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Torquato Tasso
Jerusalem Delivered
page 193

Roared loud, that thundered, and this shook;
Blustered the tempests strong, the whirlwinds blow,
The bitter storm drove hailstones in his look;
But yet his arm grew neither weak nor slow,
Nor of that fury heed or care he took,
Till low to earth the wounded tree down bended;
Then fled the spirits all, the charms all ended.

The heavens grew clear, the air waxed calm and still,
The wood returned to his wonted state,
Of withcrafts free, quite void of spirits ill;
Of horror full, but horror there innate;
He further proved if aught withstood his will
To cut those trees as did the charms of late,
And finding naught to stop him, smiled, and said,
"O shadows vain! O fools, of shades afraid!"

From thence home to the campward turned the knight,
The hermit cried, upstarting from his seat,
"Now of the wood the charms have lost their might,
The sprites are conquered, ended is the feat,
See where he comes!" In glistering white all dight
Appeared the man, bold, stately, high and great,
His eagle's silver wings to shine begun
With wondrous splendor gainst the golden sun.

The camp received him with a joyful cry,
A cry the dales and hills about that flied;
Then Godfrey welcomed him with honors high,
His glory quenched all spite, all envy killed:
"To yonder dreadful grove," quoth he, "went I,
And from the fearful wood, as me you willed,
Have driven the sprites away, thither let be
Your people sent, the way is safe and free."

Sent were the workmen thither, thence they brought
Timber enough, by good advice select,
And though by skilless builders framed and wrought
Their engines rude and rams were late elect,
Yet now the forts and towers from whence they fought
Were framed by a cunning architect,
William, of all the Genoese lord and guide,
Which late ruled all the seas from side to side;

But forced to retire from him at last,
The Pagan fleet the seas moist empire won,
His men with all their stuff and store in haste
Home to the camp with their commander run,
In skill, in wit, in cunning him surpassed
Yet never engineer beneath the sun,
Of carpenters an hundred large he brought,
That what their lord devised made and wrought.

This man began with wondrous art to make,
Not rams, not mighty brakes, not slings alone,
Wherewith the firm and solid walls to shake,
To cast a dart, or throw a shaft or stone;
But framed of pines and firs, did undertake
To build a fortress huge, to which was none
Yet ever like, whereof he clothed the sides
Against the balls of fire with raw bull's hides.

In mortices and sockets framed just,
The beams, the studs and puncheons joined he fast;
To beat the city's wall, beneath forth bt
A ram with horned front, about her waist
A bridge the engine from her side out tht,
Which on the wall when need she cast;
And from her top a turret small up stood,
Strong, surely armed, and builded of like wood.

Set on an hundred wheels the rolling mass,
On the smooth lands went nimbly up and down,
Though full of arms and armed men it was,
Yet with small pains it ran, as it had flown:
Wondered the camp so quick to see it pass,

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