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Thus far have I pursued my solemn theme
With self-rewarding toil;-thus far have sung Of godlike deeds, far loftier than beseem
The lyre, which I in early days have strung;
And now my spirits faint, and I have hung The shell, that solaced me in saddest hour,
On the dark cypress! and the strings which rung With Jesus' praise, their harpings now are o'er, Or when the breeze comes by moan and are heard no more.
And must the harp of Judah sleep again,
Shall I no more re-animate the lay! Oh! thou who visitest the sons of men,
Thou who dost listen when the humble pray,
One little space prolong my mournful day! One little lapse suspend thy last decree!
I am a youthful traveller in the way, , And this slight boon would consecrate to thee, Ere I with Death shake hands, and smile that I am free.
REMARKS ON THE ENGLISH POETS.
THE sublimity and unaffected beauty of the sacred writings are in no instance more conspicuous, than in the following verses of the xviïith Psalm.
“ He bowed the heavens also and came down: and darkness was under his feet.
“ And he rode upon a cherub and did fly: yea he did fly upon the wings of the wind.”
None of our better versions have been able to preserve the original graces of these verses. That wretched one of Thomas Sternhold, however, (which, to the disgrace and manifest detriment of religious worship, is generally used) has, in this solitary instance, and then perhaps by accident, given us the true spirit of the Psalmist, and has surpassed not only Merrick, but even the classic Buchanan *. This version is as follows.
That the reader may judge for himself, Buchanau's translation is subjoined.
Utque suum dominum terræ demittat in orbem