« PoprzedniaDalej »
Death's prime Slave-merchants! Scorpion-whips of
Lord of unsleeping Love,” From everlasting Thou! We shall not die. These, even these, in mercy didst thou form, Teachers of Good through Evil, by brief wrong Making Truth lovely, and her future might Magnetic o'er the fix’d untrembling heart.
In the primeval age a dateless while -
When, stung to rage by Pity, eloquent men
|Of Knowledge, ere the vernal sap had risen
Rudely disbranch'd : Blessed Society :
O ye numberless,
Whom soul Oppression's russian gluttony
wretch, - -
* Behemoth, in Hebrew, signifies wild beasts in general. Some believe it is the elephant, some the hippopotamus; some affirm it is the wild bull. Poetically, it designates any large
Children of Wretchedness! More groans must rise,
O return Pure Faith ! meek Piety! The abhorred Form Whose scarlet robe was stiff with earthly pomp, Who drank iniquity in cups of gold, Whose names were many and all blasphemous, Hath met the horrible judgment ' Whence that cry? The mighty army of foul Spirits shriek'd Disherited of earth! For she hath fallen On whose black front was written Mystery; She that reel'd heavily, whose wine was blood; She that work'd whoredom with the Demon Power, And from the dark embrace all evil things Brought forth and nurtured : mitred Atheism: And patient Folly who on bended knee Gives back the steel that stabb'd him ; and pal
Hunted by ghastlier shapings than surround
* Alluding to the French Revolution.
With conscious zeal had urged Love's wondrous plan,
O years' the blest pre-eminence of Saints'
"|Making noon ghastly ' Who of woman born
May image in the workings of his thought,
Believe thou, O my soul, Life is a vision shadowy of Truth; And vice, and anguish, and the wormy grave, Shapes of a dream! The veiling clouds retire, And lo! the Throne of the redeeming God Forth flashing unimaginable day, Wraps in one blaze earth, heaven, and deepest hell.
Contemplant Spirits! ye that hover o'er
. . In organizing surge ' Holies of God!
(And what if Monads of the infinite mind)
* David Hartley.
f Rev. Chap. iv. v. 2 and 3.--And immediately I was in the Spirit: and behold, a Throne was set in Heaven, and one sat on the throne. And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and sardine stone, etc. 1 The final Destruction impersonated.
THE DESTINY OF NATIONS.
Auspicious Reverence! Hush all meaner song,
Such symphony requires best instrument. Seize, then! my soul! from Freedom's trophied dome, The Harp which hangeth high between the Shields Of Brutus and Leonidas! With that Strong music, that soliciting spell, force back Earth's free and stirring spirit that lies entranc'd.
For what is Freedom, but the unfetter'd use Of all the powers which God for use had given? But chiefly this, him First, him Last to view Through meaner powers and secondary things Effulgent, as through clouds that veil his blaze. For all that meets the bodily sense I deem Symbolical, one mighty alphabet For infant minds; and we in this low world Placed with our backs to bright Reality, That we may learn with young unwounded ken The substance from its shadow. Infinite Love, Whose latenee is the plenitude of All, Thou with retracted Beams, and Self-eclipse Veiling, revealest thine eternal Son.
But properties are God: the naked mass (If Imass there be, fantastic Guess or Ghost) Acts only by its inactivity. Here we pause humbly. Others boldlier think That as one body seems the aggregate Of Atoms numberless, each organized; So, by a strange and dim similitude, Infinite myriads of self-conscious minds Are one all-conscious Spirit, which informs . With absolute ubiquity of thought (His one eternal self-affirming Act') All his involved Monads, that yet seem With various province and apt agency Each to pursue its own self-centering end. Some nurse the infant diamond in the mine; Some roll the genial juices through the oak; Some drive the mutinous clouds to clash in air, And rushing on the storm with whirlwind speed, Yoke the red lightning to their volleying car. Thus these pursue their never-varying course, No eddy in their stream. Others, more wild, With complex interests weaving human sates, Duteous or proud, alike obedient all, Evolve the process of eternal good.
And what if some rebellious, o'er dark realms Arrogate power 2 yet these train up to God, And on the rude eye, unconfirm'd for day, Flash meteor-lights better than total gloom. As ere from Lieule-Oaive's vapory head The Laplander beholds the far-off Sun Dart his slant beam on unobeying snows, While yet the stern and solitary Night Brooks no alternate sway, the Boreal Morn With mimic lustre substitutes its gleam, Guiding his course or by Niemi lake Or Balda-Zhiok,” or the mossy stone Of Solsar-kapper,t while the snowy blast Drifts arrowy by, or eddies round his sledge, Making the poor babe at its mother's back! Scream in its scanty cradle: he the while Wins gentle solace as with upward eye He marks the streamy banners of the North, Thinking himself those happy spirits shall join Who there in floating robes of rosy light Dance sportively. For Fancy is the Power That first unsensualizes the dark mind, . Giving it new delights; and bids it swell With wild activity; and peopling air, By obscure fears of Beings invisible, Emancipates it from the grosser thrall Of the present impulse, teaching Self-control, Till Superstition with unconscious hand Seat Reason on her throne. Wherefore not vain, Nor yet without permitted power impress'd, I deem'd those legends terrible, with which
The polar ancient thrills his uncouth throng; * * Whether of pitying Spirits that make their moan \
O'er slaughter'd infants, or that Giant Bird ` Vuokho, of whose rushing wings the noise
Is Tempest, when the unutterable shapey
There dwells the Fury Form, whose unheard nanne With eager eye, pale cheek, suspended breath,
* Balda Zhiok; i.e. mons altitudinis, the highest mountain in Lapland.
f Solfar Kapper: capitium Solfar, hic locus omnium quotquot veterum Lapponum superstitio sacrificiis religiosoque cultui dedicavit, celebratissimus erat, in parte sinus australis situs semimilliaris spatio a mari distans. Ipse locus, quem curiositatis gratia aliquando me invisisse memini, duabus prealtis lapidibus, sibi invicem oppositis, quorum alter musco circumdatus erat, constabat.-Leenius De Lapponibus.
t The Lapland Women carry their infants at their back in a piece of excavated wood, which serves them for a cradle. Opposite to the infant's mouth there is a hole for it to breathe through.-Mirandum prorsus est et vix credibile nisi cuividisset contigit. Lappones hyeme iter facientes per vastas montes, perque horrida et invia tesqua, eo presertim tempore quo omnia perpetuis nivibus obtecta sunt et nives ventis agitantur et in gyros aguntur, viam ad destimata loca absolue errore invenire posse, lactantem autem infantem si quem habeat, ipsa mater in dorso bajulat, in excavato ligno (Giecd'k ipsi vocant) quod pro cunis utuntur: in hoc insans pannis et pellibus convolutus colligatus jacet.-Leenius De Lapponibus.
And lips half-opening with the dread of sound,
Good, , Forces to unchain the foodful progeny Of the Ocean's stream.—Wild phantasies! yet wise, On the victorious goodness of High God Teaching Reliance, and Medicinal Hope, Till from Bethabra northward, heavenly Truth, With gradual steps winning her difficult way, Transfer their rude Faith perfected and pure.
If there be Beings of higher class than Man, I deem no nobler province they possess, Than by disposal of apt circumstance To rear up Kingdoms; and the deeds they prompt, Distinguishing from mortal agency, They choose their human ministers from such states As still the Epic song half fears to name, Repell'd from all the Minstrelsies that strike The Palace-roof and soothe the Monarch's pride.
And such, perhaps, the Spirit, who (if words Witness'd by ". deeds may claim our Faith) Held commune with that warrior-maid of France Who scourged the Invader. From her infant days, With Wisdom, Mother of retired Thoughts, Her soul had dwelt; and she was quick to mark The good and evil thing, in human lore Undisciplined. For lowly was her Birth, And Heaven had doom'd her early years to Toil, That pure from Tyranny's least deed, herself Unfear'd by Fellow-natures, she might wait On the poor Laboring man with kindly looks, And minister refreshment to the tired Way-wanderer, when along the rough-hewn Bench The sweltry man had stretch'd him, and aloft Vacantly watch'd the rudely pictured board Which on the Mulberry-bough with welcome creak Swung to the pleasant breeze. Here, too, the Maid Learnt more than Schools could teach: Man's shifting mind, His Vices and his Sorrows ' And full ost At Tales of cruel Wrong and strange Distress Had wept and shiver'd. To the lottering Eld. Still as a Daughter, would she run: she placed His cold Limbs at the sunny Door, and loved To hear him story, in his garrulous sort, Of his eventful years, all come and gone.
So twenty seasons past. The Virgin's Form, Active and tall, nor Sloth nor Luxury . Had shrunk or paled. Her front sublime and broad, Her flexile eye-brows wildly haird and low, And her full eye, now bright, now unillum'd, Spake more than Woman's Thought; and all her face
* They call the Good Spirit Torngarsnck. The other great but malignant spirit is a nameless Female; she dwells under the sea in a great house, where she can detain in captivity all the animals of the ocean by her magic power. When a dearth befalls the Greenlanders, an Angekok or magician must undertake a journey thither. He passes through the kingdom of souls, over an horrible abyss into the Palace of this phantom, .nd by his enchantments causes the captive creatures to ascend directly to the surface of the ocean.—See Crantz' Hist. of Greenland, vol. i. 206.
Was moulded to such features as declared
"Twas the cold season, when the Rustic's eye From the drear desolate whiteness of his fields Rolls for relief to watch the skiey tints And clouds slow varying their huge imagery: When now, as she was wont, the healthful Maid Had left her pallet ere one beam of day Slanted the fog-smoke. She went forth alone, Urged by the indwelling angel-guide, that oft, With dim inexplicable sympathies Disquieting the Heart, shapes out Man's course To the predoom'd adventure. Now the ascent She climbs of that steep upland, on whose top The Pilgrim-Man, who long since eve had watch'd The alien shine of unconcerning Stars, Shouts to himself, there first the Abbey-lights Seen in Neufchatel's vale; now slopes adown
|The winding sheep-track yale-ward: when, behold
In the first entrance of the level road
- Mutely questioning, The Maid gazed wildly at the living wretch. He, his head feebly turning, on the group Look'd with a vacant stare, and his eye spoke The drowsy pang that steals on worn-out anguish.
|She shudder'd : but, each vainer pang subdued,
Quick disentangling from the foremost horse
Hail him immortal! Yet amid his pangs, - - 28
Ah! suffering to the height of what was suffer'd, Stung with too keen a sympathy, the Maid Brooded with moving lips, mute, startful, dark! And now her flush'd tumultuous features shot Such strange vivacity, as fires the eye Of misery Fancy-crazed ' and now once more Naked, and void, and fix'd, and all within The unquiet silence of confused thought And shapeless feelings. For a mighty hand Was strong upon her, till in the heat of soul To the high hill-top tracing back her steps, Aside the beacon, up whose smoulder'd stones The tender ivy-trails crept thinly, there, Unconscious of the driving element, Yea, swallow'd up in the ominous dream, she sate Ghastly as broad-eyed Slumber a dim anguish Breathed from her look! and still, with pant and sob, Inly she toil'd to flee, and still subdued, Felt an inevitable Presence near.
Thus as she toil'd in troublous ecstasy." An horror of great darkness wrapt her round, And a voice uttered forth unearthly tones, Calming her soul-" O Thou of the Most High Chosen, whom all the perfected in Heaven Behold expectant—
The following fragments were intended to form part of the Poem when finished.)
“Maid beloved of Heaven!" To her the tutelary Power exclaim'd) ... Of Chaos the adventurous progeny Thou seest; foul missionaries of foul sire, Fierce to regain the losses of that hour When Love rose glittering, and his gorgeous wings Over the abyss flutter'd with such glad noise, A. what time after long and pestful calms, with slimy shapes and miscreated life oning the vast Pacific, the fresh breeze Wakens the merchant-sail uprising. Night A heavy unimaginable moan
Sent forth, when she the Protoplast beheld
- From his obscure haunt Shriek'd Fear, of Cruelty the ghastly Dam, Feverish yet freezing, eager-paced yet slow, As she that creeps from forth her swampy reeds, Ague, the biform Hag! when early Spring Beams on the marsh-bred vapors.
- “Even so" (the exulting Maiden said,
At length awakening slow, she gazed around: And through a Mist, the relic of that trance Still thinning as she gazed, an Isle appear'd, Its high, o'er-hanging, white, broad-breasted cliffs, Glass'd on the subject ocean. A vast plain Stretch'd opposite, where ever, and anon
* Revel. vi. 9, 11. And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held. And white robes were given unto every one of them, and it was said unto them that they should rest yet for a little season,
until their fellow servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.