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Stands the strong citadel, and frowns defiance
On adverse hosts—though many a bastion jut
Forth from the rampart's elevated mound;
Vain the poor providence of human art,
And mortal strength how vain! while underneath
Triumphs his mining vengeance in th' uproar
Of shattered towers, riven rocks, and mountains,
With clamour inconceivable up-torn,
And hurled down th' abyss; sulphureous pyrites,
Bursting abrupt from darkness into day,
With din outrageous, and destructive ire,
Augment th' hideous tumult, while it wounds
Th’ afflictive ear, and terrifies the eye,
And rends the heart in twain. Twice have we felt
Within Augusta's walls, twice have we felt
Thy threatened indignation : but even Thou,
Incensed Omnipotent, art gracious ever ;
Thy goodness infinite but mildly warned us,
With mercy blended wrath; oh! spare us still,
Nor send more dire conviction. We confess
That Thou art He, th' Almighty : we believe.
For at thy righteous power whole systems quake,
For at thy nod tremble ten thousand worlds.
Hark! on the winged whirlwind's rapid rage,
Which is, and is not, in a moment_hark !
On th' hurricane's tempestuous sweep He rides,
And forests are no more. For, conflict dreadful!
The west encounters east, and Notus meets
In his career the Hyperborean blast.
The lordly lions shuddering seek their dens,
And fly like timorous deer; the king of birds,
Who dared the solar ray, is weak of wing,
And faints, and falls, and dies; while He supreme,
Stands stedfast in the centre of the storm.
Wherefore, ye objects terrible and great,
Ye thunders, earthquakes, and ye fire-fraught wombs
Of fell volcanos, whirlwinds, hurricanes,
And boiling billows, hail! in chorus join
To celebrate and magnify your Maker, Who yet in works of a minuter mould Is not less manifest, is not less mighty. Survey the magnet’s sympathetic love That woos the yielding needle; contemplate The attractive amber's power, invisible E'en to the mental eye; or when the blow Sent from the electric sphere assaults thy frame, Shew me the hand that dealt it! Baffled here By his omnipotence, philosophy Slowly her thoughts inadequate revolves, And stands, with all his circling wonders round her, Like heavy Saturn in the ethereal space, Begirt with an inexplicable ring. If such the operations of his power, Which at all seasons and in every place (Ruled by established laws and current nature) Arrest the attention, who, oh! who shall tell His acts miraculous ? when his own decrees Repeals He or suspends ? when by the hand Of Moses or of Joshua, or the mouths Of his prophetic seers, such deeds He wrought Before the astonished sun's all-seeing eye, That faith was scarce a virtue. Need I sing The fate of Pharaoh and his numerous band, Lost in the reflux of the watery walls That melted to their fluid state again? Need I recount how Samson's warlike arm With more than mortal nerve was strung to o'erthrow Idolatrous Philistia ? Shall I tell How David triumphed, and what Job sustained ? But, o supreme unutterable mercy! O love unequalled, mystery immense, Which angels long to unfold! 'tis man's redemption That crowns thy glory, and thy power confirms,Confirms the great, th' uncontroverted claim. When from the virgin's unpolluted womb, Shone forth the Sun of Righteousness revealed,
And on benighted reason poured the day,
“Let there be peace," He said, and all was calm
Amongst the warring world-calm as the sea
When, “Oh! be still, ye boisterous winds," He cried,
And not a breath was blown nor murmur heard.
His was a life of miracle and might,
And charity and love: ere yet He taste
The bitter draught of death, ere yet He rise
Victorious o'er the universal foe,
And death, and sin, and hell in triumph lead.
His by the right of conquest is mankind,
And in sweet servitude and golden bonds
Were tied to Him for ever.
Oh! how easy
Is his ungalling yoke, and all his burdens
'Tis ecstasy to bear! Him, blessed Shepherd,
His flocks shall follow through the maze of life,
And shades that tend the day spring from on high;
And as the radiant roses, after fading,
In fuller foliage and more fragrant breath
Revive in smiling spring, so shall it fare
With those that love Him; for sweet is their savour,
And all eternity shall be their spring.
Then shall the gates and everlasting doors,
At which the King of Glory enters in,
Be to the saints unbarred, and there, where pleasure
Boasts an undying bloom; where dubious hope
Is certainty, and grief-attended love
Is freed from passion ;—there we'll celebrate,
With worthier numbers, Him who is and was,
And, in immortal prowess, King of kings,
Shall be the monarch of all worlds for ever!
ORPHeus, (for so the Gentiles called thy name,)
Israel's sweet Psalmist, who alone could wake
The inanimate to motion; who alone
The joyful hillocks, the applauding rocks,
And floods, with musical persuasion drew;
Thou who to hail and snow gavest voice and sound,
And madest the mute melodious! greater yet
Was thy divinest skill, and ruled o'er more
Than art and nature; for thy tuneful touch
Drove trembling Satan from the heart of Saul,
And quelled the evil angel; in this breast
Some portion of thy genuine spirit breathe,
And lift me from myself; each thought impure,
Banish; each low idea raise, refine,
Enlarge and sanctify; so shall the muse
Above the stars aspire, and aim to praise
Her God on earth as He is praised in heaven.
Immense Creator! whose all-powerful hand
Framed universal being, and whose eye
Saw, like Thyself, all things were formed for good;
Where shall the timorous bard thy praise begin,
Where end the purest sacrifice of song
And just thanksgiving ? The thought-kindling light,
Thy prime production, darts upon my mind;
Its vivifying beams my heart illumes,
And fills my soul with gratitude and Thee.
Hail to the cheerful rays of ruddy morn
That paint the streaky east, and blithesome rouse
The birds, the cattle, and mankind from rest.
Hail to the freshness of the early breeze,
And Iris dancing on the new-fallen dew.
Without the aid of yonder golden globe,
Lost were the garnet's lustre, lost the lily,
The tulip and auricula's spotted pride;
Lost were the peacock’s plumage, to the sight
So pleasing in its pomp and glossy show.
0! thrice illustrious, were it not for thee,
Those pansies, that reclining from the bank,
View through th' immaculate pellucid stream
Their portraiture in the inverted heaven,
Might as well change their triple boast the while,
The purple and the gold, that far outvie
The eastern monarch's garment, e'en with the dock,
E'en with the baleful hemlock's irksome green ;
Without thy aid, without thy gladsome beams,
The tribes of woodland warblers would remain
Mute on the bending branches, nor recite
The praise of Him, who ere He formed their lord,
Their voices tuned to transport, winged their flight,
And bade them call for nurture, and receive:
And lo! they call; the blackbird and the thrush,
The woodlark and the redbreast, jointly call ;
He hears and feeds their feathered families;
He feeds his sweet musicians, nor neglects
The invoking ravens in the greenwood wide;
And though their throats coarse rattling meet the ear,
They mean it all for music, thanks and praise;
They mean, and leave ingratitude to man.
But not to all !-for hark! the organs blow
Their swelling notes round the cathedral's dome,
And grace the harmonious choir, celestial feast
To pious ears, and medicine of the mind!
The thrilling trebles, and the manly base,
Join in accordance meet, and with one voice
All to the sacred subject suit their song.
While in each breast sweet melancholy reigns
Angelically pensive, till the joy
Improves and purifies; the solemn scene
The sun through storied panes surveys with awe,
And bashfully withholds each golden beam.
Here, as her home, from morn to eve frequents
The cherub Gratitude; behold her eyes !
With love and gladness weepingly they shed
Ecstatic smiles; the incense that her hands
Uprear, is sweeter than the breath of May
Caught from the nectarine's blossom, and her voice
Is more than voice can tell; to Him she sings,
To Him who feeds, who clothes, and who adorns,
Who made, and who preserves, whatever dwells