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Her office holds ; of all external things,
Which the five watchful senses represent,
She forms imaginations, airy shapes,
Which reason joining or disjoining, frames
All what we' affirm, or what deny, and call
Our knowledge or opinion ; then retires
Into her private cell when nature rests.
Oft in her absence mimic fancy wakes
To imitate her ; but misjoining shapes,
Wild work produces oft, and most in dreams,
Ill matching words and deeds long past or late.
Some such resemblances methinks I find
Of our last evening's talk, in this thy dream, 115
But with addition strange ; yet be not sad.
Evil into the mind of God or Man
May come and go, so unapprov'd, and leave
No spot or blame behind : which gives me hope
That what in sleep thou didst abhor to dream,
Waking thou never wilt consent to do.
Be not dishearten’d then, nor cloud those looks,
That wont to be more cheerful and serene
Than when fair morning first smiles on the world;
And let us to our fresh employments rise
125 Among the groves, the fountains, and the flowers That open now their choicest bosom'd smells, Reserv'd from night, and kept for thee in store.
So chcer'd he his fair spouse, and she was cheer'd, But silently a gentle tear let fall
130 From either eye, and wip'd them with her hair ; Two other precious drops that ready stood,
Each in their crystal sluice, he ere they fell
Kiss'd, as the gracious signs of sweet remorse
And pious awe, that fear'd to have offended.
So all was clear'd, and to the field they haste.
But first, from under shady arbo'rous roof.
Soon as they forth were come to open sight
Of day-spring, and the sun, who scarce up-risen,
With wheels yet hovering o'er the ocean brim,
Shot parallel to th' earth his dewy ray,
Discovering in wide landskip all the east
Of Paradise and Eden's happy plains,
Lowly they bow'd adoring, and began
Their orisons, each morning duly paid
In various style; for neither various style
Nor holy rapture wanted they to praise
Their Maker, in fit strains pronounc'd or sung
Unmeditated, such prompt eloquence
Flow'd from their lips, in prose or numerous verse,
More tuneable than needed lute or harp
To add more sweetness ! and they thus began.
These are thy glorious works, Parent of good, Almighty, thine this universal frame, Thus wondrous fair ; thyself how wondrous then! Unspeakable, who sit'st above these Heavens To us invisible, or dimly seen In these thy lowest works; yet these declare Thy goodness beyond thought, and pow'r divinc. Speak ye who best can tell, ye sons of light, 166 Angels; for ye behold him, and with songs And choral symphonies, day without night
Circle his throne rejoicing; ye in Heaven,
On Earth join all ye Creatures to extol
Him first, him last, him midst, and without end. 165
Fairest of stars, last in the train of night,
Jf better thou belong not to the dawn,
Sure pledge of day, that crown'st the smiling morn
With thy bright circlet, praise him in thy sphere,
While day arises, that sweet hour of prime. 170
Thou sun, of this great world both eye and soul,
Acknowledge him thy greater, sound his praise
In thy eternal course, both when thou climb'st,
And when high noon hast gain'd, and when thou fall'st.
Moon, that now meet'st the orient sun, now fly'st
With the fix'd stars, fix'd in their orb that flies, 176
And ye five other wand'ring fires that move
In mystic dance not without
resound His praise, who out of darkness call'd up light. Air, and ye elements, the eldest birth
180 Of Nature's womb, that in quaternion run Perpetual circle, multiform; and mix And nourish all things; let your ceaseless change Vary to our great Maker still new praise. Ye Mists and Exhalations that now rise
185 From hill or steaming lake, dusky or grey, Till the sun paint your fleecy skirts with gold, In honour to the world's great Author, rise, Whether to deck with clouds th' uncolour'd sky, Or wet the thirsty earth with falling showers, 190 Rising or falling still advance his praise. His praise, ye Winds, that from four quarters blow,