Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Italy
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Italy: Vols. XI–XIII.  1876–79.
Monte Circello
Virgil (70–19 B.C.)
(From Æneid)
Translated by C. P. Cranch

THEY skirt the nearest shores to Circe’s land,
Where she, the sumptuous daughter of the Sun,
Fills her secluded forests with the sounds
Of her assiduous singing, while within
Her palace proud the fragrant cedar burns,        5
Her nightly torch; and through her gauzy web
The whistling shuttle runs. Here, late at night,
The roar of angry lions in the dark
Chafing against their prison bars, was heard;
And bristly boars and raging bears, pent up,        10
And howling wolves of size immense. All these,
From human shapes, by means of potent herbs,
The cruel goddess Circe had transformed
To faces and to bodies of wild beasts.
Then, lest the pious Trojans should endure        15
Such monstrous fate, when brought into the port,
Nor touch a coast so dreadful, Neptune filled
Their sails with favoring winds, to aid their flight,
And wafted them beyond the boiling shoals.

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