To Nicæa, the Birthplace of

Nicæa ! thou wast rear’d of those1
Who left Phocæa crush’d by foes,2
And swore they never would return3
Until that red-hot ploughshare burn4
Upon the waves whereon ’twas thrown.5
Such were thy sires, such thine alone.6
Cyrus had fail’d with myriad host7
To chain them down ; long tempest-tost,8
War-worn, yet unsubdued, they found9
No refuge on Hellenic ground.10
All fear’d the despot.11
Far from home12
The Cimbri saw the exiles come,13
Victorious o’er a Punic fleet,14
Seeking not conquest, but retreat,15
Small portion of a steril shore16
Soliciting, nor seizing more.17
There rose Massilia.18
Years had past,19
And once again the Punic mast20
Display’d its banner ; once again21
Phoceans dasht it on the main,22
With hymns of triumph they rais’d high23
A monument to Victory.24
Hence was thy name, Ionian town !25
Passing all Gallia’s in renown26
Firmly thou stoodest ; not by Rome,27
Conqueror of Carthage, overcome,28
Fearing not war, but loving peace,29
Thou sawest thy just wealth increase.30
Alas ! what art thou at this hour ?31
Bound victim of perfidious Power !32
In fields of blood, however brave,33
Base is the man who sells his slave34
But basest of the base is he35
Who sells the faithful and the free.36
Bystanders we (oh shame !) have been,37
And this foul traffic tamely seen.38
Thou livest undejected yet,39
Nor thy past glories wilt forget.40
No, no ; that city is not lost,41
Which one heroic soul can boast.42
So glorious none thy annals show43
As he whom God’s own voice bade go,44
And raise an empire where the best45
And bravest from their toils may rest.46
Enna for them shalk bloom again,47
And Peace hail Garibaldi’s reign.48