Page:Ten Tragedies of Seneca (1902).djvu/129

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
Lines 404—433]


Oh! welcome habitations of my native land, and oh! wealthy Argos! at last, I see you again, and what is the greatest and most deeply felt boon to a miserable exile, I feel the contact of my natal soil, and the Gods of my Fathers, (if any are gods at the present time) the sacred towers of the Cyclopes—glorious structures, which never could have been built by ordinary human agency. The race-course so celebrated when I was young, on which I have more than once honorably earned the palm of victory in the paternal chariot! All Argos will be out to meet me, and the crowding populace will rush to see me, but Atreus will be with them! Ah! let me seek the woods again, which serve at least as a retreat, or the dense forests of the wild beasts! It is not this dazzling splendour of a kingdom, that can entirely blink my vision as to the falseness of its brightness, when I look around, at what is given to me, and when I behold the donor! I have usually had a courageous heart, and I have felt joyful to a great degree, even when mixed up with many things, that every one else would regard as rough in the extreme. Now, quite the contrary, my mind is m a whirl of dread, and my very soul recoils, and I wish to take myself back again! I even move along with an unwilling step!

PLIS. What is this, father mine, thou art faltering with thy gait feeble, withal! Thou shiftest thy face about perplexedly, and seemest quite distrustful of thyself!

THY. Oh! My soul! Why am I wavering? Why should I torture myself so long, about a matter which is simple? But yet, can I place any confidence in matters teeming with uncertainties, my brother and the kingdom? Do I still fear evils, which are already overcome, am I already tamed down? And shall I fly from troubles, which have been removed. Does it not suit my inclination to be miserable now? Let me turn back my steps, whilst I can snatch myself away!

PLIS. What reason, father mine, compels thee to turn back from thy country only just visited again? Why dost thou withdraw thy heart aside? thou art returning as a brother, and receiving a part of the kingdom and to set in order the distracting elements of the dynasty, and thy brother gives thee to thyself again, so to speak!