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“ ALL IS VANITY, SAITH THE PREACHER.”
1. Fame, wisdom, love, and power were mine,
And health and youth possess’d me; My goblets blushed from every vine,
And lovely forms caress'd me;
I sunn'd my heart in beauty's eyes,
tender; All earth can give, or mortal prize,
Was mine of regal splendour.
2. I strive to number o'er what days
Remembrance can discover, Which all that life or earth displays
Would lure me to live over.
There rose no day, there roll'd no hour
Of pleasure unembitter'd;
That gall’d not while it glitter'd.
3. The serpent of the field, by art
And spells, is won from harming; But that which coils around the heart,
Oh! who hath power of charming?
1. When coldness wraps this suffering clay,
Ah, whither strays the immortal mind? It cannot die, it cannot stay,
But leaves it darken'd dust behind. Then, unembodied, doth it trace
By steps each planet's heavenly way? Or fill at once the realous of space,
A thing of eyes, that all survey?
2. Eternal, boundless, undecay'd,
A thought unseen, but seeing all, All, all in earth, or skies display'd,
Shall it survey, shall it recall: Each fainter trace that memory
holds So darkly of departed years, In one broad glance the soul beholds,
And all, that was, at once appears.
3. Before Creation peopled earth,
Its eyes shall roll through chaos back; And where the furthest heaven had birth,
Che spirit trace its rising track.
Its glance dilate o'er all to be,
Fix'd in its own eternity.
Above or Love, Hope, Hate, or Fear,
It lives all passionless and pure: An age shall feet like earthly year;
Its years as moments shall endure. Away, away, without a wing,
O’er all, through all, its thought shall fly: A nameless and eter na thing,
Forgetting what it was to die,
1. The King was on his throne,
The Satraps throng'd the hall; A thousand bright lamps shone
O'er that bigh festival. A thousand cups of gold,
Judah deem'd divineJehovah's vessels hold
The godless Heathen's wine!
In that same hoar and hall,
The fingers of a hand Came forth against the wall,
And wrote as if on sand : The fingers of a man ;
A solitary hand Along the letters ran,
And traced them like a wand.