THE SPHINX SPEAKS
by: Francis Saltus (1846-1889)
- ARVED by
a mighty race whose vanished hands
- Formed empires more destructible than I,
- In sultry silence I forever lie,
- Wrapped in the shifting garment of the sands.
- Below me, Pharaohs scintillating bands
- With clashings of loud cymbals have passed by,
- And the eternal reverence of the sky
- Falls royally on me and all my lands.
- The record of the future broods in me;
- I have with worlds of blazing stars been crowned,
- But none my subtle mystery hath known
- Save one, who made his way through blood and sea,
- The Corsican, prophetic and renowned,
- To whom I spake, one awful night alone!
POEMS BY FRANCIS SALTUS
"The Sphinx Speaks" is
reprinted from An American Anthology. Ed. Edmund Clarence
Stedman. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1900.