Текст оригинала на английском языке
Bruce and the Spider
FOR Scotland's and for freedom's right The Bruce his part had played, In five successive fields of fight Been conqured and dismayed; Once more against the English host His band he led, and once more lost The meed for which he fought; And now from battle, faint and worn, The homeless fugitive forlorn A hut's lone shelter sought. And cheerless was that resting-place For him who claimed a throne: His canopy devoid of grace, The rude, rough beams alone; The heather couch his only bed, - Yet well I ween had slumber fled From couch of eider-down! Through darksome night till dawn of day, Absorbed in wakeful thought he lay Of Scotland and her crown. The sun rose brightly, and its gleam Fell on that hapless bed, And tinged with light each shapeless beam Which roofed the lowly shed; When, looking up with wistful eye, The Bruce beheld a spider try His filmy thread to fling From beam to beam of that rude cot; And well the insect's toilsome lot Taught Scotland's future king. Six times his gossamery thread The wary spider threw; In vain the filmy line was sped, For powerless or untrue Each aim appeared, and back recoiled The patient insect, six times foiled, And yet unconquered still; And soon the Bruce, with eager eye, Saw him prepare once more to try His courage, strength, and skill. One effort more, his seventh and last! The hero hailed the sign! And on the wished-for beam hung fast That slender, silken line; Slight as it was, his spirit caught The more than omen, for his thought The lesson well could trace, Which even 'he who runs may read,' That Perseverance gains its meed, And Patience wins the race.
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