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My soul is a forgotten thing; she sinks,
Sinks and is lost without a wish to rise; Feels an indifference she abhors, and thinks Her name erased for ever from the skies.
Language affords not my distress a name,—
When Love departs, a chaos wide and vast,
Then tell me why these ages of delay?
Oh Love, all excellent, once more appear, Disperse the shades, and snatch me into day,
From this abyss of night, these floods of fear!
No-Love is angry, will not now endure
A sigh of mine, or suffer a complaint; He smites me, wounds me, and withholds the cure; Exhausts my powers, and leaves me sick and faint.
He wounds, and hides the hand that gave the blow;
Yet I adore thee, though it seem in vain.
And wilt thou leave me, whom, when lost and blind, Thou didst distinguish and vouchsafe to choose, Before thy laws were written in my mind,
While yet the world had all my thoughts and views?
Now leave me? when, enamour'd of thy laws,
A faithful soul to perish from thy sight?
What can have caused the change which I deplore ?
And loves, and seeks thee, for Thyself alone.
Pain cannot move it, danger cannot scare;
Pleasure and wealth, in its esteem, are dust; It loves thee, even when least inclined to spare Its tenderest feelings, and avows thee just.
Tis all thine own; my spirit is so too,
An undivided offering at thy shrine;
Love, holy Love! and art thou not severe,
To slight me, thus devoted and thus fix'd? Mine is an everlasting ardour, clear
From all self-bias, generous and unmix'd.
But I am silent, seeing what I see,
And fear, with cause, that I am self-deceived; Not even my faith is from suspicion free,
And that I love, seems not to be believed.
Live Thou, and reign for ever, glorious Lord!
WATCHING UNTO GOD IN THE NIGHT SEASON.
SLEEP at last has fled these eyes,
And my heart is free and light.
Nature silent all around,
Not a single witness near;
Interruption, all day long,
Checks the current of my joys;
Undisturb'd I muse all night,
On the first Eternal Fair;
Life, with its perpetual stir,
Proves a foe to Love and me;
Never more, sweet sleep, suspend
Hush the world, that I
David, for the selfsame cause,
Night preferr'd to busy day: Hearts whom heavenly beauty draws Wish the glaring sun away.
Sleep, self-lovers is for you ;
Souls that love celestial know, Fairer scenes by night can view Than the sun could ever show.
ON THE SAME.
SEASON of my purest pleasure,
I can commune with the skies ;
Find, in watching, my repose.
Silence all around prevailing,
Nature hush'd in slumber sweet, No rude noise mine ears assailing,
Now my God and I can meet: Universal nature slumbers,
And my soul partakes the calm, Breathes her ardour out in numbers, Plaintive song or lofty psalm.
Now my passion, pure and holy,
Shines and burns without restraint, Which the day's fatigue and folly
Cause to languish, dim and faint: Charming hours of relaxation!
How I dread the ascending sun! Surely, idle conversation
Is an evil, match'd by none.
Worldly prate and babble hurt me; Unintelligible prove;
Neither teach me nor divert me;
I have ears for none but Love.
Simple souls, and unpolluted
By conversing with the great, Have a mind and taste ill suited To their dignity and state;