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Harping in loud and solemn quire,
With unexpressive notes, to Heaven's newborn heir.
Such music as 't is said
But when of old the sons of morning sung, While the Creator great
His constellations set,
And the well-balanced world on hinges
And cast the dark foundations deep,
And bid the weltering waves their oozy channel keep.
Ring out, ye crystal spheres,
Once bless our human ears,
If ye have power to touch our senses so; And let your silver chime
Move in melodious time;
And let the bass of heaven's deep organ
And, with your ninefold harmony,
Make up full concert to the angelic symphony.
For, if such holy song
Enwrap our fancy long,
Time will run back, and fetch the age of
And speckled Vanity
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
Will down return to men,
Orbed in a rainbow; and, like glories
Mercy will sit between,
Throned in celestial sheen,
With radiant feet the tissued clouds down
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;
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 ychained in sleep, 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 outbrake;
The aged earth aghast,
With terror of that blast,
Shall from the surface to the center shake; When, at the world's last session,
The dreadful Judge in middle air shall spread his throne.
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 usurpèd sway; And, wroth to see his kingdom fail, Swings 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
Can no more divine,
With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leaving.
No nightly trance, or breathed spell,
Inspires the pale-eyed priest from the pro
The lonely mountains o'er,
A voice of weeping heard and loud la
From haunted spring and dale,
Edged with poplar pale,
The parting Genius is with sighing sent; With flower-in woven tresses torn,
The nymphs in twilight shade of tangled thickets mourn.
In consecrated earth,
And on the holy hearth,
The Lars and Lemures mourn with mid
In urns and altars round,
A drear and dying sound
Affrights the Flamens at their service
And the chill marble seems to sweat, While each peculiar power foregoes his wonted seat.
Peor and Baälim
Forsake their temples dim
With that twice-battered God of Pales
And moonèd Ashtaroth,
Heaven's queen and mother both,
Now sits not girt with tapers' holy shine;
The Libyac Hammon shrinks his horn;
And sullen Moloch, fled,
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:
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 unshowered grass with lowings loud;
Nor can he be at rest
Within his sacred chest,
Naught but profoundest hell can be his shroud;
In vain with timbreled anthems dark
The sable-stolèd sorcerers bear his worshiped ark.
He feels from Judah's land
The dreaded infant's hand,
The rays of Bethlehem blind his dusky