Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, FRANCIS II, KING OF NAPLES; SONNET, by AMY LOWELL



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FRANCIS II, KING OF NAPLES; SONNET, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Poor foolish monarch, vacillating, vain
Last Line: Beneath the stars, and through a tranquil sea.
Subject(s): Francis Ii, King Of The Two Sicilies


Written after reading Trevelyan's "Garibaldi and the making of Italy"



Poor foolish monarch, vacillating, vain,
Decaying victim of a race of kings,
Swift Destiny shook out her purple wings
And caught him in their shadow; not again
Could furtive plotting smear another stain
Across his tarnished honour. Smoulderings
Of sacrificial fires burst their rings
And blotted out in smoke his lost domain.
Bereft of courtiers, only with his queen,
From empty palace down to empty quay.
No challenge screamed from hostile carabine.
A single vessel waited, shadowy;
All night she ploughed her solitary way
Beneath the stars, and through a tranquil sea.








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