ! for their country's
good, And die, that living might have proved her shame;
Perish’d, perchance, in some domestic feud, Or in a narrower sphere wild Rapine's path pursued.
XLV. Full swiftly Harold wends his lonely way Where proud Sevilla triumphs unsubdued : Yet is she free!-the spoiler's wish’d-for prey! Soon, soon shall Conquest's fiery foot intrude, Blackening her lovely domes with traces rude. Inevitable hour! 'Gainst fate to strive Where desolation plants her famish'd brood
Is vain, or Ilion, Tyre might yet survive, And Virtue vanquish all, and Murder cease to thrive.
XLVI. But all unconscious of the coming doom, The feast, the song, the revel here abounds; Strange modes of merriment the hours consume, Nor bleed these patriots with their country's
wounds: Not here War's clarion, but Love's rebecksounds ; Here Folly still his votaries enthralls; And young-eyed Lewdness walks her midnight
rounds: Girt with the silent crimes of Capitals, Still to the last kind Vice clings to the tott'ring
Lest he should view bis vineyard desolate,
Not in the toils of Glory would ye fret;
XLVIII. How carols now the lusty muleteer? Of love, romance, devotion is his lay, As whilome he was wont the leagues to cheer, His quick bells wildly jingling on the way? No ! as he speeds, he chants ; " Viva el Rey!" (8) And checks his song to execrate Godoy, The royal wittol Charles, and curse the day When first Spain's queen beheld the black-eyed boy,
[joy. And gore-fac'd Treason sprung from her adulterate
XLIX. On yon long, level plain, at distance crown'd With crags, whereon those Moorish turrets rest, Wide scatter'd hoof-marks dint the wounded
ground; And, scathed by fire, the green sward's darken'd
vest Tells that the foe was Andalusia's guest: Here was the camp, the watch-flame, and the host, Here the bold peasant storm'd the dragon's nest ;
Still does he mark it with triumphant boast, And points to yonder cliffs, which oft were won and lost.
Which tells you whom to shun and whom to
If subtle poniards, wrapt beneath the cloke, Could blunt the sabre's edge, or clear the cannon's
The holster'd steed beneath the shed of thatch, The ball-piled pyramid, the ever blazing match, (10)
LII. Portend the deeds to come :--but he whose nod Has tumbled feebler despots from their sway A moment pauseth ere he lifts the rod; A little moment deigneth to delay : (way; Soon will his legions sweep through these their The West must own the Scourger of the world. Ah ! Spain ! how sad will be thy reckoning-day, When soars Gaul's Vulture, with his wings unfurld,
[hurl'd. And thou shalt view thy sons in crowds to Hades
LIII. And must they fall? the young, the proud, the
brave, Toswell one bloated Chief's unwholesome reign?
No step between submission and a grave ?
And Counsel sage, and patriotic Zeal,
heart of steel?
LIV. Is it for this the Spanish maid, aroused, Hangs on the willow her unstrung guitar, And, all unsex'd, the Anlace hath espoused, Sung the loud song, and dared the deed of war? And she, whom once the semblance of a scar Appallid, an owlet's larum chill'd with dread, Now views the column-scattering bay’net jar,
The.falchion flash, and o'er the yet warm dead Stalks with Minerva's step where Mars might quake
Ye who shall marvel when ye hear her tale,
Beheld her smile in Danger's Gorgon face, Thin the closed ranks, and lead in Glory's fearful