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Why leap'd the hills? why did the mountains shake?
What ail'd them, their fix'd natures to forsake ?
Fly where thou wilt, O sea !

And Jordan's current cease!
Jordan, there is no need of thee;

For at God's word, whene'er he please,
The rocks shall weep new waters forth instead of

these.

Thus sung the great Musician to his lyre;
And Saul's black rage grew softly to retire';
But Envy's serpent still with him remain'd,
And the wise charmer's healthful voice disdain'd.
The' unthankful king, cured truly of his fit,
Seems to lie drown'd and buried still in it;
From his past madness draws this wicked use,
To sin disguised, and murder with excuse:
For, whilst the fearless youth his cure pursues,
And the soft medicine with kind art renews,
The barbarous patient casts at him his spear
(The usual sceptre that rough hand did bear),
Casts it with violent strength ; but into the’ room
An arm more strong and sure than his was come;
An Angel, whose unseen and easy might
Put-by the weapon, and misled it right.
How vain man's power is! unless God command,
The weapon disobeys his master's hand;
Happy was now the error of the blow ;
At Gilboa it will not serve him so.
One would have thought, Saul's sudden rage to'

have seen,

He had himself by David wounded been:
He scorn’d to leave what he did ill begin,
And thought his honour now engaged i' the’ sin ;

own

A bloody troop of his own guards he sends
(Slaves to his will, and falsely callid his friends)
To mend his error by a surer blow;
So Saul ordain’d, but God ordain’d not so.
Home flies the Prince, and to his trembling wife
Relates the new-past hazard of his life ;
Which she with decent passion hears him tell;
For not her fair

eyes

she loved so well. Upon their palace' top, beneath a row Of lemon-trees—which there did proudly grow, And with bright stores of golden fruit repay The light they drank from the sun's neighbouring (A small but artful Paradise) they walk’d, [rayAnd hand in hand sad gentle things they talk'd. Here Michal first an armed troop espies (So faithful and so quick are loving eyes!) Which march’d, and often glister'd, through a wood, That on right-hand of her fair palace stood; [kill She saw them; and cry'd out,“ They're come to My dearest lord ; Saul's spear pursues thee still. Behold his wicked guards! haste quickly, fly! For Heaven's sake, haste ! my dear lord, do not Ah, cruel father! whose ill-natured rage

[die ! Neither thy worth, nor marriage, can assuage! Will he part those he join'd so late before ? Were the two-hundred foreskins worth no more? He shall not part us ; (then she wept between). At yonder window thou mayst ’scape unseen; This hand shall let thee down! stay not, but haste; 'Tis not my use to send thee hence so fast.”

“ Best of all women!” he replies--and this Scarce spoke, she stops his answer with a kiss ; “Throw not away,” said she,“thy precious breath; Thou stay’st too long within the reach of death.”

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Timely he' obeys her wise advice; and straight
To unjust force she' opposes just deceit:
She meets the murderers with a virtuous lie,
And good dissembling tears; “ May he not die
In quiet then?" said she, “ will they not give
That freedom, who so fear lest he should live ?
Even Fate does with your cruelty conspire,
And spares your guilt, yet does what you desire.
Must he not live ? for that ye need not sin ;
My much-wrong'd husband speechless lies within,
And has too little left of vital breath
To know his murderers, or to feel his death.
One hour will do

your

work Here her well-govern'd tears dropped down apace: Beauty and sorrow mingled in one face Has such resistless charms, that they believe, And an unwilling aptness find to grieve At what they came for. A pale statue's head, In linen wrapped, appear'd on David's bed; Two servants mournful stand, and silent, by, And on the table medicinal relics lie; In the close room a well placed taper's light Adds a becoming horror to the sight: And for the’impression God prepared their sense; They saw, believed all this, and parted thence. How vain attempts Saul's unbless'd anger tries, By his own hands deceived, and servants' eyes ! “ It cannot be,” said he,

no, can it ? shall
Our great ten-thousand-slayer idly fall?
The silly rout thinks God protects him still;
But God, alas! guards not the bad from ill.
Oh

may he guard him! may his members be
In as full strength and well-set harmony
As the fresh body of the first-made man
Ere sin, or sin's just meed, Disease, began !

-And yet

He will be else too small for our vast hate ;
And we must share in our revenge with Fate.
No; let us have him whole; we else may seem
To ’ave snatch'd away but some few days from
bim,

[in two; And cut that thread which would have dropped Will our great anger learn to

pop so low? I know it cannot, will not; him we prize Of our just wrath the solemn sacrifice, That must not blemish'd be; let him remain Secure, and grow up to our stroke again. 'Twill be some pleasure then to take his breath, When he shall strive and wrestle with his death ; Go, let him live

-shall I then stay So long? good and great actions hate delay. Some foolish piety, perhaps, or he That has been still mine honour's enemy, Samuel, may change or cross my just intent, And I this formal pity soon repent : Besides, Fate gives him me, and whispers this, That he can fly no more, if we should miss ; Miss! can we miss again? Go, bring him straight, Though gasping out his soul; if the wish'd date Of his accursed life be almost past, Some joy 'twill be to see him breathe his last.” The troop return’d, of their short virtue' asham'd, Saul's courage praised, and their own weakness

blamed ; But when the pious fraud they understood, Scarce the respect due to Saul's sacred blood, Due to the sacred beauty in it reign’d, From Michal's murder their wild rage restrain'd. She' alleged the holiest chains that bind a wife, Duty and love; she' alleged that her own life,

Had she refused that safety to her lord,
Would have incurred just danger from his sword.
Now was Saul's wrath full-grown; he takes no rest;
A violent flame rolls in his troubled breast,
And in fierce lightning from his eye does break;
Not his own favourites and best friends dare speak,
Or look on him; but, mute and trembling all,
Fear where this cloud will burst, and thunder fall.
So, when the pride and terror of the wood,
A lion, prick'd with rage and want of food,
Espies out from afar some well-fed beast,
And brustles up, preparing for his feast;
If that by swiftness 'scape his gaping jaws,
His bloody eyes he hurls round, his sharp paws
Tear

up the ground; then runs he wild about,
Lashing his angry tail, and roaring out;
Beasts creep into their dens, and tremble there;
Trees, though no wind is stirring, shake with fear;
Silence and horror fill the place around;
Echo itself dares scarce repeat the sound.

Midst a large wood that joins fair Rama's town (The neighbourhood fair Rama's chief renown) A college stands, where at great Prophets' feet The Prophets' Sons with silent diligence meet; By Samuel built, and moderately endow'd, Yet more to his liberal tongue than hands they

owed ; There himself taught, and, his bless' voice to hear, Teachers themselves lay proud beneath him there. The house was a large square, but plain and low; Wise Nature's use Art strove not to outgo : : An inward square by well-ranged trees was made; And, midst the friendly cover of their shade, A

pure, well-tasted, wholesome fountain rose; Which no vain cost of marble did enclose ;

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