Arthur Albert Dawson Bayldon (1865-?)

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The Sea

Ere Greece soared, showering sovranties of light,
Ere Rome shook earth with her tremendous tread,
Ere yon blue-feasting sun-god burst blood-red,
Beneath thee slept thy prodigy, O Night!
Aeons have ta'en like dreams their strange, slow flight,
And vastest, tiniest, creatures paved her bed,
E'en cities sapped by the usurping spread
Of her imperious waves have sunk from sight
Since she first chanted her colossal psalms
That swell and sink beneath the listening stars;
Oft, as with myriad drums beating to arms,
She thunders out the grandeur of her wars;
Then shifts through moaning moods her wizard charms
Of slow flutes and caressing, gay guitars.

(Above text from An Anthology of Australian Verse (1907?) from Project Gutenberg.)


With eastern banners flaunting in the breeze
Royal processions, sounding fife and gong
And showering jewels on the jostling throng,
March to the tramp of Marlowe's harmonies.
He drained life's brimming goblet to the lees;
He recked not that a peer superb and strong
Would tune great notes to his impassioned song
And top his cannonading lines with ease.
To the wild clash of cymbals we behold
The tragic ending of his youthful life;
The revelry of kisses bought with gold,
The jest and jealous rival and the strife,
A harlot weeping o'er a corpse scarce cold,
A scullion fleeing with a bloody knife.