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DRYDEN, John


One happy moment


NO, no, poor suff'ring Heart, no Change endeavour,

Choose to sustain the smart, rather than leave her;

My ravish'd eyes behold such charms about her,

I can die with her, but not live without her:

One tender Sigh of hers to see me languish,

Will more than pay the price of my past anguish:

Beware, O cruel Fair, how you smile on me,

'Twas a kind look of yours that has undone me.

Love has in store for me one happy minute,

And She will end my pain who did begin it;

Then no day void of bliss, or pleasure leaving,

Ages shall slide away without perceiving:

Cupid shall guard the door the more to please us,

And keep out Time and Death, when they would seize us:

Time and Death shall depart, and say in flying,

Love has found out a way to live, by dying.


The Instruments

(from A Song for St. Cecilia’s Day)
…..
The trumpet's loud clangour

Excites us to arms,

With shrill notes of anger,

And mortal alarms.
The double double double beat

Of the thundering drum

Cries Hark! the foes come;

Charge, charge, 'tis too late to retreat!

The soft complaining flute,

In dying notes, discovers

The woes of hopeless lovers,

Whose dirge is whisper'd by the warbling lute.

Sharp violins proclaim

Their jealous pangs and desperation,

Fury, frantic indignation,

Depth of pains, and height of passion,

For the fair, disdainful dame.

But oh, what art can teach,

What human voice can reach,

The sacred organ's praise?

Notes inspiring holy love,

Notes that wing their heavenly ways

To mend the choirs above.

Orpheus could lead the savage race;

And trees unrooted left their place,

Sequacious of the lyre;

But bright Cecilia rais'd the wonder higher:

When to her organ vocal breath was given,

An angel heard, and straight appear'd

Mistaking Earth for Heaven.

(GRAND CHORUS)

As from the power of sacred lays

The spheres began to move,

And sung the great Creator's praise

To all the Blest above;

So when the last and dreadful hour

This crumbling pageant shall devour,

The trumpet shall be heard on high,

The dead shall live, the living die,

And Music shall untune the sky!