Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, TOWARDS DEMOCRACY: PART 3. ANDROMETA, by EDWARD CARPENTER

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

TOWARDS DEMOCRACY: PART 3. ANDROMETA, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: Now over the mediterranean shore, fronting the sun
Last Line: Dragon guards its prey.
Subject(s): Andromeda (mythology); Civilization; Democracy; Goddesses & Gods; Mythology

NOW over the Mediterranean shore, fronting the sun,
In the great woods where only the peasant comes
And brings his bottle of wine, and figs, and goat-milk cheese—
The Gods yet dwell, but are not seen of men.

Steeply the ground slopes from the chestnut woods above,
Through tangles of pine and arbutus, myrtle and rosemary,
Down to the sea.
The tasseled evergreen oak grants densest shade—the acacia showers its
fragrance on the air;
In open spots the rock-rose blooms,
And the green lizard's little heart beats fast in the sun.

Here all day long mindful of times gone by
The sun yet lingers; from the slumbering sea
(On whose clear sands the yellow and hornéd poppy loves to stray)
Sometimes fair Aphrodite lifts an arm
Unseen of mortals
The Dryads in the aspen branches wave
Their trembling fingers, and young Hyacinth
Droops earthward once more wounded by his lover.

But none resume their ancient human form.
He, the great Liberator, with the wand of love so wonderful
(Who dwelt on earth, and dwells not, but must dwell again),
He comes not—whom they wait.
The rocks, the trees, the flowers, the loving animals,
The sea, the heavenly winds,
The human form that chained within them all
Pleads for deliverance—
He comes not whom they wait.

Only the train shrieks by with monkey faces staring out of the windows;
Hotel and villa desecrate the land;
Wealth trails its slime; the Greek has fled; and Civilisation like a dismal
dragon guards its prey.

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