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Him, musing as he stood, Rodulfo saw,
And forth he came to greet the holy guest;
For he was known as one who held the law

Of Benedict, and each severe behest

So duly kept with such religious care,

That Heaven had oft vouchsafed its wonders to his prayer.


"Good brother weleome!" thus Rodulfo cries,
"In sooth it glads me to behold you here;
"It is Gualberto! and mine aged eyes

“Did not deceive me : yet full many a year "Has slipt away, since last you bade farewell "To me your host and my uncomfortable cell.


"'Twas but a sorry welcome then you found,
"And such as suited ill a guest so dear;
"The pile was ruinous old, the base unsound,

"It glads me more to bid you welcome here "That you can call to mind our former state— "Come brother, pass with me the new Moscera's gate.


So spake the cheerful Abbot, but no smile
Of answering joy soften'd Gualberto's brow
He raised his hand and pointed to the pile,

"Moscera better pleas'd me then, than now! "A palace this, befitting kingly pride! "Will Holiness, my friend, in palace pomp abide ?"


* Aye," cries Rodulfo, "tis a goodly place! 66 And pomp becomes the house of worship well. "Nay scowl not round with so severe a face!* "When earthly kings in seats of grandeur dwell, "Where art exhausted decks the sumptuous half, "Can poor and sordid huts beseem the Lord of all?"


"And ye have rear'd these stately towers on high "To serve your God?" the monk severe replied. "It rose from zeal and earnest piety,

"And prompted by no worldly thoughts beside > "Abbot, to him who prays with soul sincere "In humble hermit cell, God will incline his ear.


«Rodulfo! whilst this haughty building rose,
"Still was the pilgrim welcome at your door?
"Did charity relieve the orphans woes?

Cloathed ye the naked? did ye feed the poor? "He who with alms most succours the distrest, "Proud Abbot, know he serves his heavenly father best.


"Did they in sumptuous palaces go dwell
"Who first abandoned all to serve the Lord?

"Their place of worship was the desart cell, *Wild fruits and berries spread their frugal board, "And if a brook, like this, ran murmuring by, "They blest their gracious God, and "thought it luxury."


Then anger darkened in Rodulfo's face,

Enough of preaching," sharply he replied, "Thou art grown envious;-'tis a common case, "Humility is made the cloak of pride. "Proud of our home's magnificence are we,

"But thou art far more proud in rags and beggary."


With that Gualberto cried in fervent tone,
"O Father hear me! if this splendid pile
"Was for thine honour rear'd, and thine alone,
"Bless it O Father with thy fostering smile!
"Still may it stand, and never evil know,
Long as beside its walls the eternal stream shall flow.


"But Lord, if vain and worldly-minded men

"Have wasted here the wealth which thou hast lent, "To pamper worldly pride; frown on it then!

"Soon be thy vengeance manifestly sent,

"Let yonder brook that flows so calm beside, "Now from its base sweep down the unholy house of pride!"


He said—and lo the brook no longer flows!

The waters pause, and now they swell on high,
High and more high the mass of water grows,

The affrighted brethren from Moscera fly,
And on their Saints and on their God they call,
For now the mountain bulk o`ertops the convent wall.


It falls, the mountain bulk, with thunder sound!
Full on Moscera's pile the vengeance falls!
Its lofty tower now rushes to the ground,

Prone lie its columns now, its high arched walls,
Earth shakes beneath the onward-rolling tide,
That from its base swept down the unholy house *of pride.

*Era amigo de pobreza, en tanto grado, que sentia mucho, que los Monasterios se édificassen sumptuosamente; y assi visitando el de Moscera y viendo un edificio grande, y elegante, buelto à Rodulfo, que era alli Abad, con el rostro ayrado le dixo: Con lo que has gastado, siguiendo tu parecer, en este magnifico edificio, has quitado el sustento a muchos pobres. Puso los ojos en un pequeno arroyo, que corria alli cerca, y dixo, Dios Omnipotente, que sueles hacer grandes cosas de pequenas criaturas, yo te ruego, que vea por medio de esta pequeno arroyo venganza de este gran edificio. Dixo esto, y fuese de alli como abominando el lugar; y siendo oido, el arroyuelo comenzo a crecer, y fue de suerte, que recogiendo un monte de agua, y tomando de atràs la corriente, vino con tan grande impetu, que llevando piedras y arboles consigo, derribo el edificio.

Flos Sanctorum, por El Maestro Alonso de Villegas.

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