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The sea to drink him quick ? that casts his dead :

Angels to spare ? they punish: night to hide ? The world shall burn in light: the heavens to spread

Their wings to save him ? heaven itself shall slide

And roll away, like melting stars that glide
Along their oily threads: his mind pursues him :
His house to shroud, or hills to fall and bruise him ?
As sergeants both attach and witnesses accuse him.


As when the cheerful sun enlamping' wide,

Glads all the world with his uprising ray, And woos the widowed earth afresh to pride,

And paints her bosom with the flowery May,

His silent sister steals him quite away;
Wrapped in a sable cloud from mortal eyes,
The hasty stars at noon begin to rise ;
And headlong to his early roost the sparrow flies.

But soon as he again disshadowed is,

Restoring the blind world his blemished sight, As though another day were newly his,

The cozened birds busily take their flight,

And wonder at the shortness of the night: So Mercy once again herself displays Out from her sister's cloud, and open lays Those sunshine looks, whose beams would dim a thousand


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Such when as Mercy her beheld from high,

In a dark valley, drowned with her own tears,

'Spreading his rays like a lamp.

9 The Moon.

One of her Graces she sent hastily,

Smiling Irene,' that a garland wears

Of gilded olive on her fairer hairs,
To crown the fainting soul's true sacrifice;
Whom when as sad Repentance coming spies,
The holy desperado wiped her swollen eyes.

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But Mercy felt a kind remorse to run

Through her soft veins, and therefore hying fast To give an end to silence, thus begun :

· Ay, honored Father, if no joy thou hast

But to reward desert, reward at last The devil's voice spoke with a serpent's tongue, Fit to hiss out the words so deadly stung, And let him die, death's bitter charms so sweetly sung.

He was the father of that hopeless season,

That to serve other gods forgot their own: The reason was, Thou wast above their reason:

They would have any gods rather than none,

A beastly serpent or a senseless stone;
And these as Justice hates, so I deplore;
But the up-ploughed heart, all rent and tore,
Though wounded by itself, I gladly would restore.

He was but dust: why feared he not to fall ?

And being fallen, why should he fear to die? Cannot the hand that made him first restore him ?

Depraved of sin, should he deprived lie

Of grace? Can He not hide infirmity
That gave him strength ? Unworthy the forsaking
He is, who ever weighs without mistaking,
Or Maker of the man, or manner of his making.

Who shall thy temple incense any more,

Or at thy altar crown the sacrifice,

· Peace.

Or strew with idle flowers the hallowed floor,

Or what should prayer deck with herbs and spice,

Her vials breathing orisons of price? If all must pay that which all cannot pay, Oh! first begin with me, and Mercy slay, And thy thrice-honored Son that now beneath doth stray !

But if or He or I may live and speak,

And heaven can joy to see a sinner weep, —
Oh! let not Justice' iron sceptre break

A heart already broke, that low doth creep,
And with proud humblesse her feet's dust doth sweep.

Must all go by desert ? is nothing free?
Ah! if but those who only worthy be,
None should Thee ever see, none should Thee ever see.

What man hath done that man shall not undo,

Since God to him is grown so near akin? Did his foes slay him ? He shall slay his foe:

Hath he lost all ? He all again shall win :

Is sin his master? He shall master sin. Too hardy soul, with sin the field to try: The only way to conquer was to fly; But thus long death hath lived, and now death's self

shall die.

He is a path, if any be misled ;
He is a robe, if any

naked be;
If any chance to hunger, He is bread;

any be a bondman, He is free;

If any be but weak, how strong is He !
To dead men life He is, to sick men health ;
To blind men sight, and to the needy wealth;
A pleasure without loss, a treasure without stealth.

Who can forget-never to be forgot

The time that all the world in slumber lies,

When like the stars the singing angels shot

To earth, and heaven awaked all his eyes

To see another sun at midnight rise
On earth? was never sight of pareil fame,
For God before man like Himself did frame,
But God Himself now like a mortal man became.

A child He was, and had not learned to speak,

That with his word the world before did make; His mother's arms Him bore, He was so weak,

That with one hand the vaults of heaven could shake.

See how small room my infant Lord doth take,
Whom all the world is not enough to hold !
Who of his years or of his age hath told ?
Never such age so young, never a child so old.

And yet but newly He was infanted,

And yet already He was sought to die; Yet scarcely born, already banished;

Not able yet to go, and forced to fly;

But scarcely fled away, when, by and by,
The tyrant's sword with blood is all defiled,
And Rachel, for her sons, with fury wild,
Cries, O thou cruel king ! and, O my sweetest child !

Egypt his nurse became, where Nilus springs,

Who straight to entertain the rising sun, The hasty harvest in his bosom brings ;

But now for drought the fields were all undone,

And now with waters all is overrun :
So fast thy Cynthian mountains poured their snow,
When once they felt the sun so near them glow,
That Nilus Egypt lost, and to a sea did grow.
The angels carolled loud their song of peace;

The cursed oracles were stricken dumb;
To see their Shepherd the poor shepherds press ;

To see their King the kingly sophics come;
And then, to guide unto his master's home,

A star comes dancing up the orient,
That springs for joy over the strawy tent ;
When gold to make their prince a crown they all present.
Young John, glad child, before he could be born,

Leaped in the womb, his joy to prophesy;
Old Anna, though with age all spent and worn,

Proclaims her Saviour to posterity;

And Simeon fast his dying notes doth ply.
Oh, how the blessed souls about him trace!
It is the sire of heaven thou dost embrace:
Sing, Simeon, sing-sing, Simeon, sing apace."
With that the mighty thunder dropt away

From God's unwary arm, now milder grown,
And melted into tears; as if to pray

For pardon and for pity, it had known

That should have been for sacred vengeance thrown; There, too, the armies angelic devowed Their former rage, and all to Mercy bowed; Their broken weapons at her feet they gladly strowed. Bring, bring, ye Graces, all your silver flaskets,

Painted with every choicest flower that grows, That I may soon unflower your fragrant baskets,

To strow the fields with odors where He goes ;

Let whatsoe'er He treads on be a rose. So down she lets her eyelids fall to shine Upon the rivers of bright Palestine, Whose woods drop honey, and her rivers skip with wine.


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