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Sweet is the cross, above all sweets,
The keenest woe life ever meets
'Tis just that God should not be dear
And groans and murmurs make it clear,
The love of Thee flows just as much
Our hearts, their scantiness is such,
Both cannot govern in one soul;
The love of God deserves the whole,
THE SECRETS OF DIVINE LOVE ARE TO BE KEPT.
SUN! stay thy course, this moment ! Thou Moon! whose never-failing course stay
Bespeaks a providential force, Suspend the o’erflowing tide of day, Go, tell the tidings of my flame Divulge not such a love as mine,
To Him who calls the stars by name, Ah! hide the mystery divine;
Whose absence kills, whose presence Lest man, who deems my glory shame, cheers, Should learn the secret of my flame. Who blots or brightens all my years. O Night! propitious to my views, While, in the blue abyss of space, Thy sable awning wide diffuse :
Thine orb performs its rapid race, Conceal alike my joy and pain,
Still whisper in his listening ears Nor draw thy curtain back again,
The language of my sighs and tears ; Though morning, by the tears she shows, Tell him, I seek him, far below, Seems to participate my woes.
Lost in a wilderness of woe. Ye Stars ! whose faint and feeble fires Ye thought-composing, silent Hours, Express my languishing desires,
Diffusing peace o'er all my powers, W hose slender beams pervade the skies Friends of the pensive! who conceal As silent as my secret sighs,
In darkest shades the flames I feel ; Those emanations of a soul
To you I trust, and safely may, That darts her fires beyond the pole; The love that wastes my strength away. Your rays, that scarce assist the sight, In sylvan scenes and caverns rude, That pierce, but not displace, the night, I taste the sweets of solitude ; That shine indeed, but nothing show Retired indeed, but not alone, Of all those various scenes below, I share them with a Spouse unknown, Bring no disturbance, rather prove Who hides me here, from envious eyes, Incentives to a sacred love.
| From all intrusion and surprise.
Imbowering Shades, and Dens pro- | How calm, amid these scenes, my mind! found!
How perfect is the peace I find! Where Echo rolls the voice around; Oh, hush, be still, my every part, Mountains! whose elevated heads
My tongue, my pulse, my beating heart! A moist and misty veil o'erspreads; That Love, aspiring to its cause, Disclose a solitary bride
May suffer not a moment's pause. To Him I love-to none beside.
Ye swift-finned nations, that abide Ye Rills ! that, murmuring all the way,
In seas as fathomless as wide ; Among the polished pebbles stray;
And, unsuspicious of a snare, Creep silently along the ground,
Pursue at large your pleasures there : Lest, drawn by that harmonious sound,
Poor sportive fools! how soon does man Some wanderer, whom I would not
Your heedless ignorance trepan ! neet,
Away ! dive deep into the brine, Should stumble on my loved retreat. Where never yet sunk plummet-line; Enamelled Meads, and Hillocks green,
Trust me, the vast leviathan
Is merciful, compared with man ;
Avoid his arts, forsake the beach,
And never play within his reach! Ah! still conceal, with caution due, My soul her bondage ill endures; A charge I trust with none but you. I pant for liberty like yours;
I long for that immense profound, If, when my pain and grief increase,
That knows no bottom and no bound;
The incomprehensible of Love.
Ye Birds! that lessen as ye fly,
To whom yon airy waste belongs, Ye Meads and Groves, unconscious Resounding with your cheerful songs; things!
Haste to escape from human sight! Ye know not whence my pleasure Fear less the vulture and the kite.
springs; Ye know not, and ye cannot know,
How blest and how secure am I, The source from which my sorrows flow:
When, quitting earth, I soar on high; The dear sole Cause of all I feel,
When, lost, like you I disappear, He knows, and understands them well.
And float in a sublimer sphere !
Whence falling, within human view, Ye Deserts! where the wild beasts rove,
I am ensnared, and caught like you. Scenes sacred to my hours of love ; Omniscient God, whose notice deigns Ye Forests ! in whose shades I stray, To try the heart and search the reins, Benighted under burning day ;
Compassionate the numerous woes Ah! whisper not how blest am I,
I dare not, even to Thee, disclose ; Nor while I live, nor when I die.
Oh save me from the cruel hands Ye Lambs! who sport beneath these
Of men, who fear not Thy commands ! shades,
Love, all-subduing and divine, And bound along the mossy glades, Care for a creature truly Thine ; Be taught a salutary fear,
Reign in a heart disposed to own And cease to bleat when I am near : No sovereign but Thyself alone; The wolf may hear your harmless cry, Cherish a bride who cannot rove, Whom ye should dread as much as I. | Nor quit Thee for a meaner love !
THE VICISSITUDES EXPERIENCED IN THE CHRISTIAN LIFE.
I suffer fruitless anguish day by day,
Each moment, as it passes, marks my pain ;
And see no end of all that I sustain.
Anxiety increasing every hour,
And nought remains of all my former power.
My happy hours, like shadows, passed away ;
Night darker seems, succeeding such a day.
What profit is there in incessant tears?
Reveal thy Love, and banish all my fears!
Views not my sorrows, hears not when I plead;
Unless it shortens life, is vain indeed.
My pangs are keen, but no complaint transpires ;
Hell seems to lose its less tremendous fires.
So thy severe displeasure might subside ?
My life extinguished, and yet death denied.
The unchanging love, so sworn in better days ?
How lovely Thou, and I how rash to gaze.
Untaught, still ignorant how fair Thou art,
Nor known the torments of a doubting heart.
Whence then, I cry, the pangs that I sustain ?
Ought she to cherish or shake off her pain ?
Suffering, I suffer not ; sincerely love,
Yet feel no touch of that enlivening flame ; As chance inclines me, unconcerned I move,
All times, and all events, to me the same.
I search my heart, and not a wish is there,
But burns with zeal that hated self may fall; Such is the sad disquietude I share,
A sea of doubts, and self the source of all.
I ask not life, nor do I wish to die ;
And if thine hand accomplish not my cure, I would not purchase with a single sigh
A free discharge from all that I endure.
I groan in chains, yet want not a release ;
Am sick, and know not the distempered part; Am just as void of purpose as of peace;
Have neither plan, nor fear, nor hope, nor heart. My claim to life, though sought with earnest care,
No light within me or without me shows; Once I had faith, but now in self-despair
Find my chief cordial and my best repose. My soul is a forgotten thing ; she sinks,
Sinks and is lost, without a wish to rise ; Feels an indifference she abhors, and thinks
Her name erased for ever from the skies. Language affords not my distress a name,
Yet is it real, and no sickly dream ; 'Tis Love inflicts it ; though to feel that flame
Is all I know of happiness supreme. When Love departs, a chaos wide and vast,
And dark as hell, is opened in the soul ; When Love returns, the gloomy scene is past,
No tempests shake her, and no fears control. Then tell me why these ages of delay ?
O Love, all excellent, once more appear, Disperse the shades, and snatch me into day,
From this abyss of night, these floods of fear ! No-Love is angry, will not now endure
A sigh of mine, or suffer a complaint ; He smites me, wounds me, and withholds the cure ;
Exhausts my powers, and leaves me sick and faint. He wounds, and hides the hand that gave the blow;
He flies, he reappears, and wounds again ;Was ever heart that loved Thee treated so ?
Yet I adore Thee, though it seem in vain.