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Jay'st corer: weil may then thy Lord, appeas'd,
Redeem t'ee quite from Death's rapacious claim;
But longer in this Paradise to dwell
Permits not. To remove thee I am come, 260
And send thee from the garden forth to till
The ground, whence thou wast taken: fitter soil.
He added not; for Adam at the news
Heart-struck, with chilling gripe of sorrow stood,
That all his senses bound. Eve, who unseen
Yet all had heard, with audible lament, 266
Discover'd soon the place of her retire.
O unexpected stroke, worse than of Death! Must I thus leave thee, Paradise ! thus leave Thee, native soil, these happy walks and shades, Fit haunt of Gods! where I had hope to spend, Quiet though sad, the respite of that day That must be mortal to us both! O flow'rs, That never will in other climate grow, My early visitation, and my last
275 At e'en, which I bred up with tender hand From the first op’ning bud, and gave ye names, Who now shall rear ye to the sun, or rank Your tribes, and water from th' ambrosial fount? Thee lastly, nuptial bow'r, by me adorn’d 280 With what to sight or smell was sweet, from thee How shall I part, and whither wander down Into a lower world, to this obscure And wild! How shall we breathe in other air, Less pure, accustom’d to immortal fruits ! 285
Whom thus the Angel interrupted mild:
Lament not, Eve, but patiently resign
What justly thou hast lost; nor set thy heart,
Thus overfond, on that which is not thine:
Thy going is not lonely: with thee goes 290
Thy husband: him to follow thou art bound.
Where he abides, think there thy native soil.
Adam by this from the cold sudden damp
Recov’ring, and his scatter'd sp’rits return’d,
To Michael thus his humble words address'd :
Celestial, whether among the Thrones, or nam'd Of them the high’st, for such of shape may seem Prince above princes, gently hast thou told Thy message, which might else in telling wound, And in performing end us. What besides 300 Of sorrow, and dejection, and despair, Our frailty can sustain, thy tidings bring, Departure from this happy place, our sweet Recess, and only consolation left Familiar to our eyes,
all places else 305 Inhospitable' appear and desolate; Nor knowing us nor known: and if by pray'r Incessant I could hope to change the will Of Him who all things can, I would not cease him with
But pray’r against his absolute decree
No more avails than breath against the wind,
Blown stifling back on him that breathes it forth :
Therefore to his great bidding I submit.
This most afflicts me, that departing hence, 315
As from his face I shall be hid, depriv'd
His blessed count'nance. Here I could frequent
With worship place by place where he vouchsaf'd
Presence divine, and to my sons relate,
On this mount he appear'd; under this tree 320
Stood visible; among these pines his voice
I heard; here with him at this fountain talk'd.
So many grateful altars I would rear
Of grassy turf, and pile up ev'ry stone
Of lustre from the brook, in memory 325
Or monument to ages, and thereon
Offer sweet-smelling gums, and fruits, and flow'rs.
In yonder nether world, where shall I seek
His bright appearances, or foot-step trace?
For though I fled him angry, yet recall’d 330
To life prolong'd and promis'd race, I now
Gladly behold, though but his utmost skirts
Of glory, and far off his steps adore.
To whom thus Michael, with regard benign:
Adam, thou know'st Heav'n his, and all the Earth,
Not this rock only'. His omnipresence fills 336
Land, sea, and air, and ev'ry kind that lives,
Fomented by his virtual pow'r and warm’d.
All th' earth he gave thee to possess and rule:
No despicable gift; surmise not then
presence to these narrow bounds confin'd
Of Paradise or Eden. This had been
Perhaps thy capital seat, from whence had spread
All generations, and had hither come
From all the ends of th' earth, to celebrate 345
And rev’rence thee, their great progenitor.
But this pre-eminence thou'st lost; brought down
To dwell on even ground now with thy sons.
Yet doubt not, but in valley and in plain
God is as here, and will be found alike
Present, and of his presence many a sign
Still following thee, still compassing thee round
With goodness and paternal love, his face
Express, and of his steps the track divine:
Which, that thou may'st believe and be confirm'd
Ere thou from hence depart, know I am sent
To shew thee what shall come in future days
To thee and to thy offspring. Good with bad
Expect to hear, supernal grace contending
With sinfulness of men ; thereby to learn 360
True patience, and to temper joy with fear
And pious sorrow, equally inur’d
By moderation either state to bear,
Prosperous or adverse: so shalt thou lead
Safest thy life, and, best prepar'd, endure 365
Thy mortal passage when it comes. Ascend
This hill. Let Eve (for I have drench'd her eyes)
Here sleep below, while thou to foresight wak'st;
As once thou slept, while she to life was form’d.
To whom thus Adam gratefully reply'd: 370 Ascend; I follow thee, safe Guide, the path Thou lead'st me', and to the hand of Heav'n
submit, However chast'ning, to the evil turn My obvious breast, arming to overcome
By suff'ring, and earn rest from labour won,
If so I may attain. So both ascend
In the visions of God. It was a hill
Of Paradise the highest, from whose top
The hemisphere of earth in clearest ken
Stretch'd out to th’amplest reach of prospect lay.
Not higher that hill or wider, looking round,
Whereon for diff'rent cause the Tempter set
Our second Adam in the wilderness,
To shew him all earth’s kingdoms and their glory.
His eye might there command wherever stood
City of old or modern fame, the seat
Of mightiest empire, from the destin'd walls
Of Cambalu, seat of Cathaian Can,
And Samarcand by Oxus, Temir's throne,
To Paquin of Sinæan kings, and thence 390
To Agra and Lahore of great Mogul,
Down to the golden Chersonese, or where
The Persian in Ecbatan sat, or since
In Hispahan, or where the Russian Czar
In Moscow, or the Sultan in Bizance, 395
Turchestan-born; nor could his eye not ken
Th'empire of Negus to his utmost port
Ercoco, and the less maritime kings,
Mombaza, and Quiloa, and Melind,
And Sofala, thought Ophir, to the realm 400
Of Congo, and Angola farthest south ;
Or thence from Niger flood to Atlas mount,
The kingdoms of Almansor, Fez, and Sus,
Morocco, and Algiers, and Tremisen ;