By the waters of Babylon

from the quills of dead white poets

Lord Byron (1788 – 1824)

(From “Hebrew Melodies”)

In the valley of waters we wept on the day
When the host of the Stranger made Salem his prey;
And our heads on our bosoms all droopingly lay,
And our hearts were so full of the land far away!

The song they demanded in vain – it lay still,
In our souls as the wind that hath died in the hill –
They called for the harp – but our blood they shall spill
Ere our right hands shall teach them tone of their skill.

All stringlessly hung in the willow’s sad tree,
As dead as her dead-leaf, those mute harps must be:
Our hands may be fettered – our tears still are free
For our God – and our Glory – and Zion, Oh Thee!


About Paul Jacko

Jacko was born in Czechoslovakia not long before the communist putsch in February 1948. He studied industrial chemistry there and left in 1969 for Australia, where he became a lawyer and established his own practice. He has now retired and beside hunting, fishing, camping, prospecting and playing golf he amuses himself by writing.
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