صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني
[ocr errors]

XXIII.

And fullen Moloch fled,
Hath left in fhadows dread

His burning idol all of blackeft hue;

In vain with cymbals ring

They call the grifly king,

In difmal dance about the furnace blue;
The brutish Gods of Nile as faft,

Ifis and Orus, and the dog Anubis hafte.
XXIV.

The fable-ftoled forcerers bear his worshipt ark.
XXV.

Nor is Ofiris feen

In Memphian grove or green,

Trampling the unfhowr'd grafs with lowings loud:

Nor can he be at rest

216

Within his facred cheft,

Nought but profoundeft Hell can be his fhroud;
In vain with timbrel'd anthems dark

He feels from Juda's land
The dreaded Infant's hand,

The rays of Bethlehem blind his dufky eyn;
Nor all the God's befide,

Longer dare abide,

Not Typhon huge ending in fnaky twine:
Our babe to fhow his Godhead true,

Can in his fwadling bands controll the damned crew.

XXVI.

205

So when the fun in bed,

Curtain'd with cloudy red

Pillows his chin upon on orient wave,
The flocking fhadows pale

Troop to th' infernal jail,

Each fetter'd ghoft flips to his feveral grave,

210

220

225

230)

And the yellow-skirted Fayes

235

Fly after the night-fteeds, leaving their moon-lov'd maze. XXVII.

But fee the Virgin bleft
Hath laid her Babe to reft,

Time is our tedious fong fhould here have ending:
Heav'ns youngest teemed ftar
Hath fix'd her polish'd car,

Her fleeping Lord with handmaid lamp attending:
And all about the courtly ftable

Bright barneft Angels fit in order ferviceable.

IV.

The PASSION *,

140

I.

E

Rewhile of mufic, and ethereal mirth,
Wherewith the ftage of air and earth did ring,
And joyous news of heav'nly infant's birth,
My Mufe with Angels did divide fo fing;
But headlong joy is ever on the wing,

In wintry folftice like the fhorten'd light
Soon fwallow'd up in dark and long out-living night.
II.

For now to forrow muft I tune my song,
And fet my harp to notes of faddeft woe,
Which on our dearest Lord did feife ere long,
Dangers, and fnares, wrongs, and worse than fo,
Which he for us did freely undergo:

Most perfect Hero, try'd in heaviest plight

Of labors huge and hard, too hard for human wight!

[ocr errors]

*This poem appears to have been compofed foon after the Ode on the Nativity

[ocr errors]

III.

He fovereign Priest ftooping his regal head,
That dropt with odorous oil down his fair eyes,
Poor fleshly tabernacle entered,

His ftarry front low-rooft beneath the skies;
O what a mask was there, what a disguise!

Yet more; the ftroke of death he must abide,
Then lies him meekly down faft by his brethreas fide.
IV.

These lateft fcenes confine my roving verse,
To this horizon is my Phoebus bound;
His Godlike acts, and his temptations fierce,
And former fufferings other where are found;
Loud o'er the reft Cremona's trump doth found;
Me fofter airs befit, and fofter ftrings
Of lute, or viol ftill, more apt for mournful things.
V.

15

20

25

Befriend me Night, beft patronefs of grief,
Over the pole thy thickest mantle throw,
And work my flatter'd fancy to belief,
That Heav'n and Earth are color'd with my woe;
My forrows are too dark for day to know:

35

The leaves fhould all be black whereon I write,
And letters where my tears have wash'd a wannish white
VI.

See, fee the chariot, and those rushing wheels,
That whirl'd the Prophet up at Chebar flood,
My fpirit fome tranfporting Cherub feels,
To bear me where the tow'rs of Salem stood,
Once glorious tow'rs, now funk in guiltless blood; 4
There doth my foul in holy vision fit

In penfive trance, and anguish, and ecftatic fit.

"

30

26. Loud o'er the reft Cremona's trump doth found;] He means Marcus Hieronymus Vida, who was a native of Cremona, and alludes particularly to his poem, Chriftiados, Libri fex.

VII.

Mine eye hath found that fad fepulchral rock
That was the casket of Heav'n's richest ftore,
And here though grief my feeble hands up lock,
Yet on the foften'd quarry would I fcore
My plaining verfe as lively as before;

For fure fo well inftructed are my tears,
That they would fitly fall in order'd characters.
VIII.
Or fhould I thence hurry'd on viewless wing,
Take up a weeping on the mountains wild,
The gentle neighbourhood of grove and spring
Would foon unbofom all their echoes mild,
And I (for grief is eafily beguil'd)

Might think th' infection of my forrows loud
Had got a race of mourners on fome pregnant cloud.

V.

45

On TIME*.

LY envious Time, till thou run out thy race, Call on the lazy leaden- ftepping hours Whofe fpeed is but the heavy plummet's pace; And glut thyfelf with what thy womb devours,

50

This fubject the Author finding to be above the years he had, when he wrote it, and nothing fatisfied with what was begun, left it unfinish'd.

55.

*In thefe poems where no date is prefixed, and no circumstances direct to ascertain the time when they were compofed, the order of Milton's own editions is followed. Before this copy of verses, it appears from the author's manufcript, that he had written To be fet on a clock-caje.

[ocr errors]

5

Which is no more than what is falfe and vain,
And merely mortal drofs;

So little is our lofs

So little is thy gain.

For when as each thing bad thou hast intomb'd,
And last of all thy greedy felf confum'd,
Then long Eternity fhall greet our blifs
With an individual kifs;

And Joy fhall overtake us as a flood,
When every thing that is fincerely good
And perfectly divine,

With truth, and peace, and love, shall ever fhine
About the fupreme throne

Of him, t' whofe happy-making fight alone

10

V.I.

15

When once our heav'nly-guided foul shall climb,
Then all this earthly groffness quit,

Attir'd with ftars, we fhall for ever fit,

Triumphingover Death, and Chance, and thee, O Time.

20

Upon the CIRCUMCISION.

Y

E flaming Pow'rs, and winged Warriors bright,. That erft with mufic, and triumphant fong, First heard by happy watchful shepherds ear, So fweetly fung your joy the clouds along Through the foft filence of the lift'ning night; Now mourn, and if fad fhare with us to bear. Your fiery effence can diftil no tear, Burn in your fighs, and borrow Seas wept from our deep forrow: He who with all Heav'n's heraldry whilere.

HS

5

10

« السابقةمتابعة »