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Do thou but threat, loud storms shall make reply,
And thunder echo 't to the trembling sky;
Whilst raging seas swell to so bold an height,
As shall the fire's proud element affright:
The old drudging sun from his long-beaten way
Shall at thy voice start, and misguide the day ;
The jocund orbs shall break their measured pace,
And stubborn poles change their allotted place;
Heaven's gilded troops shall flutter here and there,
Leaving their boasting songs tuned to a sphere;
Nay, their God too—for fear he did, when we,
Took noble arms against his tyranny,
So noble arms, and in a cause so great,
That triumphs they deserve for their defeat.
There was a day! oh might I see't again,
Though he had fiercer flames to thrust us in !
And can such powers be by a child with stood ?
Will slings, alas! or pebbles, do him good ?
What the' untamed lion, wet with hunger too,
And giants, could not, that my word shall do:
I'll soon dissolve this peace; were Saul's new love
(But Saul we know) great as my

hate shall

prove, Before their sun twice more be gone about, I and my faithful snakes would drive it out. By me, Cain offer'd


his brother's gore,
A sacrifice far worse than that before;
I saw him fling the stone, as if he meant
At once his murder and his monument,
And laugh'd to see (for 'twas a goodly show)
The earth by her first tiller fatten'd so:
I drove proud Pharaoh to the parted sea;
He and his host drank up cold death by me :
By me rebellious arms fierce Korah took,
And Moses (curse upon that name !) forsook ;

Hither (ye know) almost alive he came
Through the cleft earth; ours was his funeral Aame:
By me-but I lose time, methinks, and should
Perform new acts whilst I relate the old.
David's the next our fury must enjoy:
'Tis not thy God himself shall save thee, boy !
No, if he do, may the whole world have peace;
May all ill actions, all ill fortune, cease,
And, banish'd from this potent court below,
May I a ragged, contemned Virtue grow!"

She spoke ; all stared at first, and made a pause;
But straight the general murmur of applause
Ran through Death's courts; she frowned still, and
To' envy at the praise herself had won. [begun
Great Beelzebub starts from his burning throne
To'embrace the Fiend, but she, now furious

grown To act her part, thrice bow'd, and thence she fled; The snakes all hiss'd, the fiends all murmured.

It was the time when silent night began To'enchain with sleep the busy spirits of man; And Saul himself, though in his troubled breast The weight of empire lay, took gentle rest : So did not Envy; but with haste arose ; And, as through Israel's stately towns she goes, She frowns, and shakes her head; “Shine on," says

she, “ Ruins ere long shall your sole monuments be.” The silver moon with terror paler grew, And neighbouring Hermon sweated flowery dew; Swift Jordan started, and straight backward fled, Hiding among thick reeds his aged head: Lo, at her entrance Saul's strong palace shook; And nimbly there the reverend shape she took Of Father Benjamin ; so long her beard, So large her limbs, so grave her looks, appear'd, ,

Just like his statue, which bestrid Saul's gate,
And seem'd to guard the race it did create.
In this known form she’approach'd the tyrant's side;
And thus her words the sacred form bely'd :

“ Arise, lost king of Israel! canst thou lie
Dead in this sleep, and yet thy last so nigh?
If king thou be'st, if Jesse's race as yet
Sit not on Israel's throne ! and shall he sit?
Did ye for this from fruitful Egypt fly?
From the mild brick-kiln's nobler slavery?
For this, did seas your powerful rod obey?
Did wonders guide, and feed, you on your way?
Could ye not there great Pharaoh's bondage bear,
You who can serve a boy, and minstrel, here?
Forbid it, God ! if thou be'st just; this shame
Cast not on Saul's, on mine, and Israel's, name!
Why was I else from Canaan's famine led ?
Happy, thrice happy, had I there been dead,

my full loins discharged this numerous race, This luckless tribe, even crown’d to their disgrace! Ah, Saul! thy servant’s vassal must thou live? Place to his harp must thy dread sceptre give? What wants he now but that? canst thou forget (If thou be’st man thou canst not) how they met The youth with songs? alas! poor monarch! you Your thousand only, he ten thousand, slew ! Him Israelloves, him neighbouring countries fear; You but the name and empty title bear. And yet the traitor lives, lives in thy court; The court thus must be his; where he shall sport Himself with all thy concubines, thy gold, Thy costly robes, thy crown. Wert thou not told This by proud Samuel, when at Gilgal he With bold false threats from God affronted thee?

The dotard lied; God said it not, I know;
Not Baal or Moloch would have used thee so.
Was not the choice his own ? did not thy worth
Exact the royal lot, and call it forth?
Hast thou not since (my best and greatest son!)
To him, and to his perishing nation, done
Such lasting benefits as may justly claim
A sceptre as eternal as thy fame? [invade;
Poor prince! whom madmen, priests, and boys,
By thine own flesh, thy' ungrateful son, betray'd !
Unnatural fool! who can thus cheated be
By friendship's name, against a crown and thee!
Betray not too thyself ; take courage, call
Thy' enchanted virtues forth, and be whole Saul.
Lo! this great cause makes thy dead fathers rise,
Breaks the firm seals of their closed tombs and eyes.
Nor can their jealous ashes, whilst this boy
Survives, the privilege of their graves enjoy.
Rise quickly, Saul! and take that rebel's breath,
Which troubles thus thy life, and even our death:
Kill him, and thou’rt secure; 'tis only he
That's boldly interposed 'twixt God and thee,
As earth's low globe robs the high moon of light;
When this eclipse is pass'd, thy fate's all bright.

dear son! and credit what I tell; I've seen thy royal stars, and know them well. Hence, fears and dull delays! is not thy breast (Yes, Saul, it is) with noble thoughts possess'd ? May they beget like acts !” With that she takes One of her worst, her best-beloved snakes :

Softly, dear worm! soft and unseen,” said she, “ Into his bosom steal, and in it be My viceroy.” At that word she took her flight, And her loose shape dissolved into the night.

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The’ infected king leap'd from his bed amazed, Scarce knew himself at first, but round him gazed ; And started back at pieced-up shapes, which fear And his distracted fancy painted there: Terror froze

up his hair, and on his face Showers of cold sweat rollid trembling down apace. Then knocking with his angry hands his breast, Earth with his feet, he cries, “ Oh! 'tis confess’d; I've been a pious fool, a woman-king; Wrong'd by a seer, a boy, every thing. Eight hundred years of death is not so deep, So unconcern'd, as my lethargic sleep. My patience even a sacrilege becomes, Disturbs the dead, and opes their sacred tombs. Ah! Benjamin, kind father! who for me This cursed world endurest again to see! All thou hast said, great vision! is so true, That all which thou command'st, and more, I'll do: Kill him! yes, mighty ghost! the wretch shall die, Though every star in heaven should it deny; Nor mock the’ assault of our just wrath again, Had he ten times his famed ten thousand slain. Should that bold popular madman, whose design Is to revenge his own disgrace by mine, Should my ungrateful son oppose the intent, Should mine own heart grow scrupulous and relent, Curse me, just Heaven! (by which this truth I If I that seer, my son, or self, do spare. [swear) No, gentle ghost! return to thy still home; Thither, this day, mine and thy foe shall come. If that curst object longer vex my sight, It must have learn’d to appear as thou to-night.”

Whilst thus his wrath with threats the tyrant fed, The threaten'd youth slept fearless on his bed;

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