by Percy Bysshe Shelley
The Devil's Walk


 On Launching Some Bottles Filled with Knowledge into the Bristol Channel. 

Published from the Esdaile manuscript book by Dowden, "Life of Shelley", 1887; dated August, 1812.

 Vessels of heavenly medicine! may the breeze Auspicious waft your dark green forms to shore; Safe may ye stem the wide surrounding roar Of the wild whirlwinds and the raging seas; And oh! if Liberty e'er deigned to stoop  From yonder lowly throne her crownless brow, Sure she will breathe around your emerald group The fairest breezes of her West that blow. Yes! she will waft ye to some freeborn soul Whose eye-beam, kindling as it meets your freight,  Her heaven-born flame in suffering Earth will light, Until its radiance gleams from pole to pole, And tyrant-hearts with powerless envy burst To see their night of ignorance dispersed.