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At last surrounds their sight
That with long beams the shamefac'd night
(array'd ; And sworded seraphim,
But when of old the sons of morning sung ;
And the well-balanced world on hinges hung;
Ring out, ye crystal spheres,
have power to touch our senses so ;
And let the base of Heaven's deep organ blow; And, with your ninefold harmony, Make up full consort to the angelic symphony. For if such holy song Enwrap our fancy long,
Time will run back, and fetch the age of gold; And speckled Vanity Will sicken soon and die,
And leprous sin will melt from earthly mould, And Hell itself will pass away, And leave her dolorous mansions to the peering day.
Yea, Truth and Justice then
Orb’d in a rainbow; &, like glories wearing,
With radiant feet the tissued clouds down
The Babe yet lies in smiling infancy,
So both himself and us to glorify;
While the red fire and smouldring clouds out The aged Earth aghast,
[brake: With terror of that blast,
Shall from the surface to the centre shake;
But now begins; for, from this happy day,
Not half so far casts his usurped sway;
Runs through the arched roof in words deceiving.
With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leaving.
A voice of weeping heard, and loud lament;
The parting genius is with sighing sent;
[mourn. The nymphs, in twilight shade of tangled thickets In consecrated earth, And on the holy hearth,
The Lars, and Lemures moan, with midnight In urns, and altars round,
[plaint ; A drear and dying sound
Affrights the Flamens, at their service quaint: And the chill marble seems to sweat, While each peculiar power forgoes his wonted seat
Peor and Baälim
With that twice-batter'd god of Palestine ;
Now sits not girt with tapers' holy shine;
And sullen Moloch, fled
His burning idol, all of blackest hue;
In dismal dance about the furnace blue :
Nor is Osiris seen
Trampling the unshower'd grass with lowings
[loud; Within his sacred chest,
Nought but profoundest He!) can be his shroud ; In vain with timbrell’d nthems rk, The sable-stol'd sorcerers bear his worshipt ark.
He feels, from Juda's land,
The rays of Bethlehem blind his dusky eyn;
Not Typhon huge, ending in snaky twine:
Pillows his chin upon an orient wave,
Each fetter'd ghost slips to his several grave,
maze. Fly after the night-steeds, leaving their moon-loved But see, the virgin bless'd Hath laid her Babe to rest,
Time is our tedious song should here have ending: Heaven's youngest-teemed star Hath fix'd her polish'd car,
Her sleeping Lord with handmaid lamp attending • And all about the courtly stable Bright-harness'd angels sit, in order serviceable.
EREWHILE of music, and ethereal mirth,
In wintery solstice, like the shorten'd light,
Most perfect hero, tried in heaviest plight Of labours huge and hard, too hard for human wight ! He, sovereign priest, stooping his regal head, That dropt with odorous oil down his fair eyes, Poor fleshy tabernacle entered, His starry front low-roof'd, beneath the skies; O what a mask was there, what a disguise !
Yet more; the stroke of death he must abide, Then lies him meekly down, fast by his brethren's side. These latest scenes confine my roving verse; To this horizon is my Phoebus bound: His godlike acts, and his temptations fierce, And former sufferings, other where are found; Loud o'er the rest Cremona's trump doth sound;
Me softer airs befit, and softer strings Of lute, or viol still, more apt for mournful things. Befriend me, Night, best patroness of grief, Over the pole thy thickest mantle throw, And work my flatter'd fancy to belief, That Heaven and earth are colour'd with my woe; My sorrows are too dark for day to know :
The leaves should all be black whereon Iwrite, white; And letters, where my tears have wash'd, a wannish
See, see the chariot, and those rushing wheels,
There doth my soul in holy vision sit,
would I score My plaining verse, as lively as before ;
For sure so well instructed are my tears, That they would fitly fall in order'd characters. Or should I thence hurried, on viewless wing, Take up a weeping, on the mountains wild, The gentle neighbourhood of grove and spring Would soon unbosom all their echoes mild, And I, for grief is easily beguiled,
Might think the infection of my sorrows loud Had got a race of mourners, on some pregnant cloud. This subject the Author finding to be above the years
he had, when he wrote it, and nothing satisfied with what was begun, left it unfinished.
UPON THE CIRCUMCISION.
Ye flaming powers, and winged warriors bright
His infancy to seize!