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But when through all the infernal bounds

Language: English

But when thro' all th'infernal bounds 
  Which flaming Phlegethon surrounds,
      Love, strong as Death, the Poet led
      To the pale nations of the dead,
  What sounds were heard,
  What scenes appear'd,
    O'er all the dreary coasts!
        Dreadful gleams,
        Dismal screams,
        Fires that glow,
        Shrieks of woe,
        Sullen moans,
        Hollow groans,
      And cries of tortur'd ghosts!
  But, hark! he strikes the golden lyre;
  And see! the tortur'd ghosts respire,
          See, shady forms advance!
    Thy stone, O Sisyphus, stands still,
    Ixion rests upon his wheel.
          And the pale spectres dance!
  The Furies sink upon their iron beds,
  And snakes uncurl'd hang list'ning round their heads.

View text with footnotes

Submitted by John Fowler


Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Text added to the website: 2009-09-04.
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:03:21
Line count: 22
Word count: 103

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