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Who sigh'd ? who is it groans ? whose heart has burst?
Who art thou of the damn'd ? I rave-I thirst !
Oh, water! Thanks! It calms my nerves and brain.
Let me sit here, and lean upon the chain.
What say you,-am I judged and sentenced,--say?
No respite ? no reprieve ? not even a day?" There is deep pathos, surely, in that by his orthodoxy, or yielding to the last line.
natural love of life, But all at once, His Grace plies her weakness with excited by some sophism, she breaks all his strength, and while he is argu- forth into a reply. ing with her, she seems as if overcome
" " Reason !'- she cried, and sitting raised her head
. I too have thought of that, and often read.
Have tried to fathom depths that seem'd profound,
And link'd the chain of causes round and round;
Scann'd many a prophet's visionary page,
And poet's dream, and wildering of the sage:
Books, that profess'd all human wit could find,
And all Heaven deigns reveal to lost mankind;
Yet found in none a verity so great,
So useful, simple, probable, as— Fate.
Fate knows no altar. Fate, of Gods alone,
Adopts no church, nor effigy of stone,
Where men may vainly beg, or falsely swear;
She needs no victim, and she heeds no prayer.
Hers is a car no obstacle may turn,
A heart, that cannot yield, and will not yearn ;
An arm, that drives where'er her counsels list :
Great Jove obeys them-how shall man resist ?
Such is the power in whose career I stood
And perish ;- blest! were that for others' good."" The Primate meets her calmly and convincingly about fate, but stumbling on the question of evil, says
“ God's gospel makes the doubts of reason plain,
Faith lightens allwhereon Anne attacks him with renewed vehemence in a speech of extraordinary power and beauty.
Then wherefore Sin, and Pain?'
She bounded up with sudden power possessid,
As all the demon roused within her breast,--
• Yes, ---though your Gospel should, methinks, if God's,
Convince like reason, not by fire and rods,
Yet would I kneel to welcome rods and fire,
Bind the brass bonnet as a bridal tire,
Hear priests for truth, for slumber hail the gin,--
Could faith resolve me-wherefore Pain and Sin.
What says your prophet? Why was evil sent ?
God will redress? Why did not God prevent ?
Would he, but could not ?-or would not, yet could ?-
There's nothing bad, and one thing only good.
One, infinite, eternal Universe !
Whose parts combine, by changes, and disperse ;
Cloud after cloud succeeding evermore,
Leaves of the forest, waves along the shore,
Snows on the mountain, dust in deserts borne,
Meteors of night, and dews that gem the morn.
Be still! I see it. From the foreland's steep,
Lo, mists clear up, I see it, o'er the deep,
Great Nature's will, the universal soul !
Like heat, or light, diffused from pole to pole ;
Through space revolving every starry ball,
Each atom entering, vivifying all ;
Varied by various forms where with combined ;
Instinct in brutes, and reason in mankind,
Life in the plant, and germin in the clod,
Change, movement, order, cause and only God!
Whereof some portion all imbibe with breath,
Share while in life, and render back at death,
To mix and merge in God's eternal sum,
As flesh in earth's. Behold the life to come!
Away! Why palter with my heart's despair ?
A voice in vain suppress'd is cavilling there,
All, all is darkness, doubt, and ignorance !
Why search for causes more than change and chance ?
'Mid chances infinite and endless change,
Why might not atoms thus themselves arrange ?
Why not be ruled by uncreated laws,
And be themselves their self-existing cause ?
To own such cause, since after all coerced,
And matter is, owo matter such at first!
Is life to come like lise before our birth?
I prize but this; I, earthy, love the earth.
Oh! murmuring streams, green valleys, sylvan bowers,
Ye starry nights, ye golden-footed hours,
Spring's roseate morn, sweet summer's evening hue,
Still autumn's noon,—my sisters,-all adieu !
Your sun-clad forms shall ever beam in youth,
Nor know time's hand, nor care's corroding tooth.
And Earth !—whose bosom was my place to dwell,
Whose milk my nurse, -hail, mother, and farewell!
Goddess, o'er thee no evil arm has power;
Lo, rifted rocks with lichens germ and flower!
Fire, frost, and flood reanimate thy face ;
Each dissolution teems with life and grace.
But woe thy otrspring! woe, whose flesh is grass!
Organic forms they all dissolve and pass.
As fades the plant, so withers man and beast.
All die alike, they look alike diseased,
O’er all alike the worm usurps its range,
And gilded flies attest the irremeable change.'
The Primate-in one of his addresses shapes, ban.dogs, owls, skeletons of --had alluded to her sorceries, and apes, nay, even the skull of a man, proofs of her witchcraftfound below her and more, a clerk's—as Maud confessfather's roof--strange forms of wax- ed-and now Anne exclaims drugs potent over hell, monstrous
". Fools ! to suppose they served for arts accurst,
And cite Maud's answers when her nails were burst,
That one did errands to the full-eyed moon,
And one was call’d the Chaplain, one Baboon ;
One prey'd upon her like an Incubus,
And, Sabbaths, all took sacrament with us.
Could not her muttering lips, fantastic air,
Garb, gesture, pulse, and glassy eye declare
Her brain, ere hooded in the beaten drum,
Was madder e’en than mine has since become ?
Yet I bethink me, with what mystic doubt
She shunn'd the study still, and pried without;
Till once I chiding drew her through the gate,
Greet an old friend, and view the future state !
Her palm uniting with the bones of one,
By whose young pressure both had been undone :
The wretch, hands shaken, prick'd her wrist, and laugh'd,
And offer'd bonds of blood-to learn the craft.'"
But who is Maud-and who is 'Tis not easy to know without reading Maud's chaplain, whose skeleton Anne the whole poem- but listen to Anne confesses was in her father's house ? Ayliffe. 6. One morning, -years elapsed,
1,- We spied afloat,
Wrapp'd in a gown, a body black and bloat.
Its head droop'd backwards, legs and arms were sunk,
And refluent waters just heaved up the trunk.
'Twas Chaplain Hyde_uncover'd on the sands;
Stones fili'd his hood, a crucifix his hands.
Prayers, tapers, knell, and consecrated earth,
Were forfeit, father thought, whate'er their worth;
Why then should this confession give remorse?-
He did, he did, anatomize that corse.
And I, in wonder gazing, traced his knife,
Through inmost springs of motion, sense, and life;
Limbs, with contractile sinews strung to act,
Nerves, which excite those sinews to contract,
Those nerves excited by the brain I found,
That brain through other nerves by objects round.
That beauteous brain! Man outward moves august;
He lifts his head to heaven, and spurns the dust;
But inward, oh what work, what art divine !
The shapely bones, the column of the spine,
The conduits laid for blood from chyle derived,
The strange alembics for that chyle contrived ;
Like separate creatures, or machines, possest
Of powers distinct, consenting with the rest ;-
The rest may mandates from the brain fulfil,
But these disown obedience to the will,
And, self-inform’d, incessant action keep,
Unknown to error, rest, fatigue, or sleep;
Without our reason's guide, or sense's aid :
I saw, adored, and lauded Him who made.
But ah !-I saw no vestige of a soul :
No place for that, no use-throughout the whole.
With that all parts seem'd fashion’d to dispense,
And act by nerves through impulse on the sense.
Nor saw one token that your creed confirms,
One sign of life hereafter, save the worm's.
There, Faith to Heaven, my guardian angel, fled :
I mourn'd, then jeer'd, and envied next, the dead.
Between two prophets wavering till that day,
I after doubted both, and ceased to pray.'' More she said, and more she is go- tone into his own ear-a revelation ing to say, about Chaplain Hyde, and of necessity broken, and somewhat Maud, and her own strange, wild, difficult to understand-but making and miserable self, when she exclaims much clear that till then was dark. wildly,
We now learn that Fitz-Hugh's father " Hark! this moment here had left his all in charge to hers, who An angel's voice, or devil's pierced my ear!
soon found that that all was but Or say, if mortal’s, from which side the grave? debts, and discharged them without Ay, and ere now, methinks, unless I rave, complaint. A wicked uncle of FitzI have heard sighs, heard moanings, in the Hugh's aecused the physician of pil. room,
lage, and a scheme Heard accents, like I would forget of whom,
“ To stain with his the lineage of a lord, As whispering what might not be louder said. Again! Fitz-Hugh of Merton ! Is he dead?”
And bait the bastard girl to noose the
plunder'd ward.” She catches him by the arm-and knows his hand. " But whence this To such loose accusations, Fitz-Hugh monkish cuff?” Sole answer-“ Me- had basely lent his ear, and at his mento mori !" Then comes on her uncle's instigation, and that of his impassioned appeal to the monk-once own false heart, written a letter to his a man she loved-poured in a low benefactor, threatening to vindicate
his rights. Anne Ayliffe then parted things here, and some perhaps rather from him for ever-and in a few days extravagant-nor can we think this their cot was burnt, and themselves mode of acquainting us with what it dragged to dungeons. And now that was time we should be beginning to in her blindness she has discovered know, a very bappy one. Anne Ay. the Trappist, she demands if he had liffe talks herself into a passion_but betrayed the secrets of her faith. But not a vulgar one-with her mute audihe is bound to everlasting silence- tor and herself--and surely there is and “ Jesu," “ Memento mori,'' is his prodigious energy in the declamation only answer. There are some striking of the leretic.
" " Oh, for some faith, some prophet-saviour-guide!
Oh ! could I die in hope-as mother died !
Or pray, as when I join’d her latest prayer !
Why leave us, God I to ignorance and despair ?
Nay, childhood's lessons, and a nursery tale,
Had lured me right, where lore and reason fail.
I sink, with no one but myself to blame.
Haste! Mother, help! She will !--she comes to claiin!
Lo! there ! beneath von crescent moon she stands,
And o'er Al-Sirat waves to heaven her hands,
Where, with God's laws, his messengers are set,-
Noah, Abram, Moses, Jesus, Mahomet, --
To weigh my life hy mercy's scale sublime,
Where one good deed shall balance ten of crime.
Come, faith sball wing the soul to heaven, and prayer
Unfolds its gates, and alms admit me there,
And sufferings grace with crowns of martyrdom.
I will! Yes, Allan Kierim ! I come.
God is my God! Mobammed is his seer !
And Islamism the faith I die for here!
" • Defame its precepts, and their progress hate,
But own_his spirit was profound and great;
His, who when words usurp'd the place of sease,
Penance of virtue, faith of evidence,
And men, in arts and arms degenerate grown,
Adored-a woman some, and some a stone;
In solitude, the school of genius, bred,
To find by thought the wisdom others read,
Came from the mountain, where he mused sublime
O'er deserts, seas, eternal space and time,
Unnumber'd stars, and each to worlds a sun,
And preach'd, -Ho! Earth and Mortals, God is one !
For God to see, and Mahomet attest,-
'Twas ocean stopp'd and turn d him from the west;
Else had our crescent horns, throughout the world,
From crowns of kings and domes of temples hurl'd
The Roman gibbet, spared its victims, thrust
Its priests to toil, and pagods ground to dust.
And ye, instructed by a Moslem nurse,
Had swell’d the cry ye kill me for, and curse,-
Allah jl Allah ! God is ever one!
God has no father, mother, bride, or son,
Not to the Trappist's ear alone had this been addressed—but to the Primate and all the Conclave. With great power of argument and eloquence the Primate refutes the ravings of the unhappy girl--and declares that her hour is come.
" • Come then, from them, and theirs, and their abyss,
Come, separate we ourselves, and her dismiss !
The dread and dismal duty must be done.
Then - In the name of God, the Father, Son,
And Holy Spirit.'-Speaking thus, he stood.
All others rose, and sign’d the blessed rood.
And all, save her whom death was throttling then,
And him who swoond to earth, replied--- Amen!
With firmer tone, by secret prayer endued,
The Primate raised his hand, and thus pursued :-
". Sinful, apostate, desperate, infidel !
Scoffer, blasphemer, sorceress, child of hell!
Thou, whom no grace, no penitence, can stir,
Hence, to the fate you merit, and prefer!
Go, laden with thy sin, of sins the worst,
God's Church condemns thee, and thou art accurst!
Outcast of nature !-scandal of offence !
Anathema Maranatha ! Go hence !
By power from Heaven, vouchsafed to our control,
We here give up thy body and thy soul,
That, to the secular arm, therewith to deal,
This, to the God to whom you made appeal.
Depart!-- Resistance, doomed wretch, is vain.-
Lay hands on her! Is all without in train ?'
Off! Mercy! Stay! I will recant,-- I do.
Save, save me, Jesu! Mary! Save, Fitz-Hugh!
Let me confess—let me confess, at least :
Let me confer one moment with a priest.
Treasures there are, in covert, to reclaim :
Secrets to show-accomplices to name.
Ha ! have I touch'd the chord, whose nerves unclasp
Your iron'd hearts, and hands' devouring grasp?
Then, for confession, let the rest stand clear, -
And, Phillip of La Trappe! come thou, and hear!
By him, him only, will I be confest.
Thanks! Must I kneel! Stand further off, the rest!
See none o'erhear thy penitent's discourse.
One duty yet remains—and one resource.