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Thou camest; but which when Wisdom's self be

held,

Rightly she augured what thy visions meant, Shadow'd in doubtful hues by some immortal hand; When breathing mystic truths divine,

Full many a seer and prophet thou hast taught,
And from the Almighty brought

Behests of dread command and import high;
While the rapt mind's judging eye

In cloudless perspective the future caught:
Nor seldom God or Angel held

Converse with man; the midnight hour
Illumined shone with glory's ray,

And coruscations of eternal day

Waved, queen of silence! o'er thy darksome bower; Heaven oped her golden portals wide,

And far within her glittering courts were spied The' angelic phalanx robed in vestments bright* To earth descending slow from yon fair worlds of light.

And still thy gracious forms await

The good man on the verge of fate;

When this world and the next between,
The Beatific Vision to the sight

Unfolding opens heaven; then floods the scene,
In boundless bliss absorbed, and deluges of light.
Thou canst the heart of guilt appal;
Thy voice, O awful Sleep, has power
To wake the dead at midnight hour,
Obedient to thy potent call:

And tyrants oft have heard with dread

The cry of vengeance thundering in their ear,

* Genesis xxviii. 12.

While the pale spectre Fear

Hangs her dire portents round the regal bed, Horrors and woes and death: Night's demons loud Shriek to the moon afar, from many a passing cloud.

Beneath the dim Earth's centre deep,
Beneath where Ocean rolls his wave,
Where ghosts their lingering sabbath keep,
And, thrown across the gulf of fate,
Where Hell her ponderous adamantine gate
Bars on the mansions of the grave,
Close by Death's door, on either hand,
O Sleep, thy shadowy kingdoms stand;
Stretch'd on thy ebon couch supine,
Soft poppy wreaths thy temples twine;
Around thee mimic Fancy plays,
The shadow of the evening strays,

And busy murmurs creep:

While dreams in clusters thick are spread,

Like hovering mists about thy head,

That with fantastic wing thy dewy eyelids sweep.

About thy sable standard pass

Of Hopes and Fears a mingled mass,
Fluttering Wishes, gay Desires,
Sighs of Disappointment born,
Passion's unextinguish'd fires,
And Melancholy's plaint forlorn!
While from the tablet of the brain
Memory calls off her dusky train,
Dim-veil'd Illusion mocks the sight
With shortlived phantoms of delight,
And shows of promised bliss that fly
Ere the young Morn with bashful eye,

From Thetis' coral-woven bed,

Lifts o'er the wave his beaming head:
Amidst the deep-surrounding shade
Ambition's gilded trophies fade;

No more the lover's arms enfold

The fair, snatch'd sudden from his view;
And melting like the early dew

Slips from the miser's grasp the evanescent gold.

Vast and stupendous beyond aught,
Fancy, in fit ecstatic, thought;
Or what beside of high-wrought lore
Graced Fiction's elfin tales of yore,
Thy forms in many a wondrous hue
Glance on the bard's astonish'd view,
Or hold in deep suspense his tranced ear;
While many a phantom cleaves the ground,
And busy murmurs circle round,

And airy voices wake that whisper fear:

Oft by the paly star

[wild,

His steps thou lead'st to shadowy wood scenes Or, where stupendous precipices piled

Gleam through the' untrodden wilderness afar;
Where Nature's awful scenes present

Mute wonder and astonishment;
Or in some nook where Solitude
Sits on a rocky fragment rude,
He reads that high immortal line,
Traced by the Muse's hand divine,
Which, while enamour'd of the strain
Memory's bold pencil would retain,
Fades by degrees upon the mental sight,

And seeks Oblivion's shore, and melts before the light.

Ye visions of the night, farewell!
The orient Morn's impurpled ray
Has chased your airy forms away,
And now with strong immortal hand
She breaks, O Sleep, thy fairy wand,
And melts thy wizard spell.

Yet with impassion'd fond regret

I quit thy shadowy realms, where, brought
Midst Fancy's high and solemn hour,
The Muse invoked thy mystic power
To nurse poetic thought:
Adieu, ye visionary vales!

Far off Night's sullen spirit sails,
The land of shadows, lo, I leave :

Yet shall yon golden lamp of day

More lasting forms more happy scenes display?
Alas! like thine, they quickly pass away,
Like thine, alas! deceive.

II.

SOFT queen of shadows, gentle Sleep,
Once more to thee I pay my vow,
Again I woo thy murmurs deep
To soothe this throbbing breast of mine,
And round my aching temples twine
The grateful foliage of thy cypress bough;
Sweet are thy foldings; when the mind,
Leaving the load of cares behind,

Expatiates 'midst thy visionary reign,

And bathes in slumbers bland the wakeful sense

of pain.

Sweet are thy foldings, when, to bless
The spirit faint with trials sore,
Thou comest indulgent to restore
Past scenes of shortlived happiness!
When thy fairy fingers dress

The paths where childhood loved to stray;
When Joy with roses strew'd the way,
And Pleasure, nymph of heavenly birth,
Frolick'd blithe: with simple Glee,
Sport, and rose-lipp'd Gaiety,
The family of Mirth!

Where playful at the cottage door,
Or in light gambols on the floor,
Infant groups with daisies crown'd
Frisk'd in many an airy round;
Or, with instinctive aim, began

[man.

To mimic, midst their sports, the graver cares of

Scenes of enchantment! ye are fled;

Yet Fancy oft your flight pursues,

While evening shadows dim

O'er earth's pale surface swim,

[hues.

And eyes your transient forms, and pranks in golden But most when mortal eyelids close,

Lock'd in Sleep's profound repose,

The' enchantress wakes, and lo, anew
Youth's fairy prospects start to view,
The vernal landscape glows!

Hope relumes her sickly fires,

The bard's ecstatic breast inspires,

Expressing subjects high, and worthy of the Muse.

And oft has Friendship known

The kind relief that Sleep alone,

VOL. III.

M

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