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The Explanation Of The Apocalypse

AN exile from the busy haunts of men,

Forbidden now to see his country’s soil,

He, loved of God, to heaven triumphant soars,

And joins the choir around the high-throned King.

His sacred eye the world below surveys,

As o’er its waters pass the fleeting ships.

Babel and Solyma in conflict join

Their several hosts. In quick succession here

They turn in flight, and here the strife renew.

The white-robed soldier of the gentle Lamb

May with his leader gain the realms of joy;

The scaly serpent in the dark abyss

O’erwhelms in hunger, flame, and pestilence,

His gathering bands. This warfare’s dread array,

And art, and numbers, and its victories

Desirous to unfold, I’ve wandered through

The sacred plains, where those of old have sown,

Collecting thence some fruits. But few they are,

That no profusion cause to loathe the feast,

Nor e’en forbid the meaner guest to attempt

A preparation all too great. And now,

If these my scanty morsels please thy taste,

Give praise to God, Who reigns above the skies;

Or else, accept a friendly heart’s intent,

And, armed with pumice, this my verse erase.








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