CAIN:A MYSTERY Now the Serpent was morn subtil than any beast of the field which the

Lord God had made. -Genesis,Chapter 3rd, verse I. PREFACE. The following scenes are entitled "A Mystery" in conformity with the ancient title annexed to dramas upon similar subjects, which were styled "Mysteries, or Moralities." The author has by no means taken the same liberties with his subject which were common formerly, as may be seen by any reader curious enough to refer to those very profane productions, whether in English, French, Italian, or Spanish. The author has endeavored to preserve the language adapted to his characters; and where it is (and this is b ut rarely) taken from actual Scripture, he has made as little alteration, even of words, as the rhythm would permit. The reader will recollect that the book of Genesis does not state that Eve was tempted by a demon, but by "The Serpent" and that only becau se he was "the most subtil of all the beasts of the field." Whatever interpretation the Rabbins and the Fathers may have put upon this, I take the words as I find them, and reply, with Bishop Watson[1] upon similar occasions, when the Fathers were quoted to him as Moderator in the schools of Cambridge, "Behold the Book!" - holding up the Scripture. It is to be recollected, that my present subject has nothing to do with the New Testament, to which no reference can be here made without anachronism. With the poems upon similar topics I have not been recently familiar. Since I was twenty I have never read Milton [2], but I had read him so frequently before, that this may make little difference. Gesner's "Death of Abel"[3] I have never read since I was eight year s of age, at Aberdeen. The general impression of my recollection is delight; but of the contents I remember only that Cain's wife was called Mahala, and Abel's Thirza; in the following pages I have called them, "Adah" and "Zillah," the earliest female name s which occur in Genesis. They were those of Lamech's wives: those of Cain and Abel are not called by their names. Whether, then, a coincidence of subject may have caused the same in expression, I know nothing, and care as little. I am prepared to be accused of Manicheism [4], or some other hard name ending in ism, which makes a formidable figure and awful sound in the eyes and ears of those who would be as much puzzled to explain the terms so bandied about, as the liberal and pious indulgers in such epithets. Against such I can defend myself, or, if necessary, I can attack in turn. "Claw for claw, as Conan said to Satan, and the deevil take the shortest nails" (Waverley) [5]. The reader will please to bear in mind (what few choose to recollect), that there is no allusion to a future state in any of the books of Moses, nor indeed in the Old Testament. For a reason for this extraordinary omission he may consult Warburton's "Divine Legation" [6]; whether satisfactory or not, no better has yet been assigned. I h ave therefore supposed it new to Cain, without I hope, any perversion of Holy Writ. With regard to the language of Lucifer, it was difficult for me to make him talk like a clergyman upon the same subjects; but I have done what I could to restrain him withi n the bounds of spiritual politeness. If he disclaims having tempted Eve in the shape of the Serpent, it is only because the book of Genesis has not the most distant allusion to anything of the kind, but merely to the Serpent in his serpentine capacity. Note--The reader will perceive that the author has partly adopted in this poem the notion of Cuvier [2] that the world had been destroyed several times before the creation of man. This speculation, derived from the different strata and the bones of enormous and unknown animals found in them, is not contrary to the Mosaic account, but rather confirms it; as no human bones have yet been discovered in those strata, although those of many known animals are found near the remains of the unknown. The assertion of Lucifer, that the pre Adamite world was also peopled by rational beings much more intelligent than man, and proportionably powerful to the mammoth, etc., etc., is, of course, a poetical fiction to help him to make out his case. I ought to add, that there i s a "tramelogedia" of Alfieri, called "Abele" [8]. I have never read that, nor any other of the posthumous works of the writer, except his Life. CHARACTERS MEN. ADAM. CAIN. ABEL. SPIRITS. ANGEL OF THE LORD.

LUCIFER. WOMEN. EVE. ADAH. ZILLAH.

ACT I. SCENE 1. - The Land without Paradise. - Time, Sunrise. ADAM, EVE, CAIN, ABEL, ADAH, ZILLAH, offering a Sacrifice.

ADAM. God the Eternal! Infinite! All-wise! Who out of darkness on the deep didst make Light on the waters with a word - All Hail! Jehovah! with returning light - All Hail! EVE. God! who didst name the day, and separate Morning from night, till then divided never Who didst divide the wave from wave, and call Part of thy work the firmament - All Hail! ABEL. God! who didst call the elements into Earth, ocean, air and fire - and with the day And night, and worlds which these illuminate, Or shadow, madest beings to enjoy them, And love both them, and thee - All Hail! All Hail! ADAM. God! the Eternal parent of all things! Who didst create these best and beauteous beings, To be beloved, more than all, save thee Let me love thee and them: - All Hail! All Hail! ZILLAH. Oh, God! who loving, making, blessing all, Yet didst permit the Serpent to creep in, And drive my father forth from P aradise, Keep us from further evil:- Hail! All Hail! ADAM. Son Cain! my first-born - wherefore art thou silent? CAIN. Why should I speak? ADAM. To pray. CAIN. Have ye not prayed? ADAM. We have, most fervently. CAIN. And loudly: I Have heard you. ADAM. So will God, I trust. ABEL. Amen! ADAM. But thou my eldest born? art silent still? CAIN. 'Tis better I should be so. ADAM. Wherefore so? CAIN. I have nought to ask. ADAM. Nor aught to thank for? CAIN. No. ADAM. Dost thou not live? CAIN. Must I not die? EVE. Alas! The fruit of our forbidden tree begins To fall. ADAM. And we must gather it again. Oh God! why didst thou plant the tree of knowledge? CAIN. And wherefore plucked ye not the tree of life? Ye might have then defied him. ADAM. Oh! my son, Blaspheme not: these are Serpent's words. CAIN. Why not? The snake spoke truth; it was the Tree of Knowledge; It was the Tree of Life: knowledge is good, And Life is good; and how can both be evil? EVE. My boy! thou speakest as I spoke in sin, Before thy birth: let me not see renewed My misery in thine I have repented. Let me not see my offspring fall into The snares beyond the walls of Paradise, Which even in Paradise destroyed his parents. Content thee with what is. Had we been so, Thou now hadst been contented. - Oh, my son! ADAM. Our orisons[9] completed, let us hence, Each to his task of toil - not heavy, though Needful: the earth is young, and yields us kindly Her fruits with little labor. EVE. Cain - my son Behold thy father cheerful and resigned And do as he doth. [Exeunt ADAM and EVE.] ZILLAH. Wilt thou not, my brother? ABEL. Why wilt thou wear this gloom upon thy brow, Which can avail thee nothing, save to rouse The Eternal anger? ADAH. My beloved Cain Wilt thou frown even on me?

Was plucked too soon.I will follow shortly. My father is Tamed down. Save with the truth: was not the Tree. Which shut them out . and feel for it. Thou livest . The peace of God Be on your spirit. CAIN. and re-create . and the earth's CAIN. No: art thou? CAIN. It may be thou shalt be as we. indissoluble tyrant.and they are bitterWhich I must feed on for a fault not mine. suffering in concert. And heaven's And all that in them is.and thou wilt be No less than thou art now.but I thought alone This misery was mine." How know I that? Because He is all-powerful. and yet all invincible Instinct of life.because My father could not keep his place in Eden? What had I done in this? . If not.and must live for ever. and of fruits and trees: I see The gates of what they call their Paradise Guarded by fiery-sworded Cherubim. And hadst thou not been fit by thine own soul For such companionship. and constant thought: I look Around a world where I seem nothing. in his greatness.'tis your immortal part Which speaks within you. which I abhor.A shape like to the angels Yet of a sterner and a sadder aspect Of spiritual essence: why do I quake? Why should I fear him more than other spirits. LUCIFER. While that of Knowledge. Thou speak'st to me of things which long have swum In visions through my thought: I never could Reconcile what I saw with what I heard. They are the thoughts of all Worthy of thought. No more? LUCIFER. No. but it will pass. Are ye happy? LUCIFER.which I know not. and why not for him? If not. They say . I would not now Have stood before thee as I am. must all-good. Souls who dare use their immortality Souls who dare look the Omnipotent tyrant in His everlasting face. see no thing To make death hateful. I live. with Thoughts which arise within me. and ADAH.and if he so doth. living. too. Mark me! that Son will be a sacrifice! CAIN. Precede me. to make eternity Less burthensome to his immense existence And unparticipated solitude. he'd have us so. humanity? He cometh. I am none: And having failed to be one. Who? LUCIFER. CAIN. ADAH. who art thou? LUCIFER. CAIN. if he made us . is no happier than We in our conflict! Goodness would not make Evil. more endurable. One who aspired to be what made thee. ABEL. And you. [Enter LUCIFER. tarry not behind. on pain Of being that which I am. as before. and tell him that His evil is not good! If he has made. He conquered. Think not The Earth. But live to die.and me: I feel the weight Of daily toil.] CAIN (solus). And he is good. as I Despise myself.as he Gave you a father . the Tree Of Knowledge? and was not the Tree of Life Still fruitful? Did I bid her pluck them not? Did I plant things prohibited within The reach of beings innocent. CAIN. I will Return to seek you here. Master of spirits. brother .why suffer? What was there in this? The tree planted. what art thou? LUCIFER. CAIN. where it grew The fairest in the center? They have but One answer to all questions. canst thou Leave them. LUCIFER. Poor clay! And thou pretendest to be wretched! Thou! CAIN. and curious By their own innocence? I would have made ye . So I have heard His Seraphs sing. is Existence . I know the thoughts Of dust. nor love the state To which that birth has brought me.CAIN.nay. a serpent Had been enough to charm ye. Abel. would be nought Save what I am. Whom I see daily wave their fiery swords Before the gates round which I linger oft. at least we sympathize And. and what else hath he made? But let him Sit on his vast and solitary throne. to catch a glimpse of those Gardens which are my just inheritance. Ah! didst thou tempt my mother? LUCIFER. Ere the night closes o'er the inhibited walls And the immortal trees which overtop The cherubim-defended [11] battlements? If I shrink not from these. my brother is A watching shepherd boy. I tempt none. CAIN. Why should I quail from him who now approaches? Yet . I fain [10] would be alone a little while. What immortal part? This has not been revealed: the Tree of Life Was withheld from us by my father's folly. save an innate clinging. and my Adah . "'Twas his will. Thy sire's Maker.and thou art Of spirits and of men. sisters. That he may torture: . Whom have we here?.Toil! and wherefore should I toil?. which is thine ouward cov'ring. my mother has forgot the mind Which made her thirst for knowledge at the risk Of an eternal curse.] LUCIFER. Creating worlds. follow? I judge but by the fruits.I rather would consort with spirits. Why did he Yield to the Serpent and the woman? or Yielding . Let him crowd orb on orb: he is alone Indefinite. CAIN. Would I had never lived! LUCIFER. and all the fruit is Death! LUCIFER. and Would not have made thee what thou art. As he saith . And this is Life?. They have deceived thee. Ah! Thou look'st almost a god. Could he but crush himself. as if they Could master all things . and LUCIFER. . Are ye happy? LUCIFER. Are everlasting. by my mother's haste. So restless in his wretchedness. and yet not all as beautiful As he hath been. why place him near it. Spirit. and with you. And is it So? and can aught grieve save. with all thy might. 'Tis well . brother! [Exeunt ABEL. By the unbounded sympathy of all With all! but He! so wr etched in his height. CAIN. too. CAIN.let him! He is great But. nor less Beauteous. Your gentleness must not be harshly met: I''ll follow you anon. . How! You know my thoughts? LUCIFER. A loathsome.he seems mightier far than them. My father and my mother talk to me Of serpents. 'twere the best boon He ever granted: but let him reign on! And multiply himself in misery! Spirits and Men. Adah! no.what they must sing and say. How should I be so? Look on me! LUCIFER. and walk with dust? LUCIFER. too.my Own and beloved . I am: .perhaps he'll make One day a Son unto himself . must still Create. I'm sick at heart. and might be: sorrow seems Half of his immortality.it will cease . thou shalt live. And ye? LUCIFER. And what is that? LUCIFER.and thou. understands not The mind which overwhelms me: never till Now met I aught to sympathize with me. We are mighty.he cannot unmake: We are immortal! . CAIN. And being so. who offers up The firstlings of the flock to him who bids The earth yield nothing to us without sweat.she. and. let him reign! CAIN. In Twilight's hour. Mortal! CAIN. ZILLAH. the fire-armed angels. yet cannot overcome And so I live. nor believe But. My sister Zillah sings an earlier hymn Than the birds' matins.I was unborn: I sought not to be born. and so my father saith. make our pangs Innumerable. CAIN.

And then I turned my wary eyes from off Our native and forbidden Paradise. Both them who sinned and sinned not. or he who would Have made ye live for ever. My father Says he is something dreadful. it is a dreadful thing. when I hear Of this almighty Death. as I have heard from those who heard them. Were I quiet earth. But I must retire To till the earth . and foreknew The knowledge fatal to their narrow joys.more in wisdom. Thou art my worshipper. Let me but Be taught the mystery of my being. as I scorn all That bows to him. till he ran roaring from my gripe. LUCIFER. Thou'lt know here . CAIN. LUCIFER. and bear a mind To know. Ne'er the less. CAIN. Be it proved. But thou canst not Speak aught of Knowledge which I would not know. Ask the Destroyer. fear nothing. I never As yet have bowed unto my father's God. To offer up With Abel on an altar. And become gods as we. Could I wrestle with him? I wrestled with the lion. In nature being earth also . LUCIFER. He was hindered. who see the truth. I have looked out In the vast desolate night in search of him. By being Yourselves. Which are so beautiful: shall they. and your seed's. They say the Serpent was a spirit. . I dwell apart. CAIN. Wilt thou teach me all? LUCIFER. LUCIFER. upon one condition. The seed of the then world may thus array Their earliest fault in fable. Name it LUCIFER. too. if the mind will be itself And center of surrounding things . CAIN. CAIN. And when I saw gigantic shadows in The umbrage of the walls of Eden. Hast thou ne'er bowed To him? CAIN. LUCIFER. CAIN. checkered By the far-flashing of the Cherubs' swords. I? Poor clay . Alas! I scarcely now know what it is. CAIN.Gods. in your resistance.'tis made To sway. Thy Fond parents listened to a creeping thing. And thou? CAIN.or wherefore plucked he not The life-tree? LUCIFER. but will absorb all things That bear the form of earth -born being. I watched for what I thought his coming. not worshipping Him makes thee mine the same. That is a grovelling wish. CAIN. CAIN." Were those his words? CAIN. The snake was the snake No more. I knew not that. it seems. so thrust ye Because "ye should not eat the fruits of life.fear I know not what! LUCIFER.what should I tempt them for.for I had promised LUCIFER.need I say it? Could not thy mighty knowledge teach thee that? LUCIFER.be thou amongst the first. How so? LUCIFER. No. But shall I know it? LUCIFER.but I speak to thee of what thou know'st not. LUCIFER. But we. Follow Where I will lead thee. who is. And what is that? LUCIFER. Since he could overcome them. They were. I tell thee that the Serpent was no more Than a mere serpent: ask the Cherubim Who guard the tempting tree. LUCIFER. Aye. When thousand ages Have rolled o'er your dead ashes. die? LUCIFER. LUCIFER. Why? CAIN. Nothing can Quench the mind. CAIN. But must be undergone. CAIN. Thoughts unspeakable Crowd in my breast to burning. CAIN. He has not yet Been seen. His equal? LUCIFER. Thou art not the Lord my father worships . But I will bend to neither. in the azure. for With fear rose longing in my heart to know What 'twas which shook us all . CAIN.but long outlive both thine and thee. and attribute To me a shape I scorn. Who? LUCIFER. The other may be still. CAIN. but what. In thunder. No. But the thing had a demon? LUCIFER He but woke one In those he spake to with his forky tongue. Who Saith that? It is not written so on high: The proud One will not so far falsify. CAIN. To be resolved into the earth. Ah! I thought it was a being: who could do Such evil things to beings save a being? LUCIFER.beneath Aught save a sharer or a servant of His power.and hereafter. And speaks not. Although my brother Abel oft implores That I would join with him in sacrifice: Why should I bow to thee? LUCIFER. One is yours already. Less than thy father's . Would they had snatched both The fruits. who know all things. and yet not less than those he tempted. And sighs a prayer. yet thought it. sole eternity. when a boy. Perhaps . or how? CAIN. And I. That were no evil: would I ne'er had been Aught else but dust! LUCIFER. But didst thou tempt my parents? LUCIFER. Inevitable. As I know not death.thy Lord. I'm glad of that: I would not have them die They are so lovely. And do not thirst to know. since I heard Of Death: although I know not what it is Yet it seems horrible.Call him Which name thou wilt: he makes but to destroy. In play. as an illWhat ill? LUCIFER.and Adah LUCIFER. With all thy Tree of Kn owledge. LUCIFER. LUCIFER.I have nought in common with him! Nor would: I would be aught above . Think'st thou I'd take the shape of things that die? CAIN. CAIN.for he wished to know! CAIN. and Abel lifts his eyes To Heaven. and my mother Weeps when he's named. Deadly error! Not to snatch first that fruit: . and Adah looks on me. and more Who shall .but nothing came. I cannot answer. I feel. Have I not said it? . Said'st thou not Thou ne'er hadst bent to him who made thee? CAIN. To cull some first-fruits. but I am great Many there are who worship me. LUCIFER. and Zillah casts hers to the earth.but ere he plucked The knowledge. And fell. The offering is more his than mine . see What is true knowledge. or neither! LUCIFER. and even He who thrust ye forth. What is Death? I fear. CAIN. What? CAIN. It has no shape. I cannot compass: 'tis denounced against us. And yet I fear it . He who bows not to him has bowed to me. Darest thou look on Death? CAIN. must speak it. CAIN. in the joy And power of Knowledge? CAIN. For what should spirits tempt them? What Was there to envy in the narrow bounds Of Paradise. CAIN. CAIN. who made things but to bend Before his sullen. LUCIFER. YesBut Abel's earnest prayer has wrought upon me. Though man's vast fears and little vanity Would make him cast upon the spiritual nature His own low failing. Up to the lights above us. that spirits who pervade Space . The Maker . Then who was the Demon? He Who would not let ye live. But not to live . Why dost thou hesitate? . That Thou dost fall down and worship me . And heart to look on? CAIN. he was ignorant of Death.

she must not. And yet that grief is knowledge . ignorant of Eden. She is my sister.Cain . millions. But all we know of it has gathe red Evil on ill. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. The Seraphs love most . Thou hast labored not This morn. Ask Eve.the unknown! Methinks the Tree of Knowledge Hath not fulfilled its promise: .nor God's: I have beheld The Cherubs and the Seraphs. ADAH. and love me . Aye . I cannot answer this immortal thing Which stands before me. If the blessedness Consists in slavery .and the mystery of Death. with tears.and if we had been. but still of sorrow. ADAH.CAIN. We have seen many: will he share our hour Of rest? . The Seraphs' love can be but ignorance: That they are not compatible. ADAH. and Rather than see her weep. In hymns and harpings. Adah! . did they not Prefer an independency of torture To the smooth agonies of adulation. and heaviness. I ask Thee to be mine. and as false. ADAH. Interchecked with an instant of brief pleasure. and thy sire? ADAH. LUCIFER. he looks not Like them. Was it so in Eden? ADAH.my love and joy.if it doth. CAIN. and yet draws me near. and tempt us with our o wn Dissatisfied and curious thoughts .as thou Wert worked on by the snake. Wilt thou? LUCIFER.he is welcome. Cain! walk not with this Spirit. I choose not . LUCIFER. then. No. ADAH. ADAH. To that which is omnipotent. But he is not like The angels we have seen. thy children. And me? CAIN. Aye. and sweat. Bear all . ADAH. Then follow me! CAIN.will he? CAIN (to LUCIFER). And cannot be a sin in you . CAIN Seest thou not? ADAH. he is not of ours. And leave us? CAIN. More than thy mother.save me from him! CAIN. Born on the same day. others? But he is welcome. I would.And as I love thee. Oh. Our parents? CAIN.] ADAH. No. CAIN.I Love thee. Let me go with thee. I see an angel. your mother: bears she not the knowledge Of good and evil? ADAH.and. then.but I love nought else. I must away with him. Are there. who assume The words of God. And if the higher knowledge quenches love. harmless wantonness of bliss.since there is No other choice: your sire hath chosen already: His worship is but fear. my God! Shall they not love and bring forth things that love Out of their love? have they not drawn their milk Out of this bosom? was not he. How know'st thou? CAIN. My little Enoch! and his lisping sister! Could I but deem them happy.It was Born with me . proves. expulsion from our home. What do they know? . My brother. I have come for thee.no. thou art fairer Than was the Serpent.Cherubim know most And this should be a Cherub . To Death . Choose betwixt Love and Knowledge . The rapturous moment and the placid hour. and toil. What! Must not my daughter love her brother Enoch? LUCIFER. I will.and our children. Remorse of that which was . Cain. Begot me . alone - . my Cain! go not Forth with this spirit. LUCIFER. I have heard it said.to our eternal sorrow.and we Have less without thee. I am not wretched. ADAH. thou at the least hast passed Thy youth in Paradise. Not as thou lovest Cain. Beloved Adah! ADAH. and self-seeking prayers. LUCIFER. Higher things than ye are slaves: and higher Than them or ye would be so. and if thou Wert happy CAIN. I would half Forget . methinks. It is our hour of rest and joy . At least they ought to have known all things that are Of knowledge . in thy most flushed And heedless.and worship aught. What is the sin which is not Sin in itself? Can circumstance make sin Or virtue? . the doom Of thy fond parents. ADAH.but it can never be forgotten Through thrice a thousand generations! never Shall men love the remembrance of the man Who sowed the seed of evil and mankind In the same hour! They plucked the tree of science And sin . ADAH. in the same hour With me? did we not love each other? and In multiplying our being multiply Things which will love each other as we love Them? . And still loftier than the archangels. Oh. this promise. LUCIFER. for their daring. Bear with what we have borne. which may be. So did the Serpent.but not blessed. and not from love. ADAH. Thou errest. and She wrung from me. He is not God . ADAH. because It is omnipotent.thee . And dread. LUCIFER. and it lied. What need of snakes and fruits to teach us that? ADAH. LUCIFER.and hope of that Which cometh not. Is that a sin too? LUCIFER.that they are miserable. not content with their own sorrow. And yet I fly not from him: in his eye There is a fastening attraction which Fixes my fluttering eyes on his. ADAH. But lead them and ourselves through many years Of sin and pain . my mother! thou Hast plucked a fruit more fatal to thine o ffspring Than to thyself. of the same womb. Fiend! tempt me not with beauty. What dreads my Adah? This is no ill spirit. myriads.or few.whate'er It seem in those who will replace ye in Mortality. Cain! choose Love. But there are spirits loftier still The archangels. Should we not love them . I do. as they were: they deigned To be our guest . Aye . and glowing as the light which ripens: Come away. LUCIFER. Be thou happy. But terror and self-hope. LUCIFER. Born of the same sole womb. he awes me. And Truth in its own essence cannot be But good. not yet It one day will be in your children. Nearer and nearer: . ADAH. I look upon him with a pleasing fear. All we love in our children and each other. He is a God. ADAH. He speaks like A God. I cannot abhor him. As true. For thee. [Enter ADAH. my heart Beats quick. in innocent And happy intercourse with happy spirits: But we. 'twas with Truth. We were not born then . Oh. Who Art thou that steppest between heart and heart? CAIN. ADAH. To inherit agonies accumulated By ages!-and I must be sire of such things! Thy beauty and thy love . Cain? CAIN. their father.if they sinned. CAIN.was not the Tree that Of Knowledge? ADAH. Omnipotence Must be all goodness. What must he be you cannot love when known? Since the all-knowing Cherubim love least.Cain .since he loves not. we are the slaves OfLUCIFER. my Adah. CAIN.and all the few that are. The sin I speak of is not of my making. Are girt [12] about by demons. And all the unnumbered and innumerable Multitudes. but I have done thy task: the fruits Are ripe.so he lied not: And if he did betray you. Did they love us when they snatched from the Tree That which hath driven us all from Paradise? ADAH.

the history Of past . as a conditional creed To save thee. Show in an hour what he hath made in many. CAIN. Or hath destroyed in few? CAIN. thou say'st. as in the dim blue air the eye Of you. despite of Death. ADAH. ADAH. they look upon us. ADAH. tossed upon some water -drops.I will have nought to do with happiness. Spirit. Is yon our earth? LUCIFER. His brother. swinging in far ether. All light. and I will show What thou dar'st not deny. Have faith in me.the all-peopled earth The unpeopled earth . Ask of your sire. ADAH. But the symbols Of the Invisible are the loveliest Of what is visible. Which. LUCIFER. and our children. but fly with me o'er the gulf Of space an equal flight. and he keeps it. I love it for Its beauty LUCIFER.and present. and yon bright star Is leader of the host of Heaven. Could I stand here? His angels are within Your vision. and endearing. when. He is not so. Since better may not be without: there is A wisdom in the spirit. and is he happy? Lonely. and sink not .yet I fear To sink. Dost thou not recognize The dust which formed your father? CAIN. Cain. Will he return? LUCIFER. Which. NoSave in my father. Will he. To a place Whence he shall come back to thee in an hour. thou shalt behold The worlds beyond thy little world.and sink not! doubt . LUCIFER. Or of his first-born son: ask your own heart. How can that be? LUCIFER. The million millions The myriad myriads . Cain! thou hast heard. and good? ADAH. And why not adore? ADAH. of which I am the Prince. ADAH. Let him say on. and we Can crowd eternity into an hour. and possess a kingdom which is not His. I dread not. but thou seem'st Like an ethereal night. So beautiful. Alas! no! and you Are you of Heaven? LUCIFER. Alone! Oh. and thou shalt be Borne on the air. save ONE) [13] shall come back to thee. CAIN. Whither? LUCIFER. Where should I dwell? Where are Thy God or Gods . They fill my eyes with tears. and so dost thou. And some of us resist . enquire The cause of this all-spreading happiness (Which you proclaim) of the all-great and good Maker of life and living things. So they were when the fair Serpent Spoke with our mother first. And walk the waters. come on with me. which directs To right. Cain! my brother! Cain! ACT II. Who names me Demon to his angels. LUCIFER. Believe in me.and both in vain. LUCIFER. Of which thy bosom is the germ. Did not your Maker make Out of old worlds this new one in few days? And cannot I. There will come An hour. he hath The angels. or good? To me my solitude seems sin. By me? LUCIFER. and of future worlds. Hast thou seen him? ADAH. ADAH.-The Abyss of Space. CAIN. lights at once upon The star which watches.and Time Eternity . Can it be? Yon small blue circle. but the spreading joy? LUCIFER. Yet thy God is alone. unnumbered. And thus becomes so in diffusing joy. they Echo the sound to miserable things. return within an hour? LUCIFER. It is not tranquil. CAIN. LUCIFER. He shall. And thou couldst not Alone. Follow me. nor be Amerced [14] for doubts beyond thy little life. ADAH. ADAH. and the mortals to make happy.and perish! thus Would run the edict of the other God. It is a beautiful star. And they who guard them? LUCIFER. young mortals. yet less beautiful and powerful In seeming: as the silent sunny noon. And I will weep for thee.there am I: all things are Divided with me: Life and Death . Nor would be happy. What all? LUCIFER. the exile fresh from Eden. I will not say. I will have none such: Worship or worship not. Him will I follow. If thou dost long for knowledge. I tread on air. and deem Evil or good what is proclaimed to them In their abasement. With an inferior circlet near it still. SCENE 1. With torture of my dooming. Lead on. Which looks like that which lit our earthly night? Is this our Paradise? Where are its walls.in his works. and yet drawing us to them. ADAH. What else can joy be. who is God's own image." and the man shall walk The billows and be safe. If I am not. 0 Cain! This spirit curseth us. In sooth. With us acts are exempt from time. His Seraphs say: but it is worth the trial. ADAH. Our father Adores the Invisible only. where long white clouds Streak the deep purple. Where dwellest thou? LUCIFER. be happy? ADAH. welcoming the morn. my God! Who could be happy and alone. LUCIFER. Our father Saith that he has beheld the God himself Who made him and our mother. woman! he alone Of mortals from that place (the first and last Who shall return. ADAH. I can satiate That thirst nor ask thee to partake of fruits Which shall deprive thee of a single good The Conqueror has left thee. Yes . Or stretch an hour into eternity: We breathe not by a mortal measurement But that's a mystery. By all. . If I were not that which I have said.if I may Judge from what I have heard. and unnumbe red stars Spangle the wonderful mysterious vault With things that look as if they would be suns. though It seems an awful shadow . as I know it not. Or in his angels. Not dazzling. Throughout all space. [Exeunt LUCIFER and CAIN. Oh God! or Demon! or whate'er thou art. But in his being? ADAH.and that Which is not heaven or earth.and the o'er peopled Hell. Worship the word which strikes their ear. CAIN.] ADAH (follows exclaiming). knowing nought beyond their shallow senses. but peopled with Those who once peopled or shall people both These are my realms! so that I do divide His. which humbles me and mine. but with those around us I think I could be so. "Believe in me. Aye. unless When I think how soon I shall see my brother. who are like to thee And brighter. ADAH. A man shall say to a man. it is His secret. LUCIFER. I have said it. who aided in this work. We must bear. But in that hour see things of many days. LUCIFER. and our parents. Believe . Can I do so without impiety? LUCIFER.and heaven and earth . Alone I could not. To make that silent and expectant world As populous as this: at present there Are few inhabitants. Point me out the site . Thou seems'st unhappy: do not make us so. Alas! those tears! Couldst thou but know what oceans will be shed ADAH.

And what art thou who dwellest So haughtily in spirit. And as it waxes little. If I may judge. for moments only and the space Have been and must be all unchangeable. if I show to thee things which have died. LUCIFER. We and thy sons will try.inhabited By greater things .what thou wilt . and mine. And science still beyond them. Where dost thou lead me? LUCIFER. Appear to join the innumerable stars Which are around us. and all its dust: 'Tis part of thy eternity. LUCIFER. All foul and fulsome . Look there! CAIN. CAIN. Clay . LUCIFER. Though multiplied to animated atoms. The things I see. CAIN. or the things which seem to us Greater than either: many things will have No end. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. Spirit! if It be as thou hast said (and I within Feel the prophetic torture of its truth). thou hast shown naught I dare not gaze on further. All living .and yet Seem'st sorrowful? LUCIFER. 'Tis now beyond thee. But the lights fade from me fast.and wretched. CAIN. And if there should be Worlds greater than thine own . Here let me die: for to give birth to those Who can but suffer many years. Where is it? I see nothing save a mass Of most innumerable lights. CAIN. Nor ever shall . LUCIFER. what are things? LUCIFER. To what was before thee! The phantasm of the world. Why. I know not what thou art: I see thy power. LUCIFER. then. CAIN. thou beautiful And unimaginable ether! and Ye multiplying masses of increased And still-increasing lights! what are ye? what Is this blue wilderness of interminable Air.and canst but comprehend That which was clay.at which my soul aches to think Intoxicated with eternity? Oh God! Oh Gods! or whatsoe'er ye are! How beautiful ye are! how beautiful Your works. all foredoomed to be As frail. or see them nearer. LUCIFER.and. Away. How? LUCIFER. And some till now grew larger as we approached. Yet deem not that thou canst escape it. except to clay. Beyond all power of my born faculties. LUCIFER. CAIN. And multiplying murder. it grows small and smaller. As I have shown thee much which cannot die? CAIN. in the universe. CAIN. LUCIFER. if thou Wouldst be immortal? CAIN. Wouldst thou behold things mortal or immortal? CAIN. Thou canst not All die . or happy or unhappy. The Other Spake not of this unto my father. save as a dreadful thing Of which I have heard my parents speak. learn To anticipate my immortality. brighter than yon world Which bears them. LUCIFER. I have seen the fire-flies and fire-worms Sprinkle the dusky groves and the green banks In the dim twilight. LUCIFER.the mysteries of Death.there is what must survive. And see thou show'st me things beyond my power. LUCIFER. And Edens in them? LUCIFER. And that the night. thou Shalt soon return to earth. CAIN. But if that high thought were Linked to a servile mass of matter . But what Sate nearest it? CAIN. For I was made of it. Gathers a halo round it.yonder! LUCIFER. I knew not This until lately . Both partly: but what doth Sit next thy heart? CAIN. And wilt thou tell me so? Why.a heritage not happy. That! . and canst range Nature and immortality . than thou in it.and the very best Of thine enjoyments a sweet degradation. with me. CAIN. and die Methinks is merely propagating Death. LUCIFER. Thou hast seen both worms and worlds. with death Written upon his forehead. and few so happy CAIN. I seem that which I am. where ye roll along. behold! Is it not glorious? CAIN. Do so.Of Paradise. Art thou not nearer? look back to thine earth! CAIN. and then less.and all doomed to death . which would pretend to have Had no beginning. But thou art clay . and that was ere thou Or I were. which makes both beautiful. Each bright and sparkling . or accidents. Oh! how we cleave the blue! The stars fade from us! The earth! where is my earth? Let me look on it. Less. It may be. though my dust is. And must torture be immortal? LUCIFER. LUCIFER. and such thou shalt behold. as to sojourn With worms in clay? CAIN. Spirit! let me expire. Dar'st thou behold? CAIN. when He shut him forth from Paradise. have had one as mean As thou. Thou didst before I came upon thee. and some. What are they which dwell So humbly in their pride. I should be proud of thought Which knew such things. Yet it sparkles still. and. How know I what I dare behold? As yet. CAIN. Knowing such things. Away. And such they are. But by whom or what? CAIN. That they are beautiful in their own sphere. Show me. And wore the look of worlds.Spirit . What. that I may be in the rest as angels are. But changes make not death. I cannot see it. And the immortal star in its great course. CAIN. A most enervating and filthy cheat To lure thee on to the renewal of Fresh souls and bodies. as we move on. Increase their myriads. LUCIFER. when I Beheld them from the skirts of Paradise: Methinks they both. then! on our mighty wings! CAIN. And men? . of which thy world Is but the wreck. What! is it not then new? LUCIFER. How should I? As we move Like sunbeams onward. till now. LUCIFER. or know ye in your might And knowledge! My thoughts are not in this hour Unworthy what I see. On. No more than life is. then! CAIN. were chained down To the most gross and petty paltry wants. But. Must both be guided. I must be Immortal in despite of me. Although inferior still to my desires And my conceptions. as atoms die. Oh. The little shining fire-fly in its flight. aspiring to such things. LUCIFER. By suffering.but since it must be. Yea. The things I have not seen. And therefore do I ask of thee. I am angelic: wouldst thou be as I am? CAIN. What wouldst thou think? CAIN. Spirit! I Know nought of Death. (If that they die). LUCIFER.I can survey. like the light Which shone the roundest of the stars. Let me. and mightier things have been extinct To make way for much meaner than we can Surmise. as I have seen The leaves along the limpid streams of Eden? Is your course measured for ye? Or do ye Sweep on in your unbounded revelry Through an aerial universe of endless Expansion . as of A hideous heritage I owe to them No less than life . Thou hast said. or whatsoe'er They may be! Let me die. as we recede from them. But now. But at least Let what is mortal of me perish.and they themselves far more In number than the dust of thy dull earth.what dost think of them? CAIN.

but as I know there are Such. All here seems dark and dreadful. judge But thy own flesh. but needs must forfeit it Even for the innocent! LUCIFER. Of thine. Thou say'st well: The curse is mutual 'twixt thy sire and thee But for thy sons and brother? CAIN. Haughty. CAIN. in daring To pluck the fruit forbidden? LUCIFER. Yea. that It speaks of a day past. And so it shall be ever . Adam. nor aught that is Now breathing. Perhaps He one day will unfold that further secret.and how weak they are. Which struck a world to chaos.what's this? LUCIFER. Like them. Thou seekest to behold Death. Pass on. On! on! [They disappear through the clouds.the stars are gone! LUCIFER. that I scarce Can call them living. that I Had deemed them rather the bright populace Of some all unimaginable Heaven. CAIN. . some indistinct. and some begirt With luminous belts. It is too little and too lowly to Sustain such creatures. and beautiful. I seek it not. But distinct. and in mine. as a chaos Subsiding has struck out a world: such things. CAIN. CAIN. which took. That which Thou shalt be. Behold these phantoms! they were once Material as thou art. are frequent in eternity. 'Tis darkness! LUCIFER. Living. to Thee and thy son. It was. LUCIFER. Return! be sure: how else should Death be peopled? Its present realm is thin to what it will be. Intelligent. Enormous vapours roll Apart . it was more glorious.but too mean to be The last of these. They bear not The wing of Seraph. CAIN. LUCIFER. 'tis a thing Oh God! I dare not think on't! Cursed be He who invented Life that leads to Death! Or the dull mass of life. their sire and brother! What else is Bequeathed to me? I leave them my inheritance! Oh.Wouldst have it present? CAIN. Fear not . and dark . What are these mighty phantoms which I see Floating around me? . Somewhat of both. The clouds still open wide And wider. 'Tis a fearful light! No sun . But that on drawing near them I beheld Their swelling into palpable immensity Of matter. And thou! LUCIFER. But what were they? LUCIFER. which. Can I return? LUCIFER. begirt with light. but of inexplicable Shape. happy! when unfolded. And wherefore did it fall? LUCIFER. CAIN. what I Must one day see perforce. though not Of men nor angels. looks like something. In its dull damp degeneracy. nor the face of man. CAIN. and so full of twilight. CAIN. which. Though rare in time. Behold! CAIN. that. Yes. and all Mighty and melancholy . Nor form of mightiest brute. It is the realm Of Death. save that all shall die. LUCIFER. By a most crushing and inexorable Destruction and disorder of the elements. And true. which seemed made for life to dwell on. and yet more peopled Than the huge brilliant luminous orbs which swung So thickly in the upper air. and full Of seeming strength. If not the last. good. But here. nor in my children's: And yet they have an aspect. and dead things? CAIN. CAIN. And all that we inherit. Than things to be inhabited themselves.] SCENE II. LUCIFER. and showed them taking shapes Unequal. and floating moons. to innumerable Yet unborn myriads of unconscious atoms.LUCIFER. But not as now.no lights innumerable The very blue of the empurpled night Fades to a dreary twilight . Yes. Nor wear the form of man as I have viewed it In Adam's and in Abel's. or have ye lived? LUCIFER. which Are beings past. and glorious things. I grant thee . and yet so unlike them. . CAIN. all is So shadowy. and some displaying Enormous liquid plains.Hades.no moon . How silent and how vast are these dim worlds! For they seem more than one. Dost thou curse thy father? CAIN. Enter! CAIN. How the lights recede! Where fly we? LUCIFER. the features of fair earth: . LUCIFER. But was mine theirs? LUCIFER. and that my sire's sin makes him and me. CAIN. All to be animated for this only! CAIN. Rather than life itself. Through thee and thine. Till now he hath Said nothing. But if it be as I have heard my father Deal out in his long homilies. CAIN. Nor in my sister-bride's.They wear not the form Of the Intelligences I have seen Round our regretted and unentered Eden. 'Tis awful! LUCIFER. ye interminable gloomy realms Of swimming shadows and enormous shapes. What? Hath not he who made ye Said 'Tis another life? CAIN. Advance! CAIN. When? LUCIFER. Cursed he not me in giving me my birth? Cursed he not me before my birth. CAIN. but unlike the worlds We were approaching. And some emitting sparks. CAIN. from their earth. and shadows still to come. Then what is Death? LUCIFER. and gaze upon the past. . Some fully shown. Let them share it With me. Seemed full of life even when their atmosphere Of light gave way. Aye! and serpents too? LUCIFER. Happy the day! LUCIFER.but we will Unfold its gates! CAIN. Till I know That which it really is. And yet thou seest. and high. CAIN. for I never saw such. CAIN.yet I see Huge dusky masses. As much superior unto all thy sire. liable To such. . of deep valleys and vast mountains. mighty yet and beautiful As the most beautiful and mighty which Live.without me thou Couldst not have gone beyond thy world. But how? LUCIFER. To the world of phantoms. Ask him who fells. great. Ah me! and did they perish? LUCIFER. But it grows dark. at once. CAIN. Adam is the first. Yet they lived. save the erect ones? CAIN. and clogged With agonies eternal. rose higher than the first. CAIN.what are ye? Live ye. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. I would behold. True. which. Wouldst thou have men without them? must no reptiles Breathe. being life.instead. Enter LUCIFER and CAIN. Could not retain. could e'er have been in Eden. and make widening circles round us! LUCIFER. as thou wilt fade from thine. Where Thou livest. On what thou callest earth They did inhabit. Through agonies unspeakable. I cannot answer. Where? LUCIFER. And what are they? LUCIFER. or things higher. high. as The sixty-thousandth generation shall be.

looking as he could coil Himself around the orbs we lately looked on Is he not of the kind which basked beneath The Tree in Eden? LUCIFER. It cannot be: thou now beholdest as A vision that which is reality. But do not think to dwell here till thine hour Is come! CAIN. Many of the same kind (at least so called) But never that precisely. CAIN. CAIN. Although inferior. Which looks like water. And is! It is not with the earth. Eve. nor even of the same aspect. Hast thou ne'er beheld him? CAIN. it will Seem clearer to thine immortality.with Eyes flashing like the fiery swords which fence them And tusks projecting like the trees stripped of Their bark and branches . and many states beyond thine own And this thou knewest not this morn. It may be death leads to the highest knowledge. the hugest which Roar nightly in the forest. And man tempt woman: . too. Are its inhabitants. too. But animals Did they. These dim realms! I see them. CAIN. My spirit buoys thee up to breathe in regions Where all is breathless save thyself. without the so dear-bought knowledge! It was a lying tree . No doubt the other Had more of beauty. CAIN. And yon immeasurable liquid space Of glorious azure which floats on beyond us. First-born of the first man! Thy present state of sin . Forth from the abyss. And pangs. That which The Mammoth is in thy world. LUCIFER. I rather would remain.what were they? LUCIFER. But None on it? LUCIFER.What is it? LUCIFER. and thy children shall Dwell near it . which rears his dripping mane and vasty Head.is it Not so? CAIN. No: I'll stay here. CAIN. but ten-fold In magnitude and terror. though I must till it. like his sons. thy task . and which I should deem [15] The river which flows out of Paradise Past my own dwelling. The happier thou! Thy world and thou are still too young! Thou thinkest Thyself most wicked and unhappy . CAIN. but that it is bankless And boundless. they were made for you. CAIN. these were the fruits Of the forbidden tree. No: 'twas my mother Who tempted him . what a beautiful world it was! CAIN. Their earth is gone forever So changed by its convulsion.but that I may not profit By what it bears of beautiful. thou see'st. Gaze on. thou Must pass through what the things thou seest have passed The gates of Death. The past Leviathans. And death to all things. CAIN. and that state again.Death: the rest Of your poor attributes is such as suits Reptiles engendered out of the subsiding Slime of a mighty universe. I show thee what thy predecessors are. By what gate have we entered Even now? LUCIFER. In its redoubled wretchedness. What thy world is. CAIN. CAIN. Phantoms inferior in intelligence (At least so seeming) to the things we have passed. We knew already That there was Death. thy mother. too .but 'tis something To know there are such realms. By mine! But. CAIN. And what they were thou feelest. LUCIFER. No: for thy frail race to war With them would render the curse on it useless 'Twould be destroyed so early. And being of all things the sole thing certain. LUCIFER. though deadly. But behold What these superior beings are or were. But canst not comprehend the shadow of That which it was. Because Thy hour is yet afar. LUCIFER. peopled with Things whose enjoyment was to be in blindness A Paradise of Ignorance. and disease to most things. ten times higher than the haughtiest cedar. in degree Inferior as thy petty feelings and Thy pettier portion of the immortal part Of high intelligence and earthly strength. Good man! whene'er thy wife.she tempted by the serpent.war with all things. LUCIFER.but knowledge still: but what knows man? LUCIFER. that they must die? LUCIFER. . crushed into A scarcely-yet shaped planet. which persuaded The fatal fruit. As you for him. and matter cannot Comprehend spirit wholly . too. best Can tell what shape of serpent tempted her. And yon immense Serpent. and what ye shall have . Forever! Since I must one day return here from the earth.but these lie By myriads underneath its surface. Let He who made thee answer th at. Nor know I now. You have forgotten the denunciation Which drove your race from Eden . Or.and thou art evil. 'Tis like another world. CAIN. eat of it. CAIN. or thy sons' wives. I feel at war . untoiling. they would not Be conscious to a single present spot Of its new scarcely hardened surface . How long? CAIN.let thy sons look to it! My counsel is a kind one. plighted to return. taller than The cherub-guarded walls of Eden . LUCIFER. But not what was beyond it. But there Are some things still which woman may tempt man to. I know not but for pain. LUCIFER.let me dwell in shadows. Be content. CAIN. without having shared th e apple. Resembling somewhat the wild habitants Of the deep woods of earth. so there's little lost. and of an ethereal hue . are both Eden In all its innocence compared to what Thou shortly may'st be. And these. Nor gratify my thousand swelling thoughts With knowledge. 'Twill not be followed. Thou knowest that there is A state.CAIN. At least leads to the surest science: therefore The Tree was true. Be sure thou seest first who hath tempted them! CAIN. Alas! the hopeless wretches! They too must share my sire's fate. nor allay my thousand fears Of Death and Life. CAIN. I have felt much. 'tis true. What ye in common have with what they had Is Life. To make thyself fit for this dwelling. if it irk thee. turn thee back and till The earth. I am sick of all That dust has shown me .You would not have their doom Superior to your own? Had Adam not Fallen. LUCIFER. For crime.'tis the phantasm of an Ocean. Tempt thee or them to aught that's new or strange. for 'tis even Given chiefly at my own expense. . But all Seems dim and shadowy. a liquid sun And those inordinate creatures sporting o'er Its shining surface? LUCIFER. from which Knowledge was barred as poison. And those enormous creatures. At least it promised knowledge at the price Of death . Your Maker told ye. Your father saw him not? CAIN. LUCIFER. I understand not this. LUCIFER. a Paradise To what thy sons' sons' sons.I'll waft thee there in safety. There is still some such on earth.for we know nothing.'twas Oh. all had stood. Of sorrow . and bitterness. This seems too terrible. Thy precept comes too late: there is no more For serpents to tempt woman to. LUCIFER. Like them.and thou sufferest. And must I be Like them? LUCIFER. CAIN. LUCIFER. accumulating In generations like to dust (which they . but I know them not.can they ne'er repass To earth again? LUCIFER. LUCIFER. But why war? LUCIFER. Like them.

Because thou hast thought of this ere now. And when it ceases to be so. it must still roll on the same. being not her brother. and innumerable. Thy father loves him well . but I confess I see it not in their allotment here. the bird's voice The vesper bird's. Then thou canst have no fellowship with us. And judge their beauty near. LUCIFER. And is more than myself. since the Serpent was the first To win it. Be happier in not knowing What thy remoter offspring must encounter. LUCIFER. CAIN. LUCIFER. CAIN. why recall a thought that . And if I have thought. But you have seen his angels. But if thou dost possess a beautiful Being beyond all beauty in thine eyes.nothing! 'tis The leaven of all life. Distant. Nothing.so does thy God. And what of that? Distance can but diminish glory . And who and what doth not? Who covets evil For its own bitter sake? .they. Was not thy quest for knowledge? CAIN. and he said. LUCIFER. Rarely. LUCIFER. my son! said Adam. thou canst not see if I love Or no .he being Good? I asked This question of my father. like any other appetite. Strange good. and feel my heart float softly with him Along that western paradise of clouds The forest shade. LUCIFER. how from Evil Springs Good! LUCIFER. that must arise from out Its deadly opposite. as the maker Of things unhappy! To produce destruction Can surely never be the task of joy. because I love it! LUCIFER. All these are nothing. And thy brother Sits he not near thy heart? CAIN. Thou hast seen them from afar. beneath the vain And piteous bleating of its restless dam. What am I? CAIN. CAIN. Can make its offspring. In the first dawn and bloom of young crea tion. If truth be so. and laid them to The wound. I Ne'er saw him. for He is my father: but I thought. But bask beneath the clime which knows no winter. LUCIFER. CAIN. and I know not if he smiles. What does thy God love? CAIN. Dost thou love nothing? LUCIFER.In fact but add to). All things. and hitherto Even Adam and my mother both are fair: Not fair like Adah and the Seraphim But very fair. and rose to drain The mother's milk. the green bough. When nearer. I pity thee who lovest what must perish. 'Tis fair as frail mortality. And mingles with the song of Cherubim.None . CAIN. which fills My eyes with pleasant tears as I behold Him sink. CAIN. With time. As the day closes over Eden's walls. to my eyes and heart.the Sun's gorgeous coming His setting indescribable. A part of all things. LUCIFER. Thou hast shown me wonders: thou hast shown me those Mighty Pre-Adamites who walked the earth Of which ours is the wreck: thou hast pointed out Myriads of starry worlds. And yet my sire says he's omnipotent: Then why is Evil . Why should he not? LUCIFER. Approach the things of earth most beautiful. But Sufficiently to see they love your brother: His sacrifices are acceptable. methinks He who creates all beauty will lose more Than me in seeing perish such a work. which seems to sing of love. LUCIFER. CAIN. Why art thou wretched? CAIN. And wherefore didst thou Lead me here only to inform me this? LUCIFER. I lately saw A lamb stung by a reptile: the poor suckling Lay foaming on the earth. But ignorance of evil doth not save From evil. shall endure and do. and lifelessness. Yes . Like Adah's face: I turn from earth and heaven To gaze on it. . CAIN. LUCIFER. CAIN. though Dispelled by antidotes. but love more What makes my feelings more endurable. Ill cannot come: they are too beautiful. My father plucked some herbs. Why do I exist? Why art thou wretched? why are all things so? Ev'n he who made us must be. LUCIFER. You think so. .the indulgent Lord. thy love Will cease. of which our own Is the dim and remote companion. CAIN. CAIN. therefore. Behold. Thou hast it. Ere we came down into this phantom realm. CAIN. Mortal! My brotherhood's with those who have no children. My sister Adah. CAIN. CAIN. So be they! wherefore speak to me of this? LUCIFER. He is the second born of flesh. and giveth hers Unto thy children CAIN. No I'll not believe it . but Cannot conceive my love for her the less: And when her beauty disappears. Meekly! LUCIFER. or a spirit's worldThe hues of twilight . because 'tis beautiful. Thou lovest it. Yes. LUCIFER. Now let us back to earth! CAIN. in Infinity of life: thou hast shown me shadows Of that existence with the dreaded name . And I thee who lov'st nothing. All that must pass away In them and her. But had done better in not planting it. 'Tis well and meekly done.for I thirst for good. Let him keep Her favor. LUCIFER.All the stars of heaven.(he pauses as agitated) . CAIN. LUCIFER. But as thou saidst Of all beloved things thou lovest her Who shared thy mother's milk. Within those glorious orbs which we behold. must be more ineffable. And so do I. It may be that thine own shall be for me. CAIN. CAIN. Not of all things. And is his mother's favorite. CAIN. And bounteous planter of barred Paradise He.What is that Which being nearest to thine eyes is still More beautiful than beauteous things remote? CAIN. LUCIFER. CAIN.except some vast and general purpose. speak n ot of mine. and dazzling. CAIN. my father says. But dost thou not love something like thyself? LUCIFER. that 'twere A better portion for the animal Never to have been stung at all than to Purchase renewal of its little life With agonies unutterable. Because this Evil only was the path To Good. But time has passed. And earliest embraces of earth's parents.as being The road to happiness! LUCIFER. The deep blue noon of night. LUCIFER. I have done this The loveliest thing I know is loveliest nearest. As was the apple in thy mother's eye. I'm sorry for it. What is that To me? should I not love that which all love? LUCIFER. Most assuredly: What should I be without her? LUCIFER. And the Jehovah . What didst thou answer? CAIN. Snows! what are they? LUCIFER. To which particular things must melt like snows. Then my father's God did well When he prohibited the fatal Tree. Cease to be beautiful! how can that be? LUCIFER. who o'er it tremulous Stood licking its reviving limbs with joy. lit by an orb Which looks a spirit. And. still it is delusion. LUCIFER. And his father's? CAIN. looks smilingly on Abel. And dost thou love thyself? CAIN. Then there must be delusion. too. and by degrees the helpless wretch Resumed its careless life.Spirit! Here we are in thy world.

You have said well. No. but the fruits Of your existence. but what will be the Good he gives? Were I the victor. And why not now? LUCIFER.so call him. Thou! for If thou canst do man good. near Eden. I will contain My heart till then. Which? CAIN.through all Eternity. as thou say'st we are. so I see them! LUCIFER. All.] How lovely he appears! his little cheeks.sleep on. for to see Either of these would be for thee to perish! CAIN. Or mutual and irrevocable hate? He as a conqueror will call the conquered Evil. from beneath them the clear blue Laughs out. and 'Twill spare them many tortures. That sight is for the other state. And the interminable realms of space. the last And longest. Hush! tread softly. Were thou shalt multiply the race of Adam.but none from me: I battle it against him. LUCIFER. and some of those bu t bitter. Taught thee to know thyself? CAIN. And shining lids are trembling o'er his long Lashes. To separate? Are ye not as brethren in Your essence . And you. but no matter . will I dispute! And world by world. In their pure incarnation. Hast a superior. beneath the cypress. And this should be the human sum Of knowledge. what have been his gifts To you already. Half open. But one of you makes evil. is boundless? LUCIFER. In his especial Paradise . but were it not so. dark as the cypress which waves o'er them. Enter CAIN and ADAH. Your reason: .but wherefore? ADAH. in your little world? CAIN. There The son of her who snatched the apple spake! But thou wouldst only perish. Aye. . but the time will come thou shalt see one Of them for evermore. And not made good or evil by the Giver. But if he gives you good . Would there were only one of ye! perchance An unity of purpose might make union In elements which seem now jarred in storms.Infinity with Immortality? Jarring and turning space to misery . wherefore didst thou choose it For our child's canopy? ADAH. weep.No! I have a Victor . till the great Conflict shall cease. He smiles.Which my sire brought us . and sleeps! . How came ye.why should ye differ? LUCIFER. And the infinity of endless ages. at least not now: he will awake soon His hour of mid-day rest is nearly over. and judge Not by words. CAIN. Clay has its earth. He must dream Of what? Of Paradise! . thou say'st. And to what end have I beheld these things Which thou hast shown me? LUCIFER. . and o'er all space.as all things. but no superior. then?. to know mortal nature's nothingness.or thine: Where is it? LUCIFER. All temporary breathing creatures their Peculiar element. Thy human mind hath scarcely grasp to gather The little I have shown thee into calm And clear thought: and thou wouldst go on aspiring To the great double Mysteries! the two Principles! [16] And gaze upon them on their secret thrones! Dust! limit thy ambition. CAIN. And star by star. That is the prelude. CAIN. So shall you nearer be the spiritual Nature. till he or I be quenched! And what can quench our immortality. Till ye know better its true fount. and smile! Thine are the hours and days when both are cheering And innocent! thou hast not plucked the fruit Thou know'st not thou art naked! Must the time Come thou shalt be amerced for sins unknown. Which were not thine nor mine? But now sleep on! His cheeks are reddening into deeper smiles. and the abyss. LUCIFER. his works would be deemed The only evil ones. My disinherited boy! 'Tis but a dream. And now I will convey thee to thy world. And the Jehovah and thyself have thine Ye do not dwell together? LUCIFER. which I hold with him . And why not he who made? I made ye not. Did ye not tell me that Ye are both eternal? LUCIFER. toil. although in slumber. We both reign. CAIN. I will . Yea! CAIN.The Earth. CAIN. Now that I know it leads to something definite. Bequeath that science to thy children.and your nature. which he Holds. And cannot ye both reign. such as it must be.is there not Enough? . [They disappear. why dost thou not? LUCIFER. Eat.Aye! dream of it. then.] ACT III. being Spirits wise and infinite. Alas! I seem Nothing. and try the rest Of his celestial boons to you and yours. thou little. But ye Have some allotted dwelling . Cain! CAIN. And let me perish. and therefore seemed Fitting to shadow slumber. Of Death? LUCIFER. SCENE 1. thou hast shown me much But not all: show me where Jehovah dwells. Didst thou not require Knowledge? And have I not in what I showed. Ye are his creatures. Then leave us His creatures. as in Act 1. I could show thee Both. too. you shall not Kiss him. ADAH. And the unfathomable gulfs of Hades. or show me Thy dwelling. and not see them. CAIN. And what I have seen Yon blue immensity. though of Spirits. but our dwellings are asunder. ye new And scare-born mortals. Which it ne'er shall.let it not be overswayed By tyrannous threats to force you into faith 'Gainst all external sense and inward feeling: Think and endure. though proud. Here. Evil and Good are things in their own essence. sleep . How beautifully parted! No. or his dwelling.lead me to him. But few. and war triumphant with your o wn. And his lips. and universe by universe. No! By heaven.[17] vying with The rose leaves strewn beneath them.true. CAIN. we reign Together. CAIN. CAIN Aye. One good gift has the fatal apple given. if ever it shall cease.For what? LUCIFER. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. Shall tremble in the balance. [They go up to the child. drink. tremble. But it were pity to disturb him till 'Tis closed. and your glory? LUCIFER. Homage he has from all . CAIN. young inheritor Of a world scare less young: sleep on.Death. We are brethren.and die! CAIN. and the immensity Of worlds and life. Back With me. and other worlds their tenants. Art not thou Abel's brother? CAIN. Our little Enoch sleeps upon yon bed Of leaves. do not name it mine. which looks as if it mourned O'er what it shadows. .where the outward fails. Haughty spirit! Thou speak'st it proudly. CAIN. laugh. Then I dread it less. and things which have Long ceased to breathe our breath. And smile. but thyself. CAIN. And so we shall remain. all. have theirs. CAIN. Is spirit like to flesh? can it fall out . Because its branches Shut out the sun like night. To reign. LUCIFER.and form an inner world In your own bosom . to thine earth. as I battled In highest Heaven . LUCIFER. if Evil springs from him. Cypress! 'Tis A gloomy tree. and not mine. ADAH.

provided that one victim Might satiate the Insatiable of life.For never more thyself. ADAH. Pleasing or painful. which he daily brings With a meek brow. Oh. Nor hand it down to those who spring from him. Of that I doubt. And after flattering dust with glimpses of Eden and Immortality. do not say so! Where were then the joys. Welcome. which our brother Abel made During thine absence. Term him! your words are strange today. but His heart will. Would have composed thy mind into the calm Of a contented knowledge. ADAH. And opens wide his blue eyes upon thine. 'Twere better that he ceased to live. see how full of life. The fruits of the earth. The germs of an eternal misery To myriads is within him! better 'twere I snatched him in his sleep. And loving him? Soft! he awakes. Yes . CAIN. I have toiled. too. And measures it by that which it beholds. Dear Cain! Nay. when they are gentle. and sweaten in the sun. ADAH. Sweet Enoch! [She goes to the child. And Abel's pious ministry. the early. Our brother comes CAIN. thou say'st of past and present worlds.] ABEL. Why then commune with him? he may be A foe to the Most High. Thou hast not spoken well. And to be more than expiated by The ages prophesied. Thy brother Abel. Alas! thou sinnest now. Bless thee. do not whisper o'er our son Such melancholy yearnings o'er the past: Why wilt thou always mourn for Paradise? Can we not make another? CAIN. why so awful in thy speech? CAIN. ADAH. and of joy How like to me . Then leave me! ADAH. but only hours upon the sun. Talk not of pain! The childless cherubs well might envy thee The pleasures of a parent! Bless him. Thou know'st Even for our parents error. my Cain. Here. and our Eve. gazing on eternity. what have we here? ADAH. is among the debts we owe her. that we must be victims for a deed Before our birth. than let him live to ADAH. ADAH. and When thou art gentle. What is that To us? they sinned. and all the power Which sways them I would not accost yon infant With ruder greeting than a father's kiss. I have no offering. 'tis well done. And friend to man. In high communion with a Spirit. CAIN. But first embrace thy son. Little deems our young blooming sleeper. my Cain: thy words Sound impious in mine ears. let us only say 'Twere better that he never had been born. nourishing. Hath saddened thine still deeper. upon our seed. hail! ABEL. whereupon to offer A sacrifice to God on thy return. already Expiate with what we all have undergone. Fear not! for all the stars. And that our little rosy sleeper there Might never taste of death nor human sorrow. harder still. Look! how he laughs and stretches out his arms. I said. than give Life to so much of sorrow as he must Endure. ADAH. [Enter ABEL. How know we that some such atonement one d ay May not redeem our race? CAIN. Has the Most High been so . I feel not The want of this so much regretted Eden. Well said the Spirit. but of the Spirit who was with thee. methought I had borrowed more by a few drops of ages From its immensity: but now I feel My littleness again. of beauty. I had hoped The promised wonders which thou hast beheld.] . thy sons. there.for what? ADAH. nor is that thought Thy own. Abel. And Zillah . And seem well-pleased with pain? For what should I Be contrite? for my father's sin. Farewell.] Oh. and brother. with her child. Of strength. Cain! My brother. To hail his father. Surely a father's blessing may avert A reptile's subtlety.how like to thee. Cain! that proud Spirit. Shall walk in that forbidden place of joy! ADAH. ABEL. The peace of God be on thee! CAIN. recall thee To peace and holiness! [Exit ADAH. is't not so. And. To save thee from the Serpent's curse! ADAH.our sweet sister. ADAH. Why. Cain! look on him. CAIN. My sister Adah.as a bribe To the Creator? ADAH. that he so soon Hath given thee back to us. Oh. The mind then hath capacity of time. beautiful. like to our father? CAIN. Given with a gentle and a contrite spirit.if so you term him? ABEL. Never! Though thy God left thee. Would I could die for them. while his little form Flutters as winged with joy. far Beyond our wonted range. and never more Shall light. CAIN. my brothe r. CAIN. nameless sin If it be such a sin to seek for knowledge? ADAH. CAIN. so they might live! CAIN. Love us. ADAH. that I would be so ready With the burnt offerings. nor fathers. That I was nothing! ADAH. then. Till I return to dust? If I am nothing For nothing shall I be an hypocrite. little or almighty. and worlds he never lit: methought Years had rolled o'er my absence. No. Then. and. And yet I have approached that sun. Cain? Mother. or need have victims to Atone for this mysterious. or Where'er thou wilt: where'er thou art. skirred [18] extinguished worlds. but I see Thy guide hath done thee evil: still I thank him. Was he of those We have seen and spoken with. and dashed him 'gainst The rocks. my Cain! And love thyself for our sakes. bequeath. Visions. and grovelling in the dust. Where? ADAH. our features are Reflected in each other. I had beheld the immemorial works Of endless beings. According to the curse: . To whom we own so much besides our birth? CAIN. One altar may suffice. It shall. CAIN. CAIN. Two altars. Say. and thine own too. Cain! CAIN. Our sister tells me that thou hast been wandering. 'Tis scarcely Two hours since ye departed: two long hours To me. we are innocent: what have we Done. whose base hu mility Shows more of fear than worship . So soon? ADAH. and sire.our sire. and seen Worlds which he once shone on. who withdrew thee hence. And how knew he. And can forgive him all. but since That saying jars you. boy! If that a mortal blessing may avail thee. my God! Touch not the child . Cain! As yet he hath no words to thank thee. By sacrificing The harmless for the guilty? what atonement Were there? why.Death. May his soft spirit. No: he contents him With making us the nothing which we are. But bless him ne'er the less. Have I not thee .my child! thy child! Oh. CAIN. Blossom and bud -and bloom of flowers and fruits These are a goodly offering to the Lord. Hardly hours. resolves It back to dust again . as they are In the clear water. and tilled. CAIN. CAIN. CAIN. The mother's joys of watching. for we love thee. Surely. Wherefore said he so? Jehovah said not that.our boy . then let them die! ADAH. when gentle For then we are all alike. so say I . of bloom. leave us for awhile We mean to sacrifice. CAIN.must I do more? For what should I be gentle? for a war With all the elements ere they will yield The bread we eat? For what must I be grateful? For being dust. and son.

CAIN. leave me. CAIN. ABEL. The dead The Immortal .well. . I am a tiller of the ground. I should ill Deserve the name of our great father's son. Choose thou! CAIN. sacrifice alone Jehovah loves thee well. ere he hath more! ABEL. Not till we have prayed and sacrificed together. And softened with a sacrifice. and earth. and must Yield what it yieldeth to my toil . Thine eyes are flashing with unnatural light Thy cheek is flushed with an unnatural hue Thy words are frau ght with an unnatural sound What may this mean? CAIN. but still to be fulfilled! Accept from out thy humble first of shepherds' First of the first-born flocks .such as thou mad'st him. lead thou the way. of which he is . receive them. the shepherd's shrine. CAIN. which thus far I have endured.'tis thy place. CAIN. ABEL [kneeling]. leave me! Or let me leave thee to thy pious purpose. ABEL. ABEL. Oh. than supplication To look on ours! If a shrine without victim. then. Now prepare Thine offerings. Which fed on milk. CAIN. Both well. ABEL. If thou lov'st blood. CAIN. [They dress their altars. In his acceptance of the victims. and kindle a flame upon them. No . I will build no more altars.but yet accept it for The thanksgiving of him who spreads it in The face of thy high heaven .] ABEL. And I will follow . may seem Good to thee .its fruit. And in the worship of our God. Brother. But I have ne'er Asserted it. and precede me in Our priesthood . Nor suffer any ABEL [rising]. hath shed it for thy service In the first of his flock. I know not. He is . which Still yearn for their dead offspring? or the pangs Of the sad ignorant victims underneath Thy pious knife? Give way! this bloody record Shall not stand in the sun. If it must be so . God! Who made us. it will calm thee. CAIN. And spared.I pray thee. CAIN. My brother.bowing his own Even to the dust. Had not thy justice been so tempered with The mercy which is thy delight. ABEL.as what offering can be Aught unto thee? . pray! Jehovah's wroth with thee. And suits thee. Think not upon my offering's acceptance. ABEL [opposing him]. His! His pleasure! what was his high pleasure in The fumes of scorching flesh and smoking blood.Sole Lord of light! Of good. with its blood of lambs and kids. CAIN. Another sacrifice! Give way. if the sweet and blooming fruits of earth. CAIN. we must perform our task togethe r. Abel. What shall I do? ABEL. Where hast thou been? CAIN. No. and may'st For what can he oppose? If he be good. as they might have been. who hath blessed us. to shame creation! ABEL. [The fire upon the altar of ABEL kindles into a column of the brightest flame.the Omnipotent The overpowering mysteries of space The innumerable worlds that were and areA whirlwind of such overwhelming things. Compared with our great crimes: . Two beings here erect them unto thee. The more my grief. I pray thee To do so now: thy soul seems laboring in Some strong delusion. In itself nothing . or else That sacrifice may be ABEL. Nor what thou hast seen? CAIN. save in thy will And whether that be good or ill I know not.then look to it: Give way.ABEL. and Good and Evil seem To have no power themselves. To try another sacrifice. moons. to earth let them return. Revere him. it may be . as the elder. Where are thine? ABEL. ABEL. and fat thereof A shepherd's humble offering. and eternity! Without whom all were evil. nor fit to judge Omnipotence .inasmuch as they have not Suffered in limb or life . for evermore! CAIN [standing erect during this speech]. Abel.as I may.] Behold them in their various bloom and ripeness. Strike him! or spare him. Omnipotent.and. except to some good end Of thine omnipotent benevolence! Inscrutable. From earth they came. I stand between thee and the shrine which hath Had his acceptance. Strike him! thou art omnipotent. 'tis thine. Calm! say I? Never Knew I what calm was in the soul. as my elder. Look on it! and for him who dresseth it. which the unstained turf I spread them on now offers in the face Of the broad sun which ripened them. Cain! what meanest thou? CAIN. If. and glory. despite our father's sin. Thou shalt not: . And milder seasons.before It is too late.an offering. Thy fruits are scattered on the earth. Thou art fitter for his worship than I am. and ascends to heaven. and of thy name. It means .add not impious works to impious Words! let that altar stand .and rather form A sample of thy works. To cast down yon vile flatterer of the clouds. called not On thee to join me. Take them! If thou must be induced with altars. But thee the better: I care not for that. Why so? ABEL. and scatters the fruits abroad upon the earth. Choose one of those two altars. as thou wilt! since all Rests upon thee. if good. Jehovah upon earth! and God in heaven! And it may be with other names. CAIN. and with whom Nothing can err. as the elder. offer first Thy prayer and thanksgiving with sacrifice. which smokes On my right hand. as thy work s: If thou must be propitiated with prayers.I am new to this. But make another of thine own . Shown in the exemption of thy deeds from evil.] ABEL [kneeling]. may win thy favor.in honor Of thee. then . Give Give way! . brother. Their seed will bear fresh fruit there ere the summer: Thy burnt-flesh offering prospers better. CAIN. as have made me Unfit for mortal converse: leave me. ABEL. as to Accord a pardon like a Paradise. Brother. I revered thee not. give back! thou shall not touch my altar With violence: if that thou wilt adopt it. Suns. Choose for me: they to me are so much turf And stone.but merely to endure Its mandate. Behold them hereThe firstlings of the flock. To the pain of the bleating mo thers. ABEL.the Unbounded . CAIN. The smoky harbinger of thy dull prayers Thine altar. to make His children all lost. And altar without gore. Or. 'Tis the highest. Not being omnipotent. CAIN. Neither.thy God loves blood! . Spirit whate'er or whose'er thou art. Spurn me not. My Abel. What mean'st thou? CAIN. Nothing can calm me more. and seeks nothing Which must be won by kneeling: if he's evil. whose limbs now reek In sanguinary incense to thy skies. I hope. In his great name. upon their loud-voiced spheres Singing in thunder round me. I pray thee. to be destroyed in blood.'tis hallowed now By the immortal pleasure of Jehovah. and who breathed the breath of life Within our nostrils. ABEL. when thick with blood! ABEL. [He gathers fruits. see How Heaven licks up the flames. Oh. without me.but let it be alone At least. I have chosen. while a whirlwind throws down the altar of CAIN. because Thine attributes seem many. I have no flocks. although I have seen the elements stilled.

Cain! get thee forth: we dwell no more together.My brother! . [Puts his hand to his brow. Then take thy life unto thy God. Speak. part not with him thus.what is this? . only stir! Why.my blood My brother's and my own! and shed by me! Then what have I further to do with life.he hangs his guilty head. Yet one kiss on yon pale clay.his heart! Let me see. That we are not more miserable still.a dreary dream Had maddened me. Oh. let it be borne In such sort as may s how our God.we never must meet more. was it some more hostile angel. else I am become The native of another and worse world . ABEL. why then he breathes. And covers his ferocious eye with hands Incarnadine! ADAH.CAIN. Depart! and leave the dead to me . for he is thy son Curse him not. Stand back till I have strewed this turf along Its native soil: .she has but one brother Now. Ah.No.me no son! for thus I curse him from my sight for evermore! All bonds I break between us.I . Thou wert the stronger. then let me watch by him. and given My brother to his cold and still embrace. which he snatches from the altar]. give me . Who. It was! I see it now . His lips. that the thought Empoisoned all my life. as from a thunder -cloud! yon brand Massy and bloody! snatched from off the altar.] Woman. Awake! .stir .'tis wet.Who makes me brotherless? His eyes are open! then he is not dead! Death is like sleep.Eve! Adah! . and with What? [A long pause. like us From Eden.my son! [To EVE. Thy natural grief. my son! Speak.speak. Since he loves lives. Since I have taken life from my own flesh? But he can not be dead! .My son! . ADAH. and ZILLAH.who hath done this? He moves not. [ABEL dies. Oh. what can it be? 'Tis Cain. to take him from me! ADAM. Through all the coming myriads of mankind. for brethren Smite not each other. brother? Doth he sleep? Oh. Who shall abhor thee. Stir . I heard a heavy sound. lead to impiety! A heavy doom was long forespoken to us. Cain! and say it was not thou! EVE. till his children do by him As he did by his brother! May the swords And wings of fiery Cherubim pursue him By day and night . as he broke That of his nature.] CAIN [solus].'twas a blow And but a blow. What's he who speaks of God? CAIN.give me thy hand. Thy murderer.come hither! Death is in the world! [Exit ZILLAH. CAIN [striking him with a brand.yet .snakes spring up in his path Earth's fruits be ashes in his mouth .Looking slowly round. and thine! EVE. fratricide! henceforth that word is Cain. A voice of woe from Zillah brings me here What do I see? . since thou Wert present. What Dost thou there.No! . too. Who walks not with Jehovah? or some wild Brute of the forest? EVE. Zillah! ZILLAH.] And yet there are no dews! 'Tis blood . behold the Serpent's work. ABEL [falls]. He hath left thee no brother Zillah no husband .thou breathest! breathe upon me! Oh God! Oh God! ABEL [very faintly]. Come.who abhor The name of Death so deeply.no! This is a vision. Life cannot be so slight. Or what hath done this deed? . when he is gone Who hath provided for us this dread office. thou dost him wrong Cain! clear thee from this horrible accusal.the leaves On which he lays his head to sleep be strewed With scorpions! May his dreams be of his victim! His waking a continual dread of Death! May the clear rivers turn to blood as he Stoops down to stain them with his raging lip! May every element shun or change to him! May he live in the pangs which others die with! And Death itself wax something worse than Death To him who first acquainted him with man! Hence.] CAIN. and shouldst have stepped in Between him and aggression! Fath er! . If thou lov'st thyself. no! It is not blood.] ADAM. and tell Poor Zillah CAIN [after a moment's stupefaction].I have led him here. We will return again. and assure us. Comfort poor Zillah: . Brother! ABEL.] ZILLAH. EVE. And yet I feel it not. wretched as we are. I am awake at last . and red with ADAM. Cain. for who would shed his blood? Abel! what's this? .'Tis true! . Then may God forgive him! Cain.] ADAM. but not fatally.thou wert full of life this morn! Abel! I pray thee. His will! the will of yon Incarnate Spirit Of Death. mock me not! I smote Too fiercely. Eve! let not this. my father: do not Add thy deep curse to Eve's upon his head! ADAM. Which grief wrings from our parent.No: He will not answer to that name.he hath spoken to me since What shall I say to him? . . . mother. And I none! . Ah! a livid light Breaks through.[1'9] ADAM. God! receive thy servant! and Forgive his slayer. EVE. He breathes not: and his hands drop down from mine With stony lifelessness! Ah! cruel Cain! Why camest thou not in time to save him from This violence? Whatever hath assailed him. Heaven! What means this paleness. That I may bear to hear my own again! [Enter ZILLAH. Zillah! ZILLAH.I am Henceforth alone . Yet . though thou wert their sire! May the grass wither from thy feet! the woods Deny thee shelter! earth a home! the dust A grave! the sun his light! and heaven her God! [Exit EVE. Speak. doth it beat? methinks . calling on her Parents. My hand! 'tis all red. The earth swims round me: . ADAH. and sleep shuts down our lids. Oh! speak not of it now: the Serpent's fangs Are in my heart! My best beloved. are apart. And black with smoke. EVE. I curse him not: his spirit be his curse. that we Are faithful servants to his holy will. he will wake.nay. in yon . I must watch my husband's corse. And who hath brought him there? .else ABEL [opposing him]. What hast thou done . Hear.Cain.Oh Death! Death! Why didst thou not take me.His heart! . as to be quenched Thus quickly! . Oh! for a word more of that gentle voice. why Wouldst thou oppose me? This is mockery.] Where am I? alone! Where's A bel? where Cain? Can it be that I am he? My brother. May all the curses Of life be on him! and his agonies Drive him forth o'er the wilderness. I love God far more Than life. And my betrothed. before I knew His aspect . . And now that it begins. Come. EVE [pointing to CAIN]. so .but he shall ne'er awake! [Enter ADAM. etc. for he knew not what He did .why so pale? What hast thou! . and watching by my husband.my brother? CAIN. and yon stream? . who first incurred thee? Why dost thou not so now? ADAM. Mother. for his is my brother. ADAH. mother.Is silence death? No. And only done to daunt me: . Abel! Jehovah! this is punishment beyond A mother's sin. whom I have brought upon the earth To strew it with the dead. As if he would not have asserted his Inexorable claim without my aid. and then looks at it. May all his days be desolate! May ADAH. Jehovah! May the eternal Serpent's curse be on him! For he was fitter for his seed than ours. Hold! Curse him not.why liest thou so long on the green earth? 'Tis not the hour of slumber: .speak to me. on the temples. .that's well! .

let us go forth.] ADAH. . ANGEL. Cain! thou hast heard. a sevenfold vengeance shall Be taken on his head. and suits my steps. 17 Both blood-red and of the flesh. I would CAIN [interrupting her]. but he Thou slew'st was gentle as the flocks he tended. I hear our little Enoch cry within Our bower. I. and vagabond on earth! ADAH. but nought to that which is within it! Is there more? let me meet it as I may. Hear'st thou that voice? THE VOICE WITHIN. Then he would but be what his father is. It soundeth like an angel's tone. and Bishop of Llandaff in 1782. when thou shalt till the ground.] ADAH. all have left thee. It burns My brow. No more of threats: we have had too many of them: Go to our children . Where is thy brother Abel? CAIN.] 1822] NOTES 1 Richard Watson (1737-1816) was appointed Moderator of the Schools in 1762. I will bear Enoch. God and Lucifer. But with me![Exeunt. CAIN. nor walk the wilderness Under the cloud of night. 5 The quotation is from Sir Walter Scott's Waverly (1814). so that he may go forth in safety. who sprung from the same womb with thee. Ere the sun declines Let us depart. Did not the milk of Eve give nutriment To him thou now seest so besmeared with blood? The fratricide might well engender paricides. ANGEL.Nay. whom his God Can ne'er forgive. What Wouldst thou with me? ANGEL.] ANGEL. That which I am. which opened late her mouth To drink thy brother's blood from thy rash hand. But who bath dug that grave? Oh. Am I then My brother's keeper? ANGEL. nor even dare To do that for thee. that whoso findeth him Shall slay him.the Lord thy God And mine commandeth me to set his seal On Cain.my heart! my heart! [Exeunt ADAM and ZILLAH weeping. earth! For all the fruits thou hast rendered to me. and may our God Be thine! Now let us carry forth our children. [Enter the ANGEL of the Lord. ADAM. none mourn like me.Now for the wilderness! [ADAH stoops down and kisses the body of ABEL. but him who slew thee. CAIN. CAIN. This punishment is more than he can bear. CAIN. I think thou wilt forgive him. 2 The allusion is to Paradise Lost (1667). Angel of Light! be merciful. . my brother. Eastward from Eden will we take our way. Lead! thou shalt be my guide. A fugitive and vagabond on earth. ADAH. A VOICE from within exclaims. I alone must not weep. heaven and hell all take on such Manichean aspects in Cain. Thou hast slain thy brother. speak to me. 11 The Cherubs are members of the second order of angels. No. Which might have graced his recent marriage couch. Cain! what hast thou done? The voice of thy slain brother's blood cries out. let me die! ANGEL. surrounded 13 That One. Think'st thou my boy will bear to look on me? ADAH. unto the Lord! . It must not be. The Divine Legation of Moses Demonstrated on the Principles of a Religious Deast (1741). I must not speak of this . A dreary. Cain! Cain! ADAH. Not only for thyself. 19 Corpse. Now. [The ANGEL sets the mark on CAIN 's brow. 14 Punished. 3 Solomon Gesner's "Death of Abel (trans. Cain! Cain! ADAH. I Give thee back this.I will follow thee. nor his own soul. My office is Henceforth to dry up tears. CAIN. Peace be with him! CAIN. 18 Passed swiftly through. and of his father. He's gone. Henceforth. . Behold thou drivest him from the face of earth. Oh! thou dead And everlasting witness! whose unsinking Blood darkens earth and heaven! what thou now art I know not! but if thou seest what I am. CAIN. it shall not Yield thee her strength. I am ready.] CAIN. held that the world is governed by two competing deities: a god of darkness who made the body and a god of light who was responsible for the soul.Farewell! I must not. which thou shouldst have done For me . and taken From me a being I ne'er loved to bear. And you his sister.And those lips once so warm . 9 Prayers. And I lie ghastly! so shall be restored By God the life to him he loved. and an early doom. Uniting with our children Abel's offspring! 0 Abel! ADAH.D. I Can never meet thee more. 10 Willingly. And who shall warrant thee against thy son? ADAH. nor did I make myself but could I With my own death redeem him from the dust And why not so? let him return today. . Would they could! but who are they Shall slay me? Where are these on the lone earth As yet unpeopled? ANGEL. much as I Shrink from the deed which leaves thee brotherless. In fondness brotherly and boyish. To mark upon thy brow Exemption from such deeds as thou hast done. Who shall heal murder? what is done. earth! Oh. and not to shed them.compose thy limbs into their grave The first grave yet dug for mortality. If I thought that he would not. Stern hast thou been and stubborn from the womb. After the fall too soon was I begotten.it is between thee And the great God. ANGEL. 8 See Opere Inediti (1804) by Vittorio Alfieri ( 1749-1803). we must go forth. 12 Girdled. Why. Ah! little knows he what he weeps for! And I who have shed blood cannot shed tears! But the four rivers [20] would not cleanse my soul. and my sire still mourned for Eden. nor say That this poor aching breast now nourishes A murderer in my boy. dare not touch what I have made thee. Even from the ground. Come hither! CAIN. Ere yet my mother's mind subsided from The Serpent. CAIN. I will not leave thee lonely with the dead Let us depart together. And from the face of God shall he be hid. As the ground thou must henceforth till. good and evil. 20 Four rivers were said to encircle Eden. 16 These two Principles may be an insta nce of the Manicheism that Byron confessed to putting in the poem: light and dark. Cain! I will divide thy burden with thee. will be Jesus.] ADAH. Who slayeth Cain. But yet of all who mourn. by Mary Collyer) was published in 1791. I did not seek For life. of course. I fear Nothing except to leave thee. And he who lieth there was childless! I Have dried the fountain of a gentle race. 15 Judge or conclude. 6 Thomas Warburton. CAIN. Regius Professor of Divinity in 1771. Go forth! fulfil thy days! and be thy deeds Unlike the last! [The ANGEL disappears.Now art thou Cursed from the earth. But it shall not be so . I am. 'Tis the most desolate. is done. 'Twill come to pass. CAIN. 4 The Manicheans in the third century A. 7 Cuvier's studies of fossilized bones were being published in France at about the same time that Byron was writing Cain. And might have tempered this stern blood of mine. And wherefore lingerest thou? Dost thou not fear To dwell with one who hath done this? ADAH. Leave me! ADAH. So shall our children be. No. drained The same breast clasped thee often to my own. To me .thine own. a fugitive shalt thou Be from this day. just below the Seraphs. Has been thy lot! Of all who mourn for thee.

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