The Iliad

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Book VII


Vaunting, aflash in arms, Hector swept through the gates
with his brother Paris keeping pace beside him.
Both men bent on combat, on they fought like wind
when a god sends down some welcome blast to sailors
desperate for it, worked to death at the polished oars,
beating the heavy seas, their arms slack with the labor-
so welcome that brace of men appeared to the Trojans
desperate for their captains.
                                                Each one killed his man.
Paris took Menesthius, one who had lived in Arne,
a son of King Areithous lord of the war-club
and his lady Phylomedusa with large lovely eyes.
Hector slashed Eioneus' throat with a sharp spear,
ripped him under the helmet's hammered bronze rim-
his legs collapsed in death.
                                               Quick in the jolting onset
Lycia's captain Glaucus son of Hippolochus skewered
Dexius' son Iphinous just as he leapt behind
his fast mares-he stabbed his shoulder, hard,
and down from his car Iphinous crashed to earth
and his limbs went slack with death.
                                                            Rampaging Trojans!
Yes, but as soon as fiery-eyed Athena marked them
killing Argive ranks in this all-out assault,
down she rushed from the peaks of Mount Olympus
straight for sacred Troy. But Phoebus Apollo
spotting her from Pergamus heights-the god grim set
on victory for the Trojans-rose to intercept her . . .
As the two came face-to-face beside the great oak,
lord Apollo the son of Zeus led off, "What next?—
what is the mighty Zeus's daughter blazing after now?
Down from Olympus, what heroics stir your heart?
No doubt you'll hand your Argives victory soon,
you'll turn the tide of battle!
You have no mercy, none for dying Trojans.
Come, listen to me-my plan is so much better:
let us halt the war and the heat of combat now,
at least for today. They'll fight again tomorrow,
until they win their way to the fixed doom of Troy,
since that is your only passion-you two goddesses—
to plunder Troy to rubble."
                                                            Athena's eyes lit up
and the goddess said, "So be it, archer of the sky!
Those were my very thoughts, winging down from Olympus
into the midst of Trojans and Achaeans. But tell me,
how do you hope to stop the men from fighting?"


"Hector!"—lord Apollo the son of Zeus replied-
"We'll spur his nerve and strength, that breaker of horses,
see if he'll challenge one of the Argives man-to-man
and they will duel in bloody combat to the death.
Achaeans armed in bronze will thrill to his call,
they'll put up a man to battle shining Hector."


      So Apollo staged the action. Her eyes afire
the goddess Pallas did not resist a moment.
She flashed the word in Helens' mantic spirit-
the son of Priam sensed what pleased the immortals
hatching instant plans, and coming up to Hector
advised him quickly, "Hector, son of Priam,
a mastermind like Zeus, listen to me now-
let your brother guide you.
Have all Trojans and Argives take their seats,
and you, you challenge Achaea's bravest man
to duel in bloody combat to the death.
It's not the hour to meet your doom, not yet.
I heard a voice of the gods who live forever."


      When Hector heard that challenge he rejoiced
and right in the no man's land along his lines he strode,
gripping his spear mid-haft, staving men to a standstill
while Agamemnon seated his Argives geared for combat.
And Apollo lord of the silver bow and Queen Athena,
for all the world like carrion birds, like vultures,
slowly settled atop the broad towering oak
sacred to Zeus whose battle-shield is thunder,
relishing those men. Wave on wave of them settling,
close ranks shuddering into a dense, bristling glitter
of shields and spears and helmets—quick as a ripple
the West Wind suddenly risen shudders down the sea
and the deep sea swell goes dark beneath its force—
so settling waves of Trojan ranks and Achaeans
rippled down the plain . . .
And Hector rose and spoke between both sides:
"Hear me—Trojans, Achaeans geared for combat!
I'll speak out what the heart inside me urges.
Our oaths, our sworn truce—Zeus the son of Cronus
throned in the clouds has brought them all to nothing
and all the Father decrees is death for both sides at once.
Until you Argives seize the well-built towers of Troy
or you yourselves are crushed against your ships.
                                                            But now,
seeing the best of all Achaeans fill your ranks,
let one whose nerve impels him to fight with me
come striding from your lines, a lone champion
pitted against Prince Hector. Here are the terms
that I set forth-let Zeus look down, my witness!
If that man takes my life with his sharp bronze blade,
he will strip my gear and haul it back to his ships.
But give my body to friends to carry home again,
so Trojan men and Trojan women can do me honor
with fitting rites of fire once I am dead.
But if I kill him and Apollo grants me glory,
I'll strip his gear and haul it back to sacred Troy
and hang it high on the deadly Archer's temple walls.
But not his body: I'll hand it back to the decked ships,
so the long-haired Achaeans can give him full rites
and heap his barrow high by the broad Hellespont.
And someday one will say, one of the men to come,
steering his oar-swept ship across the wine-dark sea,
'There's the mound of a man who died in the old days,
one of the brave whom glorious Hector killed.'
So they will say, someday, and my fame will never die."


      A hushed silence went through all the Achaean ranks,
ashamed to refuse, afraid to take his challenge . . .
But at long last Menelaus leapt up and spoke,
lashing out at them, groaning, heartsick: "Oh no—
your threats, your bluster—women, not men of Achaea!
What disgrace it will be—shame, cringing shame
if not one Danaan now steps up to battle Hector.
You can all turn to earth and water-rot away!
Look at each of you, sitting there, lifeless,
lust for glory gone. I'll harness up,
I'll fight the man myself. The gods on high-
they hold the ropes of victory in their hands!"


      With that he began to don his handsome gear.
And then and there, Menelaus,
the death-stroke would have blazed before your eyes—
dead at the hands of Hector, a far stronger man—
if Argive kings had not leapt up and caught you.
And Atreus' son himself, powerful Agamemnon
seized your right hand, shouting out your name:
"You're mad, my Prince! No need for such an outburst—
get a grip on yourself, distraught as you are.
Just for the sake of rivalry, soldier's pride,
don't rush to fight with a better man, with Hector
the son of Priam. Many others shrink before him.
Even Achilles dreads to pit himself against him
out on the battle lines where men win glory—
Achilles, far and away a stronger man than you.
Go back. Sit down with the comrades you command.
We'll put up another champion to go against this Hector.
Fearless, is he? and never sated with fighting?
He'll gladly sink to a knee and rest, I'd say,
if the man comes through alive
from the fight he begs for, dueling to the death."


      Again the iron warrior brought his brother round—
good counsel, fitting too. Menelaus yielded at once.
His aides, elated, lifted the armor off his shoulders.
And then lord Nestor rose and spoke among the men:
"No more-or enormous sorrow comes to all Achaea!
How he would groan at this, the old horseman Peleus,
that fine speaker, the Myrmidons' famed commander.
How he rejoiced that day, questioning me in his halls,
when he learned the blood and birth of all the Argives.
Now if he heard how all cringe in the face of Hector,
time and again he'd stretch his hands to the gods
and pray that life breath would quit his limbs
and sink to the House of Death.
                                                            Oh if only—
Father Zeus, Athena, Apollo-I were young again!
Fresh as the day we fought by Celadon's rapids,
our Pylians in platoons against Arcadian spearmen
under Phia's ramparts, round the Iardanus' banks.
When Arcadia's champion Ereuthalion strode forth,
a man like a god for power, his shoulders decked
with King Areithous' armor, massive Areithous . . .
the Great War-club, so they called that hulk,
his men-at-arms and their sashed and lovely women.
He would never fight with a bow or long spear, no,
with his giant iron club he'd break battalions open.
That monster—Lycurgus cut him down by stealth,
not force at all, on a footpath so cramped
his iron club was useless fending off his death.
There-before he could heft it-a sudden lunge
and Lycurgus' spear had run him through the guts.
Flat on his back he went, slamming against the ground
and his killer stripped the armor brazen Ares gave him.
He donned it himself, for years of grueling war,
but then, when Lycurgus grew too old in his halls,
he passed it on to a favorite henchman, Ereuthalion,
and sporting that gear he challenged all our best.
And they, they shook from head to foot, terrified,
none with the nerve to face him then. Only I—
my hardened courage drove me to fight the man
in a hot burst of daring,
and I the youngest trooper of us all . . .
I took him on and Athena gave me glory. By heaven,
Ereuthalion was the biggest, strongest man I ever killed,
the huge lumbering sprawl of him stretching far and wide!
Oh make me young again, and the strength inside me
steady as a rock! Hector with that flashing helmet
would meet his match in combat in a moment.
You, the bravest of all Achaeans—and not one
with the spine to battle Hector face-to-face!"


      The old man's taunts brought nine men to their feet.
First by far Agamemnon lord of men sprang up
and following him Tydides, powerful Diomedes,
next. the Great and Little Ajax armed in fury,
Idomeneus after them and Idomeneus' good aide,
Meriones, a match for the butcher god of war,
Eurypylus after them, Euaemon's gallant son,
Thoas son of Andraemon, Odysseus out for exploit:
all were roused to go up against Prince Hector.
Once more the fine old horseman gave commands:
"Now shake the lots for all,
the first to the last man—we'll see who wins.
He's the one to do his Achaean comrades proud,
do himself proud too, if he comes through alive
from the fight that waits him, dueling to the death."


      And each soldier scratched his mark on a stone
and threw it into Atrides Agamemnon's helmet.
Fighters prayed. Stretching hands to the gods
a man would murmur, scanning the wide sky,
"Father Zeus, let Ajax win, or Tydeus' son
or the proud king himself of all Mycenae's gold!"


      So they prayed as the old horseman shook the lots
and one leapt from the helmet, the one they wanted most—
Great Ajax' lot it was. And the herald took it round
through all the ranks, left to right for luck,
and showed it to all Achaea's bravest men.
None of them knew it, each denied the mark.
But once he'd passed it round and reached the man
who had scratched the stone and thrown it in the helmet—
Ajax bent on glory-out went his hand to take it,
the herald pausing beside him dropped it in
and Ajax knew his mark and thrilled to see it,
flung it down at his feet and shouted, "Friends-
the lot is mine and it fills my heart with joy!
I know I can overpower this dazzling Hector.
But come, while I strap my battle-armor on,
all of you pray to Cronus' son, almighty Zeus.
Pray to yourselves in silence, so Trojans cannot hear—
no, pray out loud!
No one at all to fear. No one can rout me—
his will against my will—not by force,
god knows, and not by a sly maneuver either.
I'm not such a raw recruit, I like to think,
born and bred on Salamis."


So Great Ajax vaunted
and men prayed to the son of Cronus, King Zeus.
They'd call out, scanning the wide sky, "Father Zeus—
ruling over us all from Ida, god of greatness, glory!
Now let Ajax take this victory, shining triumph!
But if you love Hector, if you hold him dear,
at least give both men equal strength and glory."
                                                            So they prayed
as Ajax harnessed himself in burnished, gleaming bronze
and once he had strapped his legs and chest in armor,
out he marched like the giant god of battle wading
into the wars of men when Zeus drives them hard
to clash and soldier on with heart-devouring hate.
So giant Ajax marched, that bulwark of the Achaeans—
a grim smile curling below his dark shaggy brows,
under his legs' power taking immense strides,
shaking his spear high, its long shadow trailing.
The men of Argos exulted at the sight of him there
but terrible tremors shook each Trojan fighter's knees—
Hector himself, his heart pounding against his ribs.
But how could he shrink before the enemy, slip back
into a crowd of cohorts now? He was the challenger,
he with his lust for battle. Ajax strode on, closing,
bearing his huge body-shield like a rampart, heavy bronze
over seven layers of oxhide. Tychius made it for him,
laboring long, the finest leather-smith by far:
over in Hyle where the master had his home
he crafted that famous gleaming shield for Ajax,
layering seven welted hides of sturdy well-fed bulls
and hammered an eighth layer of bronze to top it off.
And now holding that great shield before his chest
Telamonian Ajax marched right up to Hector,
threatening with his deep resounding voice,
"Hector, now you'll learn, once and for all,
in combat man-to-man, what kind of champions
range the Argive ranks, even besides Achilles,
that lionheart who mauls battalions wholesale.
Off in his beaked seagoing ships Achilles lies,
raging away at Agamemnon, marshal of armies—
but here we are, strong enough to engage you,
and plenty of us too. Come—
lead off, if you can, with all your fighting power!"


      A flash of his helmet as. rangy Hector shook his head:
"Ajax, royal son of Telamon, captain of armies,
don't toy with me like a puny, weak-kneed boy
or a woman never trained in works of war!
War—I know it well, and the butchery of men.
Well I know, shift to the left, shift to the right
my tough tanned shield. That's what the real drill,
defensive fighting means to me. I know it all,
how to charge in the rush of plunging horses—
I know how to stand and fight to the finish,
twist and lunge in the War-god's deadly dance.
                                                            On guard!
Big and bluff as you are, I've no desire to hit you
sniping in on the sly—
I'd strike you out in the open, strike you now!"
                                                            He hurled—
his spear's long shadow flew and it struck Ajax' shield,
that awesome seven-layered buckler, right on the eighth,
the outside layer of bronze that topped it off,
through six hides it tore but the seventh stopped
the relentless brazen point.
                                                    But Great Ajax next
dear to the gods he hurled and his spear's shadow flew
and the shaft hit Hector's round shield, hit full center—
straight through the gleaming hide the heavy weapon drove,
ripping down and in through the breastplate finely worked,
tearing the war-shirt, close by Hector's flank it jabbed
but the Trojan swerved aside and dodged black death.
Both seized their lances, wrenched them from the shields
and went for each other now like lions rending flesh
or a pair of wild boars whose power never flags.
Hector stabbed at the buckler, full center too,
not smashing through, the brazen point bent back—
and Ajax lunged at him, thrusting hard at his shield
and the shaft punched through, rammed him back in his fury
and grazed his neck and the dark blood gushed forth.
But not even then did Hector quit the battle . . .
backing, helmet flashing, his strong hand hefting
a rock from the field, dark, jagged, a ton weight—
he hurled it at Ajax, struck the gigantic shield,
seven oxhides thick, struck right on the jutting boss
and the bronze clanged, echoing round and round as Ajax
hoisting a boulder—far larger—wheeled and heaved it,
putting his weight behind it, tremendous force—
and the rock crashed home, Hector's shield burst in,
hit by a millstone-and Hector's fine knees buckled,
flat on his back he went, his shield crushing down on him
swept him off his feet. But Apollo quickly pulled him up-
and now they'd have closed with swords, hacked each other
if heralds of Zeus and men had not come rushing in,
one from the Trojans, one from the armed Achaeans,
Talthybius and Idaeus, both with good clear heads.
Parting them, holding their staffs between both men,
the herald Idaeus, cool, skilled in tactics, urged,
"No more, my sons— don't kill yourselves in combat!
Zeus who marshals the storm cloud loves you both.
You're both great fighters—we all know that full well.
The night comes on at last. Best to yield to night."


      But the giant Ajax answered briskly, "Wait,
Idaeus, tell Hector here to call the truce.
Mad for a fight, he challenged all our bravest.
Let him lead off. I'll take his lead, you'll see."


      His helmet flashed as Hector nodded: "Yes, Ajax,
since god has given you power, build and sense
and you are the strongest spearman of Achaea,
let us break off this dueling to the death,
at least for today. We'll fight again tomorrow,
until some fatal power decides between our armies,
handing victory down to one side or another. Look,
the night comes at last. Best to yield to night.
So you will bring some joy to Achaea's forces
camped beside their ships, and most of all
to your own troops, the comrades you command.
But I'll go back to the great city of King Priam
and bring some joy to the men of Troy and Trojan women
trailing their long robes. Thankful for my return
they'll go to meet the gods and sing their praises.
let us give each other gifts, unforgettable gifts,
so any man may say, Trojan soldier or Argive,
'First they fought with heart-devouring hatred,
then they parted, bound by pacts of friendship.' "


      With that he gave him his silver-studded sword,
slung in its sheath on a supple, well-cut sword-strap,
and Ajax gave his war-belt, glistening purple.
So both men parted, Ajax back to Achaea's armies,
Hector back to his thronging Trojans—overjoyed
to see. him still alive, unharmed, striding back,
free of the rage and hands of Ajax still unconquered.
They escorted him home to Troy—saved, past all their hopes—
while far across the field the Achaean men-at-arms
escorted Ajax, thrilled with victory, back to Agamemnon.


    Soon as they had gathered within the warlord's tents
he sacrificed an ox in their midst, a full-grown ox,
five years old, to the towering son of Cronus, Zeus.
They skinned the animal quickly, butchered the carcass,
expertly cut the meat into pieces, pierced them with spits,
roasted them to a turn and pulled them off the fire.
The work done, the feast laid out, they ate well
and no man's hunger lacked a share of the banquet.
But the lord of far-flung kingdoms, hero Agamemnon,
honored giant Telamonian Ajax first and last
with the long savory cuts that line the backbone.
And when they had put aside desire for food and drink
the old man began to weave his counsel among them:
Nestor was first to speak—from the early days
his plans and tactics always seemed the best.
With good will to the lords he rose and spoke:
"King Agamemnon, chiefs of all the Argives-
how many long-haired Achaeans lie here dead!
And now Ares the slashing god of war has swirled
their dark blood in Scamander's deep clear stream
and their souls have drifted down to the House of Death.
So at dawn you must call a halt to fighting by Achaeans,
form your units, bring on wagons, gather up the dead
and wheel the corpses back with mules and oxen. Then,
at a decent distance from the ships, we burn the bodies,
so every soldier here can carry back the bones
to a dead man's sons when he sails home again.
And let us heap a single great barrow over the pyre,
one great communal grave stretched out across the plain
and fronting it throw up looming ramparts quickly,
a landward wall for ships and troops themselves.
And amidst the wall build gateways fitted strong
to open a clear path for driving chariots through.
And just outside the wall we must dig a trench,
a deep ditch in a broad sweeping ring
to block their horse and men and break their charge—
then these headlong Trojans can never rush our armies."


      So he advised. All the warlords sounded their assent.
And now the Trojans collected high on the crest of Troy.
They were shaken, distracted men at Priam's gates
but the clearheaded Anterior opened up among them:
"Hear me, Trojans, Dardans, all our loyal allies,
I must speak out what the heart inside me urges.
On with it—give Argive Helen and all her treasures
back to Atreus' sons to take away at last.
We broke our sworn truce. We fight as outlaws.
True, and what profit for us in the long run?
Nothing—unless we do exactly as I say."


      So he pressed the point, then took his seat.
But among them stood magnificent Paris now,
fair-haired Helen's lord, and he came back
with a winging burst in answer: "Stop, Anterior!
No more of your hot insistence—it repels me.
You must have something better than this to say.
But if you are serious, speaking from the heart,
the gods themselves have blotted out your senses.
Now I say this to our stallion-breaking Trojans,
I say No, straight out—I won't give up the woman!
But those treasures I once hauled home from Argos,
I'll return them all and add from my own stores."


      With that concession the prince sat down again.
Then Priam the son of Dardanus rose among them,
a man who could match the gods for strong advice,
and with good will toward all he swayed his people:
"Hear me, Trojans, Dardans, all our loyal allies-
I must speak out what the heart inside me urges.
Now take your evening meal throughout the city,
just as you always have, and stand your watches,
each man wide awake. And then, at first light,
let the herald Idaeus go to the beaked ships
and tell the Atridae, Agamemnon and Menelaus,
the offer of Paris who caused our long hard campaign.
Let Idaeus add this too, a good sound proposal:
see if they are willing to halt the brutal war
until we can bum the bodies of our dead.
We'll fight again tomorrow . . .
until some fatal power decides between us both,
handing victory down to our side—or the other."


      His people hung on his words and all obeyed the king.
They took their meal by ranks throughout the army.
At first light Idaeus went to the beaked ships
and out on the meeting grounds he found the Argives,
veterans close by the stem of Agamemnon's ship.
Taking his stand, right in the milling troops,
the herald called out in a high, firm voice,
"Son of Atreus! Captains of all Achaeans!
Priam and noble Trojans command me to report,
if it proves acceptable, pleasing to one and all,
the offer of Paris who caused our long hard campaign.
All the treasures that filled his hollow ships
and the prince hauled home to Troy—
would to god he'd drowned before that day!—
he'll return them all and add from his own stores.
But the lawful wife of Menelaus, renowned Menelaus,
he will not give her up, Paris makes that clear,
though all Troy commands him to do precisely that.
They tell me to add this too, a good sound proposal:
if you are willing, come, we'll halt the brutal war
until we can bum the bodies of our dead.
We'll fight again tomorrow—
until some fatal power decides between us both,
handing victory down to one side or the other."
                                                            So he spoke
and a hushed silence went through all the ranks.
Finally Diomedes lord of the war cry shouted out,
"No one touch the treasures of Paris, Helen either!
It's obvious—any fool can see it. Now, at last,
the neck of Troy's in the noose—her doom is sealed."


      All the Achaean soldiers roared out their assent,
stirred by the stallion-breaking lord's reply,
and King Agamemnon rounded on Idaeus: "There,
there's the Achaeans' answer, Idaeus—a declaration—
you can hear for yourself. It is my pleasure too.
But about the dead, I'd never grudge their burning.
No holding back for the bodies of the fallen:
once they are gone, let fire soothe them quickly.
That is my sworn pledge. Zeus my witness now,
Hera's lord whose thunder drums the sky!"
                                                            With that oath
he raised his scepter high in the eyes of all the gods
and Idaeus turned, trailing back to sacred Troy.
There they sat in assembly, Trojans, Dardans,
all collected together, waiting long and tense
for the herald to return. And home Idaeus came,
delivered his message standing in their midst
and they fell to making hurried preparations,
dividing the labors quickly—two detachments,
one to gather the bodies, one the timber.
And far on the other side Achaean troops
came streaming out of the well-benched ships,
some to gather the bodies, some the timber.


      Just as the sun began to strike the plowlands,
rising out of the deep calm flow of the Ocean River
to climb the vaulting sky, the opposing armies met.
And hard as it was to recognize each man, each body,
with clear water they washed the clotted blood away
and lifted them onto wagons, weeping warm tears.
Priam forbade his people to wail aloud. In silence
they piled the corpses on the pyre, their hearts breaking,
burned them down to ash and returned to sacred Troy.
And just so on the other side Achaean men-at-arms
piled the corpses on the pyre, their hearts breaking,
burned them down to ash and returned to the hollow ships.


      Then with the daybreak not quite risen into dawn,
the night and day still deadlocked, round the pyre
a work brigade of picked Achaeans grouped.
They heaped a single great barrow over the corpse-fire,
one great communal grave stretched out across the plain
and fronting it threw up looming ramparts quickly,
a landward wall for ships and troops themselves,
and amidst the wall built gateways fitted strong
to open a clear path for driving chariots through.
And against the fortress, just outside the wall,
the men dug an enormous trench, broad and deep,
and drove sharp stakes to guard it.
                                                            So they labored,
the long-haired Achaeans, while the gods aloft,
seated at ease beside the lord of lightning, Zeus,
gazed down on the grand work of Argives armed in bronze.
Poseidon the god whose breakers shake the land began,
"Father Zeus, is there a man on the whole wide earth
who still informs the gods of all his plans, his schemes?
Don't you see? Look there—the long-haired Achaeans
have flung that rampart up against their ships,
around it they have dug an enormous deep trench
and never offered the gods a hundred splendid bulls,
but its fame will spread as far as the light of dawnl
And men will forget those ramparts I and Apollo
reared for Troy in the old days—
for the hero Laomedon—we broke our backs with labor."


      But filled with anger, Zeus who marshals the thunderheads
let loose now: "Unbelievable! God of the earthquake,
you with your massive power, why are you moaning so?
Another god might fear their wall—their idle whim—
one far weaker than you in strength of hand and fury.
Your own fame goes spreading far as the light of dawn.
Come now, just wait till these long-haired Achaeans
sail back in their ships to the fatherland they love,
then batter their wall, sweep it into the salt breakers
and pile over the endless beach your drifts of sand again,
level it to your heart's content—the Argives' mighty wall."


      So they conferred together, building their resolve.
The sun went down. The Argives' work was finished.
They slew oxen beside the tents and took their meal.
And the ships pulled in from Lemnos bringing wine,
a big convoy sent across by Euneus, Jason's son
whom Hypsipyle bore the seasoned lord of armies.
An outright gift to Atrides Agamemnon and Menelaus,
Euneus gave a shipment of wine, a thousand measures full.
From the rest Achaean soldiers bought their rations,
some with bronze and some with gleaming iron,
some with hides, some with whole live cattle,
some with slaves, and they made a handsome feast.
Then all that night the long-haired Achaeans feasted
as Trojans and Trojan allies took their meal in Troy.
Yes, but all night long the Master Strategist Zeus
plotted fresh disaster for both opposing armies—
his thunder striking terror—
and blanching panic swept across the ranks.
They flung wine from their cups and wet the earth
and no fighter would dare drink until he'd poured
an offering out to the overwhelming son of Cronus.
Then down they lay at last and took the gift of sleep.


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