BETA

IV.

IOTIS DYING.

[...]
Two hours before the dawning, while yet the night-stars gleam,1
I wake me from my slumber, and plunge into the stream ;2
I look around and listen—the morning watch is mine3
I hear the beeches rustle, I hear the murmuring pine.4
My comrades lie around me ; but yet they do not sleep.5
They call upon their captain—they call him and they weep ;6
Up, up, Iotis ! rouse thee—to battle with thy best !7
The enemy are on us!—up, up, we may not rest ! ”8
What shall I say, my children ? —how answer to your call ?9
This wound of mine is mortal ; deep struck the deadly ball ;10
’Tis burning in my bosom—ye summon me in vain :11
O ! never in the combat my sword shall flash again !12
Your hands, my brave ones ! raise me—once more erect I stand,13
Once more ye gather round me, my true and trusty band !14
Sounds not my voice as clearly as in the battle cry ?15
Then bring me wine, bright sparkling, that I may drink and die !16
O ! were I on the mountains—the mountains wild and free !17
Beside the upland forest, beneath the spreading tree ;18
To feel the breezes blowing, to hear the wild-bird’s song,19
And sheep-bells gayly jingling, as the white flock moyes along ! ”20