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SACRED ECLOGUE.

In Imitation of VIRGIL'S POLLIO.

7E Nymphs of Solyma! begin the fong:

To heavenly themes fublimer strains belong.
The moffy fountains, and the fylvan shades,
The dreams of Pindus and th'Aonian maids,
Delight no more-0 thou my voice infpire,
Who touch'd Ifaiah s hallow'd lips with fire!

Rapt into future times, the bard begun :
A Virgin shall conceive, a Virgin bear a Son!
From Jeffe's root behold a branch arise,

*

Whofe facred flower with fragrance fills the skies :
Th' Etherial Spirit o'er its leaves shall move,
And on its top descends the mystic Dove.

Yet heav'ns! from high the dewy nectar pour,

And in foft filence fhed the kindly shower!

The fick and weak the healing plant shall aid, 本

From storms a fhelter, and from heat a fhade.

All crimes fhall cease, and ancient fraud shall fail;

Returning Justice lift aloft her fcale;

*Ifai. ch. II. ver. I.

Ch. 45. ver. 8. Ch.

25. ver. 4.

Ch. 9. v. 7.

Peace o'er the world her olive wand extend,
And white-rob'd Innocence from heaven defcend.
Swift fly the years, and rife th' expected morn!
Oh fpring to light, aufpicious Babe, be born!
See Nature haftes her earliest wreaths to bring,
With all the incense of the breathing Spring:
See lofty Lebanon his head advance,
See nodding forefts on the mountains dance:
See fpicy clouds from lowly Sharon rife,
And Carmel s flowery top perfumes the skies.
Hark! a glad voice the lonely defart chears;
Prepare the way! a God, a God appears
A God, a God! the vocal hills reply,
The rocks proclaim'd th' approaching Deity.
Lo, earth receives him from the bending skies!
Sink down, ye mountains, and ye vallies, rise;
With heads declin'd, ye cedars, homage pay;
Be fmooth ye rocks; ye rapid floods give way!
The Saviour comes! by ancient bards foretold:
Hear him, ye deaf, and, all ye blind, behold!
He from thick films fhall purge the visual ray,
And on the fightless eye-ball pour the day:
'Tis he th' obftructed paths of found fhall clear,
And bid new mufic charm th' unfolding ear:
The dumb fhall fing, the lame his crutch forego,
And leap exulting like the bounding roe.
No figh, no murmur the wide world fhall hear,
From every face he wipes off every tear.

* Ch. 35. ver. 2. + Ch. 40. ver. 3, 4. 42. ver. 18. Ch. 35. ver. 5. 6.

Ch.

In * adamantine chains shall death be bound, And hell's grim tyrant feel th' eternal wound. As the good † fhepherd tends his fleecy care, Seeks freshest pasture, and the purest air, Explores the loft, the wandering sheep directs, By day o'erfees them, and by night protects, The tender lambs he raises in his arms, Feeds from his hand, and in his bofom warms; Thus fhall mankind his guardian care engage, The promis'd father of the future age. No more shall | nation against nation rife, Nor ardent warriors meet with hateful eyes, Nor fields with gleaming steel be cover'd o'er, The brazen trumpets kindle rage no more; But useless lances into scythes fhall bend, And the broad faulchion in a plow-fhare end. Then palaces fhall rife; the joyful § fon Shall finish what his fhort-liv'd fire begun; Their vines a fhadow to their race fhall yield, And the fame hand that fow`d, fhall reap the field. The fwain in barren defarts with furprize Sees lillies fpring, and fudden verdure rife; And starts amidst the thirsty wilds to hear New falls of water murmuring in his ear. On rifted rocks the dragon s late abodes, The green reed trembles, and the bulrufh nods.

+ Ch. 9.

*Ch. 25. ver. 8. + Ch. 40. ver. II. ver. 6. Ch. 2. ver. 4. § Ch. 65. ver. 21, 22. Ch. 35. ver. 1, 7.

VOL. I.

Wafte* fandy vallies, once perplex'd with thorn,
The fpiry fir and shapely box adorn;

To leaflefs fhrubs the flowery palms fucceed,
And odorous myrtle to the noisome weed.

The lambs with wolves fhall graze the verdent mead,
And boys in flowery bands the tyger lead;

The fteer and lion at one crib fhall meet,
And harmless serpents lick the pilgrim s feet.
The fmiling infant in his hand shall take
The crefted bafilifk and fpeckled snake,
Pleas'd the green luftre of the scales furvey,
And with their forky tongue fhall innocently play.
Rife, crown'd with light, imperial || Salem, rife!
Exalt thy towery head and lift thy eyes!
See a long $ race thy fpacious courts adorn;
See future fons, and daughters yet unborn,
In crouding ranks on every fide arife,
Demanding life, impatient for the skies!
See barbarous nations at thy gates attend,
Walk in thy light, and in thy temple bend;
See thy bright altars throng'd with proftrate kings,
And heap'd with products of →→ Sabacan springs!
For thee Idume s fpicy forests blow,

And feeds of gold on Ophir's mountains glow.
See heaven its sparkling portals wide display,
And break upon thee in a flood of day!

* Ch. 41. ver. 19. and ch. 55. ver. 13. + Ch.

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