Courage poems/ page 5 of 77 /
While soldier thus and chief,
In doubtful sort, against their hidden fate
Devised their counsel, Appius alone
Feared for the chances of the war, and sought
Through Phoebus' ancient oracle to break
The silence of the gods and know the end.
Your footsteps now the arsenals have trod
Where lie the treasures of the warrior God;
Yet 'midst his ranks to serve is little fame,
Little avails the soldier's ardent flame,
Unless to all the heights of art you climb,
And reach of martial skill the true sublime.
Without these aids, to be more serious,
Her power they hold had been precarious;
The eyes might have conspired her ruin,
And she not known what they were doing.
Foolish it had been and unkind
That they should see and she be blind.
Would I defend the step,were the thing true
Which is a fable,see my former speech,
That Guido slept (who never slept a wink)
Through treachery, an opiate from his wife,
Who not so much as knew what opiates mean.