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‘Bees in Summer’
The Aeneid of Virgil, Book 1, Part 12
Gaining the heights they look down
Wondering at the mighty towers
At a nearer distance view the town [1]
Once huts, and shepherds' bowers
Men toil before the gates
Some call to all to gather
The work songs resound along streets
The marketplace bustling with banter
Some build the queen’s keep
Some quarry and roll stones along
Some extend the walled steeps
Some for homes choose ditched ground
Some pine for an orderly choice
Some ordain laws and sternly expound
Of holy senates and elect by voice
Some design a stony pier
Some from marble mighty columns hew
Some lay deep foundations for a theatre
Some carve scenes for future view
Such is their toil
Such their busy pains
Ploughing the sun-kissed soil
Like summer bees in flowery plains
Some lead their youth to work
Some at the gate stand ready to work
Some condense their crops to drink
Some in cells pour draughts to drink
All combine force to drive
The lazy drones from the toilsome hive
They view each other's deeds
Sweaty work providing the queen’s needs
[the hero speaks]
Happy the city is whose walls rise
Concealed in cloud
Entering at the gate
He mixed unseen among the crowd
Hearing the holy speaker relate
At town center there stood
An ancient and hallowed wood
And here the seer’s found
The head of Fortune’s own hound [2]
This sign their foundress Juno gave
Of a fateful home for people brave
Sidonian Dido here with solemn state
Did Juno's temple build, and consecrate [3]
Her brazen-stepped temple
With marble-pillared threshold
Gifted with a golden shrine
A house for the mother divine
Brazen-plated cedar beams enclosed
The rafters brass-crowned
Lofty doors brass-hinged and sound
Aeneas did then behold
What brought back his courage of old
For on the rising town’s temple wall
Was painted the tale of Troy’s fall
End 12
-1. The keep, or the citadel, or castle, a walled fortress of the ruler adjacent to an unwalled town, is a classic artifact of alien conquest, with the lower classes occupying the town originally constituting a conquered race, such as in Norman England, their master foes occupying an exclusionary zone. This practice extends to immigrant no-go enclaves in Western municipalities where ethnically alien folk have been imported as tools for economic displacement.
-2. The lucky hound head may extend further into pre-antiquity than the herding tradition and be a paleolithic holdover from the age of the hunt.
-3. It is no accident that the Semitic city of exiles stumbled upon by Aeneas in his exile is blessed by the very goddess of civilization that cursed Aryan Troy—perhaps a more subtle justification of the sack of historic Carthage and general Roman depredations in the Levant. Virgil, though, traffics in more than propaganda, but also tradition, tradition that his eldest ancestors were forced into nomadism by war, which is the most common catalyst for migration in the tribal setting, demonstrating that tribalism encourages peaceful separation more often than sectarian war, the latter more likely a result of unsuccessful cultural disengagement.
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