« AnteriorContinuar »
theory of numbers and music, with their supposed power over the motions of the universe; - imaginations consonant with such a theory. - Wish expressed (in 11th Stanza) realized, in some degree, by the representation of all sounds under the form of thanksgiving to the Creator. — (Last Stanza.) The destruction of earth and the planetary system, the survival of audible harmony, and its support in the Divine Nature, as revealed in Holy Writ.
Tay functions are ethereal,
As if within thee dwelt a glancing mind,
Organ of vision! And a Spirit aërial
Informs the cell of Hearing, dark and blind;
Intricate labyrinth, more dread for thought
To enter than oracular cave;
Strict passage, through which sighs are brought,
And whispers for the heart, their slave ;
And shrieks, that revel in abuse
Of shivering flesh; and warbled air,
Whose piercing sweetness can unloose
The chains of frenzy, or entice a smile
Into the ambush of despair;
Hosannas pealing down the long-drawn aisle,
And requiems answered by the pulse that beats
Devoutly, in life's last retreats !
The headlong streams and fountains
Serve Thee, invisible Spirit, with untired powers ;
Cheering the wakeful tent on Syrian mountains,
They lull perchance ten thousand thousand flowers.
That roar, the prowling lion's Here I am,
How fearful to the desert wide!
That bleat, how tender! of the dam
Calling a straggler to her side.
Shout, cuckoo ! — let the vernal soul
Go with thee to the frozen zone ;
Toll from thy loftiest perch, lone bell-bird, toll
At the still hour to Mercy dear,
Mercy from her twilight throne
Listening to nun's faint throb of holy fear,
To sailor's prayer breathed from a darkening sea,
Or widow's cottage-lullaby.
in. Ye Voices, and ye Shadows And Images of voice, — to hound and horn From rocky steep and rock-bestudded meadows Flung back, and, in the sky's blue caves, reborn, On with your pastime! till the church-tower bells A greeting give of measured glee; And milder echoes from their cells Repeat the bridal symphony. Then, or far earlier, let us rove Where mists are breaking up or gone, And from aloft look down into a cove Besprinkled with a careless choir, Happy milkmaids, one by one Scattering a ditty each to her desire, A liquid concert matchless by nice Art, A stream as if from one full heart,
IV. Blest be the song that brightens The blind man's gloom, exalts the veteran's mirth; Unscorned the peasant's whistling breath, that
lightens His duteous toil of furrowing the green earth. For the tired slave, Song lifts the languid oar, And bids it aptly fall, with chime That beautifies the fairest shore, And mitigates the harshest clime. Yon pilgrims see, -- in lagging file They move; but soon the appointed way A choral Ave Marie shall beguile, And to their hope the distant shrine Glisten with a livelier ray: Nor friendless he, the prisoner of the mine, Who from the well-spring of his own clear breast Can draw, and sing his griefs to rest.
When civic renovation
Dawns on a kingdom, and for needful haste
Best eloquence avails not, Inspiration
Mounts with a tune, that travels like a blast
Piping through cave and battlemented tower ;
Then starts the sluggard, pleased to meet
That voice of Freedom, in its power
Of promises, shrill, wild, and sweet!
Who, from a martial pageant, spreads
Incitements of the battle-day,
Thrilling the unweaponed crowd with plumeless
heads ? —
Even She whose Lydian airs inspire
Peaceful striving, gentle play
Of timid hope and innocent desire
Shot from the dancing Graces, as they move
Fanned by the plausive wings of Love.
Fanned by the new races, as they
How oft along thy mazes, Regent of sound, have dangerous Passions trod ! 0 Thou, through whom the temple rings with
praises, And blackening clouds in thunder speak of God, Betray not by the cozenage of sense Thy votaries, wooingly resigned To a voluptuous influence That taints the purer, better mind; But lead sick Fancy to a harp That hath in noble tasks been tried ; And, if the virtuous feel a pang too sharp, Soothe it into patience, - stay The uplifted arm of Suicide ; And let some mood of thine in firm array Knit every thought the impending issue needs, Ere martyr burns, or patriot bleeds !
As Conscience, to the centre
Of being, smites with irresistible pain,
So shall a solemn cadence, if it enter
The mouldy vaults of the dull idiot's brain,
Transmute him to a wretch from quiet hurled, -
Convulsed as by a jarring din ;
And then aghast, as at the world
Of reason partially let in
By concords winding with a sway
Terrible for sense and soul !
Or, awed, he weeps, struggling to quell dismay.
Point not these mysteries to an Art
Lodged above the starry pole, —
Pure modulations flowing from the heart
Of Divine Love, where Wisdom, Beauty, Truth,
With Order dwell, in endless youth?
Oblivion may not cover
All treasures hoarded by the miser, Time.
Orphean Insight ! truth’s undaunted lover,
To the first leagues of tutored passion climb,
Where Music deigned within this grosser sphere
Her subtle essence to enfold,
And voice and shell drew forth a tear
Softer than Nature's self could mould.
Yet strenuous was the infant Age:
Art, daring because souls could feel,
Stirred nowhere but an urgent equipage
Of wrapt imagination sped her march
Through the realms of woe and weal:
Hell to the lyre bowed low; the upper arch