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Of the wild bees of Palestine,

Banqueting through the flowery vales; And, Jordan, those sweet banks of thine, And woods, so full of nightingales.

But naught can charm the luckless Peri;
Her soul is sad-her wings are weary—
Joyless she sees the Sun look down
On that great Temple, once his own,
Whose lonely columns stand sublime,

Flinging their shadows from on high,
Like dials, which the wizard, Time,

Had raised to count his ages by!

Yet haply there may lie concealed

Beneath those Chambers of the Sun,
Some amulet of gems, annealed
In upper fires, some tablet sealed

With the great name of Solomon,
Which, spelled by her illumined eyes,
May teach her where, beneath the moon,
In earth or ocean, lies the boon,

The charm, that can restore so soon
An erring Spirit to the skies.

Cheered by this hope, she bends her thither;
Still laughs the radiant eye of Heaven,
Nor have the golden bowers of Even
In the rich West begun to wither;
When, o'er the vale of Balbec winging

Slowly, she sees a child at play
Among the rosy wild-flowers singing,
As rosy and as wild as they;

Chasing, with eager hands and eyes,
The beautiful blue damsel-flies,
That fluttered round the jasmine stems,
Like winged flowers or flying gems :—
And near the boy, who, tired with play
Now nestling 'mid the roses lay,
She saw a wearied man dismount

From his hot steed, and on the brink Of a small imaret's rustic fount

Impatient fling him down to drink. Then swift his haggard brow he turned To the fair child, who fearless sat, Though never yet hath day-beam burned Upon a brow more fierce than that,— Sullenly fierce a mixture dire, Like thunder-clouds of gloom and fire; In which the Peri's eye could read Dark tales of many a ruthless deed; The ruined maid-the shrine profanedOaths broken-and the threshold stained With blood of guests!—there written, all Black as the damning drops that fall From the denouncing Angel's pen, Ere Mercy weeps them out again.

Yet tranquil now that man of crime
(As if the balmy evening time
Softened his spirit) looked and lay,
Watching the rosy infant's play ;-
Though still, whene'er his eye by chance
Fell on the boy's, its lurid glance

Met that unclouded, joyous gaze,

As torches, that have burned all night
Through some impure and godless rite,
Encounter morning's glorious rays.

But, hark! the vesper call to prayer,
As slow the orb of daylight sets,
Is rising sweetly on the air,

From Syria's thousand minarets.
The boy has started from the bed
Of flowers, where he had laid his head,
And down upon the fragrant sod

Kneels with his forehead to the south,
Lisping th' eternal name of God

From Purity's own cherub mouth,
And looking, while his hands and eyes
Are lifted to the glowing skies,
Like a stray babe of Paradise,

Just lighted on that flowery plain,

And seeking for its home again.

Oh! 'twas a sight-that Heaven-that child— A scene, which might have well beguiled

Ev'n haughty Eblis of a sigh,
For glories lost and peace gone by!

And how felt he, the wretched Man
Reclining there—while memory ran
O'er many a year of guilt and strife,
Flew o'er the dark flood of his life,
Nor found one sunny resting-place,
Nor brought him back one branch of grace,
"There was a time," he said, in mild,
Heart-humbled tones-" thou blessed child!

When, young, and haply pure as thou,
I looked and prayed like thee-but now—
He hung his head each nobler aim,

And hope, and feeling, which had slept
From boyhood's hour, that instant came
Fresh o'er him, and he wept-he wept

Blest tears of soul-felt penitence!
In whose benign, redeeming flow
Is felt the first, the only sense

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Of guiltless joy that guilt can know. "There's a drop," said the Peri, "that down from

the moon

Falls through the withering airs of June
Upon Egypt's land, of so healing a power,
So balmy a virtue, that ev'n in the hour
That drop descends, contagion dies,
And health reanimates earth and skies!
Oh, is it not thus, thou man of sin,

The precious tears of repentance fall?
Though foul thy fiery plagues within,

One heavenly drop hath dispelled them all!"

And now-behold him kneeling there
By the child's side, in humble prayer,
While the same sunbeam shines upon
The guilty and the guiltless one,
And hymns of joy proclaim through Heaven
The triumph of a Soul Forgiven!

"Twas when the golden orb had set, While on their knees they lingered yet,

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There fell a light more lovely far
Than ever came from sun or star,
Upon the tear that, warm and meek,
Dewed that repentant sinner's cheek.
To mortal eye this light might seem
A northern flash or meteor beam-
But well th' enraptured Peri knew
'Twas a bright smile the Angel threw
From Heaven's gate, to hail that tear,
The harbinger of glory near!

"Joy, joy forever! my task is doneThe gates are passed, and Heaven is won! Oh! am I not happy? I am, I am—

To thee, sweet Eden! how dark and sad

Are the diamond turrets of Shadukiam,

And the fragrant bowers of Amberabad !

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'Farewell, ye odours of Earth, that die
Passing away like a lover's sigh ;-
My feast is now of the Tooba Tree,
Whose scent is the breath of Eternity!

"Farewell, ye vanishing Flowers, that shone

In my fairy wreath, so bright and brief;Oh! what are the brightest that e'er have blown To the lote-tree, springing by Allah's throne, Whose flowers have a soul in every leaf! Joy, joy forever!-my task is doneThe Gates are passed, and Heaven is won!" 15*

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