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Giving way to thoughts less cheerful than archaic, he is checked by a sportive sally from the Rose. But is anew troubled, catching sight of an object attesting a Power even more nitrous and menacing than the Bomb-King himself. In short, another and greater crowned artilleryman, a capricious dominator, impossible to dethrone, and reigning by right incontestably divine. Pondering which discouraging fact, once more our genial friend is twitted by the festive Mentor.

“Signor, turn here?” And turn we did,
Repassing scenes that charmed erewhile,
Nor less could charm reviewed even now.


What blandishment in clime, or else
What subtler influence, my rose,
From thee exhaled, thou Lydian one,
Seductive here could flatter me
Even in emotion not unfelt
While fleeting from that warmish pair!
If, taking tone indeed from them,
No lightsome thought awhile prevailed
Devious it drifted like a dream.
I mused on Virgil, here inurned
On Pausilippo, legend tells—
Here on the slope that pledges ease to pain,
For him a pledge assuredly true
If here indeed his ashes be—
Rome's laureat in Rome's palmy time;
Nor less whose epic's undertone
In volumed numbers rolling bland,
Chafing against the metric bound,
Plains like the South Sea ground-swell heaved
Against the palm-isle's halcyon strand.
What Mohawk of a mountain 'lours!
A scalp-lock of Tartarian smoke
Thin streaming forth from tawny brow,
One heel on painted Pompeii set,
And one on Hercules 'whelmed town!
The Siren's seat for pleasurists lies
Betwixt two threatening bombardiers
Their mortars loaded, linstocks lit—
Vesuvius yonder—Bomba here.


Events may Bomba's batteries spike:
But how with thee, sulphurious Hill
Whose vent far hellward reaches down!
Ah, funeral urns of time antique
Inwrought with flowers in gala play,
Whose form and bacchanal dance in freak,
Even as of pagan time ye speak
Type ye what Naples is alway?
Yes, round these curved volcanic shores,
Vined urn of ashes, bed on bed,
Abandonment as thoughtless pours
As when the revelling pagan led.
And here again I droopt the brow,
And, lo, again I saw the Rose,
The red red ruddy and royal Rose!
Expanded more from bud but late
Sensuous it lured, and took the tone
Of some light taunting Cyprian gay
In shadow deep of college-wall
Startling some museful youth afoot—
“Mooning in mind? Ah, lack-a-day!”