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What is that
Adah. Thou has not spoken well, nor is that thought Thy own, but of the spirit who was with thee. Would I could die for them, so they might live!
Cain. Why, so say I-provided that one victim Might satiate the insatiable of life, And that our little rosy sleeper there Might never taste of death nor human sorrow, Nor hand it down to those who spring from him. Adah. How know we that some such atonement one
Adah. Alas! thou sinnest now, my Cain : thy words
Then leave me ! Adah.
Never, Though thy God left thee. Cain.
Say, what have we here? Adah. Two altars, which our brother Abel made During thine absence, whereupon to offer A sacrifice to God on thy return.
Cain. And how knew he, that I would be so ready With the burnt offerings, which he daily brings With a meek brow, whose base humility Shows more of fear than worship, as a bribe To the Creator ?
Surely, 'tis well done.
Adah. The fruits of the earth, the early, beautiful
Cain. I have toil'd, and till'd, and sweaten in the sun
God ! Touch not the child—my child ! thy child! Oh, Cain !
Cain. Fear not ! for all the stars, and all the power Which sways them, I would not accost yon infant With ruder greeting than a father's kiss.
Adah. Then, why so awful in thy speech ?
Cain. 'Twere better that he ceased to live, than give
to so much of sorrow as he must Endure, and, harder still, bequeath ; but since That saying jars you, let us only say
'Twere better that he never had been born.
Adah. Oh, do not say so ! Where were then the joys, The mother's joys of watching, nourishing, And loving him ? Soft ! he awakes. Sweet Enoch !
[She goes to the child.
Bless thee, boy!
Of that I doubt ;