37. The Isles of the Sirens

CEASE, Stranger, cease those piercing notes,
    The craft of Siren choirs;
Hush the seductive voice, that floats
    Upon the languid wires.

Music's ethereal fire was given
    Not to dissolve our clay,
But draw Promethean beams from Heaven,
    And purge the dross away.

Weak self! with thee the mischief lies,
    Those throbs a tale disclose;
Nor age nor trial has made wise
    The Man of many woes.

Off Lisbon
December 13, 1832.

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Newman Reader — Works of John Henry Newman
Copyright 2007 by The National Institute for Newman Studies. All rights reserved.