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Time is our tedious song should here have ending:
Heaven's youngest-teemed star
Hath fix'd her polislı'd car,
Her sleeping Lord with handmaid lamp attending :
And all about the courtly stable,
Bright-harness'd angels sit in order serviceable.
Blest pair of syrens, pledges of heaven's joy,
Sphere-born, harmonious sisters, Voice and Verse,
Wed your divine sounds, and mix'd power employ,
Dead things with imbreathed sense able to pierce,
And to our high-raised phantasy present
That undisturbed song of pure content,
Aye sung before the sapphire-colour'd throne
To Him that sits thereon,
With saintly shout and solemn jubilee,
Where the bright seraphim in burning row
Their loud uplifted angel-trumpets blow,
And the cherubic host in thousand choirs
Touch their immortal harps of golden wires,
With those just spirits that wear victorious palms,
Hymns devout and holy psalms
That we on earth with undiscording voice
May rightly answer that melodious noise,
As once we did, till disproportion'd sin
Jarr'd against Nature's chime, and with harsh din
Broke the fair music that all creatures made
To their great Lord, whose love their motion sway'd
In perfect diapason whilst they stood
In first obedience and their state of good.
Oh, may we soon again renew that song,
And keep in tune with heaven, till God ere long
To His celestial concert us unite,
To live with Him, and sing in endless morn of light.
On the late Massacre at Piedmont. Avenge, O Lord, Thy slaughter'd saints, whose bones
Lie scatter'd on the Alpine mountains cold;
Even them who kept Thy truth so pure of old, When all our fathers worshipp'd stocks and stones, Forget not : in Thy book record their groans,
Who were Thy sheep, and in their ancient fold
Slain by the bloody Piedmontese that rollid
Mother with infant down the rocks. Their moans
The vales redoubled to the hills, and they
To heaven. Their martyr'd blood and ashes sow
O'er all the Italian fields, where still doth sway
The triple tyrant; that from these may grow
A hundredfold, who, having learn’d Thy way, Early may fly the Babylonian woe.
To Cyriac Skinner..
Cyriac, this three years day, these eyes, though clear,
To outward view, of blemish or of spot,
Bereft of sight, their seeing have forgot ;
Nor to their idle orbs does day appear,
Or sun, or moon, or star, throughout the year,
Or man, or woman. Yet I argue not
Against Heaven's hand or will, nor bate one jot Of heart or hope; but still bear up, and steer
Right onwards. What supports me, dost thou ask? The conscience, friend, t' have lost them overplied
In Liberty's defence, my noble task, Whereof all Europe rings from side to side.
This thought might lead me through this world's vain mask, Content, though blind, had I no other guide.
On his Blindness. When I consider how my light is spent,
Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide, Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest He returning chide ;
“ Doth God exact day-labour, light denied ?
I fondly ask: but Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies, 6 God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts; who best
Bear His mild yoke, they serve Him best; His state
Is kingly: thousands at His bidding speed,
And post o'er land and ocean without rest;
They also serve who only stand and wait."
Methought I saw my late espoused saint
Brought to me, like Alcestis, from the grave,
Whom Jove's great son to her glad husband gave,
Rescued from death by force, though pale and faint;
Mine, as whom wash'd from spot of child-bed taint
Purification in th' old law did save,
And such as yet once more I trust to have
Full sight of her in heaven without restraint,
Came vested all in white, pure as her mind:
Her face was veil'd; yet, to my fancied sight,
Love, sweetness, goodness, in her person
So clear, as in no face with more delight.
But, oh! as to embrace me she inclined,
I waked-she fled—and day brought back my night.
The Morning Hymn in Paradise.
[To extract the beauties of " Paradise Lost” would be to reprint the little three-shilling quarto which, under that title, Samuel Simmons first published in 1667. And every reader will have his own favourite passages.
Mr Macaulay points out, and, in his “ Lays of Ancient Rome," has successfully imitated, those passages in which Milton shews his musical mastery of rugged names; and, like a patrician and a Frenchman, Chateaubriand admires the delicate and pointed expression and the occasional paradox.* We must content ourselves with giving two or three which have received the universal suffrage.]
These are thy glorious works, Parent of good,
Almighty! Thine this universal frame,
Thus wondrous fair; Thyself how wondrous then!
Unspeakable, who sitt'st above these heavens
To us invisible, or dimly seen
In these Thy lowest works; yet these declare
Thy goodness beyond thought, and power Divine.
Speak, ye who best can tell, ye sons of light,
Angels; for ye behold Him, and with songs
And choral symphonies, day without night,
Circle His throne rejoicing; ye in Heaven.
On earth join all ye creatures to extol
Him first, Him last, Him midst, and without end.
Fairest of stars, last in the train of night,
If better thou belong not to the dawn,
Sure pledge of day, that crown'st the smiling morn
With thy bright circlet, praise Him in thy sphere,
While day arises, that sweet hour of prime.
Thou Sun, of this great world both eye and soul,
Acknowledge Him thy greater; sound His praise
In thy eternal course, both when thou climb'st,
And when high noon hast gain'd, and when thou fallist.
Moon, that now meet'st the orient sun, now fly’st,
With the fix'd stars, fix'd in their orb that flies;
*“Milton a surtout le mérite de l'expression. On connait les ténèbres visibles,' le silence ravi,' &c. Ces hardiesses, lorsqu'elles sont bien sauvées, comme les dissonances en musique, font un effet très-brillant." La manière dont le poëte Anglais a conduit la chute de nos premiers pères mérite d'être examinée. Un esprit ordinaire n'aurait pas manqué de renverser le monde au moment où Eve porte à sa bouche le fruit fatal; Milton s'est contenté de faire pousser un soupir à la terre qui vient d'enfanter la mort : on est beaucoup plus surpris, parce que cela est beaucoup moins surprenant. Quelles calamités cette tranquillité présente de la nature ne fait-elle point entrevoir dans l'avenir !"--Génie du Christianisme.
And ye five other wandering fires, that move
In mystic dance not without song, resound
His praise who out of darkness call'd up light.
Air, and ye elements, the eldest birth
Of Nature's womb, that in quaternion run
Perpetual circle, multiform; and mix
And nourish all things; let your ceaseless change
Vary to our great Maker still new praise.
Ye mists and exhalations, that now rise
From hill or steaming lake, dusky or gray,
Till the sun paint your fleecy skirts with gold,
In honour to the world's great Author rise;
Whether to deck with clouds the uncolour'd sky,
Or wet the thirsty earth with falling showers,
Rising or falling still advance His praise.
His praise, ye winds, that from four quarters blow,
Breathe soft or loud; and wave your tops, ye pines,
With every plant, in sign of worship wave.
Fountains, and ye that warble, as ye flow,
Melodious murmurs, warbling tune his praise.
Join voices, all ye living souls: ye birds,
That singing up to heaven-gate ascend,
Bear on your wings and in your notes His praise.
Ye that in waters glide, and ye that walk
The earth, and stately tread, or lowly creep;
Witness if I be silent, morn or even,
To hill, or valley, fountain, or fresh shade,
Made vocal by my song, and taught His praise.
Hail, universal Lord, be bounteous still
To give us only good; and if the night
Have gather'd aught of evil, or conceald,
Disperse it, as now light dispels the dark!
“Celestial, whether among the thrones, or named
Of them the highest; for such of shape may seem
Prince above princes! gently hast thou told
Thy message, which might else in telling wound,
And in performing end us; what besides