|Share page||Visit Us On FB|
CELTIC POETRY. 145
Erc's shriller curse he seemed to hear and Erc's despairing
cry. Much did the hapless warrior strive to shake from breast
and brain The illusion and the shameful wish fast-rising ; but in vain ; The wish to fly seized all his limbs ; the stronger dread of
shame, Contending with the wish to fly, made spoil of all his frame. His knees beneath him wavered as if shaken by the stress Of a rapid running river ; his heart, in fear's excess, Sprang to and fro within him, as a wild bird newly caged, Or a stream-ascending salmon in a strong weir's trap engaged.
Some of the single combats of the heroes, following the details of the narrative, are described with Homeric vigor, and the address of the King of Lochlan to the invading army, disheartened by apparitions, has the fire and spirit, as well as the form, of the Scandinavian runic verse: —
This is my sentence : Fairy nor Fire-Drake Keep back the Kemper At home, in the burg, Leaves he the maiden Boon for the bridal; Abroad, on the holme, Leaves he the harvest, Ripe for the reaper ; The bowl, on the board, In the hall of the banquets, Leaves he untasted,