Next came the closing scene: but shall I paint
The scarlet column, sullen, slow, and faint,
Which marched, with "colors cased" to yonder field,
Where Britain threw down corslet, sword and shield?
Shall I depict the anguish of the brave
Who envied comrades sleeping in the grave?
Shall I exult o'er inoffensive dust
Of valiant men whose swords have turned to rust?
Shall I, like Menelaus by the coast,
O'er dead Ajaces make unmanly boast?
Shall I, in chains of an ignoble Verse,
Degrade dead Hectors, and their pangs rehearse -
Nay! such is not the mood this People feels,
Their chariots drag no foemen by the heels!
Let Ajax slumber by the sounding sea
From the fell passion of his madness free!
Let Hector's ashes unmolested sleep -
But not to-day shall any Priam weep!