« הקודםהמשך »
Hast thou, though suckled at fair Freedom's
breast, Exported slavery to the conquer'd East, Pullid down the tyrants India served with dread, And raised thyself, a greater, in their stead ! Gone thither arm’d and hungry, return’d full, Fed from the richest veins of the Mogul, A despot big with power obtain'd by, wealth, And that obtain’d by rapine and by stealth ? With Asiatic vices stored thy mind, But left their virtues and thine own behind; And, having truck'd thy soul, brought home the fee, To tempt the poor to sell himself to thee? Hast thou by statute shoved from its design The Saviour's feast, his own bless'd bread and
wine, And made the symbols of atoning grace An office key, a picklock to a place, That infidels may prove their title good By an oath dipp'd in sacramental blood ? A blot that will be still a blot, in spite Of all that grave apologists may write: And though a bishop toil to cleanse the stain, He wipes and scours the silver eup in vain. And hast thou sworn on every slight pretence, Till perjuries are common as
bad While thousands careless of the damning sin, Kiss the book's outside, who ne'er look'd within ? Hast thou, when Heaven has clothed thee
with disgrace, And, long provoked, repaid thee to thy face (For thou hast known eclipses, and endured Dimness and anguish, all thy beams obscured, When sin has shed dishonour on thy brow; And never of a sabler hue than now),
Hast thou, with heart perverse, and conscience
Hast thou within thee sin, that in old time Brought fire from Heaven, the sex-abusing crime, Whose horrid perpetration stamps disgrace, Baboons are free from, upon human race? Think on the fruitful and well water'd spot, That fed the flocks and herds of wealthy Lot, Where Paradise seem'd still vouchsafed on earth, Burning and scorch'd into perpetual dearth, Or, in his words who damn’d the base desire, Suffering the vengeance of eternal fire; Then Nature injured, scandalized, defiled, Unveil'd her blushing cheek,look'don,and smiled; Beheld with joy the lovely scene defaced, And praised the wrath that laid her beauties waste.
Far be the thought from any verse of mine, And farther still the form'd and fix'd design,
To thrust the charge of deeds that I detest,
The priestly brotherhood, devout, sincere,
Where shall a teacher look, in days like these, For ears and hearts, that he can hope to please? Look to the poor—the simple, and the plain Will hear perhaps thy salutary strain: Humility is gentle, apt to learn, Speak but the word, will listen and return. Alas, not so! the poorest of the flock Are proud, and set their faces as a rock; Denied that earthly opulence they choose, God's better gift they scoff at and refuse. The rich, the produce of a nobler stem, Are more intelligent at least, try them. O vain inquiry! they without remorse Are altogether gone a devious course;
Where beckoning Pleasure leads them, wildly
stray; Have burst the bands, and cast the yoke away.
Now, borne upon the wings of truth sublime, Review thy dim original and prime. This island, spot of unreclaim'd rude earth, The cradle that received thee at thy birth, Was rock'd by many a rough Norwegian blast, And Danish howlings scared thee as they pass'd; For thou wast born amid the din of arms, And suck'd a breast that panted with alarms. While yet thou wast a groveling puling chit, Thy bones not fashion’d, and thy joints not knit, The Roman taught thy stubborn knee to bow, Though twice a Cæsar could not bend thee now: His victory was that of orient light, When the sun's shafts disperse the gloom of night. Thy language at this distant moment shows How much the country to the conqueror owes; Expressive, energetic, and refined, It sparkles with the gems he left behind: He brought thy land a blessing when he came, He found thee savage, and he left thee tame; Taught thee to clothe thy pink'd and painted hide, And grace thy figure with a soldier's pride; He sow'd the seeds of order where he went, Improved thee far beyond his own intent, And, while he ruled thee by the sword alone, Made thee at last a warrior like his own. Religion, if in heavenly truths attired, Needs only to be seen to be admired; But thïne, as dark as witcheries of the night, Was form’d to harden hearts and shock the sight; Thy Druids struck the well hung harps they bore With fingers deeply dyed in human gore;
And, while the victim slowly bled to death, Upon the rolling chords rung out his dying breath.
Who brought the lamp, that with awaking beams Dispellid thy gloom, and broke away thy dreams, Tradition, now decrepit and worn out, Babbler of ancient fables, leaves a doubt: But still light reach'd thee; and those gods of
Woden and Thor, each tottering in his shrine,
? Which may be found at Doctor's Commons.