THE DESTRUCTION OF SENNACHERIB
by: George Gordon (Lord) Byron
"The Destruction of Sennacherib" is
reprinted from Works. George Gordon Byron. London: John Murray,
- HE Assyrian
came down like the wolf on the fold,
- And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold;
- And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea,
- When the blue wave rolls nightly on deep Galilee.
- Like the leaves of the forest when Summer is green,
- That host with their banners at sunset were seen:
- Like the leaves of the forest when Autumn hath blown,
- That host on the morrow lay withered and strown.
- For the Angel of Death spread his wings on the blast,
- And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed;
- And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill,
- And their hearts but once heaved, and for ever grew still!
- And there lay the steed with his nostril all wide,
- But through it there rolled not the breath of his pride;
- And the foam of his gasping lay white on the turf,
- And cold as the spray of the rock-beating surf.
- And there lay the rider distorted and pale,
- With the dew on his brow, and the rust on his mail:
- And the tents were all silent, the banners alone,
- The lances unlifted, the trumpet unblown.
- And the widows of Ashur are loud in their wail,
- And the idols are broke in the temple of Baal;
- And the might of the Gentile, unsmote by the sword,
- Hath melted like snow in the glance of the Lord!