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PART I

ENGLISH POEMS

A PARAPHRASE ON PSALM CXIV
This and the following Psalm were done by the Author at

fifteen years old
When the blest seed of Terah's faithful son
After long toil their liberty had won,
And passed from Pharian fields to Canaan-land,
Led by the strength of the Almighty's hand,
Jehovah's wonders were in Israel shown,
His praise and glory was in Israel known.
That saw the troubled sea, and shivering fled,
And sought to hide his froth-becurlèd head
Low in the earth; Jordan's clear streams recoil,
As a faint host that hath received the foil.
The high huge-bellied mountains skip like rams
Amongst their ewes, the little hills like lambs.
Why fed the ocean? and why skipped the mountains?
Why turned Jordan toward his crystal fountains?
Shake, Earth, and at the presence be agast
Of Him that ever was and aye shall last,
That glassy floods from rugged rocks can crush,
And make soft rills from fiery flint-stones gush.

IO

PSALM CXXXVI

Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord, for he is kind;

For his mercies aye endure,

Ever faithful, ever sure.
Let us blaze his name abroad,
For of gods he is the God;
For his, etc.

O let us his praises tell,
Who doth the wrathful tyrants quell;

For his, etc.

IO

Who with his miracles doth make
Amazéd heaven and earth to shake;

For his, etc.

Who by his wisdom did create
The painted heavens so full of state;

For his, etc.

19

Who did the solid earth ordain
To rise above the watery plain;

For his, etc.

Who, by his all-commanding might,
Did fill the new-made world with light;

For his, etc.

30

39

And caused the golden-tressèd sun
All the day long his course to run;

For his, etc.
The horned moon to shine by night
Amongst her spangled sisters bright;

For his, etc.
He, with his thunder-clasping hand,
Smote the first-born of Egypt land;

For his, etc.
And, in despite of Pharao fell,
He brought from thence his Israel;

For his, etc.
The ruddy waves he cleft in twain
Of the Erythræan main;

For his, etc.
The floods stood still, like walls of glass,
While the Hebrew bands did pass;

For his, etc.

50 59

But full soon they did devour
The tawny king with all his power;

For his, etc.
His chosen people he did bless
In the wasteful wilderness;

For his, etc.
In bloody battle he brought down
Kings of prowess and renown;

For his, etc.
He foiled bold Seon and his host,
That ruled the Amorrean coast;

For his, etc.
And large-limbed Og he did subdue,
With all his over-hardy crew;

For his, etc.

70

And to his servant Israel
He gave their land, therein to dwell;

For his, etc.

79

He hath, with a piteous eye,
Beheld us in our misery;

For his, etc.
And freed us from the slavery
Of the invading enemy;

For his, etc.
All living creatures he doth feed,
And with full hand supplies their need;

For his, etc.
Let us, therefore, warble forth
His mighty majesty and worth;

For his, etc.
That his mansion hath on high,
Above the reach of mortal eye;

For his mercies aye endure,
Ever faithful, ever sure.

90

ON THE DEATH OF A FAIR INFANT

DYING OF A COUGH

Anno ætatis 17

I

O FAIREST flower, no sooner blown but blasted,
Soft silken primrose fading timelessly,
Summer's chief honour, if thou hadst outlasted
Bleak Winter's force that made thy blossom dry;
For he, being amorous on that lovely dye

That did thy cheek envermeil, thought to kiss,
But killed, alas! and then bewailed his fatal bliss.

II

IO

For, since grim Aquilo, his charioteer,
By boisterous rape the Athenian damsel got,
He thought it touched his deity full near,
If likewise he some fair one wedded not,
Thereby to wipe away the infamous blot

Of long uncoupled bed and childless eld,
Which 'mongst the wanton gods a foul reproach was held.

III

So, mounting up in icy-pearlèd car,
Through middle empire of the freezing air
He wandered long, till thee he spied from far;
There ended was his quest, there ceased his care:
Down he descended from his snow-soft chair,

But, all unwares, with his cold-kind embrace,
Unhoused thy virgin soul from her fair biding-place.

20

IV

Yet art thou not inglorious in thy fate;
For so Apollo, with unweeting hand,
Whilom did slay his dearly-lovèd mate,
Young Hyacinth, born on Eurotas' strand,
Young Hyacinth, the pride of Spartan land;

But then transformed him to a purple flower:
Alack, that so to change thee Winter had no power!

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