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And with your ninefold harmony

131 Make up full consort to the angelic symphony.

For if such holy song,

Enwrap our fancy long, Time will run back, and fetch the age of gold; And speckled vanity

136 Will sicken soon and die, And leprous sin will melt from earthly mould ;

And Hell itself will pass away, And leave her dolorous mansions to the peering day. Yea, Truth and Justice then

141 Will down return to men, Orb'd in a rainbow ; and, like glories wearing,

Mercy will sit between
Throned in celestial sheen,

145 With radiant feet the tissued clouds down

steering; And Heaven, as at some festival, Will open wide the gates of her high palace hall.

But wisest Fate says No;
This must not yet be so ;

150 The Babe yet lies in smiling infancy

That on the bitter cross

Must redeem our loss ;
So both Himself and us to glorify :

Yet first, to those ychain'd in sleep 155 The wakeful trump of doom must thunder through

the deep,
With such a horrid clang

As on mount Sinai rang
While the red fire and smouldering clouds out-

brake :
The aged Earth aghast

With terror of that blast
Shall from the surface to the centre shake,

When, at the world's last sessión, The dreadful Judge in middle air shall spread His



And then at last our bliss

Full and perfect is,
But now begins ; for from this happy day

The old Dragon under ground,

In straiter limits bound,
Not half so far casts his usurpéd sway ;

170 And, wroth to see his kingdom fail, Swinges the scaly horror of his folded tail.

The oracles are dumb ;

No voice or hideous hum Runs through the arched roof in words deceiving: Apollo from his shrine

176 Can no more divine, With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leaving :

No nightly trance or breathéd spell Inspires the pale-eyed priest from the prophetic cell. The lonely mountains o’er

181 And the resounding shore A voice of weeping heard, and loud lament ;

From haunted spring and dale
Edged with poplar pale

185 The parting Genius is with sighing sent ;

With flower-inwoven tresses torn
The nymphs in twilight shade of tangled thickets

In consecrated earth
And on the holy hearth

190 The Lars and Lemures moan with midnight

plaint ;
In urns, and altars round

A drear and dying sound
Affrights the Flamens at their service quaint ;

And the chill marble seems to sweat, 195 While each peculiar Power forgoes his wonted seat.

Peor and Baalim

Forsake their temples dim,
With that twice-batter'd god of Palestine ;
And moonéd Ashtaroth

200 Heaven's queen and mother both,

Now sits not girt with tapers' holy shine ;

The Lybic Hammon shrinks his horn, In vain the Tyrian maids their wounded Thammuz


And sullen Moloch, fled,

205 Hath left in shadows dread His burning idol all of blackest hue ;

In vain with cymbals' ring

They call the grisly king,
In dismal dance about the furnace blue ; 210

The brutish gods of Nile as fast,
Isis, and Orus, and the dog Anubis, haste.

Nor is Osiris seen

In Memphian grove, or green, Trampling the unshower'd grass with lowings loud :

215 Nor can he be at rest

Within his sacred chest ; Nought but profoundest hell can be his shroud ;

In vain with timbrell’d anthems dark The sable-stoléd sorcerers bear his worshipt ark. He feels from Juda's land

221 The dreaded infant's hand ; The rays of Bethlehem blind his dusky eyn ;

Nor all the gods beside
Longer dare abide,

225 Not Typhon huge ending in snaky twine :

Our Babe, to show his Godhead true,
Can in His swaddling bands control the damned

So, when the sun in bed
Curtain'd with cloudy red

230 Pillows his chin upon an orient wave,

The flocking shadows pale

Troop to the infernal jail,
Each fetter'd ghost slips to his several grave;
And the yellow-skirted fays

235 Fly after the night-steeds, leaving their moon-loved


But see, the Virgin blest

Hath laid her Babe to rest ;
Time is, our tedious song should here have

ending :
Heaven's youngest-teeméd star

240 Hath fix'd her polish'd car, Her sleeping Lord with hand-maid lamp attend

ing : And all about the courtly stable Bright-harness'd angels sit in order serviceable.


63 SONG FOR SAINT CECILIA’S DAY, 1687 From Harmony, from heavenly Harmony

This universal frame began :
When Nature underneath a heap

Of jarring atoms lay
And could not heave her head,

5 The tuneful voice was heard from high

Arise, ye more than dead !
Then cold, and hot, and moist, and dry
In order to their stations leap,
And Music's power obey.

10 From harmony, from heavenly harmony

This universal frame began :

From harmony to harmony
Through all the compass of the notes it ran,
The diapason closing full in Man.

15 What passion cannot Music raise and quell ?

When Jubal struck the chorded shell His listening brethren stood around,

And, wondering, on their faces fell To worship that celestial sound.

20 Less than a god they thought there could not

Within the hollow of that shell

That spoke so sweetly and so well.
What passion cannot Music raise and quell ?

The trumpet's loud clangor

25 Excites us to arms, With shrill notes of anger

And mortal alarms.
The double double double beat
Of the thundering drum

Cries · Hark! the foes come ;
Charge, charge, 'tis too late to retreat !'
The soft complaining flute

In dying notes discovers
The woes of hopeless lovers,

35 Whose dirge is whisper'd by the warbling lute.

Sharp violins proclaim
Their jealous pangs and desperation,
Fury, frantic indignation,
Depth of pains, and height of passion

For the fair disdainful dame.
But oh! what art can teach,
What human voice can reach

The sacred organ's praise ? Notes inspiring holy love,

45 Notes that wing their heavenly ways To mend the choirs above. Orpheus could lead the savage, race, And trees unrooted left their place Sequacious of the lyre :

50 But bright Cecilia raised the wonder higher : When to her Organ vocal breath was given, An Angel heard, and straight appear’d

Mistaking Earth for Heaven I

Grand Chorus


As from the power of sacred lays

The spheres began to move,
And sung the great Creator's praise

To all the blest above ;

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