Like burnt-out torches by a sick man's bed
   Gaunt cypress-trees stand round the sun-bleached stone;
   Here doth the little night-owl make her throne,
And the slight lizard show his jewelled head.
And, where the chaliced poppies flame to red,
   In the still chamber of yon pyramid
   Surely some Old-World Sphinx lurks darkly hid,
Grim warder of the pleasaunce of the dead.

Ah! sweet indeed to rest within the womb
   Of earth, great mother of eternal sleep,
But sweeter far for thee a restless tomb
   In the blue cavern of an echoing deep,
Or where the tall ships founder in the gloom
   Against the rocks of some wave-shattered steep.

-Oscar Wilde, 1854-1900

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