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Full text of "The Dynasts : Parts First And Second"

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THE DYNASTS                    ACT i
FIRST LADY Yes : surely he is a courier from the field!
Shall we not hasten down, and take from him The doom his tongue may deal us ?
We shall catch
As soon by watching here as hastening hence The tenour of his news.    (They wait.)    Ah, yes : seeŚ
The bulletin is straightway to be nailed! He was, then, from the field. . . .
They wait on while the bulletin is affixed.
I cannot scan the words the scroll proclaims ; Peer as I will, these too quick-thronging dreads Bring water to the eyes.    Grant us, good Heaven, That victory be where she is needed most To prove Thy goodness! . . . What do you make of it?
THIRD LADY (reading, through a glass)
" The battle strains us sorely ; but resolve
May save us even now.    Our last attack
Has failed, with fearful loss.    Once more we strive."
A long silence in the room. Another rider is heard approaching, above the murmur of the gathering citizens. The second lady looks out
A straggler merely he. ... But they decide, At last, to post his news, wild-winged or no.