Poems (1898)/Achilles

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For works with similar titles, see Achilles.
For other versions of this work, see Achilles (Coates).


When, with a mortal mother's helpless tears,
Thetis, the silver-footed, to her son
Revealed the choice in death he might not shun;
The goddess-born, longing for lengthened years
In his own land, with all that life endears—
Renounced Earth's breathing pleasures new begun,
And chose to die in youth, each conflict won,
Leaving a fame no blight autumnal sears.

The Argives sleep, the Trojan hosts are dumb,
And no man knows where Homer's ashes be;
Yet, echoing down the list'ning ages, come—
E'en to this distant nineteenth century—
The hero's words by warlike Ilium,
And strengthen others in their need, and me!