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every muse, and became master of them all-sighing at length for some higher and holier source of poetical feeling, he turns to the east, and listens with rapture to its prophetic melodies--subdued by the strain, he lets fall the lyre, seizes the harp of Sion and of Erin, at once the emblem of piety and patriotism, and gives its boldest and most solemn chords to his own impassioned inspirations of country and of religion.”


Moore wrote, besides the Irish Melodies, a large number of songs, many of which are still the delight of the social circle. His prolific muse also produced, in 1816, a volume of Sacred Songs, of exquisite poetical beauty and high devotional feeling. The following are amongst the most favourable specimens of this portion of his works :


Were not the sinful Mary's tears

An offering worthy heaven,
When, o'er the faults of former years,
She wept—and was forgiven ?

When bringing every balmy sweet,

Her day of luxury stor'd,
She o'er her Saviour's hallow'd feet

The precious odours pour'd!

And wip'd them with that golden hair,

Where once the diamond shone;
Though now those gems of grief were there,

Which shine for God alone

Were not those sweets, so humbly shed

That hair- those weeping eyes— And the sunk heart that inly bledHeaven's noblest sacrifice ?

Thon, that hast slept in error's sleep,

Oh! wouldst thou wake in heaven, Like Mary kneel, like Mary weep,

Love much-and be forgiven !


The bird let loose in eastern skies,

When hast'ning fondly home,
Ne'er stoops to earth her wing, nor flies

Where idle warblers roam.
But high she shoots through air and light,

Above all low delay,
Where nothing earthly bounds her flight,

Nor shadow dims her way

So grant me, God, from every care

And stain of passion free,
Aloft, through Virtue's purer air,

To hold my course to thee !
No sin to cloud, no lure to stay

My soul as home she springs; Thy sunshine on her joyful way,

Thy freedom in her wings !

O Thou! who dry'st the mourner's tear,

How dark this world would be,
If, when deceived and wounded here,

We could not fly to Thee!
The friends, who in our sunshine live,

When winter comes, are flown;
And he who has but tears to give,

Must weep those tears alone.

But Thou wilt heal that broken heart,

Which, like the plants that throw
Their fragrance from the wounded part

Breathes sweetness out of woe.

When joy no longer soothes or cheers,

And even the hope that threw
A moment's sparkle o'er our tears,

Is dimm'd and vanish'd too-
Oh ! who would bear life's stormy doom,

Did not Thy wing of love
Come brightly wafting through the gloom,

Our peace-branch from above?
Then sorrow, touched by Thee, grows bright,

With more than rapturous ray;
As darkness shows us worlds of light

We never saw by day.


Sound the loud timbrel o'er Egypt's dark sea !
Jehovah has triumph'd_his people are free.
Sing, for the pride of the tyrant is broken,

His chariots, his horsemen, all splendid and brave. How vain was their boast! for the Lord had but spoken,

And chariots and horsemen are sunk in the wave. Sound the loud timbrel o'er Egypt's dark sea ! Jehovah has triumph’d_his people are free.

Praise to the Conqueror, praise to the Lord !
His word was our arrow, his breath was our sword.
Who shall return to tell Egypt the story

Of those she sent forth in the hour of her pride ? For the Lord hath looked out from his pillar of glory,

And all her brave thousands are dash'd in the tide. Sound the loud timbrel o'er Egypt's dark sea ! Jehovah has triumph'd-his people are free.


Moore's volume bearing the above-mentioned title is a deservedly popular production. The scene is laid in the Island of Zea. A poetical narrative forms a link for many beautiful melodies. Some of these, such as “The sky is bright,” and “The Balaika,” are well known in the world of song. The lines on Memory, and the hymn to Mary, Star of the Sea, are exquisitely poetical.

O Memory, how coldly

Thou paintest joy gone by ;
Like rainbows, thy pictures

But mournfully shine and die.
Or, if some tints thou keepest,

That former days recall,
As o'er each line thou weepest,

Thy tears efface them alī.
But, Memory, too truly

Thou paintest grief that's past;
Joy's colours are fleeting,

But those of sorrow last.
And, while thou bring'st before us

Dárk pictures of past ill,
Life's evening closing o'er us

But makes them darker still.

When evening shades are falling

O'er ocean's sunny sleep,
To pilgrims' hearts recalling

Their home beyond the deep;
When, rest o'er all descending,

The shores with gladness smile,

And lutes, their echoes blending,

Are heard from isle to isle;
Then, Mary, Star of the Sea,
We pray, we pray, to thee !
The noonday tempest over,

Now ocean toils no more,
And wings of halcyons hover

Where all was strife before.
Oh! thus may life in closing

Its short tempestuous day,
Beneath heaven's smile reposing,

Shine all its storms away.
Thus, Mary, Star of the Sea,

we pray, to thee !

We pray,

LALLA ROOKH. In 1817 Moore published “ Lalla Rookh.” This beautiful poem was warmly welcomed by the literary world, and has lived down Hazlitt's cynical remark that, “Moore ought not to have written it even for three thousand guineas.” There may, perhaps, be too much ornament in this poem, but a greater critic than Hazlitt (the late Lord Jeffrey) thus writes of Lalla Rookh, in the Edinburgh Review of November, 1817 :

“ There is a great deal of our recent poetry derived from the east, but this is the finest orientalism we have had yet. The Land of the Sun has never shone out so brightly on the children of the north, nor the sweets of Asia been poured forth, nor her gorgeousness displayed so profusely to the delighted senses of Europe. The beauteous forms, the dazzling splendour, the breathing odours of the East seem at last to have found a kindred poet in the Groen Isle of the West.

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