I used to do a thing with children whereby one would tell them the plot of 'Ozymandias', would give them a prose pr?cis of it and make them write out their own poem, which they enjoyed doing and afterwards you would read them Shelley?s poem which came as quite a surprise. Extraordinary poem, I think it?s funny too, I think it?s not often brought out, the humour there is in this poem.
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."