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Poem by Richard Monckton Milnes

A Grecian Thunder-Storm

The Thunder came not with one awful pulse,
When the wide Heaven seems quaking to its heart,
But in a current of tumultuous noise,
Crash upon crash,--a multitudinous clang
Of cymbals beating in the low--hung clouds,--
And every shortest interspace filled up
With echoes vivid as their parent sounds.
The lightning came not in one flash of light,
Soon yielding to the darkness, (which ere long
Is routed by another wingèd blaze,)
But with no pause, and swaying to and fro,
As if the common air was turned to flame.
So mused I, from this hot and furious scene
Drawing a timely lesson of calm Truth,
So,--when great nations are awake at heart,
And rise embattled, from an ancient sleep
Sudden aroused by some consummate deed
Of reckless tyranny, or glad to stand
For heir--loom rights, familiar liberties,
Through pain and loss and terror, unto death,--
Should be the expression of their energies,--
Earnest, intense, impassioned as you will,
But with no pause; the fruit is Victory.

Richard Monckton Milnes

Richard Monckton Milnes's other poems:
  1. London Churches
  2. The Subterranean River, At Cong
  3. Switzerland and Italy
  4. To the Moon of the South
  5. Valentia

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