Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, NAPOLEON AT REST, by JOHN PIERPONT



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NAPOLEON AT REST, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: His falchion flashed along the nile
Last Line: The cloud's deep voice, the wind's low sigh.
Variant Title(s): The Exile At Rest
Subject(s): Napoleon I (1769-1821)


HIS falchion flashed along the Nile;
His hosts he led through Alpine snows;
O'er Moscow's towers, that shook the while,
His eagle flag unrolled, -- and froze.

Here sleeps he now, alone; -- not one
Of all the kings whose crowns he gave,
Nor sire, nor brother, wife, nor son,
Hath ever seen or sought his grave.

Here sleeps he now, alone; -- the star,
That led him on from crown to crown,
Hath sunk; -- the nations from afar
Gazed, as it faded and went down.

He sleeps alone; -- the mountain cloud
That night hangs round him, and the breath
Of morning scatters, is the shroud
That wraps his martial form in death.

High is his couch; -- the ocean flood
Far, far below by storms is curled,
As round him heaved, while high he stood,
A stormy and inconstant world.

Hark! Comes there from the Pyramids,
And from Siberia's waste of snow,
And Europe's fields, a voice that bids
The world be awed to mourn him? --
No; --

The only, the perpetual dirge,
That's heard here, is the sea-bird's cry,
The mournful murmur of the surge,
The cloud's deep voice, the wind's low sigh.





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