Odes by Horace

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lovelier than the lovely dame That bore you, sentence as you please

Those scurril verses, be it flame

Your vengeance craves, or Hadrian seas.

Not Cybele, nor he that haunts

Rich Pytho, worse the brain confounds,

Not Bacchus, nor the Corybants

Clash their loud gongs with fiercer sounds

Than savage wrath; nor sword nor spear

Appals it, no, nor ocean's frown,

Nor ravening fire, nor Jupiter

In hideous ruin crashing down.

Prometheus, forced, they say, to add

To his prime clay some favourite part

From every kind, took lion mad,

And lodged its gall in man's poor heart.

'Twas wrath that laid Thyestes low;

'Tis wrath that oft destruction calls

On cities, and invites the foe

To drive his plough o'er ruin'd walls.

Then calm your spirit; I can tell

How once, when youth in all my veins

Was glowing, blind with rage, I fell

On friend and foe in ribald strains.

Come, let me change my sour for sweet,

And smile complacent as before:

Hear me my palinode repeat,

And give me back your heart once more.

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