The Sphinx

By George Sterling

Where everlasting sleep has smoothed the frown
    From Pharaoh's brow, she stares across the lands
    That hear no more the voice of his commands,
And feel no more the shadow of his crown.
Deep in Time's sea the kings and captains drown,
    As ages buffet with relentless hands
    Her stony face, and blur with driven sands
The runes that told their miserable renown.

Seeking its goal in vastitudes unsown,
    Mirage ahead and barren dust behind,
    Shifting forever in the desert wind,
        The human caravan forever plods,
Beside whose ancient path she waits alone,
        Watching the death of nations and their gods.

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