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Knew never till this irkfome night. Methought
Close at mine ear one call'd me forth to walk
With gentle' voice; I thought it thine': it said,
Why sleep'it thou Ever now is the pleasant time,
The cool, the filent, fave where silence yields
To the night warbling bird, that now awake
Tunes sweetest his love-labour'd song ; now reigns
Full-orbid the moon, and with more pleasant light
Shadowy sets off the face of things; in vain,
If none regard : heav'n wakes with all his
Whom to behold but Thee, nature's defire ?
In whose fight all things joy, with ravishment
Attracted by thy beauty ftill to gaze.
I rose, as' at thy call; but found thee not:
To find thee I directed then
And on, methought, alone I pass’d, thro' ways
That brought me on a sudden to the Tree
Of interdiēted knowledge: fair it seemd,
Much fairer to my fancy than by day:
And as I wondring look'd, beside it stood
One shap'd, and wing'd, like one of those from Heav'n,
By us oft seen: his dewy locks diftill'd
AMBROSIA ; on that tree he also gaz’d;
And, O fair plant, said he, with fruit surcharg'd!
Deigns none to ease thy load, and taste thy sweet?
Nor Gop, nor man? Is knowledge so despisd? 60
Or envy, or what referve forbids to taste
Forbid who will, none shall from me with hold
Longer thy offerd good: why else set here?
This said, he paus'd not, but with vent'rous arm
He pluck’d, he tafted : me damp horror chilla
At such bold words, vouch'd with a deed so bold.
But he thus, overjoy'd: O fruit divine !
Sweet of thy self, but much more sweet thus crop'd !
Forbidden here, it seems as only fit
For Gods, yet able to make Gods of meri:
And why not Gods of men, fince good the more | Communicated, more abundant grows,
The author not impaird, but honour'd more?
Here, happy creature, fair Angelic Eve!
Partake thou also: happy though thou art,
75 Happier thou may'ft be, worthier canst not be: Taste this, and be henceforth among the Gods Thy self a Goddefs; not to earth confin'd, But sometimes in the air, as we; sometimes Ascend to heav'n, by merit thine, and fee
80 What life the Gods live there, and such live Thou. So saying, he drew nigh, and to me held, Ev'n to my mouth, of that same fruit held part Which he had pluck'd: the pleasant favoury smell So quicken'd appetite, that I, methought, Could not but taste! Forthwith up to the clouds With him I flew, and underneath beheld The earth outstretch'd immense, a prospect wide, And various: wond'ring at my flight and change To this high exaltation ; fuddenly My guide was gone, and I, methought, sunk down, And fell asleep: but O, how glad I wak'd To find this but a dream! Thus Eve her night Related, and thus ADAM answer'd sad.
Best image of my felf, and dearer half!
The trouble of thy thoughts this night in sleep
Affects me equally: nor can I like
This uncouth dream, of evil sprung, I fear.
Yet evil whence? in thee can harbour none,
Created pure. But know, that in the soul
lesser faculties, that serve
Reason as chief: among these Fancy next
Her office holds: of all external things,
Which the five watchful senses represent,
She forms imaginations, aery shapes,
Which Reason joining, or disjoining, frames
All what we affirm, or what deny, and call
Our knowledge, or opinion ; then retires
Into her private cell, when nature rests.
Oft in her absence mimic Fancy wakes
To imitate her; but mis-joining shapes,
Wild work produces oft, and moft in dreams ;
Ill matching words, and deeds, long palt, or late.
Some such resemblances methinks I find
Of our last evening's talk, in this thy dream; 115
But with addition Itrange! yet, be not fad:
Evil into the mind of God, or man,
May come, and go, fo unapprov'd, and leave
No spot or blame behind: which gives me hope
That what in sleep thou didit abhor to dream,
Waking thou never wilt consent to do.
B: not dishearten'd then, nor cloud those looks,
That wont to be more chearful and serene,
Then when fair morning first smiles on the world:
And let us to our fresh employments rise,
Among the groves, the foontains and the flow'rs,
That open now their choiceft bosom'd smells,
Reserv'd from night, and kept for thee in store.
So cheard he his fair spouse, and she was chear’d; But silently a gentle tear let fall
130 From either eye, and wip'd them with her hair: Two other precious drops that ready ftood, Each in their crystal sluice, he ere they fell Kiss'd, as the gracious fignu of sweet remorse, And pious awe, that fear'd to have offended. 135 So all was clear'd, and to the field they haste: But first, from under shady arborous roof, Soon as they forth were come to open sight Of day.spring, and the sun, (who scarce up-ris'n, With wheels yet hov’ring o'er the ocean-brim, 140 Shot parallel to th' earth his dewy ray, Discov’ring in wide landscape all the east Of Paradise, and Eden's happy plains) Lowly they bow'd, adoring, and began Their orifons, each morning duly paid
145 In various style ; for neither various style, Nor holy rapture wanted they to praise Their Maker, in fit strains pronounc'd or sung Unmeditated; such prompt eloquence Flow'd from their lips, in prose or numerous verse ; More tuneable, than needed lute, or harp,
11 To add more sweetness; and they thus began,
These are thy glorious works, Parent of Good !
Almighty! Thine this universal frame,
Thus wondrous fair; Thy self how wondrous then!
Unspeakable! who fitt'it above these heav'ns,
To us invisible, or dimly seen
In these Thy lowest works: yet thefe declare
Thy goodness beyond thought, and pow'r divine.
Speak ye who best can tell, ye fons of light,
Angels! for ye behold Him, and with songs,
And choral lymphonies, day without night,
Circle his throne rejoicing; ye in heav'n:
On earth join all ye creatures to extol
Him first, Him last, Him midit, and without end.
Fairest of stars! last in the train of night,
If better thou belong not to the dawns
Sure pledge of day, that crown'it the smiling morn
With thy bright circlet, praise Him in thy sphere
While day arises, that sweet hour of prime.
170 Thou sun! of this
great world both and soul,
Acknowledge Him thy greater; found His praise
In thy eternal course, both when thou climbiit,
And when high noon haft gain'd, and when thou fallit.
Moon! that now meet'it the orient sun, now fly'it
With the fix'd stars, fix'd in their orb that flies;
five other wand'ring fires ! that move
In myftic dance not without song, resound
His praise, who out of darkness call'd up light.
Air, and ye elements! the eldest birth
Of Nature's womb, that in quaternion run
Perpetual circle, multiform ; and mix,
And nourish all things: let your ceaseless change
Vary to our Great Maker still new praise.
Ye mists and exhalations! that now rise
From hill, or streaming lake, dusky, or grey,
Till the fun paint your fleecy skirts with gold,
In honour to the world's great Author rise :
Whether to deck with clouds th' uncolour'd sky,
Or weț the thirsty earth with falling show'rs,
Rising, or falling, still advance His praise.
His praise, ye winds! that from four quarters blow,
Breath soft, or loud ; and wave your tops, ye pines !
With every plant, in sign of worship wave.
Fountains! and ye that warble, as ye flow,
Melodious murmurs! warbling tune His praise.
Join voices, all ye living souls' ye birds,
That finging up to heaven-gate ascend,
Bear on your wings, and in your notes, His praise ;
Ye that in waters glide, and ye that walk
The earth, and stately tread, or lowly creep !
Withefs if I be silent, morn or even,
To hill, or valley, fountain, or fresh shade,
Made vocal by my song, and taught His praise.
Hail Universal Lord! be bounteous still
-205 To give us only good: and if the night Have gather'd ought of evil, or conceal'd, Disperse it, as now light dispels the dark!
So pray'd they innocent, and to their thoughts Firm peace recover'd soon, and wonted calm.
210 On to their morning's rural work they hafte Among sweet dews and flow'rs; where any row Of fruit-trees, over-woody, reach'd too far Their pamper'd boughs, and needed hands to check Fruitless embraces ; or they led the vine
215 To wed her elm; she spous'd, about him twines Her marriageable arms, and with her brings Her dow'r, th' adopted clufters, to adorn His barren leaves. Them thus employ'd beheld With pity heav'n's high King, and to Him callid RAPHAEL, the sociable spirit, that deign'd To travel with TOBIAS, and secur'd His marriage with the sev’n-times wedded maid.
RAPHAEL, faid He, thou hear'st what stir on earth SATAN, from hell scap'd thro' the darksome gulf, Hath rais’d in Paradise, and how disturb'd
226 This night the human pair, how he designs In them at once to ruin all mankind; Go therefore, half this day as friend with friend Converse with Adam, in what bow'r or shade 230