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And sends the fowls to us in care
On daily visits through the air.
He hangs in shades the orange bright
Like golden lamps in a green night,
And does in the pomegranates close
Jewels more rich than Ormus shows :
He makes the figs our mouths to meet
And throws the melons at our feet;
But apples plants of such a price,
No tree could ever bear them twice.
With cedars chosen by His hand
From Lebanon He stores the land;
And makes the hollow seas that roar
Proclaim the ambergris on shore.
He cast (of which we rather boast)
The Gospel's pearl upon our coast;
And in these rocks for us did frame
A temple where to sound His name.
Oh! let our voice His praise exalt
Till it arrive at Heaven's vault,
Which thence (perhaps) rebounding may
Echo beyond the Mexique bay!'
-Thus sung they in the English boat
A holy and a cheerful note:
And all the way, to guide their chime,
With falling oars they kept the time.

A. Marvell

CXLVII

AT A SOLEMN MUSIC

Blest pair of Sirens, pledges of Heaven's joy,
Sphere-born harmonious Sisters, Voice and Verse!
Wed your divine sounds, and mixt power employ,
Dead things with inbreathed sense able to pierce ;
And to our high-raised phantasy present
That undisturbed Song of pure concent
Aye sung before the sapphire-colour'd throne
To Him that sits thereon,

With saintly shout and solemn jubilee ;
Where the bright Seraphim in burning row
Their loud uplifted angel-trumpets blow;
And the Cherubic host in thousand quires
Touch their immortal harps of golden wires,
With those just Spirits that wear victorious palms,
Hymns devout and holy psalms

Singing everlastingly :

That we on Earth, with undiscording voice
May rightly answer that melodious noise;
As once we did, till disproportion'd sin

Jarr'd against nature's chime, and with harsh din
Broke the fair music that all creatures made

To their great Lord, whose love their motion sway'd In perfect diapason, whilst they stood

In first obedience, and their state of good.

O may we soon again renew that Song,

And keep in tune with Heaven, till God ere long To His celestial consort us unite,

To live with Him, and sing in endless morn of light!

J. Milton

CXLVIII

NOX NOCTI INDICAT SCIENTIAM.

When I survey the bright
Celestial sphere :

So rich with jewels hung, that night
Doth like an Ethiop bride appear;

My soul her wings doth spread,
And heaven-ward flies,

The Almighty's mysteries to read
In the large volumes of the skies.

For the bright firmament
Shoots forth no flame

So silent, but is eloquent
In speaking the Creator's name.

No unregarded star
Contracts its light

Into so small a character,
Removed far from our human sight,

But if we steadfast look,
We shall discern

In it as in some holy book,

How man may heavenly knowledge learn.

It tells the Conqueror,

That far-stretch'd power Which his proud dangers traffic for, Is but the triumph of an hour.

That from the farthest North
Some nation may

Yet undiscover'd issue forth,
And o'er his new-got conquest sway.

Some nation yet shut in
With hills of ice,

May be let out to scourge his sin,
Till they shall equal him in vice.

And then they likewise shall
Their ruin have;

For as yourselves your Empires fall,
And every Kingdom hath a grave.

Thus those celestial fires,
Though seeming mute,
The fallacy of our desires
And all the pride of life, confute.

For they have watch'd since first
The World had birth:
And found sin in itself accursed,
And nothing permanent on earth.

W. Habington

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HYMN TO DARKNESS

Hail thou most sacred venerable thing!
What Muse is worthy thee to sing?
Thee, from whose pregnant universal womb
All things, ev'n Light, thy rival, first did come.
What dares he not attempt that sings of thee,
Thou first and greatest mystery?

Who can the secrets of thy essence tell?
Thou, like the light of God, art inaccessible.

Before great Love this monument did raise,
This ample theatre of praise;
Before the folding circles of the sky
Were tuned by Him, Who is all harmony;
Before the morning Stars their hymn began,
Before the council held for man,

Before the birth of either time or place, Thou reign'st unquestion'd monarch in the empty

space.

Thy native lot thou didst to Light resign,
But still half of the globe is thine.
Here with a quiet, but yet awful hand,
Like the best emperors thou dost command.
To thee the stars above their brightness owe,
And mortals their repose below:
To thy protection fear and sorrow flee,

And those that weary are of light, find rest in thee.

J. Norris of Bemerton

CL

A VISION

I saw Eternity the other night,

Like a great ring of pure and endless light,
All calm, as it was bright :-

And round beneath it, Time, in hours, days, years, Driven by the spheres,

Like a vast shadow moved; in which the World

And all her train were hurl'd.

H. Vaughan

CLI

ALEXANDER'S FEAST, OR, THE POWER OF MUSIC

'Twas at the royal feast for Persia won

By Philip's warlike son

Aloft in awful state

The godlike hero sate

On his imperial throne;

His valiant peers were placed around,

Their brows with roses and with myrtles bound,

(So should desert in arms be crown'd);

The lovely Thais by his side

Sate like a blooming Eastern bride

In flower of youth and beauty's pride :

Happy, happy, happy pair!

None but the brave

None but the brave

None but the brave deserves the fair!

Timotheus placed on high

Amid the tuneful quire

With flying fingers touch'd the lyre :

The trembling notes ascend the sky

And heavenly joys inspire.

The song began from Jove

Who left his blissful seats above

K

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