The Night of Gods

By George Sterling

Their mouths have drunken the eternal wine—
    The draught that Baal in oblivion sips.
    Unseen about their courts the adder slips,
Unheard the sucklings of the leopard whine;
The toad has found a resting-place divine
    And bloats in stupor between Ammon's lips.
    O Carthage and the unreturning ships,
The fallen pinnacle, the shifting Sign!

Lo! when I hear from voiceless court and fane
    Time's adoration of Eternity—
        The cry of kingdoms past and gods undone—
I stand as one whose feet at noontide gain
    A lonely shore; who feels his soul set free,
        And hears the blind sea chanting to the sun.

The third of "Three Sonnets on Oblivion", Dedicated to Mr. Raphael Weill.

The Thirst of Satan: Poems of Fantasy and Terror. By George Sterling, Edited by S. T. Joshi, August 2003, ISBN 0972164464, 216 pages, Paperback, $15.00.

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