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And in the blast and bray of the long horn
Was Arac : all about his motion clung
The shadow of his sister, as the beam
Of the East, that play'd upon them, made them glance
Like those three stars of the airy Giant's zone,
And as the fiery Sirius alters hue,
And bickers into red and emerald, shone
Their morions, wash'd with morning, as they came.
And I that prated peace, when first I heard
War-music, felt the blind wildbeast of force,
Whose home is in the sinews of a man,
Stir in me as to strike : then took the king
And now a pointed finger, told them all :
A common light of smiles at our disguise
Had labour'd down within his ample lungs,
The genial giant, Arac, roll'd himself
Thrice in the saddle, then burst out in words.
• Our land invaded, life and soul ! himself
Your captive, yet my father wills not war :
Yet, right or wrong, I care not: this is all,
I stand upon her side : she made me swear it
Her that talk'd down the fifty wisest men ;
She was a princess too ; and so I swore.
I lagg'd in answer loth to render up
To cleave the rift of difference deeper yet ;
Till one of those two brothers, half aside
And fingering at the hair about his lip,
A taunt that clench'd his
like a blow !
For fiery-short was Cyril's counter-scoff,
Then spake the third • But three
three ? no more ?
No more, and in our noble sister's cause?
More, more, for honour : every captain waits
Hungry for honour, angry for his king.
Of these or those, the question settled die.'
• Yea' answered I for this wild wreath of air,
This flake of rainbow flying on the highest
It needs must be for honour if at all :
Since, what decision ? if we fail, we fail,
you shall have her answer by the word.'
• Boys !' shriek'd the old king, but vainlier than a hen
To her false daughters in the pool ; for none
Regarded ; neither seem'd there more to say :
He battered at the doors ; none came : the next,
An awful voice withi
had warn'd him thence :
The third, and those eight daughters of the plough Came sallying thro' the gates, and caught his hair,
And so belabour'd him on rib and cheek
They made him wild: not less one glance he caught
doors of Ida station’d there
Unshaken, clinging to her purpose, firm
Set in a cataract on an island-crag,
When storm is on the heights, and right and left