« EelmineJätka »
< 'Twould be in vain for me, with fly deceit, • To plead not guilty, and my cause debate, . He, whom the jarring elements obey,
Who governs all things with despotic fway, « To whom all nature's open at a view, • Would soon my crime, as now he does, pursue.
- Favor'd as others of that chosen race, * The seed of Jacob, objects of his grace;
My lot was cast in Judah's pleasant land, • Where join'd I was to a distinguish'd band, • That knows God's mind, and bears his high com
Unthinking wretch! to disobey my God,
Provoke him most t exert his vengeful might. * Now here I stand an object of his wrath,
And, for my fake, you're all expos'd to death. "Ye charge the horrors of the deep in vain,
And, to deaf idol deities, complain. His word, that turn'd these wat’ry worlds to flame, $ That flame to tempeft, can the tempest tame.'
The sailors now with this account amaz’d, All trembling stood, and on each other "gaz’d.
A deadly cold ran shiv'ring through their hearts,
Now hopes were lost, and all essays thought vain, To Jonah thus the sailors turn again :
Since by thy fault (as thou didst now confess) We labor, helpless, in this fad distress, • Tell, if thou know'ft th' Almighty's sov'reign will, « How we may beft the raging tempeft ftill;
What means are needful to appease his wrath, . And save ourselves, if possible, from death.'
The prophet, trembling, made a faint reply; • T'atone for guilt, the guilty soul must die.
For me alone hath happen'd all this woe; • The storm is mine, not your avenging foe, • Make haste to plunge me in the swelling deep, · And all your cares, and all the winds shall sleep. • Soon as the ship of such a weight is eas’d, • A calm shall spread, and justice be appeas’d.'
Again, the pitying sailors ply'd their oars, With skill and strength to reach the Tarsian fhores. But ceas’d, at length, t'employ a fruitless care, And thus to heaven address'd their pious prayer:
"Opow'rful Being ! of all Gods the best! • Regard, we pray, regard our sad request.
• Thou know'st we thirst not for thy servant's life, • Nor are we prompted by revengeful ftrife; . We covet not the riches he enjoys,
Nor is his death our pleasure, but his choice. • Thee, by his crimes, he has enrag'd, and now
Thy justice threatens to inflict the blow. • We instruments are only in thy hand, • To execute what justice does demand. • Then from the guilt of blood, thy suppliants save, Nor satisfaction in thy fury crave.'
With strange reluctance the obedient crew,
O, sudden change the sea is all serene,
Now ftruck with wonder, all the failors raise
But Jonah, whom of late no fhip could save, By care divine, rests in a living grave. With ardent soul to heaven for help he pray'd, And heaven, in pity, sent him speedy aid. The word was giv'n, and soon the scaly herd Forgot their hunger, and the prey rever'd. Proud to attend the stranger, all draw near, Till their huge king, Leviathan, appear, That, as a mountain of enormous size, Confounds the deep, and laves the distant skies : O'er finny shoals maintains despotic reign, And rolls in state thro' the capacious main. As yawns an earthquake, he, at God's command Strange to relate !*does his large jaws expand; Disclose the hideous cavern of his womb, And there, alive, the trembling seer entomb.
Now safe within the monstrous whale he lies,
Yet, whilst our prophet is in prison hurl'd
• To thee, my God, enthron'd above the sky, • From dismal caverns of the deep I cry. • Amidst the horrors of this dreadful place • I hope for mercy, and implore thy grace. • While thou canst pardon, tho' thou look'st severe, • There's room for hope, as well as anxious fear.
· Why • Why should I, helpless, in my ship-wreck, mourn, • Since faith a judge can to a Saviour turn? • Tho' I'm confin'd in caverns of the main, Amidst my woes, I'll faith and hope maintain.
Thou, who canst thake the centre, canft controul · The rebel powers of my tumultuous soul; • Restrain the wild disorder of my blood, And save me from the dangers of the flood.'
The prophet's suit, with faith and fervor join'd, Soon reach'd the throne, and sooth'd th’ Almighty's
Thrice had the fun his daily race renew'd,
What can't th' almighty power of God perform?