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19. The Oracles are dum, No voice or hideous humm

Runs through the arched roof in words deceiving. Apollo from his shrine Can no more divine,

With hollow shreik the steep of Delphos leaving. No nightly trance, or breathed spell, Inspires the pale-ey'd Priest from the prophetic cell.

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20.

The lonely mountains o’re,
And the resounding shore,

A voice of weeping heard, and loud lament;
From haunted spring, and dale
Edg’d with poplar pale,

The parting Genius is with sighing sent,
With flowre-inwov'n tresses torn [mourn.
The Nimphs in twilight shade of tangled thickets

21.

In consecrated Earth,
And on the holy Hearth,

190 The Lars, and Lemures moan with midnight In Urns, and Altars round,

[plaint, A drear and dying found

Affrights the Flamins at their service quaint; And the chill Marble seems to sweat, While each peculiar power forgoes his wonted seat.

22.

Peor, and Baalim,
Forsake their Temples dim,

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With that twice batter'd god of Palestine,
And mooned Ashtaroth,
Heav'ns Queen and Mother both,

Now fits not girt with Tapers holy shine,
The Libyc Hammon shrinks his horn, [mourn.
In vain the Tyrian Maids their wounded Thamuz

23: And sullen Moloch fled, Hath left in shadows dred,

His burning Idol all of blackest hue;
In vain with Cymbals ring,
They call the grisly King,

In dismal dance about the furnace blue;
The brutish gods of Nile as fast,
Ifis and Orus, and the Dog Anubis hast.

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24. Nor is Ofris seen In Memphian Grove, or Green,

Trampling the unshowr'd Grass with lowings Nor can he be at rest

[loud : Within his facred chest,

Naught but profoundest Hell can be his shroud, In vain with Timbrel'd Anthems dark The fable-stoled Sorcerers bear his worshipt Ark.

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25 He feels from Jude's Land The dredded Infants hand, The rayes

of Bethlehem blind his dusky eyn; Nor all the Gods beside, Longer dare abide,

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Not Typhon huge ending in snaky twine : Our Babe to thew his Godhead true, [crew. Can in his swadling bands controul the damned

26. So when the Sun in bed, Curtain’d with cloudy red,

Pillows his chin upon an Orient wave,
The flocking shadows pale,
Troop to th’infernal Jail,

Each fetter'd Ghost Nips to his several grave, And the yellow-skirted Fayes,

[maze. Fly after the Night-steeds, leaving their Moon-lov'd

27. But see the Virgin blest, Hath laid her Babe to rest.

[ing, Time is our tedious Song should here have endHeav'ns youngest teemed Star,

240 Hath fixt her polisht Car,

[ing: Her sleeping Lord with Handmaid Lamp attendAnd all about the Courtly Stable, Bright-harnest Angels fit in order serviceable.

The Passion.

1.

RE-WHILE of Musick, and Ethereal mirth,

[ring, Wherewith the stage of Ayr and Earth did And joyous news of heav'nly Infants birth,

My muse with Angels did divide to sing;
But headlong joy is ever on the wing,

In Wintry solstice like the shortn’d light
Soon swallow'd up in dark and long out-living

night.

2.

IO

For now to sorrow must I tune my song,
And set my Harp to notes of saddest wo,
Which on our dearest Lord did sease er'e long,
Dangers, and snares, and wrongs, and worse then so,
Which he for us did freely undergo.

Most perfect Heroe, try'd in heaviest plight Of labours huge and hard, too hard for human wight.

3: He sov'ran Priest stooping his regal head That dropt with odorous oil down his fair eyes, Foor fleshly Tabernacle entered, His starry front low-rooft beneath the skies; O what a mask was there, what a disguise !

Yet more; the stroke of death he must abide, Then lies him meekly down fast by his Brethrens

side.

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4.

These latest scenes confine my roving vers,
To this Horizon is my Phæbus bound;
His Godlike acts; and his temptations fierce,
And former sufferings other where are found;
Loud o're the rest Cremona's Trump doth sound;

Me softer airs befit, and softer strings
Of Lute, or Viol still, more apt for mournful things.

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5
Befriend me night best Patroness of grief,
Over the Pole thy thickest mantle throw,
And work my flatter'd fancy to belief,
That Heav'n and Earth are colour'd with

my wo; My sorrows are too dark for day to know :

The leaves should all be black wheron I write, And letters where my tears have washt a wannish white.

6.
See see the Chariot, and those rushing wheels,
That whirld the Prophet up at Chebar flood,
My spirit som transporting Cherub feels,
To bear me where the Towers of Salem stood,
Once glorious Towers, now sunk in guiltless blood;

There doth my soul in holy vision sit
In pensive trance, and anguish, and ecstatick fit.

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lock,

7. Mine

eye hath found that fad Sepulchral rock That was the Casket of Heav'ns richest store, And here though grief my

feeble hands

up Yet on the softned Quarry would I score My plaining vers as lively as before ;

For sure so well instructed are my tears,
That they would fitly fall in order'd Characters.

8.
Or should I thence hurried on viewles wing,
Take up a weeping on the Mountains wilde,
The gentle neighbourhood of grove and spring
Would soon unbofom all their Echoes milde,

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