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With marble for brick, and stones of price
For garniture of the edifice ?
Now I see: it is no dream:
It stands there, and it does not seem ;
For ever, in pictures, thus it looks,
And thus I have read of it in books,
Often in England, leagues away,
And wonder'd how those fountains play,
Growing up eternally
Each to a musical water-tree,
Whose blossoms drop, a glittering boon,
Before my eyes, in the light of the moon,
To the granite lavers underneath.
Liar and dreamer in your teeth!
I, the sinner that speak to you,
Was in Rome this night, and stood, and knew
Both this and more! For see, for see,
The dark is rent, mine eye is free
To pierce the crust of the outer wall,
And I view inside, and all there, all,
As the swarming hollow of a hive,
The whole Basilica alive!
Men in the chancel, body, and nave,
Men on the pillars' architrave,
Men on the statues, men on the tombs
With popes and kings in their porphyry wombs,
All famishing in expectation
Of the main-altar's consummation.
For see, for see, the rapturous moment
Approaches, and earth's best endowment
Blends with heaven's: the taper fires
Pant up, the winding brazen spires
Heave loftier yet the baldachin;
The incense-gaspings, long kept in,
Suspire in clouds; the organ blatant
Holds his breath and grovels latent,
As if God's hushing finger grazed him
(Like Behemoth when He praised him),
At the silver bell's shrill tinkling;
Quick cold drops of terror sprinkling
On the sudden pavement strew'd
With faces of the multitude.
Earth breaks up, time drops away,
In flows heaven, with its new day
Of endless life, when He who trod,
Very Man and very God,
This earth in weakness, shame and pain,
Dying the death whose signs remain
Up yonder on the accursed tree,
Shall come again, no more to be
Of captivity the thrall,
But the one God, all in all,
King of kings, and Lord of lords,
As His servant John received the words,
“I died, and live for evermore! ”
JOHN BARLEYCORN. One of the most spirited of the lyrics of BURNS. Although it must be familiar to every reader, this collection would be incomplete without it.
THERE went three kings into the east,
Three kings both great and high ;
And they have sworn a solemn oath,
John Barleycorn shall die.
They took a plough and plough'd him down,
Put clods upon his head;
And they have sworn a solemn oath,
John Barleycorn was dead.
But the cheerful spring came kindly on,
And showers began to fall ;
John Barleycorn got up again,
And sore surprised them all.
The sultry suns of summer came,
And he grew thick and strong;
His head well arm'd with pointed spears,
That no one should him wrong.
The sober autumn enter'd mild,
And he grew wan and pale ;
His bending joints and drooping head
Show'd be began to fail.
His colour sicken'd more and more,
He faded into age;
And then his enemies began
To show their deadly rage.
They took a weapon long and sharp,
And cut him by the knee ;
Then tied him fast upon a cart,
Like a rogue for forgery.
They laid him down upon his back,
And cudgeld him full sore;
They hung him up before the storm,
And turn'd him o'er and o’er.
They fill'd up then a darksome pit
With water to the brim,
And heaved in poor John Barleycorn,
To let him sink or swim.
They laid him out upon the floor,
To work him further woe;
And still, as signs of life appear'd,
They toss'd him to and fro.
They wasted o'er a scorching flame
The marrow of bis bones;
But the miller used him worst of all,
For he crush'd him between two stones. And they have taken his very heart's blood,
And drunk it round and round: And so farewell, John Barleycorn!
Thy fate thou now hast found.
THE FIRST GRIEF.
By Mrs. HEMANS. " Oh! call my brother back to me,
I cannot play alone; The summer comes with flower and bee
Where is my brother gone ?
“The butterfly is glancing bright
Across the sunbeam's track;
I care not now to chase its flight-
Oh! call my brother back.
" The flowers run wild—the flowers we sow'd
Around our garden-tree;
Our vine is drooping with its load-
Oh! call him back to me."
“ He would not hear my voice, fair child !
He may not come to thee;
The face that once like spring-time smiled
On earth no more thou'lt see!
“A rose's brief bright life of joy,
Such unto him was given;
Go-thou must play alone, my boy-
Thy brother is in heaven!”
And has he left the birds and flowers,
And must I call in vain ;
And through the long, long summer hours,
Will be not come again ?
“ And by the brook, and in the glade,
Are all our wanderings o’er ?
Oh! while my brother with me play'd,
Would I had loved him more!”
BURIAL OF THE DEAD.
From KEBLE's Christian Year. or and when the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her, and said note her. Weep not. And He came and touched the bier; and they That bare himn stood still And He said, Young man, I say unto thee. Arise."-St. Luke vii. 13, 14.
Who says the wan autumnal sun
Beams with too faint a smile
To light up Nature's face again,
And, though the year be on the wane,
With thoughts of Spring the heart beguile?
Waft him, thou soft September breeze,
And gently lay him down
Within some circling woodland wall,
Where bright leaves, reddening e'er they fall,
Wave gaily o'er the waters brown.
And if some tones be false or low,
What are all prayers beneath
But cries of babes, that cannot know
Half the deep thought they breathe ?
In His own words we Christ adore,
But angels, as we speak,
Higher above our meaning soar
Than we o'er children weak.
And yet His words mean more than they,
And yet He owns their praise :
Why should we think He turns away
From infants' simple lays ?
This, the most magnificent Hymn in our language, is by Milton.
It was the winter wild,
While the heaven-born child,
All meanly wrapt in the rude manger lies :
Nature, in awe to him,
Hath doff'd her gaudy trim,
With her great Master so to sympathise :
It was no season then for her
To wanton with the sun, her lusty paramour.
Only with speeches fair
She wooes the gentle air
To hide her guilty front with innocent snow;
And on her naked shame,
Pollute with sinful blame,
The saintly veil of maiden white to throw;
Confounded, that her Maker's eyes
Should look so near upon her foul deformities. ·