quick embark’d, and on the benches ranged
In order, thresh’d with oars the foamy flood.
Thence, o’er the Deep proceeding sad, we reach’d
The land at length, where, giant-sized and free
From all constraint of law, the Cyclops dwell.
They, trusting to the Gods, plant not, or plough,
But earth unsow’d, untill’d, brings forth for them
All fruits, wheat, barley, and the vinous grape
Large cluster’d, nourish’d by the show’rs of Jove.
No councils they convene, no laws contrive,
But in deep caverns dwell, found on the heads
Of lofty mountains, judging each supreme
His wife and children, heedless of the rest.
In front of the Cyclopean haven lies
A level island, not adjoining close
Their land, nor yet remote, woody and rude.
There, wild- goats breed numberless, by no foot
Of man molested; never huntsman there,
Inured to winter’s cold and hunger, roams
The dreary woods, or mountain-tops sublime;
No fleecy flocks dwell there, nor plough is known,
But the unseeded and unfurrow’d soil,
Year after year a wilderness by man
Untrodden, food for blatant goats supplies.
For no ships crimson-prow’d the Cyclops own,
Nor naval artizan is there, whose toil
Might furnish them with oary barks, by which
Subsists all distant commerce, and which bear
Man o’er the Deep to cities far remote
Who might improve the peopled isle, that seems
Not steril in itself, but apt to yield,
In their due season, fruits of ev’ry kind.
For stretch’d beside the hoary ocean lie
Green meadows moist, where vines would never fail;
Light is the land, and they might yearly reap
The tallest crops, so unctuous is the glebe.
Safe is its haven also, where no need
Of cable is or anchor, or to lash
The hawser fast ashore, but pushing in
His bark, the mariner might there abide
Till rising gales should tempt him forth again.
At bottom of the bay runs a clear stream
Issuing from a cove hemm’d all around
With poplars; down into that bay we steer’d
Amid the darkness of the night, some God
Conducting us; for all unseen it lay,
Such gloom involved the fleet, nor shone the moon
From heav’n to light us, veil’d by pitchy clouds.
Hence, none the isle descried, nor any saw
The lofty surge roll’d on the strand, or ere
Our vessels struck the ground; but when they struck,
Then, low’ring all our sails, we disembark’d,
And on the sea-beach slept till dawn appear’d.
Soon as Aurora, daughter of the dawn,
Look’d rosy forth, we with admiring eyes
The isle survey’d, roaming it wide around.
Meantime, the nymphs, Jove’s daughters, roused the goats
Bred on the mountains, to supply with food
The partners of my toils; then, bringing forth
Bows and long-pointed javelins from the ships,
Divided all into three sep’rate bands
We struck them, and the Gods gave us much prey.
Twelve ships attended me, and ev’ry ship
Nine goats received by lot; myself alone
Selected ten. All day, till set of sun,
We eating sat goat’s flesh, and drinking wine
Delicious, without stint; for dearth was none
Of ruddy wine on board, but much remain’d,
With which my people had their jars supplied
What time we sack’d Ciconian Ismarus.
Thence looking forth toward the neighbour-land
Where dwell the Cyclops, rising smoke we saw,
And voices heard, their own, and of their flocks.
Now sank the sun, and (night o’ershadowing all)
We slept along the shore; but when again
The rosy-finger’d daughter of the dawn
Look’d forth, my crews convened, I thus began.
Companions of my course! here rest ye all,
Save my own crew, with whom I will explore
This people, whether wild, they be, unjust,
And to contention giv’n, or well-disposed
To strangers, and a race who fear the Gods.
So speaking, I embark’d, and bade embark
My followers, throwing, quick, the hawsers loose.
They, ent’ring at my word, the benches fill’d
Well-ranged, and thresh’d with oars the foamy flood.
Attaining soon that neighbour-land, we found
At its extremity, fast by the sea,
A cavern, lofty, and dark-brow’d above
With laurels; in that cavern slumb’ring lay
Much cattle, sheep and goats, and a broad court
Enclosed it, fenced with stones from quarries hewn,
With spiry firs, and oaks of ample bough.
Here dwelt a giant vast, who far remote
His flocks fed solitary, converse none
Desiring, sullen, savage, and unjust.
Monster, in truth, he was, hideous in form,
Resembling less a man by Ceres’ gift
Sustain’d, than some aspiring mountain-crag
Tufted with wood, and standing all alone.
Enjoining, then, my people to abide
Fast by the ship which they should closely guard,
I went, but not without a goat-skin fill’d
With sable wine which I had erst received
From Maron, offspring of Evanthes, priest
Of Phæbus guardian god of Ismarus,
Because, through rev’rence of him, we had saved
Himself, his wife and children; for he dwelt
Amid the grove umbrageous of his God.
He gave me, therefore, noble gifts; from him
Sev’n talents I received of beaten gold,
A beaker, argent all, and after these
No fewer than twelve jars with wine replete,
Rich, unadult’rate, drink for Gods; nor knew
One servant, male or female, of that wine
In all his house; none knew it, save himself,
His wife, and the intendant of his stores.
Oft as they drank that luscious juice, he slaked
A single cup with twenty from the stream,
And, even then, the beaker breath’d abroad
A scent celestial, which whoever smelt,
Thenceforth no pleasure found it to abstain.
Charged with an ample goat-skin of this wine
I went, and with a wallet well supplied,
But felt a sudden presage in my soul
That, haply, with terrific force endued.
Some savage would appear, strange to the laws
And privileges of the human race.
Few steps convey’d us to his den,

  By PanEris using Melati.

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