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Of sun, or moon, or star, throughout the year, 5

Or man, or woman, Yet I argue not
Against Heav'n's hand or will, nor bate a jot

Of heart or hope ; but still bear up and steer
Right onward. What supports me, dost thou ask?

The conscience, Friend, to have lost them overply'd

In liberty's defence, my noble task,
Of which all Europe talks from side to side.
This thought might lead me through the world's

vain mask
Content though blind, had I no better guide.

XXIII.

On his deceased WIFE *.

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Methought I saw my late espoused saint

Brought to me like Alcestis from the grave,
Whom Jove's great fon to her glad husband gave,

Rescued from death by force, though pale and faint.'
Mine, as whom wash'd from spot of child-bed taint 5

Purification in the old Law did fave,
And such, as yet once more I trust to have

Full fight of her in Heav'n without restraint,
Came vested all in white, pure as her mind :

Her face was veil'd, yet to my fancied fight
Love, sweetness, goodness, in her person shin'd

* This was his second wife, Catharine the daughter of Captain Woodcock of Hackney, who lived with him not above a year after their marriage, and died in childbed of a daughter.

So clear, as in no face with more delight.

But O as to embrace me she inclin'd,
I wak'd, the Aed, and day brought back my night.

XXIV.

On occasion of the PLAGUE in LONDON. Found on a glass window at Chalfont, in Buckingham

fhire, where Milton resided during the continuance of that calamity.

[From Birch's Life.] Jair mirror of foul times; whose fragile sheen

Shall, as it blazeth, break; while Providence (Aye watching o'er his faints with eye unseen)

Spreads the red rod of angry pestilence;

To sweep the wicked and their counsels hence; $ Yea, all to break the pride of lustful kings,

Who heaven's lore reject for brutish sense ; As erst he scourg'd Jeilides' fin of yore,

For the fair Hittite, when, on seraph's wings, He sent him war, or plague, or famine fore.

FO

PSA L M S.

PS A

L M

S.

PSALM I. Done into verse, 1653.

Blesd is the man who hath not walk daftray

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Of finners hath not stood, and in the feat
Of scorners hath not sat. But in the great
Jehovah's law is ever his delight,
And in his law he studies day and night:
He shall be as a tree which planted grows
By watery streams, and in his feason knows
To yield his fruit, and his leaf shall not fall,
And what he takes in hand shall prosper all.
Not so the wicked, but as chaff which fann'd
The wind drives, so the wicked shall not stand'
In judgment, or abide their trial then,
Nor finners in th' assembly of just men.
For the Lord knows th’ upright way of the just,
And the way of bad men to ruin must.

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P s A L. II. Done Aug. 8, 1653• Terzette. W

HY do the Gentiles tumult, and the nations

Muse a vain thing, the kings of th’earth up stand With power, and princes in their congregations Lay deep their plots together through each land

Against

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Against the Lord and his Messiah dear ?

S Let us break off, say they, by strength of hand Their bonds, and cast from us, no more to wear,

Their twisted cords : He who in Heav'n doth dwell

Shall laugh, the Lord shall scoff them, then severe Speak to them in his wrath, and in his fell

And fierce ire trouble them; but I, faith he,

Anointed have my King (though ye rebel) On Sion my holy' hill. A firm decree

I will declare; the Lord to me hath said

Thou art my Son, I have begotten thee 15 This day; ask of me, and the grant is made;

As thy poffeffion I on thee bestow

Th’ Heathen, and as thy conquest to be sway'd Earth's utmost bounds : them shalt thou bring full

low
With iron scepter bruis’d, and them disperse

Like to a potter's vessel Mhiver'd fo.
And now be wise at length, ye Kings averse,

Be taught, ye Judges of the earth ; with fear

Jehovah serve, and let your joy converse With trembling; kiss the Son, left he appear 25

In anger, and ye perish in the way,

If once his wrath take fire like fuel fere. Happy all those who have in him their stay!

PSAL. III.

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my

many are my

foes !
How
many

those
That in arms against me rise !

Many are they
That of my life distrustfully thus say,

5
No help for him in God there lies.
But thou, Lord, art my shield, my glory,

Thee through my story
Th' exalter of

head I count ;
Aloud I cry'd

10
Unto Jehovah, he full soon reply'd
And heard me from his holy mount.
I lay and slept, I wak'd again,

For
my

sustain
Was the Lord. Of many millions

IS
The populous l'out
I fear not, though incamping round about
They pitch against me their pavilions.
Rise, Lord; save me, my God; for thou

Hast smote ere now
On the cheek-bone all

my

foes,
Of men abhorr'd
Hast broke the teeth. This help was from the Lord ;
Thy bleffing on thy people flows.

20

PSAL. IV.

3

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