Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

Japh. They are gone! They bave disappear'd amidst Of the forsaken world; and never more,

(the roar Whether they live, or die with all earth's life, Now near its last, can aught restore Anah unto these eyes.

Chorus of Mortals. Oh son of Noah! mercy on thy kind! What, wilt thou leave us all-all-all behind? While safe amidst the elemental strife, Thou sitt'st within thy guarded ark? A mother (offering her infant to JAPHET.) Oh let this

child embark!
I brought him forth in wo,

But thought it joy
To see him to my bosom clinging so.

Why was he born?
What hath he done

My unwean’d son-
To move Jehovah's wrath or scorn?
What is there in this milk of mine, that Death
Should stir all heaven and earth up to destroy

My boy,
And roll the waters o'er bis placid breath?
Save him, thou seed of Seth!
Or cursed be-with him who made
Thee and thy race, for which we are betray'd!
Japh. Peace! 'tis no hour for curses, but for pray’r!

Chorus of Mortals.

For prayer!

And where

Shall prayer ascend,
When the swoln clouds unto the mountains bend

And burst,

And gushing oceans every barrier rend,
Until the very deserts know no thirst?

Accurst
Be be, who made thee and thy sire!
We deem our curses vain; we must expire;

But as we know the worst,
Why should our hymn be raised, our koees be bent
Before the implacable Omnipotent,
Since we must fall the same?
If he hath made earth, let it be his shame,

To make a world for torture:-Lo! they come

The loathsome waters in their rage! And with their roar make wholesome nature dumb!

The forest's trees (coeval with the hour When Paradise upsprung,

Ere Eve gave Adam koowledge for her dower,
Or Adam his first hymn of slavery sung,)

So massy, vast, yet green in their old age,
Are overtopt,
Their summer blossoms by the surges lopt,
Which rise, and rise, and rise.
Vainly we look up to the lowering skies-

They meet the seas,
And shut out God from our beseeching eyes.

Fly, son of Noab, fly, and take thine ease
In thine allotted Ocean-tent;
And view, all floating o'er the Element,
The corpses of the world of thy young days:
Then to Jehovah raise
'Thy song of praise!
A Mortal. Blessed are the dead

Who die in the Lord!
And though the waters be o’er earth outspread,

Yet, as his word,

Be the decree adored!
He gave me life--he taketh but

The breath which is his own:
And though these eyes should be forever shut,

Nor longer this weak voice before his throne
Be heard in supplicating tone,
Still blessed be the Lord,

For what is past,
For that which is:
For all are his,

From first to last-
'Time-space-eternity-life-death-

The vast known and immeasurable unknową. He made, and can unmake;

And shall I, for a little gasp of breath, Blaspheme and groan?

No; let me die, as I have lived, in faith,
Nor quiver, though the universe may quake!

Chorus of Mortals.
Where shall we fly?

Not to the mountains high;*
For now their torrents rush with double roar,

To meet the ocean, which, advancing still, Already grasps each drowning hill,

Nor leaves an unsearch'd cave.

Enter a Woman, Woman, Oh, save me, save! Our valley is no more: My father and my father's tent, My brethren and my brethren's herds, Tbe pleasant trees that o'er our noonday bent And sent forth eveniog songs from sweetest birds, The little riyulet which freshep'd all

Our pastures green,

No more are to be seen.
When to the mountain cliff I climb'd this morn,

I turn'd to bless the spot,
And not a leaf appear'd about to fall;

And now they are not!
Why was I born?
Japh.

To die! in youth to die;
And happier in that doom,
Than to behold the universal tomb
Which I
Am thus condemo'd to weep above in vaio.
Wby, when all perish, why must I remain?

[The Waters rise: Men fly in every direction; many are

overtaken by the waves; the Chorus of Mortals disperses in search of safety up the Mountains, Japhet remains upon a rock, while the Ark floats towards him in the distance.

THE CURSE OF MINERVA.

Slow sinks, more lovely ere his race be run,
Along Morea's bills the setting sun;
Not, as in portbern climes, obscurely bright,
But one unclouded blaze of living light;
O’er the hush'd deep the yellow beam be throws,
Gilds the green wave that trembles as it glows;
On old Ægina's rock and Idra's isle,
The God of gladness sheds bis parting smile.
O’er his own regions lingering loves to shine,
Though there bis altars are no more divine.
Descending fast, the mountain-shadows kiss
Thy glorious gulf, unconquered Salamis!
Their azure arches, through the long expanse,
More deeply purpled meet his mellowing glance,
And tenderest tints along their summits driven
Mark his gay course, and own the hues of Heaven!
Till darkly sbaded from the land and deep,
Behind his Delpbian cliff he sinks to sleep.
On such an eve, his palest beam be cast
When, Athens! bere thy wisest look'd his last!
How watch'd thy better sons his farewell ray
That clos’d their murder'd sage's latest day!
Not yet—not yet-Sol pauses on the hill,
The precious hour of parting lingers still;
But sad his light to agonizing eyes,
And dark the mountain's once delightful dyes.
Gloom o'er the lovely land he seem'd to pour,
The land wbere Phoebus never frown'd before;

« ForrigeFortsæt »