Romulus and Remus


Rudyard Kipling

OH, LITTLE did the Wolf-Child care—
    When first he planned his home,
What city should arise and bear
    The weight and state of Rome.

A shiftless, westward-wandering tramp,
    Checked by the Tiber flood,
He reared a wall around his camp
    Of uninspired mud.

But when his brother leaped the Wall
    And mocked its height and make,
He guessed the future of it all
    And slew him for its sake.

Swift was the blow—swift as the thought
    Which showed him in that hour
How unbelief may bring to naught
    The early steps of Power.

Forseeing Time’s imperilled hopes
    Of Glory, Grace, and Love—
All singers, Cæsars, artists, Popes—
    Would fail if Remus throve,

He sent his brother to the Gods,
    And, when the fit was o’er,
Went on collecting turves and clods
    To build the Wall once more!

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