Eugene Field

(2 September 1850 - 4 November 1895 / St Louis / Missouri / United States)

To Pompeius Varus - Poem by Eugene Field

Pompey, what fortune gives you back
To the friends and the gods who love you?
Once more you stand in your native land,
With your native sky above you.
Ah, side by side, in years agone,
We've faced tempestuous weather,
And often quaffed
The genial draught
From the same canteen together.

When honor at Philippi fell
A prey to brutal passion,
I regret to say that my feet ran away
In swift Iambic fashion.
You were no poet; soldier born,
You stayed, nor did you wince then.
Mercury came
To my help, which same
Has frequently saved me since then.

But now you're back, let's celebrate
In the good old way and classic;
Come, let us lard our skins with nard,
And bedew our souls with Massic!
With fillets of green parsley leaves
Our foreheads shall be done up;
And with song shall we
Protract our spree
Until the morrow's sun-up.


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Poem Submitted: Friday, April 9, 2010



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