Abbildungen der Seite

Supine on earth an awful figure lies, While foftest numbers seem to seal his eyes; . The hoary fire Heav’n’s guardian care demands, And at his feet the watchful angel stands. The form august and large, the mein divine, Betray the founder of Messiah's line. + Lo! from his loins the promis'd ltem ascend, And high to heav'n its sacred boughs extend : Each limb productive of some hero springs, And blooms luxuriant with a race of kings. Th'eternal plant wide spreads its arms around, And with the mighty branch the mystic top is crown'da

And lo! the glories of th' illustrious line, At thcir first dawn with ripen'd splendors shinc, In David all express’d; the good, the great, The king, the hero, and the man complete. Serenc he sits, and sweeps the golden lyre, And blends tlie prophet's with the poet's fire. See! with what art he ftrikes the vocal ftrings, The God, his theme, inspiring what he fings! Hark!-or our ears delude us from his tongue Sweet flows, or seems to flow, some heav'nly fong., Oh, could thine art arrest the fleeting found, And paint the voice in magic numbers bound; Could the warm sun, as erst when Memnon play 4, Wake with his rising beam the vocal shade; Then might he draw the attentive angels down, Bending to hear the lay, so sweet, fo like their own. On either side the monarch's offspring shine, Aud fome adorn, and some disgrace their line. Here Ainmon glories ; proud incestuous lord ! This hand sustains the robe, and that the sword.

of Jesse.

Frowning and fierce, with haughty strides he tow'rs,
And on his horrid brow defiance low'rs.
There Absolom the ravilh'd sceptre fways,
And his stol'n honour all his shame displays:
The base usurper youth! who joins in one
The rebel subject, and th’ ungrateful fon.

Amid th' royai race fee Nathan fiand:
Fervent he seems to speak, and litt his hand;
His looks th' emotion of his soul diclofe,
And eloquence from ev'ry gellure flows.
Such, and fo ftern he came, ordain’d to bring
Th' ungrateful mandate to th' guilty king:
When, at his dreadful voice, a sudden (mart
Shot through the trembling monarch's conscious heart,
From his own lips condemn'd; levere decree!
Had his God prov'd so ítern a judge as he.
But man with frailty is ally'd by birth;
Confumniate purity ne'er dwelt on earth!
Through all the soul, though virtue holds the rein,
Bcats at the heart, and springs in ev'ry vein,
Yet ever from the clearesi fource have ran
Some grofs alloy, some tincture of the man.

But who is he, decp-muling? in his mind, He seems to weigh in reason's scales mankind; Fix'd contemplation holds his steady eyes-I know the sage,t the witest of the wife. Bleft will all man could wila, or prince obtain, Yet his great heart pronounc'd those bleslings vain, And lo! bright glittring in his facred hands, In miniature, the glorious temple fiands. Etulgent frame! fiupendous to behold ! Gold the strong valves, the roof of burnih'd gold,

$ Solomon,

[ocr errors]

The wand'ring ark, in that bright dome enshrin'd,
Spreads the firong light eternal, unconfin'd!
Above th' unutterable glory plays,.
Presence Divine! and the full-streaming rays
Pour through reluctant clouds intolerable blaze.

But ftern oppression rends Reboan's reign ;
See the gay prince, injurious, proud, and vain !
TH’imperial sceptre totters in his hand,
And proud Rebellion triumphs in the land.
Curs'd with Corruption's ever-fruitful spring,
A beardless fenate, and a haughty king.

There Asa, good and great, the sceptre bears,
Justice attends his peace, success his wars;
While virtue was his sword, and heav’n his shield,
Withou! controul the warrior swept the field ;
Loaded with spoils, triumphant he return'd,
And half her swarthy fons fad Ethiopia mourn'd.
But lince thy flagging piety decay'd,
And barter'd God's defence for human aid ;
See their fair laurels wither on thy brow,
Nor herbs, nor healthful arts avail thee now";
Nor is Heaven chang'd, apoftate prince, but thou. )
No mcan atonement does this lapse require ;
But see the fon, you must forgive the fire :
He, the just prince, with ev'ry virtue bless’d,
He reign'd, and goodness all the man poffefs'd;
Around the throne fair happiness and peace
Smooth'd ev'ry brow, and smil'd in ev'ry face.
As when along the burning waste he stray'd,
Where no pure stre: nis in bubbling mazes play'd,
Where Drought incumbent on the thirsty ground ,
Longlince had breail'd her scorching blafs around,


The prophet f calls, th' obedient foods repair
To the parch'd fields, for Josaphat was there.
The new-sprung waves, in many a gurgling vein,
Trick le luxurious through the fucking plain;
Fresh honours the reviving fields adorn,
And o'er the desert Plenty pours her horn.
So from the throne his influence he lheds,
And bids the virtues raise their languid heads :
Where'er he goes, attending Truth prevails,
Oppreffion fies, and Juftice lifts her scales.
See on his arm, the royal eagle stand,
Great type of conquest and fupreme command;
Th' exulting bird distinguish'd triumph brings,
And greets the monarch with expanded wings.
Fierce Moab's fons prevent th' impending blow,
Rush on themselves, and fall without the foe.
The pions hero vanquilh'd heav'n by pray'r;
His faith an army, and his vows a war.
There too, Ofias, fates indulgent bless'd,
And thy days thone, in fairest actions dress’d :
Till that raih hand hy some blind phrenzy sway'd,
Unclean, the facred office durft invade.
Quick o'er thy limbs tbe scurty venum ran,
And hoary filth besprinkled all the man.

Transmislive worth adorns the pious fon,
The father's virtues with the father's throne.
Lo! there he stands: he who the rage subdued
Of Ammon’s fons, and drench'd his sword in blood..
And dost thou, Ahaz, Judah's fcourge, disgrace,
With thy base front, the glories of thy race?

[blocks in formation]

See the vile king his iron sceptre bear-
His only praise attends the pious heir ; 8
He in whole foul the virtues all confpire,
The best good son, from the worst wicked fire,
And lo! in Hezekiah's golden reign,
Long-exil'd Piety returns again ;
Again in genuine purity the thines,
And with her presence gilds the long-neglected fhrinese
Ill-starr'd does proud Affyria's impious lord ||
Bid Heaven to arms, and vaunt his dreadful sword;
His own vain threats th' insulting king o'erthrow,
But breathe new courage on the gen'rous foe.
Th’avenging Angel, ky Divine command,
The fiery sword full-blazing in his hand,
Leant down from heaven : amid the storm he rode, )
March'd Peftilence before him; as he trod,
Pale Desolation bath'd his steps in blood.
Thick wrapt in night, through the proud hoft he pass'd,
Dispensing death, and drove the furious blatt ;
Nor bade Destruction give her revels o'er,
Till the gorg'a sword was drunk with human gore.
But what avails thee, pious prince, in vain
Thy fceptre rescu'd, and the Affyrian Nain ?
Een now the soul maintains her latest frife,
And Death's chill grasp congeals the fount of life.
Yet see, kind Heav’n renews thy brittle thread,
And rolls full fifteen summers o'er thy head;
Lo the receding sun repeats his way,
And, like thy life, prolongs the falling day,
Though Nature her inverted course forego,
The day forget to rent, the time to flow,

ŞHezekialı.. ! Sennacherib).

« ZurückWeiter »