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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Asia: Vols. XXI–XXIII. 1876–79.

Syria: Jerusalem

On the Day of the Destruction of Jerusalem by Titus

By Lord Byron (1788–1824)

FROM the last hill that looks on thy once holy dome

I beheld thee, O Sion, when rendered to Rome:

’T was thy last sun went down, and the flames of thy fall

Flashed back on the last glance I gave to thy wall.

I looked for thy Temple, I looked for my home,

And forgot for a moment my bondage to come;

I beheld but the deathfire that fed on thy fane,

And the fast-fettered hands that made vengeance in vain.

On many an eve the high spot whence I gazed

Had reflected the last beam of day as it blazed;

While I stood on the height, and beheld the decline

Of the rays from the mountain that shone on thy shrine.

And now on that mountain I stood on that day,

But I marked not the twilight beam melting away!

O, would that the lightning had glared in its stead,

And the thunderbolt burst on the conqueror’s head!

But the gods of the Pagan shall never profane

The shrine where Jehovah disdained not to reign;

And scattered and scorned as thy people may be,

Our worship, O Father, is only for thee.