Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
Charles II. of Spain to Approaching Death
Eugene Lee-Hamilton (b. 1845)
MAKE way, my lords! for Death now once again
Waits on the palace stairs. He comes to lay
His finger on my brow. Make way! make way,
Ye whispering groups that scent an ending reign!
Death, if I make thee a grandee of Spain,        5
And give thee half my subjects, wilt thou stay
Behind the door a little, while I play
With life a moment longer? I would fain.
Oh, who shall turn the fatal shadow back
On Ahaz’ sundial now? Who ’ll cure the king        10
When Death awaits him, motionless and black?
Upon the wall the inexorable thing
Creeps on and on, with horror in its track.
The king is dying. Bid the great bells ring.


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