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Down to the dust returns this earthly frame;
Receive my spirit, Lord ! from whom it came;
Rebuke the Tempter, show thy power to save,
O let thy glory light me to the grave,
That these, who witness my departing breath,
May learn to triumph in the grasp of death."
He closed his eyelids with a tranquil smile,
And seemed to rest in silent
Around his couch with filial awe we kneeled,
When suddenly a light from heaven revealed
A spirit, that stood within the unopened door ; -
The sword of God in his right hand he bore;
His countenance was lightning, and his vest
Like snow at sunrise on the mountain's crest ;
Yet so benignly beautiful his form, ben
His presence stilled the fury of the storm;
. At once the winds retire, the waters cease;
His look was love, his salutation, “ Peace !"
Our mother first beheld him, sore amazed,
But terror grew to transport, while she gazed:
“'Tis he, the Prince of Seraphim, who drove
Our banished feet from Eden's happy grove;
Adam, my life, my spouse, awake!” she cried;
“Return to Paradise; behold thy guide!
O let me follow in this dear embrace!”
She sank, and on his bosom hid her face.
Adam looked up; his visage changed its hue,
Transformed into an angel's at the view:
“I come !” he cried, with faith's full triumph fired,
And in a sigh of ecstacy expired.
The light was vanished, and the vision fled;
We stood alone, the living with the dead;
The ruddy embers, glimmering round the room,
Displayed the corse amidst the solemn gloom;
But o'er the scene a holy calm reposed,
The gate of heaven had opened there, and closed.
Eve's faithful arm still clasped her lifeless spouse;
Gently I shook it, from her trance to rouse ;
gave no answer; motionless and cold,
It fell like clay from my relaxing hold;
Alarmed, I lifted up the locks of grey
That hid her cheek; her soul had passed away:
A beauteous corse she graced her partner's side ;
Love bound their lives, and death could not divide.
Trembling astonishment of grief we felt,
Till Nature's sympathies began to melt;
We wept in stillness through the long, dark night,
And oh! how welcome was the morning light!
From “ The Fall of Jerusalem.”—MILMAN.
To-morrow! will that to-morrow dawn upon thee?
I've warned them, I have lifted up my voice,
As loud as 't were an angel's, and well nigh
Had I betrayed my secret: they but scoffed,
And asked how long I had been a prophetess ?
Then that injurious John did foully taunt me,
As though I envied my lost sister's bridal ;
And when I clung to my dear father's neck,
With the close fondness of a last embrace,
He shook me from him.
But, ah me! how strange!
This moment, and the hurrying streets were full
As at a festival; now all's so silent,
That I might hear the footsteps of a child.
The sound of dissolute mirth hath ceased, the lamps
Are spent, the voice of music broken off.
No watchman's tread comes from the silent wall,
There are nor lights nor voices in the towers.
The hungry have given up their idle search
For food, the gazers on the heavens are gone;
Even Fear's at rest — all still as in a sepulchre !
And thou liest sleeping, O Jerusalem !
A deeper slumber could not fall upon thee,
If thou wert desolate of all thy children,
And thy razed streets a dwelling-place for owls.
I do mistake! this is the Wilderness,
The Desert, where winds pass and make no sound,
And not the populous city, the besieged purets
And overhung with tempest. Why, my voice,
My motion, breaks upon the oppressive stillness
Like a forbidden and disturbing sound.
The very air 's asleep; my feeblest breathing
Is audible — I'll think my prayers
Ha! 't is the thunder of the Living God !
It peals ! it crashes ! it comes down in fire!
Again !- it is the engine of the foe;
Our walls are dust before it - Wake - oh wake !
O Israel! - O Jerusalem !
Why shouldst thou wake ? thy foe is in the heavens!
Yea, thy judicial slumber weighs thee down,
And gives thee, O lost city ! to the Gentile,
It rolls down,
As though the Everlasting raged not now
Against our guilty Zion, but did mingle
The universal world in our destruction,
And all mankind were destined for a sacrifice
On Israel's funeral pile. O Crucified !
Here, here, where thou didst suffer, I beseech thee,
Even by thy cross !
Hark! now in impious rivalry
Man thunders. In the centre of our streets
The Gentile trumpet, the triumphant shouts
Of onset; and I, - 1, a trembling girl,
Alone, awake, abroad.
Oh! now ye wake.
Now ye pour forth, and hideous Massacre,
Loathing his bloodless conquest, joys to see you
Thus naked and unarmed.
The Closing Year.-GEORGE D. PRENTICE.
'Tis midnight's holy hour - and silence now
Is brooding like a gentle Spirit o'er
The still and pulseless world. Hark! on the winds
The bell's deep tones are swelling — 't is the knell
Of the departed year. No funeral train
Is sweeping past, — yet, on the stream and wood,
· With melancholy light, the moonbeams rest
Like a pale, spotless shroud; the air is stirred
As by a mourner's sigh — and on yon cloud,
That floats so still and placidly through heaven,
The spirits of the seasons seem to stand,
Young Spring, bright Summer, Autumn's solemn form,
And Winter with his aged locks, — and breathe,
In mournful cadences that come abroad
Like the far wind-harp's wild and touching wail,
Gone from the Earth for ever.
'Tis a time
For memory and for tears. Within the deep,
Still chambers of the heart, a spectre dim,
Whose tones are like the wizard voice of Time,
Heard from the tomb of Ages, points its cold
And solemn finger to the beautiful
And holy visions, that have passed away,
And left no shadow of their loveliness
On the dead waste of life. That spectre lifts
The coffin-lid of Hope, and Joy, and Love;
And, bending mournfully above the pale
Sweet forms that slumber there, scatters dead flowers
O’er what has passed to nothingness. The year
Has gone, and, with it, many a glorious throng
Of happy dreams. Its mark is on each brow,
Its shadow in each heart. In its swift course,
It waved its sceptre o'er the beautiful —
And they are not. It laid its pallid hand
Upon the strong man - and the haughty form
Is fallen, and the flashing eye is dim.
It trod the hall of revelry, where thronged
The bright and joyous - and the tearful wail
Of stricken ones is heard, where erst the song
And reckless shout resounded. It passed o'er
The battle-plain, where sword and spear and shield
Flashed in the light of mid-day — and the strength
Of serried hosts is shivered, and the grass,
Green from the soil of carnage, waves above
The crushed and mouldering skeleton. It came
And faded like a wreath of mist at eve;
Yet, ere it melted in the viewless air,
It heralded its millions to their home
In the dim land of dreams.
Remorseless Time -
Fierce Spirit of the Glass and Scythe — what power