Tag Archives Ancient Rome

AT THE BRIDGE

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When I was poorly my mother read to me

from Macaulay’s ‘Lays of Ancient Rome’:

Then out spoke brave Horatius, the Captain

of the Gate: “To every man upon

this earth, death cometh soon or late; And how

can man die better than facing fearful odds…”

He lived, was gifted land, and made in bronze.

 

But what I remember from those sickly days

is an image of the Captain, sword drawn,

and his two comrades. Behind them,

a second line of defence, they had fired

the only bridge across the Tiber.

Their duty was to stay the baying hordes

charging down the hillside towards them.

I see them now, three figures in a fiery

valley filled with flickering shadows,

waiting for the enemy.

 

 

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