The World’s Triumphs

A poem by Matthew Arnold

So far as I conceive the World’s rebuke
To him address’d who would recast her new,
Not from herself her fame of strength she took,
But from their weakness, who would work her rue.
‘Behold,’ she cries, ‘so many rages lull’d,
So many fiery spirits quite cool’d down:
Look how so many valours, long undull’d,
After short commerce with me, fear my frown.
Thou too, when thou against my crimes wouldst cry,
Let thy foreboded homage check thy tongue.’
The World speaks well: yet might her foe reply
‘Are wills so weak? then let not mine wait long.
Hast thou so rare a poison? let me be
Keener to slay thee, lest thou poison me.

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