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What will the suitors ? must my servant-train To tend the fruit-groves; with incessant speed The allotted labours of the day refrain,
He shall this violence of death decreed
To good Laërtes tell. Experienced age
And to their power to save his race appeal.
Then Euryclea thus. My dearest dread! 930 In riot to consume a wretched heir.
Though to the sword I bow this hoary head,
I own me conscious of the unpleasing deed :
Auxiliar to his flight, my aid implored, Gentle of speech, beneficent of mind ?
With wine and viands I the vessel stored : Some kings with arbitrary rage devour,
A solemn oath, imposed, the secret seal'd, Or in their tyrant-minions vest the power:
Till the twelfih dawn the light of heaven reveal'd. Ulysses let no partial favours fall,
920 Dreading the effect of a fond mother's fear, The people's parent he protected all:
He dared not violate your royal ear. But absent now, perfidious and ingrate!
But bathe, and, in imperial robes array'd, 990 His stores ye ravage, and usurp his state.
Pay due devotions to the martial maid, *
'Tis impious to surmise the powers divine The darling object of your royal care
To ruin doom the Jove-descended line: Is mark'd to perish in a deathful snare;
Long shall the race of just Arcesius reign, Before he anchors in his native port,
930 And isles remote enlarge his old domain. From Pyle-resailing and the Spartan court;
The queen her speech with calm attention hears, Horrid to speak! in ambush is decreed
Her eyes restrain the silver-streaming tears :
1000 The hope and heir of Ithaca to bleed!
She bathes, and robed, the sacred dome ascends;
The salted cakes in canisters are laid,
Daughter divine of Jove, whose arm can wield At length, in tender language interwove
The avenging bolt, and shake the dreadful shield! With sighs, she thus express'd her anxious love : If e'er Ulysses to thy fane preferr'd Why rashly would my son his fate explore, 940 The best and choicest of his flock and herd, Ride the wild waves, and quit the safer shore ? Hear, goddess, hear, by those oblations won; Did he, with all the greatly wretched, crave And for the pious sire preserve the son ; 1010 A blank oblivion, and untimely grave ?
His wish'd return with bappy power befriend, 'Tis not, replied the sage, to Medon given And on the suitors let thy wrath descend. To know, if some inhabitant of heaven
She ceased; shrill ecstacies of joy declare In his young breast the daring thought inspired! The favouring goddess present to the prayer: Or if alone with filial duty fired,
The suitors heard, and deem'd the mirthful voice The winds and waves he tempts in early bloom, A signal of her hymeneal choice: Studious to learn his absent father's doom.
Whilst one most jovial thus accosts the board : The sage retired : unable to controul 950“ Too late the queen selects a second lord; The mighty griefs that swell her labouring soul, In evil hour the nuptial rite intends, Rolling convulsive on the floor, is seen
When o'er her son disastrous death impends.” 1020 The piteous object of a prostrate queen.
Thus he unskill'd of what the fates provide ! Words to her dumb complaint a pause supplies,
But with severe rebuke Antinous cried. And breath, to waste in unavailing cries.
These empty vaunts will make the voyage vain; Around their sovereign wept the menial fair, Alarm not with discourse the menial train : To whom she thus address'd her deep despair. The great event with silent hope attend;
Behold a wretch whom all the gods consign Our deeds alone our counsel must commend. To woe! Did ever sorrows equal mine?
His speech thus ended short, he frowning rose, Long to my joys my dearest lord is lost, 960 And twenty chiefs renown'a for valour chose : His country's buckler, and the Grecian boast : Down to the strand he speeds with haughty strides, Now from my fond embrace, by tempests torn,
Where anchor'd in the bay the vessel rides, 1030 Our other column of the state is borne:
Replete with mail and military store, Nor took a kind adieu, nor sought consent !
In all her tackle trim to quit the shore. Unkind confederates in his dire intent!
The desperate crew ascend, unfurl the sails Ill suits it with your shows of duteous zeal, (The seaward prow invites the tardy gales ;) From me the purposed voyage to conceal : Then take repast, till Hesperus display'd Though at the solemn midnight hour he rose, His golden cirelet in the western shade. Why did you fear to trouble my repose ?
Meantime the queen, without refection due, He either had obey'd my fond desire,
970 Heart-wounded, to the bed of state withdrew : Or seen his mother pierced with grief expire. In her sad breast the prince's fortunes roll, Bid Dolius quick attend, the faithful slave
And hope and doubt alternate seize her soul. 1019 Whom to my nuptial train Icarius gave,
So when the woodman's toil her cave surrounds,
The departure of Ulysses from Colypse.
Pallas in a council of the gods complains of the detenzMinerva, lite-like on embodied air
tion of l lysses in the island of Calypso; u hereupon
Mercury is sent to command his pemov | The seat of Impress'd the form of Iphthima the fair;
Calypso described. She consents with much difficulty; (learius' daughter she, whose blooming charms
and Ulysses builds a vessel with his own hands, on Allured Eumelus to her virgin arms;
which he embarks. Neptune overtakes him with a A scepter'd lord, who o'er the fruitful plain
terrible tempest, in which he is shipwrecked, and in Of Thessaly, wide stretch'd his ample reign :) the last danger of death: till Leucothea, a sea-goddess, As Pallas willid, along the sable skies,
assists him, and, after innumerable perils, be gets To calm the queen, the phantom sister flies.
ashore at Phæacia. Swift on the regal dome, descending right, The bolted valves are pervious to her flight.
BOOK V. Close to her head the pleasing vision stands,
The saffron morn, with early blushes spread, And thus performs Minerva's high commands. Now rose refulgent from Tithonus' bed ; O why, Penelope, this causeless fear,
With new-born day to gladden mortal sight,
Then met the eternal synod of the sky,
Supreme in might, sublime in majesty.
Pallas to these deplores the unequal fates To whom the queen (whilst yet her pensive mind Of wise l'lysses, and his toils relates : Was in the silent gates of sleep contined :)
Her hero's danger touch'd the pitying power, 10 O sister, to my soul for ever dear,
The nymph's seducements, and the magic bower. Why this first visit to reprove my fear?
Thus she began her plaint: Immortal Jore !
1071 Or bless a people willing to obey,
If from your thoughts Ulysses you remove,
Who ruled bis subjects with a father's love. To the fierce storms, or men more fierce than they : Sole in an isle, encircled with the main,
20 Who, in a league of blood associates sworn, Abandon d, banish'd from his native reign, Will intercept the unwary youth's return.
Unbless'd he sighs; detain'd by lawless charms, Courage resume, the shadowy form replied, And press'd unwilling in Calypso's arms. In the protecting care of heaven confide: 1080 Nor friends are there, nor vessels to convey, On him attends the blue-eyed martial maid; Nor oars to cut the immeasurable way. What earthly can implore a surer aid ?
And now fierce traitors, studious to destroy Me now the guardian goddess deigns to send, His only son, their ambush'd fraud employ; To bid thee patient his return attend.
Who, pious, following his great father's fame, The queen replies: If in the bless'd abodes, To sacred Pylos and to Sparta came.
29 A goddess, thou hast commerce with the gods; What words are these? (replied the power who Say, breathes my lord the blissful realm of light,
forms Or lies he wrapp'd in ever-during night?
The clouds of night, and darkens heaven with storms ;)
The son in safety to his native shore :
Then thus to Hermes the command was given: With Horid joy her heart dilating glows:
Hermes, thou chosen messenger of heaven! The vision ma nisest of future fate,
Go; to the nymph be these our orders borne; Makes her with hope her son's arrival wait. Tis Jove's decree, Ulysses shall return :
Meantime, the suitors plough the watery plain ; The patient man shall view his old abodes, Telemachus, in thoughi, already slain ! 1100 Nor help'd by mortal hand, nor guiding gods; When sight of lessening Ithaca was lost,
In twice ten days shall fertile Scheria tind,
Alone, and floating to the wave and wind.
Is mix'd with gods, half human, halt divine,
The chief shall honour as some heavenly guest, To break the rolling waves and ruffling storm: And swift transport him to his place of rest. That safe recess they gain with happy speed, His vessels loaded with a plenteous store
30 And in close ambush wait the murderous deed. Of brass, of vestures, and resplendent ore,
(A richer prize than if his joyful isle
Hermes the hospitable rite partook, Received him charged with Ilion's noble spoil,) Divine refection! then, recruited, spoke:
120 His friends, his country, he shall see, though late; What moved this journey from my native sky, Such is our sovereign will, and such is fate.
A goddess asks, nor can a god deny: He spoke. The god who mounts the winged Hear then the truth. By mighty Jove's command winds
Unwilling have I trod this pleasing land; Fast to his feet the golden pinions binds,
For who, self-moved, with weary wing would sweep 'Thai high through fields of air his flight sustain Such length of ocean and unmeasured deep: O'er the wide earth, and o'er the boundleys main. A world of waters! far from all the ways He grasps the wand that causes sleep to fly, 60 Where men frequent, or sacred altars blaze ? Or in soft slumber seals the wakeful
But to Jove's will submission we must pay: Then shoots from heaven to high Pieria's steep What power so great, to dare to disobey ? 130 And stoops incumbent on the rolling deep. A man, he says, a man resides with thee, So watery fowl, that seek their fishy food,
Of all his kind most worn with misery; With wings expanded, o'er the foaming flood,
The Greeks, (whose arms for nine long years employ'd Now sailing smooth the level surface sweep,
Their force on Jlion, in the tenth destroy'd) Now dip their pinions in the briny deep.
At length embarking in a luckless hour, Thus o'er the world of waters Hermes flew, With conquest proud, incensed Minerva's power: Till now the distant island rose in view:
Hence on the guilty race her vengeance hurl'd Then swift ascending from the azure wave, 70 With storms pursued them through the liquid world. He took the path that winded to the cave.
There all his vessels sunk beneath the wave!
Straight to dismiss: so destiny coromands:
Ungracious gods! with spite and envy curst!
Still to your own ethereal race the worst ! 150 And nodding cypress form'd a fragrant shade; Ye envy mortal and immortal joy, On whose high branches, waving with the storm, And love, the only sweet of life, destroy. 'The birds of broadest wing their mansions form, Did ever goddess by her charms engage The chough, the sea-mew, the loquacious crow, A favour'd mortal, and not teel your rage ? And scream aloft, and skim the deeps below. So when Aurora sought Orion's love, Depending vines the shelving cavern screen, Her joys disturb'd your blissful hours above, With purple clusters blushing through the green. Till, in Orygia, Dian's winged dart Four limpid fountains from the clefts distil, 90 Had pierced the hapless hunter to the heart. And every fountain pours a several rill,
So when the covert of the thrice-ear'd field In mazy windings wandering down the hill, Saw stately Ceres to her passion yield,
160 Where bloomy meads with vivid greens were crown'd, Scarce could Täsion taste her heavenly charms, And glowing violets threw odours round.
But Jove's swift lightning scorch'd him in her arms.
When he who thunders rent his bark in twain,
The sport of winds, and driven from every coast, 170 But sad Ulysses, by himself apart,
Hither this man of miseries I led,
Nay promised (vainly promised !) to bestow
Now graceful seated on her shining throne, Go then he may (he must, if he ordain,
God of the golden wand! on what behest But never, never shall Calypso send
To toils like these her husband and her friend. 180 Loved as thou art, thy free injunctions lay;
What ships have I, what sailors to convey, 'Tis mine, with joy and duty to obey.
What oars to cut the long laborious way? Till now a stranger, in a happy hour
Yet, I'll direct the safest means to go; Approach and taste the dainties of my bower. That last advice is all I can bestow.
Thus having spoke, the nymph the table spread; To her the power who bears the charming rod : (Ambrosial cates, with nectar rosy-red ;)
Dismiss ike man, por irritate the god;
Prevent the rage of him who reigns above; Their hunger satiate, and their thirst represt,
Ulysses ! (with a sigh she thus began ;)
Is then thy home the passion of thy heart? To seek Ulysses, paced along the sand.
Thus wilt thou leave me ? are we thus to part? 260 Him pensive on the lonely beach she found, Farewell! and ever joyful may'st thou be, With streaming eyes in briny torrents drown'd, Nor break the transport with one thought of me. And inly pining for his native shore;
But, ah, Ulysses! wert thou given to know For now the soft enchantress pleased no more : What Fate yet dooms thee yet to undergo; For now, reluctant, and constrain'd by charms, Thy heart might settle in this scene of ease, Absent he lay in her desiring arms;
And even these slighted charms might learn to please. In slumber wore the heavy night away;
A willing goddess, and immortal life,
Am I inferior to a mortal dame ?
Here, on his musing mood the goddess press'd, Alas! for this (the prudent man replies) Approaching soft: and thus the chief address'd : Against Ulysses shall thy anger rise ? Unhappy man! to wasting woes a prey,
Loved and adored, oh goddess, as thou art, No more in sorrows languish life away:
Forgive the weakness of a human heart. Free as the winds I give thee now to rove Though well I see thy graces far above Go, fell the timber of yon lofty grove,
210 The dear, though mortal, object of my love; And form a raft, and build the rising ship,
Of youth eternal well the difference know, Sublime to bear thee o'er the gloomy deep; And the short date of fading charms below; To store the vessel let the care be mine,
Yet every day, while absent thus I roam, With water from the rock, and rosy wine,
I anguish to return and die at home. And life-sustaining bread, and fair array,
Whate'er the gods shall destine me to bear And prosperous gales to waft thee on the way. In the black ocean, or the watery war, These, if the gods with my desire comply, 'Tis mine to master with a constant mind; The gods, alas! more mighty far than 1,
Inured to perils, to the worst resign'd.
By seas, by wars, so many dangers run;
With sighs Ulysses heard the words she spoke, Thus while he spoke, the beamy sun descends, Then thus his melancholy silence broke.
And rising night her friendly shade extends. 290 Some other motive, goddess ! sways thy mind To the close grot the lonely pair remove, Some elose design, or turn of womankind,) And slept delighted with the gifts of love. Nor my return the end, nor this the way,
When rosy morning call’d them from their rest, On a slight raft to pass the swelling sea,
Ulysses robed him in the cloak and sest: Huge, horrid, vast! where scarce in safety sails The nymph's fair head a veil transparent graced, The best-built ship, though Jove inspire the gales. Her swelling loins a radiant zone embraced The bold proposal how shall I fulfil,
With flowers of gold : an under robe, unbound, Dark as I am, unconscious of thy will ? 230 In snowy waves flow'd glittering on the ground. Swear then thou mean’st not what my soul forebodes; Forth issuing thus, she gave him first to wield Swear by the solemn oath that binds the gods. A weighty ax with truest temper steel'd,
Him, while he spoke, with smiles Calypso eyed, And doubled-edged ; the handle smooth and plain, And gently grasp'd his hand, and thus replied: Wrought of the clouded olive's easy grain : This shows thee, friend, by old experience taught, And next, a wedge to drive with sweepy sway: And learn'd in all the wiles of human thought. Then to the neighbouring forest led the way. How prone to doubt, how cautious are the wise! On the lone island's utmost verge there stood But hear, oh earth, and hear, ye sacred skies! Of poplars, pines, and firs, a lofty wood, And thou, oh Styx! whose formidable floods Whose leafless sunimits to the skies aspire, Glide through the shades, and bind the attesting gods! Scorch'd by the sun, or seard by heavenly fire, No form'd design, no meditated end,
241|(Already dried.) These pointing out to view, Lurks in the counsel of thy faithful friend; The nymph just show'd him, and with tears withdrew. Kind the persuasion, and sincere my aim;
Now toils the hero : trees on trees o'erthrown 310 The same my practice, were my fate the same. Fall crackling round him and the forests groan: Heaven has not curst me with a heart of steel, Sudden, full twenty on the plain are strow'd, But given the sense, to pity, and to feel.
And lopp'd and lighten'd of their branchy load. Thus having said, the goddess march'd before : At equal angles these disposed to join, He trod her footsteps in the sandy shore.
He smooth'd and squared them by the rule and line. At the cool cave arrived, they took their state: (The wimbles for the work Calypso found) He fill'd the throne where Mercury had sate. 250 With those he pierced them, and with clinchers bound. For him, the nymph a rich repast ordains, Long and capacious as a shipwright forms Such as the mortal life of man sustains;
Some bark's broad bottom to out-ride the storms, 3:20 Before herself were placed the cates divine,
So large he built the raft: then ribb'd it strong Ambrosial banquet, and celestial wine.
From space to space, and nail'd the planks along;
These form'd the sides : the deck he fashion'd last; \'Tis Jove himself the swelling tempest rears;
appears. With crossing sail-yards dancing in the wind; Happy! thrice happy! who, in battle slain, And to the helm the guiding rudder join'd,
Press'd, in Atrides' cause, the Trojan plain!
(Such as was that when showers of javelins fled
Four days were past, and now the work complete, A shameful fate now hides my hapless head, Shone the fifth morn, when from her sacred seat Unwept, unnoted, and for ever dead! The nymph dismiss'd him (odorous garments given) A mighty wave rush'd o'er him as he spoke, And bath'd in fragrant oils that breath'd of heaven; The raft it cover'd, and the mast it broke; Then fill'd two goat-skins with her hands divine, Swept from the deck, and from the rudder torn, With water one, and one with sable wine: Far on the swelling surge the chief was borne; Of every kind, provisions heaved aboard;
While by the howling tempest rent in twain And the full decks with copious viands stored. 340 Flew sail and sail-yards rattling o'er the main. The goddess, last, a gentle breeze supplies, Long press’d, he heaved beneath the weighty wave, To curl old Ocean, and to warm the skies. Clogg'd by the cumbrous vest Calypso gave; 410
now, rejoicing in the prosperous gales, At length emerging, from his nostrils wide, With beating heart Ulysses spreads his sails : And gushing mouth, effused the briny tide, Placed at the helm he sate, and mark'd the skies, Even then, not mindless of his last retreat, Nor closed in sleep his ever-watchful eyes.
He seized the raft, and leap'd into his seat, There view'd the Pleiads, and the Northern Team, Strong with the fear of death. The rolling flood And great Orion's more refulgent beam,
Now here, now there, impell'd the floating wood. To which, around the axle of the sky,
As when a heap of gather'd thorns is cast The Bear, revolving, points his golden eye: 350Now to, now fro, before the autumnal blast; Who shines exalted on the ethereal plain,
Together clung, it rolls around the field; Nor bathes his blazing forehead in the main. So roll'd the float, and so its texture held: 420 far on the left those radiant fires to keep,
And now the south, and now the north, bear sway, The nymph directed, as he sail'd the deep. And now the east the foamy floods obey, Full seventeen nights he cut the foamy way: And now the west-wind whirls it o'er the sea. The distant land appear'd the following day:
The wandering chief with toils on toils oppress'd, Then swell'd to sight Phæacia's dusky coast,
Leucothea saw, and pity touch'd her breast :
But now an azure sister of the main.)
All radiant on the rafi the goddess stood:
Then thus address'd him: Thou, whom heaven The king of Ocean saw, and seeing burn'd;
431 (From Ethiopia's happy climes return'd :) To Neptune's wrath, stern tyrant of the seas: The raging monarch shook his azure head, |(Unequal contest !) not his rage and power, And thus in secret to his soul he said :
Great as he is, such virtue shall devour. Heavens ! how uncertain are the powers on high! What I suggest, thy wisdom will perform; Is then reversed the sentence of the sky,
Forsake thy Goat, and leave it to the storm: In one man's favour; whilst a distant guest Strip off thy garments; Neptune's fury brave I shared secure the Æthiopian feast?
370 With naked strength, and plunge into the wave. Behold how near Phæacia's land he draws ! To reach Phæacia all thy nerves extend, The land, affix'd by Fate's eternal laws
There Fate decrees thy miseries shall end. To end his toils. Is then our anger vain ?
This heavenly scarf beneath thy bosom bind, 440 No; if this sceptre yet commands the main. And live; give all thy terrors to the wind.
He spoke, and high the forky trident hurl'd, Soon as thy arms the happy shore shall gain, Rolis clouds on clouds, and stirs the watery world, Return the gift, and cast it in the main; At once the face of earth and sea deforms, Observe my orders, and with heed obey, Swells all the winds, and rouses all :he storms. Cast it far off, and turn thy eyes away. Down rush'd the night: east, west, together roar; With that, her hand the sacred veil bestows, And south and north roll mountains to the shore; 380 Then down the deeps she dived from whence she rose: Then shook the hero, to despair resign'd,
A moment snatch'd the shining forin away, And question'd thus his yet unconquer'd mind. And all was cover'd with the curling sea.
Wretch that I am! what farther fates attend Struck with amaze, yet still to doubt inclined, 450
What shall I do? unhappy me! who knows
Thy pleaded reason, but consult with mine. With what a cloud the brows of heaven are crown'd! For scarce in ken appears that distant isle What raging winds ! what roaring waters round! 390 Thy voice foretells me shall conclude my toil.