Nicholas Michell

And this is Marathon — a word that long
Hath burned in history's page and thrilled in song,
Hath tired each heart, round earth's wide circuit flown,
And pealed in thunder o'er the tyrant's throne.
Do we not, tracing slow this hallowed field,
To Glory's shade a silent homage yield?
Treading on heroes' dust where'er we turn,
Doth not the pulse beat high, the spirit burn?
Thou trembling slave ! whose days are passed in tears,
Gaze on this field of fame, renounce thy fears.
Tyrants! whose strength is numbers — stoop your pride,
Come and behold where Persia's myriads died.
Ay, here they fell, who thought their wrath to wreak,
And bind in chains the vanquished, prostrate Greek,
But found brute force to nobler mind must bow,
Valour, not glittering show, triumphant now.
Dire was the rout, as mail-clad squadrons flew,
Hope's sun went down, their fear to madness grew;
The boasting shout, the trump that pierced the air,
Were turned to yells and wailings of despair;
Death o'er them shook his dart, and mocked their woe,
And grisly Pluto laughed for joy below.