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They are walking on with a trembling tread,
And painful the path thro’ the jungle to thread;
And their hearts beat high at the sullen crush
Of the boughs swinging back to their broken hush ;
And they hear the hiss of the startled snake,
And they see the bed in the trampled brake,
Where some ravening beast, aroused by the moon
To his prey, had reposed thro' the sultry noon.

But aye, as they paused for breath, the part
Of the cheerer was donned by the darker heart,
For the nerves of the one, whom in safety ye deemed

The gallanter spirit, now quail and cower,
While the calm which in common a dulness seemed,

Grew courage when kept thro' the perilous hour.

The jungle is cleared, and the moon shines bright

On a broad and silent plain ;
And (gaunt in the midst) the streaming light

Sleeps, hushed on a giant Fane !

No late-built, gay, and glittering shrine, *
Like those the Boudhist holds divine ;

* The massy and antique solemnity of the Hindoo temple, compared with those devoted to the Boudhist religion, covered as the latter are with gilding, and grotesque ornaments made of the most gaudy and least durable materials, never fails to strike every traveller in the countries where the two religions are found together.

But simple-lone-grey-vast—and hoar,

All darkly-eloquent of Eld!
The farthest years of untold yore

That temple had beheld.
Sadly and desolately now,
It rais'd to Heaven its gloomy brow;
Its altars silent and untrod,
The faith has left the Brahmin's God.*

There while the brothers gazing stood,

Their youthful blood grew chill,
Appalled beneath the Solitude,

The Sternness and the Still !

They have gain’d the sacred bound,

They have pass'd its broken wall; And they quail as they walk, when they hear the sound

Of their steps in the temple fall !

They stand in a desolate place,
Their roof the starr'd and breathless Space !

An altar at their feet, o'erthrown !
On the grey walls around, half-rased,
Strange shapes and mystic rhymes are traced,

Typing a past world's fate.

* “They (the Hindoo temples) were dreary and comfortless places, and there was no mistaking the religion which had the countenance and protection of the state.”-Crauford's Embassy, p. 119.

And still, as if himself had grown
Its like-upon a couch of stone
Majestic—shadowy—and alone

The dark Magician sate !
The white rays hush'd around him shining-
His broad brow knit and down-declining;
Fix'd on the wan Earth's mystic breast
His eyes_intent but dreaming-rest;
His mute form bending musingly,
And his hands clasp'd upon his knee.
Calmness sate round him like a robe,

The calmness of the crowned Dead,
The calmness of the solemn Globe

When Night makes Silence dread. The calmness of some God reclin'd

On high-and brooding o'er Earth's doom, Or of some Cloud ere yet the wind

Hath voiced the breathless gloom.
The errand they tell, and the boon they crave.

It is done !—with a glassy eye
The Sorcerer look 'd on the Twins, and gave,

In a chaunting tone, reply.

“ Ten years ago, and the Book of Light “ Was oped at the page that is bared to-night, “ And the Moon had buried her mother old, “ And the Dragon was up from his mountain-hold,

“ And the Spirits who feast on a mortal's woe
“ Were walking the wide earth to and fro.
My blood was young, and my heart was bold,

“ And I burn 'd for the spell of the conquer'd tomb ; “ And I sate by the grave they had dug that day, “ For a woman whose spirit had passed away

66 When the babe was in her womb.*

“ And the grave was bared—and the rite prepared,

“ And the dark rhyme slowly said,

“The belief in the agency of evil spirits is universal, and though disclaimed by the religion of Budha, they are more frequently worshipped than the latter. Nor will the darkest periods of German necromancy and pretended divination be found to exceed, in point of the incredible and horrible, what is to be observed among the Siamese of the present day. It is usual to inter women that have died pregnant: the popular belief is, that the necromancers have the power of performing the most extraordinary things, when possessed of the infant which had been thus interred in the womb of the mother : it is customary to watch the grave of such persons, in order to prevent the infant being carried off. The Siamese tell the tale of horror in the most solemn manner. All the hobgoblins, wild and ferocious animals, all the infernal spirits, are said to oppose the unhallowed deed; the perpetrator, well charged with cabalistic terms, which he must recite in a certain fixed order, and with nerves well braced to the daring task, proceeds to the grave, which he lays open. In proportion as he advances in his work, the opposing spirits become more daring; he cuts off the head, hands, and feet of the in. fant, with which he returns home. A body of clay is adapted to these, and this new compound is placed in a sort of temple; the matter is now accomplished, the possessor has become master of the past, present, and future.”—Finlayson's Mission to Siam and Cochin China, p. 239.

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