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Birthday of Percy Bysshe Shelley

Percy Bysshe Shelley.jpg
Romantic poet Percy Bysse Shelley was born on August 4, 1792. An advocate of justice for the lower classes, nonviolence and vegetarianism, he was married twice, the second time to Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, the author of Frankenstein. In honor of Shelley, who drowned at the age of 29, here is "Ozymandias," one of his best known poems.

I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

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