« PreviousContinue »
Yet even in death Eurydice he sung,
-Eurydice still trembled on his tongue,
Eucydice the woods,
Eurydice the floods Eurydice the rocks, and hollow mountains rung.
Music the fiercest grief can charm,
And fate's severest rage disarm.
Music can soften pain to ease,
And make despair and madness pleasę :
Our joys below it can improve,
And antedate the bliss above.
This the divine Cecilia found,
And to her Maker's praise confind the sound,
When the full organ joins the tuneful quire,
Th' immortal pow'rs incline their ear :
Borne on their swelling notes our souls aspire,
While solemn airs improve the sacred fire ;
And angels lean from heav'n to hear.
Of Orpheus now no more let poets tell, To bright Cecilia greater pow'r is givin; His numbers rais'd a shade from hell,
TWAS at the 'royal feast, for Persia won
By Philip's warlike son:
Aloft in awful state
The god-like hero sate
On his imperial throne ;
His valiant peers were plaed around;
Their brows with roses and with myrtle bound:
So should desert in arms be crown'd.
The lovely Thais by his side
Sat, like a blooming eastern bride,
In flow'r of youth and beauty's pride,
Happy, happy, happy pair;
None but the brave,
None but the brave,
None but the brave deserves the fair.
Timotheus plaed on high
Amid the tuneful quire,
With flying fingers touch'd the lyre,
The trembling notes ascend the sky,
And heav'nly joys inspire,
The song began from Jove;
Who left his blissful seats above,
Such is the pow'r of mighty love!
A dragon's fiery form bely'd the gods
Sublime on ratiant spheres he rode,
When he to fair Olympia press’d,
And stamp'd an image of himself, a sov'reign of the world
The list'ning crowd admire the lofty sound;
A present deity, they shout around,
A present deity, the vaulted roofs rebound :
With ravish'd ears
The monarch hears,
Assumes the god,
Affects to nod,
And seems to shake the spheres.
The praise of Bacchus then, the sweet musician sung:
Of Bacchus ever fair, and ever young :
The jolly god in triumph comes ;
Sound the trumpets, beat the drums ;
Flush'd with a purple grace
He shews his honest face.
Now give the hautboys breath; he comes, he comes !
Bacchus ever fair and young,
Drinking joys did first ordain :-
Bacchus' blessings are a treasure,
Drinking is the soldier's pleasure.
Rich the treasure,
Sweet the pleasure ;
Sweet is pleasure after pain.
Sooth'd with the sound, the king grew vain ;
Fought all his battles o'er again;
And thrice he routed all-his foes; and thrice he slew the
The master saw the madness rise ;
His glowing cheeks, his ardent eyes;
And while he heav'n and earth defyd
Chang'd his hand, and check'd his pride...
He chose a mournful muse
Soft pity to infuse':.
He sung Darius great and good,
By too severe a fate,
Fall'ı, fallin, fallin,
Fall'n from his high estate,
And welt'sing in his blood :
M m 2 ,
Deserted at his utmost need,
By those his former bounty fed,
On the bare earth expos'd he lies,
With not a friend to close his eyes
With downcast look the joyless victor fate,
Revolving in his alter'd soul
The various turns of fate below;
And now and then a sigh he stole ;
And tears began to flow.
The mighty master smil'd, to see
That love was in the next degree:
-Twas but a kindred soul to move :
z?or pity melts the mild to love.
Softly sweet in Lydian measures,
Soon he sooth'd his soul to pleasures.
War he sung is toil and
Honour but an empty buble ;
Never ending, still beginning, Fighting still, and still destroying:
If the world be worth thy winning, Think, O, think it worth enjoying !
Lovely Thais sits beside thee,
Take the good the gods provide thee.
The many rend the skies with loud applause;
So love was crown’d, but music won the cause.
The prince, unable to conceal his pain,
Gaz'd on the fair,
Who caus'd his care,
And sigh'd and look'd, sigh'd and look'd
Sigh'd and look'd, and sigh'd again ;
At length, with love and wine at once oppressid,
The ranquish'd victor sunk upon her breast.
Now strike the golden lyre again ;
And louder yet, and yet a louder strain,
Break his bands of sleep asunder,
And rouse him, like a rattling peal of thunder.
Hark, Hark, the horrid sound
Has rais'd up his head ;
As awak'd from the dead,
And amaz'd, he stares around.
Revenge, revenge, Timotheus cries,
See the furies arise,
See the snakes that they rear,
How they hiss in the air,
And the sparkles that flash from their eyes !
Behold a ghastly band,
Each a torch in his hand,
These are Grecian ghosts, that in battle were slain,
And unbury'd remain
Inglorious on the plain ;
Give the vengeance due
To the valiant crew.
Behold how they toss their torches on high,
How they point to the Persian abodes,
And glittring temples of their hostile gods !
The princes applaud, with a furious joy ; And the King seiz'd a flambeau, with zeal to destroy:
Thais led the way,
To light him to his prey,
And, like another Helen, fired another Troy.
Thus, long ago,
Ere heaving bellows learn'd to blow,
While organs yet were mute ;
Timotheus to his breathing flute
And sounding lyre,
Could swell the soul to rage, or kindle soft desires
At last divine Cecilia came,
Inventress of the vocal frame;
The sweet enthusiast, from her sacred store,
Enlarg'd the former narrow bounds,
And added length to solemn sounds, With nature's mother-wit, and arts unknown before.