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Beft image of myself, and dearer half,
The trouble of thy thoughts this night in fleep
Affects ne equally; nor can I like
This uncouth dream, of evil fprung I fear:
Yet evil whence? in thee, can harbour none,
Created pure. But know that in the soul
Are many leffer faculties, that ferve
Reafon as chief; among thefe Fancy next
Her office holds; of all external things,
Which the five watchful fenfes represent,
She forms imaginations, aery shapes,
Which reafon joining or disjoining frames
All what we' affirm, or what deny, and call
Our knowledge or opinion; then retires
Into her private cell when nature rests.
Oft in her abfence mimic Fancy wakes
To imitate her; but misjoining shapes,
Wild work produces oft, and most in dreams,
Ill matching words and deeds long past or late.
Some fuch resemblances, methinks, I find
Of our last evening's talk, in this thy dream,
But with addition ftrange; yet be not fad,
Evil into the mind of God or man
May come and go, fo unapprov'd, and leave.
No fpot or blame behind; which gives me hope
That what in sleep thou didst abhor to dream,
Waking thou never wilt confent to do.
Be not dishearten'd then, nor cloud those looks,
That wont to be more cheerful and ferene,
Than when fair morning first smiles on the world;
And let us to our fresh employments rife
Among the groves, the fountains, and the flowers,
That open now their choiceft bofom'd fmells,
Referv'd from night, and kept for thee in ftore.
So cheer'd he his fair spouse, and fhe was cheer'd; But filently a gentle tear let fall
130 From either eye, and wip'd them with her hair; Two other precious drops that ready flood, Each in their chryftal fluice, he ere they fell Kifs'd, as the gracious figns of fweet remorfe, And pious awe, that fear'd to have offended.
So all was clear'd, and to the field they haste. But first, from under fhady arb'rous roof Soon as they forth were come to open fight Of day-fpring, and the fun, who scarce up rifen, With wheels yet hov'ring o'er the ocean-brim, 140 Shot parallel to the earth his dewy ray, Difcovering in wide landscape all the east Of Paradise and Eden's happy plains, Lowly they bow'd adoring, and began Their orifons, each morning duly paid In various ftyle; for neither various style Nor holy rapture wanted they to praise Their Maker, in fit ftrains pronounc'd, or fung Unmeditated, fuch prompt eloquence
Flow'd from their lips, in profe or numerous verse,
More tuneable than needed lute or harp
To add more fweetnefs; and they thus began.
These are thy glorious works, Parent of good!
Almighty, thine this univerfal frame,
Thus wondrous fair; thyfelf how wondrous then!
Unfpeakable, who fitt'st above these heavens,
To us invifible, or dimly feen
Speak ye who beft can tell, ye fons of light,
Angels; for ye behold him, and with fongs
And choral fymphonies, day without night,
Circle his throne rejoicing; ye in heaven,
In these thy lowest works; yet these declare
Thy goodness beyond thought, and power divine.
On earth, join all ye creatures to extol
Him first, him laft, him midft, and without end. 165 Faireft of ftars, laft in the train of night,
If better thou belong not to the dawn,
Sure pledge of day, that crown'ft the fmiling morn.
With thy bright circlet, praise him in thy fphere,
While day arifes, that fweet hour of prime.
Thou fun, of this great world both eye and foul,
Acknowledge him thy greater; found his praise
In thy eternal course, both when thou climb'st,
And when high noon hast gain'd, and when thou fall'st.
Moon, that now meet'ft the orient fun, now fly'ft
With the fix'd stars, fix'd in their orb that flies; 176
five other wand'ring fires that move
In myftic dance, not without fong, refound
His praife, who out of darkness call'd up light.
Air, and ye elements, the eldest birth
Of Nature's womb, that in quaternion run
Perpetual circle, multiform; and mix,
And nourish all things; let your ceaseless change
Vary to our great Maker still new praise.
Ye mifts and exhalations that now rife
From hill or fteaming lake, dusky or gray,
Till the fun paint your fleecy fkirts with gold,
In honour to the world's great Author rise,
Whether to deck with clouds th' uncolour'd sky,
Or wet the thirsty earth with falling fhowers, 190
Rifing or falling ftill advance his praife..
His praife, ye winds, that from four quarters blow,
Breathe foft or loud; and wave your tops, ye pines,
With every plant, in fign of worship wave.
Fountains, and ye that warble, as ye flow,
Melodious murmurs, warbling tune his praise.
Join voices all ye living fouls: ye birds,
That finging up to heaven-gate afcend,
Bear on your wings, and in your notes his praife.
Ye that in waters glide, and ye that walk
The earth, and ftately tread, or lowly creep;
Witness if I be filent, morn or even,
To hill, or valley, fountain, or fresh fhade,
Made vocal by my fong, and taught his praife.
Hail, univerfal Lord! be bounteous still
To give us only good; and if the night
Have gather'd ought of evil, or conceal'd,
Difperfe it, as now light difpels the dark.
So pray'd they innocent, and to their thoughts Firm peace recover'd foon and wonted calm. On to their morning's rural work they haste, Among sweet dews and flowers; where any row Of fruit-trees over-woody reach'd too far Their pamper'd boughs, and needed hands to check Fruitless embraces: or they led the vine
To wed her elm; she spous'd about him twines
Her marriageable arms, and with her brings
Her dower, th' adopted clusters, to adorn
His barren leaves. Them thus employ'd beheld
With pity heaven's high King, and to him call'd 220
Raphael, the fociable spi'rit, that deign'd
To travel with Tobias, and fecur'd
His marriage with the fev'n times wedded maid.
Raphael, faid he, thou hear'ft what flir on earth
Satan, from hell 'fcap'd thro' the darkfome gulf, 225
Hath rais'd in Paradife, and how disturb'd
This night the human pair, how he defigns
In them at once to ruin all mankind.
Go therefore, half this day as friend with friend
Converse with Adam, in what bower or fhade
Thou find'st him from the heat of noon retir'd,
To refpite his day-labour with repast,
Or with repofe; and fuch difcourfe bring on,
As may advise him of his happy state,
Happiness in his power left free to will,
Left to his own free will, his will though free,
Yet mutable; whence warn him to beware
He fwerve not too fecure. Tell him withal
His danger, and from whom; what enemy,
Late fall'n himself from heaven, is plotting now 240
The fall of others from like state of blifs:
By violence? no, for that fhall be withstood;
But by deceit and lies; this let him know,
Left willfully tranfgreffing he pretend
Surprifal, unadmonish'd, unforewarn'd.
So fpake th' eternal Father, and fulfill'd All juftice: nor delay'd the winged faint After his charge receiv'd; but from among Thoufand celeftial ardors, where he flood Veil'd with his gorgeous wings, up-fpringing light 250 Flew thro' the midst of heaven; th' angelic quires On each hand parting, to his fpeed gave way. Through all th' empyreal road; till at the gate Of heaven arriv'd, the gate felf-open'd wide On golden hinges turning, as by work Divine the fov'reign Architect had fram'd. From hence, no cloud, or, te obstruct his fight,
Star interpos'd, however fmall, he fees,
Not unconform to other fhining globes,
Earth, and the garden of God, with cedars crown'd Above all hills. As when by night the glafs
Of Galileo, lefs affur'd, obferves
Imagin'd lands and regions in the moon:
Or pilot, from amidst the Cyclades,
Delos or Samos firft appearing, kens.
A cloudy fpot. Down thither prone in flight.
He speeds, and through the vaft ethereal sky
Sails between worlds and worlds, with teddy wing