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Joyless she sees the sun look down
On that great Temple, once his own,*
Whose lonely columns stand sublime,

Flinging their shadows from on high,
Like dials, which the wizard, Time,
Had rais'd to count his ages by!

Yet haply there may lie conceal'd
Beneath those chambers of the sun,
Some amulet of gems, anneal'd
In upper fires, some tablet seal'd
With the great name of Solomon,
Which, spell'd by her illumin'd eyes,
May teach her where, beneath the moon,
In earth or ocean lies the boon,

The charm, that can restore so soon
An erring Spirit to the skies!

Cheer'd by this hope, she bends her thither;-
Still laughs the radiant eye of heaven,
Nor have the golden bowers of even
In the rich west begun to wither;--
When, o'er the vale of Balbec winging
Slowly, she sees a child at play,
Among the rosy wild-flowers singing,
As rosy and as wild as they;
Chasing, with eager hands and eyes,
The beautiful blue damsel-flies, †

*The Temple of the Sun at Balbec.

"You behold there a considerable number of a remarkable species of beautiful insects, the elegance of whose appearance and their attire procured for them the name of Damsels."--Sonnini.

That flutter'd round the jasmine stems,
Like winged flowers or flying gems :-
And, near the boy, who, tir'd with play,
Now nestling 'mid the roses lay,
She saw a wearied man dismount

From his hot steed, and on the brink
Of a small imaret's rustic fount

Impatient fling him down to drink. Then swift his haggard brow he turn'd To the fair child, who fearless sat, Though never yet hath day-beam burn'd Upon a brow more fierce than that,Sullenly fierce-a mixture dire,

Like thunder-clouds, of gloom and fire!—
In which the Peri's eye could read
Dark tales of many a ruthless deed;
The ruin'd maid-the shrine profan'd--
Oaths broken-and the threshold stain'd
With blood of guests!-there written, all,
Black as the damning drops that fall
From the denouncing Angel's pen,
Ere Mercy weeps them out again!

Yet tranquil now that man of crime
(As if the balmy evening time
Soften'd his spirit) look'd and lay,
Watching the rosy infant's play ;---

Though still, whene'er his eye by chance

Fell on the boy's, its lurid glance

Met that unclouded, joyous gaze,

As torches, that have burnt all night
Through some impure and godless rite,
Encounter morning's glorious rays.

But hark! the vesper call to prayer,
As slow the orb of daylight sets,
Is rising sweetly on the air,

From Syria's thousand minarets!
The boy has started from the bed

Of flowers, where he had laid his head,
And down upon the fragrant sod

Kneels, with his forehead to the south,
Lisping th' eternal name of God

From purity's own cherub mouth,
And looking, while his hands and eyes
Are lifted to the glowing skies,
Like a stray babe of Paradise,
Just lighted on that flowery plain,

And seeking for its home again!

Oh! 'twas a sight-that heav'n-that child

A scene, which might have well beguil'd

Ev'n haughty Eblis of a sigh

For glories lost and peace gone by!

And how felt he-the wretched man
Reclining there-while memory ran
O'er many a year of guilt and strife,
Flew o'er the dark flood of his life,
Nor found one sunny resting-place,

Nor brought him back one branch of grace! "There was a time," he said, in mild,

Heart-humbled tones- "thou blessed child!

When, young and haply pure as thou,
I look'd and pray'd like thee-but now-
He hung his head-each nobler aim

And hope and feeling, which had slept From boyhood's hour, that instant came Fresh o'er him, and he wept-he wept !


Blest tears of soul-felt penitence!

In whose benign, redeeming flow
Is felt the first, the only sense

Of guiltless joy that guilt can know.

"There's a drop," said the Peri, "that down from the


Falls through the withering airs of June
Upon Egypt's land,* of so healing a power,
So balmy a virtue, that ev'n in the hour
That drop descends, contagion dies,
And health reanimates earth and skies!-
Oh! is it not thus, thou man of sin,

The precious tears of repentance fall?
Though foul thy fiery plagues within,
One heavenly drop hath dispell'd them all!"
And now-behold him kneeling there
By the child's side, in humble prayer,
While the same sunbeam shines upon
The guilty and the guiltless one,

And hymns of joy proclaim through heaven
The triumph of a soul forgiven!

"Twas when the golden orb had set,

While on their knees they linger'd yet,
There fell a light, more lovely far
Than ever came from sun or star,
Upon the tear that, warm and meek,
Dew'd that repentant sinner's cheek:
To mortal eye this light might seem

A northern flash, or meteor beam

*The Nucta, or Miraculous Drop, which falls in Egypt precisely on St. John's Day,

in June, and is supposed to have the effect of stopping the plague.

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