Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882). Complete Poetical Works. 1893.

The Masque of Pandora


  • The title poem in the volume, The Masque of Pandora and other Poems, published in 1875. It was adapted for the stage, and set to music by Alfred Cellier, and was brought out in an adaptation by Bolton Rowe at the Boston Theatre in 1881. Mr. Longfellow wrote for Miss Blanche Roosevelt, who was principally concerned in putting it on the stage, and who took the part of Pandora, the following song and chorus:—

  • WHAT place is this? Oh tell me, I implore!

    Tell me what I am feeling, hearing, seeing;

    If this be life, oh give me more and more.

    Till I am filled with the delight of being.

    What forms mysterious people this dark space?

    What voices and what sounds of music greet me?

    And who are these, so fair in form and face,

    That with such gracious welcome come to meet me?

    Blow, bellows, blow! and keep the flame from dying,

    Till from the iron on our anvils lying

    We forge the thunderbolts of Zeus supreme,

    Whose smothered lightnings in the ashes gleam.