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What are ten thousand worlds compared to Thee?
What am I then? Heaven's unnumbered hoft,
Though multiplied by myriads and arrayed
In all the glory of sublimest thought,
Is but an atom in the balance weighed
Against Thy greatness—is a cypher brought
Against infinity! What am I then ?—nought.
Nought-but the influence of Thy light divine,
Pervading worlds, hath reached my bosom too!
Yes, in my spirit doth Thy Spirit shine,
As shines the sunbeam in a drop of dew.
Nought-but I live, and on Hope's pinions Aly
Eager towards thy presence: for in Thee
I live, and breathe, and dwell; I lift my eye
Even to the throne of Thy divinity ;
am, O God, and surely Thou must be !
THOU ART! directing, guiding all. THOU ART!
Direct my understanding then to Thee ;
Control my spirit, guide my wandering heart;
Though but an atom ʼmidst immensity,
Still I am something fashioned by Thy hand;
I hold a middle rank 'twixt Heaven and Earth,
On the last verge of mortal being stand,
Close to the realms where angels have their birth,
Just on the bound'ries of the spirit land.
The chain of being is complete in me;
In me is matter's last gradation loft,
And the next step is Spirit-Deity!
I can command the lightning and am duft!
A monarch and a slave ; a worm, a God!
Whence came I here, and how? So marvellous,
Constructed and conceived ? Unknown, this clod
Lives surely through some higher energy:
For from itself alone it could not be.
Creator! Yes—Thy wisdom and Thy Word
Created me! Thou source of life and good!
Thou Spirit of my spirit and my Lord;
Thy light, Thy love, in their bright plenitude,
Filld me with an immortal song, to spring
O’er the abyss of death, and bade it wear
The garments of eternal day, and wing
Its heavenly flight beyond this little sphere,
Even to its source-to Thee-its Author there.
O thought ineffable! O visions blest!
Though worthless are conceptions all of Thee-
Yet shall Thy shadowed image fill our breast,
And waft its homage to thy Deity.
God! thus alone my lowly thoughts can soar,
Thus seek Thy presence-being wise and good –
'Midft Thy vast works, admire, obey, adore !
And when the tongue is eloquent no more,
The foul shall speak in tears of gratitude.
* The above magnificent ode, by a distinguished Russian poet, is said to have been translated into the Chinese and Tartar languages, and suspended in the Imperial Palace at Pekin, which was destroyed by the English armies in the war of 1860. It is also translated into the Japanese tongue, and hangs in the temple of Jeddo.
HERE is an unknown language spoken
By the loud winds that sweep the
By the dark storm-clouds, thunder-
And waves on rocks that dash and die
; By the lone star, whose beams wax pale, The moonlight sleeping on the vale,
The mariner's sweet distant hymn,
The horizon that before us flies,
The crystal firmament that lies
In the smooth sea reflected dim.
'Tis breathed by the cool streams at morning,
The sunset on the mountain's shades, The snow that day-break is adorning,
And eve that on the turret fades;
The city's sounds that rise and sink,
The fair swan on the river's brink,
The quivering cypress' murmured sighs,
The ancient temple on the hill,
The folemn silence, deep and still,
Within the forests mysteries.
Of Thee, O God! this voice is telling,
Thou who art Truth, Life, Hope, and Love ; On whom night calls from her dark dwelling,
To whom bright morning looks above;
Of Thee, proclaimed by every sound,
Whom nature's all-mysterious round
Declares, yet not defines Thy light;
Of Thee, the abyss and source, whence all
Our souls proceed, in which they fall,
Who hast but one name INFINITE.
All men on earth may hear and treasure
This voice, resounding from all time;
Each one, according to his measure,
Interpreting its sense sublime.
But ah! the more our spirits weak
Within its holy depths would seek,
The more this vain world's pleasures cloy ;
A weight, too great for earthly mind,
O’erwhelms its powers, until we find
In folitude our only joy.
So when the feeble eyeball fixes
Its fight upon the glorious sun, Whose gold-emblazoned chariot mixes
With rosy clouds that towards it run;
The dazzled gaze all powerless finks,
Blind with the radiance which it drinks,
And sees but gloomy specks float by;
And darkness indistinct o'ershade
Wood, meadow, hill, and pleasant glade,
And the clear bosom of the sky.
AM old and blind !
Men point to me as smitten by God's
Afflicted and deserted of my mind,-
Yet I am not cast down.
I am weak, yet strong-
I murmur not that I no longer see -
Poor, old, and helpless, I the more belong,
Father supreme ! to Thee.
III. O Merciful One, When men are farthest, then Thou art most near; When friends pass by, my weakness shun,
Thy chariot I hear.
Thy glorious face
Is leaning towards me,—and its holy light
Shines in upon my lonely dwelling-place,
And there is no more night.
I recognise Thy purpose clearly shown-
My vision Thou hast dimmed that I may
fee Thyself, Thyself alone.