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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
‘’Tis Noon; the Light is Fierce’
By José-Maria de Heredia (1842–1905)
 
Translation of Maurice Francis Egan

’TIS noon; the light is fierce; the air is fire;
  The ancient river rolls its waves of lead;
  Direct from Heaven day falls overhead,—
Phra covers Egypt in relentless ire.
The eyes of the great sphinx that never tire—        5
  The sphinx that bathes in dust of golden-red—
  Follow with mystic looks the unmeasurèd
And needle-pointed pyramidal spire.
A darkened spot is on the sky of white,—
  An endless flight of circling vulture wings;        10
  A flame immense makes drowsy all earth’s things.
The ardent soil is sparkling; full in sight
  A brass Anubis, silent, still, and stark,
  Turns to the sun its never-ending bark.
 
 
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