« AnteriorContinuar »
On that great day, at thy right hand,
What serves it to be good ? Goodness by thee,
SONNETS. Too long I follow'd have my fond desire, And too long painted on the ocean streams; 'Too long refreshment sought amidst the fire, Pursu'd those joys which to my soul are blames. Ah! when I had what most I did admire, And seen of life's delights the last extremes, I found all but a rose hedg'd with a brier, A nought, a thought, a masquerade of dreams. Henceforth on thee, my only good, I 'll think; For only thou canst grant what I do crave; Thy nail my pen shall be; thy blood, mine ink; Thy winding-sheet, my paper; study, grave: And, till my soul forth of this body fee, No hope I'll have but only, only thee.
To spread the azure canopy of Heaven,
“ Bright portals of the sky,
Emboss'd with sparkling stars ;
That in your roofs may come the King of kings. “ Scarf'd in a rosy cloud,
He doth ascend the air;
Of that fair lamp which flames of beauty streams. “ He towers those golden bounds
He did to Sun bequeath;
That, robd in glory, Heaven's King may ascend. “O Well-spring of this all !
Thy Father's image vive;
To thee, to thee, be praises ever given. “ What was dismarshall'd late
In this thy noble frame,
From their first source, by thee liomc turned are, • By thee, that blemish old
Of Eden's leprous prince,
What hapless hap had I for to be born
ASTREA in this time
“ By thee, those spirits pure, First children of the light,
More oft than once Death whisper'd in mine ear, Now fixed stand, and sure,
“ Grave what thou hear’st in diamond and gold; In their eternal right;
I am that monarch whom all monarchs fear, Now human companies
Who have in dust their far-stretch'd pride nprolld. Renew their ruin'd wall;
All, all is mine beneath Moon's silver sphere; Fall'n man, as thou mak’st rise,
And nought, save virtue, can my power withhold: Thou giv'st to angels, that they shall not fall.
This, not believ'd, experience true thee told, “ By thee, that prince of sin,
By danger late when I to thee came near. That doth with mischief swell,
As bugbear then my visage I did show, Hath lost what he did win,
That of my horrours thou right use might'st make, And shall endungeon'd dwell;
And a more sacred path of living take: His spoils are made the prey,
Now still walk armed for my ruthless blow; His fanes are sack'd and torn,
Trust flattering life no more, redeem time past, His aitars raz'd away,
And live each day, as if it were thy last." And whai ador'd was late, now lies a scorn. " These mansions pure and clear,
THE SHADOW OF THE JUDGMENT. Which are not made by hands,
ABOVE those boundless bounds, where stars do more, Which once by him 'joy'd were,
The ceiling of the crystal round above, And his, the in not stain'd, bands,
And rainbow-sparkling arch of diamond clear, Now forfet'd, dispossest,
Which crowns the azure of each updersphere, And headlong from them thrown,
In a rich mansion, radiant with light,
To which the Sun is scarce a taper bright,
That almost spiritual it may be nam’d, “O! Well-spring of this all!
Where bliss aboundeth, and a lasting May, Thy Father's image vive;
All pleasures heightening, Nourisheth for aye, Word, that from nought dill call
The King of Ages dwells. About his throne,
Like to those beams day's golden lamp hath on,
Angelic splendours glance, more swift than aught
Reveal'd to sense, nay, than the winged thought, Great banisher of ill,
His will to practise: here do seraphim By nove but thee could these great deeds be done.
Burn with immortal love; tbere cherubim, « Now each ethereal gate
With other noble people of the light, To him hath open'd been;
As eaglets in the Sun, delight their sight; And Glory's King in state
Heaven's ancient denizens, pure active powers, His palace enters in:
Which, freed of death, that cloister high embowers, Now come is this High Priest
Ethereal princes, ever-conquering bands, In the most holy place,
Blest subjects, acting what their king commands; Not without blood addrest,
Sweet choristers, by whose melodious strains With glory Heaven, the Earth to crown with grace. Skies dance, and Earth untir'd their brawl sustains.
Mixed among whose sacred legions dear, “ Stars, which all eyes were late,
The spotless souls of humanes do appear, And did with wonder burn,
Divesting bodies which did cares divest, His name to celebrate,
And there live happy in eternal rest. In flaming tongues them tum ;
Hither, surcharg'd with grief, fraught with annoy, Their orby crystals move
(Sad spectacle into that place of joy !) More active than before,
Her hair disorder'd, dangling o'er her face, And en heate from above,
Which had of pallid violets the grace; Their sovereign prince laud, glorify, adore.
The crimson mantle, wont her to adorn, “ The choirs of happy souls,
Cast loose about, and in large pieces torn; Wak'd with that music sweet,
Sighs breathing forth, and from her heavy eyne, Whose descant care controuls,
Along her cheeks distilling crystal brine, Their Lord in triumph meet;
Which downward to her ivory breast was driven, The spotless sp'rits of light
And had bedew'd the milky-way of Heaven, His trophies do extol,
Came Piety: at her left hand near by, And, arch'd in squadrons bright,
A wailing woman bare her company, Greet their great Victor in his capitol.
Whose tender babes her snowy neck did clip,
And now hang on her pap, now by her lip: “O glory of the Heaven!
Flames glanc'd berhead above, which once did glor, O sole delight of Earth !
But late look pale, a poor and ruthful show! To thee all power be giren,
She, sobbing, shrunk the throne of God before, God's uncreated birth;
And thus began her case to him deplore: Of mankind lover true,
“ Forlorn, wretch'd, desolate! to whom should I Endurer of his wrong,
My refuge have, below or in the sky,
But unto thee? See, all-beholding King,
On Earth, lost man to save from Hell's abime,
Who made thy name so truly be implor'd, All live on Earth by spoil, the host his guest And by the reverend soul so long ador'd,
Betrays; the man of her lies in his breast Her banish'd now see from these lower bounds; Is not assurd; the son the father's death Behold her garments' shreds, her body's wounds : Attempts; and kindred kindred reare of breath Look bow her sister Charity there stands,
By lurking means, of such age few inakes sick, Proscrib'd on Earth, all maim'd by wicked hands : Since Hell disgorg'd her baneful arsenic. Mischief there mounts to such an bigh degree, Whom murders, foul assassinates defile, That there now none is left that cares for me. Most who the harmless innocents beguile, There dwells idolatry, there atheism reigns; Who most can ravage, rob, rapsack, blaspheme, There man in dumb, yet roaring, sins him stains; Is held most virtuous, hath a worthy's name; So foolish, that he puppets will adore
So on embolden'd malice they rely, Of metal, stone, and birds, beasts, trees, before That, madding, thy great puissance they defy: He once will to thy holy service bow,
Erst man resembled thy portrait, soil'd by smoke Aud yield thee homage. Ah, alas! yet now Now like thy creature hardly doth he look. To those black sp'rits which thou dost keep in chains Old Nature here (she pointed where there stood He vows obedience, and with shameful pains An aged lady in a heavy mood) Infernal horrours courts; case fond and strange! Doth break her staff, denying human race To bane than bliss desiring more the change. To come of her, things born to her disgrace! Thy Charity, of graces once the chief
The dove the dove, the swan doth love the swan; Did long time find in hospitals relief ;
Nought so relentless unto man as man. Which now lie levell’d with the lowest ground, 0! if thou mad'st this world, govern'st it all, Where sad memorials scarce are of them found. Deserved vengeance on the Earth let fall: Then (vagabonding) temples her receiv'd,
The period of her standing perfect is; Where my poor cells afforded what she crav'd; Her hour-glass not a minute short doth miss. But now thy temples raz'd are, human blood The end, O Lord, is come; then let no more Those places stains, late where thy altars stood: Mischief still triumph, bad the good devour; Times are so horrid, to implore thy name
But of thy word since constant, true thou art, That it is held now on the Earth a blame.
Give good their guerdon, wicked due desert." Now doth the warrior, with his dart and sworii, She said : throughout the shining palace went Write laws in blood, and vent them for thy word: A murmur soft, such as afar is sent Religion, faith pretending to make known, By musked zephyrs’ sighs along the main; All have, all faith, religion quite o'erthrown! Or when they curl some flow'ry iee and plain : Men awless, lawless live; most woful case ! One was their thought, one their intention, will; Men no more men, a God-contemning race." Nor could they err, Truth there residing still:
Scarce had she said, when, from the nether world | All, mov'd with zeal, as one with cries did pray, (Like to a lightning through the welkin hurld, “ Hasten, O Lord! ( hasten the last day!” That scores with fames the way, and erery eye Look how a generous prince, when he doth hear With terroir dazzles as it swimmeth by)
Some loving city, and to him most dear, Came Justice; to whom ange's did make place, Which wont with gifts and shows him entertain And Truth her flying foots' eps straight did trace. (And, as a father's, did obey his reign,) Her sword was lost, the precious weights she bare A rout of slaves and rascal foes to wrack, Their beam bad torn, scales rudely bruised were: Her buildings overthrow, her riches sack, From off her head was reft her golden crown;
Feels vengeful flames within his bosom burn, In rags her veil was rent, and star-spangl'd gown; And a just rage all respects overturn : Her tear-wet locks hang'd o'er her face, which made So seeing Earth, of angels once the inn, Between her and the Mighty King a shade;
Mansions of saints, deflower'd all by sin, Just wrath had rais'd her colour, (like the morn And quite confus'd, by wretches here beneath, Portending clouds moist embryos to be born) The world's great Sovereign moved was to wrath. Of which, she taking leave, with heart swoll'n great, Thrice did he rouse himself, tbrice from his face Thus strove to 'plain before the throne of state. Flames sparkle did throughout the heavenly place,
“ Is not the Earth thy workmanship, great King? The stars, though fixed, in their rounds did quake; Didst thou not all this all from nought once bring The Earth, and earth-embracing sea, did shake: To this rich beauty, which doth on it shine;
Carmel and Hæmus felt it; Athos' tops Bestowing on each creature of thine
Affrighted shrunk; and near the Ethiops, Some shadow of thy bounty? Is not man
Atlas, the Pyrenees, the Apennine, Thy vassal, plac'd to spend his life's short span And lofty Grampius, which with snow doth shine. To do thee homage ? And then didst not thou Then to the synod of the sp'rits he swore, A queen install me there, to whom should bow Man's care should end, and time should be no more, Thy Earth's indwellers, and to this effect
By his own self he swore of perfect worth, Put in my hand thy sword ? O high neglect! Straight to perform his word sent angels forth. Now wretched earthlings, to thy great disgrace, There lies an island, where the radiant Sun, Perverted have my pow'r, and do deface
When he doth to the northern tropics run, All rererent tracts of justice; now the Earth Of six long moneths makes one tedious day; Is but a frame of shame, a funeral hearth, And when through southern signs he holds his way, Where every virtue hath consumed been,
Six moneths turneth in one loaihsome night, And nought (no, not their dust) rests to be seen: (Night neither here is fair, por day hot-bright, Long hath it me abhorrd, long chased me;
But half white, and half more) where, sadly clear, Expell’d at last, here I have fled to thee,
Still coldly glance the beams of either Bear -And forthwith rather would to Hell repair, The frosty Groen-land. On the lonely shore Than Earth, since justice execute is there,
The ocean in mountains hoarse doth roar,
And over-tumbling, tumbling over rocks,
Men basilisks to men prove, and by breath, Cast various rainbows, which in froth he chokes: Than lead or steel, bring worse and swifter death: Gulphs all about are shrunk most strangely steep, No cypress, obsequies, no tomb they have; Than Nilus' cataracts more vast and deep.
The sad Heaven mostly serves them for a grave. To the wild land beneath to make a shade,
These over Earth tumultuously do run, A mountain listeth up his crested head :
South, north, from rising to the setting San ; His locks are icicles, his brows are snow;
They sometime part, yet, than the winds more feet, Yet from his burning bowels deep below,
Forthwith together in one place they meet. Comets, far-flaming pyramids, are driven, Great Quinzay, ye it know, Susania's pride, And pitchy meteors, to the cope of Heaven. And you where stately Tiber's streains do glide; No summer here the lovely grass forth brings, Memphis, Parthenope, ye too it know, Nor troes, no, not the deadly cypress springs. And where Euripus' seven-fold tide doth for: Cave-loving Echo, daughter of the air,
Ye know it, empresses, on Thames, Rhone, Seide; By human voice was never waken'd here :
And ye, fair queens, by Tagus, Danube, Rhine; Instead of night's black bird, and plaintful owl, Though they do scour the Earth, roam far and large, Infernal furies here do yell and howl.
Not thus content, the angels leave their charge: A mouth yawns in this beight so black, obscure We of her wreck these slender signs may name, With vapours, that no eye it can endure :
By greater they the judgment do proclaim. Great Ætna's caverns never yet did make
This centre's centre with a mighty blow Such sable damps, though they be hideous black; One bruiseth, whose crack'd concaves louder los, Stern horrdurs here eternally do dwell,
And rumble, than if all th' artillery And this gulf destine for a gate to Hell :
On Earth discharg'd at once were in the sky; Forth from this place of dread, Earth to appal, Her surface shakes, her mountains in the main Three furies rushed at the angel's call.
Turn topsy-turvy, of heights making plain: One with long tresses doth her visage mask, Towns them ingulf; and late where towers did stand Her temples clouding in a horrid cask;
Now nought remaineth but a waste of sand: Her right hand swings a brandon in the air, With turning eddies seas sink under ground, Which flames and terrour hurleth every where; And in their floating depth are valleys found; Pond'rous with darts, her left doth bear a shield, Late where with foamy crests waves tilted wares, Where Gorgon's head looks grim in sable field: Now fishy bottoms sbine, and mossy cares. Her eyes blaze fire and blood, each hair 'stills blood, The mariner casts an amazed eye Blood thrills from either pap, and where she stood On his wing'd firs, which bedded he finds lie, Blood's liquid coral sprang her feet beneatb; Yet can he see no shore; but whilst he thinks, Where she doth stretch her arm is blood and death. What hideous crevice that huge current drinks, Her Stygian head no sooner she uprears,
The streams rush back again with storming tide, When Earth of swords,helms, lauces,straightappears And now his ships on crystal mountains glide, To be deliver'd; and from out her womb,
Till they be hurl'd far beyond seas and hope, In flame-wing'd thunders, artillery doth come; And settle on some hill or palace top; Floods' silver streams do take a blushing dye; Or, by triumphant surges over-driven, The plains with breathless bodies buried lie; Show Earth their entrails, and their keels the Hearen. Rage, wrong, rape, sacrilege, do her attend, Sky's cloudy tables some do paint, with fights Fear, discord, wrack, and woes which have no end : Of armed squadrons, justling steeds and knights, Town is by town, and prince by prince withstood; With shining crosses, judge, and sapphire throne, Earth turns an hideous shamble, a lake of blood. Arraigned criminals to howl and groan, (stine
The next, with eyes sunk hollow in her brains, And plaints sent forth are heard: new worlds xen Lean face, snarl'd hair, with black and empty veins, with other suns and moons, false stars decline, Her dry'd-up bones scarce cover'd with her skin, And dive in seas; red comets warm the air, Bewraying that strange structure built within ; And blaze, as other worlds were judged there, Thigh-bellyless, most ghastly to the sight,
Others the heavenly bodies do displace, A wasted skeleton resembleth right.
Make Sun his sister's stranger steps to trace; Where she doth roam in air faint do the birds, Beyond the course of spheres he drives his coach, Yawn do earth's ruthless brood and harmless herds, and near the cold Arcturus doth approach; The wood's wild forragers do howl and roar, The Scythian amaz'd is at such beams, The humid swimmers die along the shore :
The Mauritanian to see icy streams; In towns, the living do the dead up eat,
The shadow, which erewhile turn'd to the west, Then die themselves, alas! and, wanting meat, Now wheels about, then reeleth to the east: Mothers not spare the birth of their own wombs, New stars above the eighth Heaven sparkle clear, But turn those nests of life to fatal tombs.
Mars chops with Saturn, Jove claims Mars's sphere; Last did a saffron-colour'd hag come out, Shrunk nearer Earth, all blacken'd now and brown, With uncomb'd hair, brows banded all about In mask of weeping clouds appears the Moon. With dusky clouds, in ragged mantle clad, There are no seasons, autumn, summer, spring, Her breath with stinking fumes the air bespread; All are stern winter, and no birth forth bring: In either hand she held a whip, whose wires Red turns the sky's blue curtain o'er this globe, Still'd poison, blaz'd with Phlegethontal fires. As to propine the judge with purple robe. Relentless, she each state, sex, age, defiles,
At first, entranc'd, with sad and curious eyes, Earth streams with gores, burns with envenom'd boils; Earth's pilgrims stare on those strange prodigies: Where she repairs, towns do in deserts turn, The star-gazer this round finds truly more The living have no pause the dead to mourn ; In parts and whole, yet by no skill cau prore The friend, ah! dares not lock the dying eyes The firmament's stay'd firmness. They which dream Of his belov'd; the wife the husband flies; An everlastingness in world's Fast frame,
Think well some region where they dwell may wrack, Wip'd from our eyes now shall be every tear,
Now poble souls a guerdon just shall find,
And rest and glory be in one combin'd; Repine to see their countries overthrown,
Now, more than in a mirror, by tbese eyne,
Even face to face, our Maker shall be seen.
Thy triumphs and return we did expect,
O come still hop'd for, come long wish'd for, Lord."
Immur'd with flames, Earth in a palsy shakes,
And from her womb the dust in several beaps This galley, full of God-despising wights,
Takes life, and must'reth into human shapes :
Come howling to the day, with serpents crown'd.
Ushering the way still where the Judge should move,
What Persian prince, Assyrian most renown'd,
Fire to dry blood, and blood to quench out fire;
And Grecian tiames transported in the air;
What picture of rich Corinth's tragic wrack,
Or of Numantia the hideous sack;
Which must lie smoking in the world's vast womb,
And to itself both fuel be and tomb? Begins the Twins' dear mansion to clear,
Near to that sweet and odoriferous clime,
Where the all-cheering emperor of time
And every hill and collin crowns with palms;
“What can,”saythey,“these changes else portend, Doth build her nest, and takes new life in death; Of this great frame, save the approaching end ! A valley into wide and open fields Past are the signs, all is perform’d of old,
Far it extendeth * * * * * *
The rest is wanting.
Who sinless died for sin, who vanquish'd Hell,
That mine may thine obey: protect me still, VOL. V.