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Your brain is overwrought with these deep thoughts;
A thousand times, and now should weep for sorrow,
Our fortunes would spring high in him, and that
HAMPDEN, PYM, CROMWELL, and the younger VANE.
England, farewell! thou, who hast been my cradle,
I held what I inherited in thee,
As pawn for that inheritance of freedom
Which thou hast sold for thy despoiler's smile :
Upon the Abbey towers.
The vanes sit steady
The silver lightnings
Of the evening star, spite of the city's smoke,
Hail, fleet herald
Of tempest! that wild pilot who shall guide
O light us to the isles of th' evening land!
With purest blood of noblest hearts; whose dew
Is yet unstained with tears of those who wake
Of formal blasphemies; nor impious rites
These exiles from the old and sinful world!
Of pale blue atmosphere; whose tears keep green
Of this wide prison, England, is a nest
Of cradled peace built on the mountain tops,
To which the eagle-spirits of the free,
Which range through heaven and earth, and scorn the storm
Of time, and gaze upon the light of truth,
Return to brood over the [
That cannot die, and may not be repelled.
PROLOGUE TO HELLAS-A FRAGMENT.
HERALD OF ETERNITY.
IT is the day when all the Sons of God
Wait in the roofless senate-house whose [place]
Is chaos and the immovable abyss
Frozen by his steadfast word to hyaline.
The shadow of God, and delegate
Of that before whose breath the universe
Is as a print of dew.
Hierarchs and kings,
Is yet withheld, clothed in which it shall
The fairest of those wandering isles that gem
That green and azure sphere, that earth enwrapped
Than in an atmosphere of living spirit
* it rolls from realm to realm
And age to age, and in its ebb and flow
Impels the generations
To their appointed place,
Whilst the high Arbiter
Beholds the strife, and at the appointed time
Sends his decrees veiled in eternal *
Within the circuit of this pendent orb
There lies an antique region, on which fell
The dews of thought, in the world's golden dawn, Earliest and most benign; and from it sprung Temples and cities and immortal forms,
And harmonies of wisdom and of song,
And thoughts, and deeds worthy of thoughts so fair. And, when the sun of its dominion failed,
And when the winter of its glory came,
The winds that stripped it bare blew on, and swept
In wandering clouds of sunny rain that thawed
Haste, Sons of God, * for ye beheld,
Reluctant or consenting or astonished,
The stern decrees go forth which heaped on Greece
Ruin and degradation and despair.
A fourth now waits. Assemble, Sons of God,
To speed or to prevent or to suspend
(If, as ye dream, such power be not withheld) The unaccomplished destiny.
From every point of the Infinite,
Like a thousand dawns on a single night
And through thunder and darkness dread
And, in their pavilioned chariots led
By living wings, high overhead
The giant Powers move,
Gloomy or bright as the thrones they fill.
A chaos of light and motion
There are two fountains in which spirits weep
The Aurora of the nations. By this brow
Whose pores wept tears of blood; by these wide wounds; By this imperial crown of agony;
By infamy and solitude and death,
(For this I underwent); and by the pain
Of pity for those who would
* for me
The unremembered joy of a revenge,
In tempest of the omnipotence of God
From hollow leagues, from Tyranny which arms
To stamp, as on a winged serpent's seed,
Of faction, which like earthquake shakes and sickenз
By which the holiest dreams of highest spirits
She shall arise
Victorious as the world arose from chaos!
Be as all things beneath the empyrean,
Thou mockery-king, crowned with a wreath of thorns-
Which pierces thee, whose throne a chair of scorn!
Which are my empire, and the least of them
Thou who art mailed in the omnipotence
To swallow all delight, all life, all hope.
Go, thou vicegerent of my will, no less
Than of the Father's. But, lest thou shouldst faint,
The earth behind thy steps; and war shall hover
Sceptres and crowns, mitres and swords and snares
The first is anarchy; when power and pleasure,
On freedom hang like fruit on the green tree,
Thou seest but the past in the to-come.
Pride is thy error and thy punishment.
Boast not thine empire, dream not that thy worlds
Which lends it to the worlds thou callest thine.
Haste thou, and fill the waning crescent
With beams as keen as those which pierced the shadow