How grandly the sun sets! what gorgeous display!
Like gold in a crucible melting away,
Whose ingots of treasure dissolve into flood,
As yellow as amber, or crimson as blood!
How like a great king full of glory he goes!
All stately his presence! all calm his repose!
Though weary with travel, and strength nearly done,
The flush on his brow shows the goal is near won.
And yet in his triumph a sadness appears,
His bright eye grows dim with the mist of his tears,
And fancy can picture his mighty heart swell
With the last look at parting, and sigh of farewell!
Sublimely he sinks on his opal-like bed,
On soft pillows of down reposing his head;
No ensign of sov'reignty circles his brow;
No fierce glance of pow'r can issue thence now;
Around his pavilion, the numerous clouds
Attend the aged monarch, like courtiers in crowds:
Reflecting his countenance smiling or sad,
Now gloomy with sorrow, now brilliant and glad,
While kneeling with zeal they unsandal his feet,
He gives them his gold ere he makes his retreat,
And like the great Caesar, to die with a grace,
Draws round him the purple, concealing his face.
And now what a panoply mantles above!
Externals of royalty, power and love,
For a brief while the body is laid out in state,
And grandeur and splendour the pageant await,
Till night with her sable pall spangled with stars,
Bears away all its pomp on her funeral cars.
But soon is all trace of such honour dispersed,
And the mourning and gloom are quickly reversed;
Ev'ry eye, ev'ry heart turns with eager delight
To hail the new monarch that breaks on the sight.
All ardent and glowing he comes on the scene,
With a crown on his head, and brow all serene;
Majestic and dignified, jewell'd and gay,
Steps forth from his chamber in royal array,
And loosing his robes from his fire-flashing zone,
With regal magnificence sits on his throne.
With sceptre in hand, and standard unfurled,
Behold him the ruler and soul of the world!
While statesmen, and warriors in crimson and gold,
With lances of silver, and banners unroll'd,
Surround their young sov'reign, officious and bold,
And glancing their plumes in their joy and their pride,
They blazon the triumph he seeks not to hide.
Effulgent and splendid the scene now appears,
The earth in her ecstasy bursts into tears,
And as his bright chariot passes along,
She smiles with fresh beauty, and charms with new song!
Ah! thus should each potentate rule in his might;
The fountain of happiness, progress and light;
Vicegerent of Providence, Goodness and Love,
His reign upon earth, but his kingdom above.