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The lily cheek, the “purple light of love,"
The liquid lustre of the melting eye, ..
Mary! of these the Poet sung, for these
Did Woman triumph;.... turn not thou away
Contemptuous from the theme. No Maid of Arc
Had, in those ages, for her country's cause
Wielded the sword of freedom; no Roland
Had borne the palm of female fortitude ;
No Cordé with self-sacrificing zeal
Had glorified again the Avenger's name,
As erst when Cæsar perish’d: haply too
Some strains may hence be drawn, befitting me
To offer, nor unworthy thy regard.
GLAD as the weary traveller tempest-tost
To reach secure at length his native coast,
Who wandering long o'er distant lands hath sped,
The night-blast wildly howling round his head,
Known all the woes of want, and felt the storm 5
Of the bleak winter parch his shivering form;
The journey o'er and every peril past
Beholds his little cottage-home at last,
And as he sees afar the smoke curl slow,
Feels his full eyes with transport overflow; 10
So from the scene where Death and Misery reign,
And Vice and Folly drench with blood the plain,
Joyful I turn, to sing how Woman's praise
Avail'd again Jerusalem to raise,
Call’d forth the sanction of the Despot's nod, 15
And freed the nation best beloved of God.
Darius gives the feast; to Persia's court, Awed by his will, the obedient throng resort : Attending Satraps swell their prince's pride, 19 And vanquish'd Monarchs grace the Conqueror's side. No more the warrior wears the garb of war, Girds on the sword, or mounts the scythed car; No more Judæa's sons dejected go, And hang the head, and heave the sigh of woe.
From Persia's rugged hills descend the train, 25
From where Orontes foams along the plain,
From where Choaspes rolls his royal waves,
And India sends her sons, submissive slaves.
Thy daughters, Babylon, for this high feast 29
Weave the loose robe, and paint the flowery vest,
With roseate wreaths they braid the glossy hair,
They tinge the cheek which nature form’d so fair,
Learn the soft step, the soul-subduing glance,
Melt in the song, and swim adown the dance.
Exalted on the Monarch's golden throne, 35
In royal state the fair Apame shone ;
Her form of majesty, her eyes of fire,
Chill with respect, or kindle with desire ;
The admiring multitude her charms adore,
And own her worthy of the rank she bore. 40
Now on his couch reclined Darius lay, Tired with the toilsome pleasures of the day; Without Judæa's watchful sons await, To guard the sleeping idol of the state. Three youths were these of Judah's royal race, 45 Three youths whom Nature dower'd with every grace, To each the form of symmetry she gave, And haughty genius cursed each favourite slave; These fill’d the cup, around the Monarch kept, 49 Served when he spake, and guarded while he slept.
Yet oft for Salem's hallow'd towers laid low The sigh would heave, the unbidden tear would flow And when the dull and wearying round of power Allow'd Zorobabel one vacant hour,