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With turban'd heads, of every hue and race,
Bowing before that veil'd and awful face,
Like tulip-beds, of different shape and dyes,
Bending beneath th' invisible West-wind's sighs!
What new-made mystery now, for Faith to sign,
And blood to seal, as genuine and divine, —
What dazzling mimickry of God's own power
Hath the bold Prophet plann'd to grace this hour?
Not such the pageant now, though not less proud,
Yon warrior youth, advancing from the crowd,
With silver bow, with belt of broider'd crape,
And fur-bound bonnet of Bucharian shape,
So fiercely beautiful in form and

Like war's wild planet in a summer sky; —
That youth to-day, - a proselyte, worth hordes
Of cooler spirits and less practis'd swords,
Is come to join, all bravery and belief,
The creed and standard of the heav'n-sent Chief.

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Though few his years, the West already knows Young Azim's fame; -- beyond th’Olympian snows,

Ere manhood darken’d o'er his downy cheek,
O’erwhelm'd in fight and captive to the Greek, ?
He linger'd there, till peace dissolv'd his chains; -
Oh! who could, ev’n in bondage, tread the plains
Of glorious GREECE, nor feel his spirit rise
Kindling within him ? who, with heart and

Could walk where Liberty had been, nor see
The shining foot-prints of her Deity,
Nor feel those god-like breathings in the air,
Which mutely told her spirit had been there?
Not he, that youthful warrior, - no, too well
For his soul's quiet work'd th' awakening spell;
And now, returning to his own dear land,
Full of those dreams of good that, vainly grand,
Haunt the young heart; - proud views of human-kind, ,
Of men to Gods exalted and refin'd;
False views, like that horizon's fair deceit,
Where earth and heav'n but seem, alas, to meet ! -
Soon as he heard an Arm Divine was rais'd
To right the nations, and beheld, emblaz’d

7 In the war of the Caliph Mahadi against the Empress Irene, for an account of which v. Gibbon, vol. x.

On the white flag MOKANNA's host unfurl'd,
Those words of sunshine, “ Freedom to the World,"
At once his faith, his sword, his soul obey'd
Th’inspiring summons; every chosen blade,
That fought beneath that banner's sacred text,
Seem'd doubly edg’d, for this world and the next;
And ne'er did Faith with her smooth bandage bind
Eyes more devoutly willing to be blind,
In virtue's cause;

never was soul inspir'd
With livelier trust in what it most desir'd,
Than his, th' enthusiast there, who kneeling, pale
With pious awe, before that Silver Veil,
Believes the form, to which he bends his knee,
Some pure, redeeming angel, sent to free
This fetter'd world from every bond and stain,
And bring its primal glories back again!

Low as young Azim knelt, that motly crowd
Of all earth's nations sunk, the knee and bow'd,
With shouts of “ ALLA !” echoing long and loud;
While high in air, above the Prophet's head,
Hundreds of banners, to the sunbeam spread,


Wav’d, like the wings of the white birds taat fan The flying throne of star-taught Soliman ! Then thus he spoke :-“Stranger, though new the frame “ Thy soul inhabits now, I've track’d its flame “ For many an age®, in every chance and change 66 Of that Existence, through whose varied range,

As through a torch-race, where, from hand to hand “ The flying youths transmit their shining brand, 66 From frame to frame the unextinguish'd soul “ Rapidly passes, till it reach the goal !

“ Nor think 'tis only the gross Spirits, warm'd “ With duskier fire and for earth's medium form'd, " That run this course; Beings, the most divine, “ Thus deign through dark mortality to shine. 66 Such was the Essence that in Adam dwelt, “ To which all Heav'n, except the Proud One, knelt :' 6 Such the refin’d Intelligence that glow'd “ In Moussa’s frame; - and; thence descending, flow'd

8 The transmigration of souls was one of his doctrines:— v D'Herbelot.

“ And when we said unto the angels, Worship Adam, they all worshipped him except Eblis, (Lucifer,) who refused.”—The Koran,


chap. ii.

66 In

“ Through many a Prophet's breast ;— in Issa'shone, “ And in MOHAMMED burn'd; till, hastening on, “ (As a bright river that, from fall to fall

many a maze descending, bright through all, “ Finds some fair region where, each labyrinth past, « In one full lake of light it rests at last !) " That Holy Spirit, settling calm and free " From lapse or shadow, centers all in me!"

Again, throughout th' assembly at these words, Thousands of voices rung; the warriors' swords Were pointed up to heav'n ; a sudden wind In the open banners play'd, and from behind Those Persian hangings, that but ill could screen The Haram's loveliness, white hands were seen Waying embroider'd scarves, whose motion gave A perfume forth ; - like those the Houris wave When beckoning to their bowers th' Immortal Brave.

But these,” pursued the Chief, “ are truths sublime, “ That claim a holier mood and calmer time 66 Than earth allows us now; this sword must first 6 The darkling prison-house of Mankind burst,

i Jesus.

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