Monday, June 25, 2012

Monday Poetry: Ozymandias

Percy Shelly wrote many great poems.

But I've always been attracted to his poem "Ozymandias."  I think this is for 2 reasons:

1.  It is the name of one of the main characters of the comic book classic Watchmen.
2.  I find it a fascinating and concrete insight into the fleeting nature of worldly power.  It reminds of that passage from Scripture "This too shall pass."


I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desart. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away

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