Landon in The Literary Gazette 1823/Head of Tyrtæus

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Poems (1823)
by Letitia Elizabeth Landon
Medallion Wafers - Head of Tyrtæus
2251372PoemsMedallion Wafers - Head of Tyrtæus1823Letitia Elizabeth Landon

Literary Gazette, 8th February 1823, Page 91




Glorious Bard! whose lyre was heard
Amid the armed ring,
As victory were upon each word
And death on every string—
Glorious Bard! to whom belong
Wreaths not often claimed by song,
Those hung round the warrior's shield—
Laurels from the blood-red field.
The soldier cowered beneath his tent,
His sword all rust, his bow unbent;
His comrades, who had dared to die,
Unburied on the plain,
And, jeered by mocking foemen nigh,
He dared not taunt again.
The Bard took up his burning song;
Each heart beat high, each arm grew strong:
He told them of the curse and shame
That darken round the coward's name;
Told how the mother's cheek would burn
To hear her son had fled,
How the young maiden's smile would turn
To tears, should it be said,—
“The war strength of thy lover's brand
Is weaker than thine own fair hand;"
And proudly rung his harp while telling
The fallen warrior's fame,
When trumpet, shout, and song are swelling
All glorious with his name.
It was enough,—each sword was out,
The mountains trembled in the shout
Of men prepared like men to die
For Sparta and for victory![1]

  1. signature after later poem