The Hymns of DIONYSIUS:
Translated from the Greek.
To the MUSE.
1 LEND thy voice, celestial maid:
2 Through thy vocal grove convey'd,
3 Let a sudden call from thee.
4 Wake my soul to harmony.
5 Raise, oh! raise the hallow'd strain,
6 Mistress of the tuneful train.[Page 144]
7 And thou sacred source of light,
8 Author of our mystic rite,
9 Thou whom erst Latona bore
10 On the sea-girt Delian shore,
11 Join the fav'ring Muse, and shed
12 All thy influence on my head.
II. TO APOLLO.
13 Be still, ye vaulted skies! be still
14 Each hollow vale, each echoing hill,
15 Let earth and seas, and winds attend;
16 Ye birds awhile your notes suspend;
17 Be hush'd each sound; behold him nigh,
18 Parent of sacred harmony;
19 He comes! his unshorn hair behind
20 Loose floating to the wanton wind,
21 Hail, sire of day, whose rosy car,
22 Through the pathless fields of air,
23 By thy winged coursers borne,
24 Opes the eyelids of the morn.
25 Thou, whose locks their light display
26 O'er the wide aetherial way,
27 Wreathing their united rays
28 Into one promiscuous blaze.
29 Under thy all-seeing eye
30 Earth's remotest corners lie;
31 While, in thy repeated course,
32 Issuing from thy fruitful source,[Page 145]
33 Floods of fire incessant stray,
34 Streams of everlasting day.
35 Round thy sphere the starry throng,
36 Varying sweet their ceaseless song,
37 (While their vivid flames on high
38 Deck the clear untroubled sky,)
39 To the tuneful lyre advance,
40 Joining in the mystic dance,
41 And with step alternate beat
42 Old Olympus' lofty seat.
43 At their head the wakeful Moon
44 Drives her milkwhite heifers on,
45 And with measur'd pace and even
46 Glides around the vast of heaven,
47 Journeying with unwearied force,
48 And rejoicing in her course.
49 Time attends with swift career,
50 And forms the circle of the year.
III. TO NEMESIS.
51 Nemesis, whose dreaded weight
52 Turns the scale of human fate;
53 On whose front black terrors dwell,
54 Daughter dire of Justice, hail!
55 Thou whose adamantine rein
56 Curbs the arrogant and vain.
57 Wrong and Force before thee die,
58 Envy shuns thy searching eye,
59 And, her sable wings outspread,
60 Flies to hide her hated head.[Page 146]
61 Where thy wheel with restless round
62 Runs along th' unprinted ground,
63 Humbled there, at thy decree
64 Human greatness bows the knee.
65 Thine it is unseen to trace
66 Step by step each mortal's pace:
67 Thine the sons of Pride to check,
68 And to bend the stubborn neck,
69 Till our lives directed stand
70 By the measure in thy hand.
71 Thou observant sit'st on high
72 With bent brow and stedfast eye,
73 Weighing all that meets thy view
74 In thy balance just and true.
75 Goddess, look propitious down,
76 View us, but without a frown,
77 Nemesis, whose dreaded weight
78 Turns the scale of human fate.
79 Nemesis be still our theme,
80 Power immortal and supreme,
81 Thee we praise, nor thee alone,
82 But add the partner of thy throne.
83 Thee and Justice both we sing,
84 Justice, whose unwearied wing
85 Rears aloft the virtuous name
86 Safe from hell's rapacious claim;
87 And when thou thy wrath hast shed
88 Turns it from the guiltless head.