Treasure Island

James Clerk Maxwell

(13 June 1831 – 5 November 1879 / Edinburgh, Scotland)

Horace, Seventh Epode


Whither, whither, reckless Romans,
Are you rushing, sword in hand?
Has not yet the blood of brothers,
Fully stained the sea and land?

Not that raging conflagration
Should o’er fallen Carthage play;
Not that the unconquered Briton
Should descend the sacred way.

"Rome," exclaims the joyful Parthian,
"Ruin for herself prepares;
Wolves with wolves are never savage,
Lion lion never tears."

Is this fury? is it madness?
Speedy answer I demand;
Foolish, blinded, guilty Romans,
Silent, stupefied you stand. [590]

Thus ’tis fated, blood of brothers
Must atone for brothers’ guilt,
Since the blood of injured Remus
Romulus in anger spilt.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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