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126 PSALM CXXXVI. PARAPHRASED.

PSALM CXXXVI.

LET us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord, for he is kind ;

For his mercies aye endure,
Ever faithful, ever sure.

Let us blaze his name abroad,
For of gods he is the God;

For his, etc.

O let us his praises tell,
Who doth the wrathful tyrants quell;

For his, etc.

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Who with his miracles doth make
Amazed heaven and earth to shake;

For his, etc.

Who by his wisdom did create
The painted heavens so full of state;

For his, etc.

Who did the solid earth ordain
To rise above the watery plain ;

For his, etc.

Who, by his all-commanding might,
Did fill the new-made world with light ;

For his, etc.

And caused the golden-tressèd sun
All the day long his course to run ;

For his, etc.

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The hornèd moon to shine by night
Amongst her spangled sisters bright;

For his, etc.
He, with his thunder-clasping hand,
Smote the first-born of Egypt land ;

For his, etc.
And, in despite of Pharao fell,
He brought from thence his Israel ;

For his, etc.
The ruddy waves he cleft in twain
Of the Erythræan main ;

For his, etc.
The floods stood still, like walls of glass,
While the Hebrew bands did pass;

For his, etc.
But full soon they did devour
The tawny king with all his power ;

For his, etc.

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His chosen people he did bless
In the wasteful wilderness;

For his, etc.
In bloody battle he brought down
Kings of prowess and renown;

For his, etc.
He foiled bold Seon and his host,
That ruled the Amorrean coast;

For his, etc.

And large-limbed Og he did subdue,
With all his over-hardy crew;

For his, etc.

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And to his servant Israel
He gave their land, therein to dwell ;

For his, etc.
He hath, with a piteous eye,
Beheld us in our misery;

For his, etc.
And freed us from the slavery
Of the invading enemy;

For his, etc.
All living creatures he doth feed,
And with full hand supplies their need;

For his, etc.
Let us, therefore, warble forth
His mighty majesty and worth ;

For his, etc.
That his mansion hath on high,
Above the reach of mortal eye;

For his mercies aye endure,
Ever faithful, ever sure.

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ON THE DEATH OF A FAIR INFANT

DYING OF A COUGH.

Anno ætatis 17.

1.
O FAIREST flower, no sooner blown but blasted,
Soft silken primrose fading timelessly,
Summer's chief honour, if thou hadst outlasted
Bleak Winter's force that made thy blossom dry;
For he, being amorous on that lovely dye

That did thy cheek envermeil, thought to kiss, But killed, alas! and then bewailed his fatal bliss.

II.

IO

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For, since grim Aquilo, his charioteer,
By boisterous rape the Athenian damsel got,
He thought it touched his deity full near,
If likewise he some fair one wedded not,
Thereby to wipe away the infamous blot

Of long uncoupled bed and childless eld,
Which 'mongst the wanton gods a foul reproach was

held.

ΙΙΙ.

So, mounting up in icy-pearlèd car,
Through middle empire of the freezing air
He wandered long, till thee he spied from far ;
There ended was his quest, there ceased his care:
Down he descended from his snow-soft chair,

But, all unwares, with his cold-kind embrace, 20 Unhoused thy virgin soul from her fair biding-place.

IV.

Yet art thou not inglorious in thy fate;
For so Apollo, with unweeting hand,
Whilom did slay his dearly-lovèd mate,
Young Hyacinth, born on Eurotas' strand,
Young Hyacinth, the pride of Spartan land;

But then transformed him to a purple flower : Alack, that so to change thee Winter had no power !

Yet can I not persuade me thou art dead,
Or that thy corse corrupts in earth's dark womb, 30
Or that thy beauties lie in wormy bed,
Hid from the world in a low-delvèd tomb;
Could Heaven, for pity, thee so strictly doom?

Oh no! for something in thy face did shine
Above mortality, that showed thou wast divine.

VOL. I.

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Resolve me, then, O Soul most surely blest
(If so it be that thou these plaints dost hear)!
Tell me, bright Spirit, where'er thou hoverest,
Whether above that high first-moving sphere,
Or in the Elysian fields (if such there were), 40

Oh, say me true if thou wert mortal wight,
And why from us so quickly thou didst take thy flight.

VII.
Wert thou some star, which from the ruined roof
Of shaked Olympus by mischance didst fall;
Which careful Jove in nature's true behoof
Took up, and in fit place did reinstall ?
Or did of late Earth's sons besiege the wall

Of sheeny Heaven, and thou some goddess fled Amongst us here below to hide thy nectared head ?

VIII. Or wert thou that just maid who once before 50 Forsook the hated earth, oh! tell me sooth, And camest again to visit us once more ? Or wert thou [Mercy], that sweet smiling Youth ? Or that crowned Matron, sage white-robed Truth?

Or any other of that heavenly brood Let down in cloudy throne to do the world some good?

IX.

Or wert thou of the golden-winged host,
Who, having clad thyself in human weed,
To earth from thy prefixed seat didst post,
And after short abode fly back with speed,
As if to show what creatures Heaven doth breed;

Thereby to set the hearts of men on fire
To scorn the sordid world, and unto Heaven aspire ?

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