The Castle of Al Waled

William Gibson

Upon Gibraltar's steep ascent there stands
A castled ruin, built when first the Moor
Crossed conqueror to the European shore, —
Dashed helmed knighthood by his turbaned bands.
No longer from its height the pile commands
The face of the colossal Rock; but tower
And gate and partial battlements, though hoar,
Are massive-standing; while the builders' hands
A thousand years ago were dust! The brunt
Of battle bearing, scores of shot and shell
Show the endurance in the old time wont.
What thronged romances in my bosom swell,
Ouce hauglity fortress of the infidel,
O palpable millennium, front to front!

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