Ambrose Bierce

(24 June 1842 - 26 December 1913 / Horse Cave Creek, Ohio)

Tempora Mutantur - Poem by Ambrose Bierce

'The world is dull,' I cried in my despair:
'Its myths and fables are no longer fair.

'Roll back thy centuries, O Father Time.
To Greece transport me in her golden prime.

'Give back the beautiful old Gods again
The sportive Nymphs, the Dryad's jocund train,

'Pan piping on his reeds, the Naiades,
The Sirens singing by the sleepy seas.

'Nay, show me but a Gorgon and I'll dare
To lift mine eyes to her peculiar hair

'(The fatal horrors of her snaky pate,
That stiffen men into a stony state)

'And die-erecting, as my soul goes hence,
A statue of myself, without expense.'

Straight as I spoke I heard the voice of Fate:
'Look up, my lad, the Gorgon sisters wait.'

Raising my eyes, I saw Medusa stand,
Stheno, Euryale, on either hand.

I gazed unpetrified and unappalled
The girls had aged and were entirely bald!

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, September 29, 2012

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