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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 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 , but I had read him so frequently before, that this may make little difference. Gesner's "Death of Abel" 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 , 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) . 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" ; 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  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" . 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 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?
.what they must sing and say. and of fruits and trees: I see The gates of what they call their Paradise Guarded by fiery-sworded Cherubim.and if he so doth. CAIN. Mortal! CAIN. While that of Knowledge. It may be thou shalt be as we. Why did he Yield to the Serpent and the woman? or Yielding . Would I had never lived! LUCIFER. and yet not all as beautiful As he hath been. who offers up The firstlings of the flock to him who bids The earth yield nothing to us without sweat. what art thou? LUCIFER. to catch a glimpse of those Gardens which are my just inheritance. too. CAIN. Let him crowd orb on orb: he is alone Indefinite. is no happier than We in our conflict! Goodness would not make Evil. My sister Zillah sings an earlier hymn Than the birds' matins. Creating worlds. I am none: And having failed to be one. Who? LUCIFER. on pain Of being that which I am. A loathsome. The peace of God Be on your spirit. I live. and why not for him? If not. My father is Tamed down. 'twere the best boon He ever granted: but let him reign on! And multiply himself in misery! Spirits and Men. .and thou art Of spirits and of men. CAIN. ZILLAH. Was plucked too soon.I will follow shortly. where it grew The fairest in the center? They have but One answer to all questions. Could he but crush himself.I rather would consort with spirits. as before. Poor clay! And thou pretendest to be wretched! Thou! CAIN. and walk with dust? LUCIFER.she. Precede me. 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. and feel for it. thou shalt live. CAIN. If not. CAIN. And is it So? and can aught grieve save. Abel. I will Return to seek you here. and LUCIFER. No. and curious By their own innocence? I would have made ye . and with you. sisters. Ah! Thou look'st almost a god. And heaven's And all that in them is.because My father could not keep his place in Eden? What had I done in this? . They say . I fain  would be alone a little while. nor love the state To which that birth has brought me.which I know not. I would not now Have stood before thee as I am. CAIN. too. One who aspired to be what made thee.my Own and beloved . let him reign! CAIN.and they are bitterWhich I must feed on for a fault not mine. Mark me! that Son will be a sacrifice! CAIN. We are mighty. nor less Beauteous. too. And ye? LUCIFER. which I abhor. CAIN. by my mother's haste. Whom have we here?. What immortal part? This has not been revealed: the Tree of Life Was withheld from us by my father's folly. They have deceived thee.he seems mightier far than them. and might be: sorrow seems Half of his immortality. Adah! no.] LUCIFER. he'd have us so.as he Gave you a father . And you. and my Adah . which is thine ouward cov'ring.Toil! and wherefore should I toil?. why place him near it. CAIN.and thou wilt be No less than thou art now. indissoluble tyrant.perhaps he'll make One day a Son unto himself . the fire-armed angels. I am: . Think not The Earth. and constant thought: I look Around a world where I seem nothing. I'm sick at heart. with Thoughts which arise within me. How should I be so? Look on me! LUCIFER." How know I that? Because He is all-powerful. to make eternity Less burthensome to his immense existence And unparticipated solitude. So restless in his wretchedness. more endurable. living.CAIN. And hadst thou not been fit by thine own soul For such companionship. and what else hath he made? But let him Sit on his vast and solitary throne. and all the fruit is Death! LUCIFER. Are everlasting. and re-create .I was unborn: I sought not to be born. CAIN. 'Tis well . make our pangs Innumerable. Are ye happy? LUCIFER. understands not The mind which overwhelms me: never till Now met I aught to sympathize with me. In Twilight's hour. yet cannot overcome And so I live.and me: I feel the weight Of daily toil. No: art thou? CAIN. Are ye happy? LUCIFER. Why should I quail from him who now approaches? Yet . Master of spirits.nay. nor believe But. follow? I judge but by the fruits. at least we sympathize And. and ADAH. brother! [Exeunt ABEL. Thy sire's Maker. My father and my mother talk to me Of serpents. who art thou? LUCIFER.he cannot unmake: We are immortal! . humanity? He cometh. By the unbounded sympathy of all With all! but He! so wr etched in his height. and so my father saith. canst thou Leave them. How! You know my thoughts? LUCIFER. as if they Could master all things . I tempt none.] CAIN (solus).but I thought alone This misery was mine. LUCIFER.and thou. ABEL. see no thing To make death hateful. And what is that? LUCIFER. as I Despise myself. He conquered. ADAH. 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. a serpent Had been enough to charm ye. Ah! didst thou tempt my mother? LUCIFER. And this is Life?. Save with the truth: was not the Tree.it will cease . brother . And being so. So I have heard His Seraphs sing.and must live for ever. They are the thoughts of all Worthy of thought. Your gentleness must not be harshly met: I''ll follow you anon.'tis your immortal part Which speaks within you. my mother has forgot the mind Which made her thirst for knowledge at the risk Of an eternal curse. That he may torture: . I know the thoughts Of dust. tarry not behind. Souls who dare use their immortality Souls who dare look the Omnipotent tyrant in His everlasting face. No more? LUCIFER. if he made us . Spirit. As he saith . LUCIFER.let him! He is great But. must still Create. [Enter LUCIFER. And he is good. "'Twas his will. is Existence . Which shut them out . my brother is A watching shepherd boy. CAIN. and yet all invincible Instinct of life. Whom I see daily wave their fiery swords Before the gates round which I linger oft. with all thy might. and Would not have made thee what thou art.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. But live to die. and the earth's CAIN. CAIN. must all-good. in his greatness. would be nought Save what I am. and tell him that His evil is not good! If he has made. but it will pass. suffering in concert. Thou livest .why suffer? What was there in this? The tree planted. save an innate clinging. and. Ere the night closes o'er the inhibited walls And the immortal trees which overtop The cherubim-defended  battlements? If I shrink not from these.
But shall I know it? LUCIFER. I have looked out In the vast desolate night in search of him. He was hindered. and yet not less than those he tempted. They were. His equal? LUCIFER.I have nought in common with him! Nor would: I would be aught above . and my mother Weeps when he's named. LUCIFER. That were no evil: would I ne'er had been Aught else but dust! LUCIFER. Thoughts unspeakable Crowd in my breast to burning. I tell thee that the Serpent was no more Than a mere serpent: ask the Cherubim Who guard the tempting tree. and Adah looks on me. Nothing can Quench the mind. Thou art not the Lord my father worships . CAIN. And speaks not. Alas! I scarcely now know what it is. Inevitable. CAIN. CAIN. for With fear rose longing in my heart to know What 'twas which shook us all . Though man's vast fears and little vanity Would make him cast upon the spiritual nature His own low failing. And then I turned my wary eyes from off Our native and forbidden Paradise. And yet I fear it . and Zillah casts hers to the earth. CAIN.and Adah LUCIFER. Thou'lt know here . but will absorb all things That bear the form of earth -born being. Ask the Destroyer. it seems. or how? CAIN. LUCIFER. who is. I knew not that. They say the Serpent was a spirit. LUCIFER. CAIN. as I scorn all That bows to him. in the joy And power of Knowledge? CAIN. Were I quiet earth. die? LUCIFER. I never As yet have bowed unto my father's God. Less than thy father's .for he wished to know! CAIN.fear I know not what! LUCIFER. LUCIFER. But not to live . That is a grovelling wish. CAIN. Aye. and bear a mind To know. For what should spirits tempt them? What Was there to envy in the narrow bounds Of Paradise. Deadly error! Not to snatch first that fruit: . As I know not death. Thou art my worshipper. I watched for what I thought his coming. Ne'er the less. I cannot compass: 'tis denounced against us. In play. With all thy Tree of Kn owledge. And sighs a prayer. LUCIFER. No. in your resistance. The Maker . LUCIFER. CAIN. in the azure. In nature being earth also . Which are so beautiful: shall they. And I.but nothing came. Who? LUCIFER. And heart to look on? CAIN. when I hear Of this almighty Death. . But I will bend to neither. Be it proved.thy Lord. Why? CAIN. CAIN. that spirits who pervade Space . CAIN. Said'st thou not Thou ne'er hadst bent to him who made thee? CAIN. What is Death? I fear. LUCIFER. Perhaps . When thousand ages Have rolled o'er your dead ashes. Up to the lights above us.beneath Aught save a sharer or a servant of His power. And what is that? LUCIFER. Thy Fond parents listened to a creeping thing. it is a dreadful thing.'tis made To sway. see What is true knowledge. and more Who shall . CAIN. And become gods as we." Were those his words? CAIN. CAIN. who see the truth. But the thing had a demon? LUCIFER He but woke one In those he spake to with his forky tongue. CAIN. How so? LUCIFER. Wilt thou teach me all? LUCIFER. I'm glad of that: I would not have them die They are so lovely. CAIN. CAIN. My father Says he is something dreadful. Think'st thou I'd take the shape of things that die? CAIN. I cannot answer. he was ignorant of Death. sole eternity. as I have heard from those who heard them. But must be undergone. fear nothing. CAIN. and Abel lifts his eyes To Heaven. What? CAIN. if the mind will be itself And center of surrounding things . but what. LUCIFER. upon one condition. And when I saw gigantic shadows in The umbrage of the walls of Eden.and hereafter. YesBut Abel's earnest prayer has wrought upon me. CAIN. He has not yet Been seen. That Thou dost fall down and worship me .need I say it? Could not thy mighty knowledge teach thee that? LUCIFER. I dwell apart. not worshipping Him makes thee mine the same. The seed of the then world may thus array Their earliest fault in fable. and your seed's. But I must retire To till the earth . By being Yourselves. Since he could overcome them. Why dost thou hesitate? .for I had promised LUCIFER. I feel. To offer up With Abel on an altar. CAIN. Who Saith that? It is not written so on high: The proud One will not so far falsify. Although my brother Abel oft implores That I would join with him in sacrifice: Why should I bow to thee? LUCIFER. Would they had snatched both The fruits. and attribute To me a shape I scorn. LUCIFER. The offering is more his than mine . or he who would Have made ye live for ever. Then who was the Demon? He Who would not let ye live.but I speak to thee of what thou know'st not. and even He who thrust ye forth. too. LUCIFER. Ah! I thought it was a being: who could do Such evil things to beings save a being? LUCIFER. checkered By the far-flashing of the Cherubs' swords. And thou? CAIN. Name it LUCIFER. Darest thou look on Death? CAIN. and foreknew The knowledge fatal to their narrow joys. when a boy. CAIN. It has no shape. Could I wrestle with him? I wrestled with the lion. who made things but to bend Before his sullen. The other may be still. One is yours already. To be resolved into the earth. LUCIFER. And fell. CAIN. since I heard Of Death: although I know not what it is Yet it seems horrible. but I am great Many there are who worship me.Gods. CAIN.but long outlive both thine and thee. To cull some first-fruits. He who bows not to him has bowed to me. as an illWhat ill? LUCIFER.but ere he plucked The knowledge.or wherefore plucked he not The life-tree? LUCIFER. But thou canst not Speak aught of Knowledge which I would not know. No. must speak it. Hast thou ne'er bowed To him? CAIN. who know all things. Both them who sinned and sinned not. But we. Have I not said it? . till he ran roaring from my gripe.more in wisdom.be thou amongst the first. LUCIFER.Call him Which name thou wilt: he makes but to destroy. But didst thou tempt my parents? LUCIFER. The snake was the snake No more. Follow Where I will lead thee. or neither! LUCIFER. In thunder. And do not thirst to know. so thrust ye Because "ye should not eat the fruits of life. Let me but Be taught the mystery of my being.what should I tempt them for. yet thought it. I? Poor clay .
But terror and self-hope. and self-seeking prayers.and if we had been. thou at the least hast passed Thy youth in Paradise. 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. methinks. At least they ought to have known all things that are Of knowledge . CAIN. ADAH. Cain? CAIN. she must not.save me from him! CAIN. The Seraphs' love can be but ignorance: That they are not compatible. I would. To Death . Born of the same sole womb. I ask Thee to be mine. Oh. not content with their own sorrow. Oh. LUCIFER. To inherit agonies accumulated By ages!-and I must be sire of such things! Thy beauty and thy love . I do.thee . We have seen many: will he share our hour Of rest? . Fiend! tempt me not with beauty. Interchecked with an instant of brief pleasure. Nearer and nearer: . Are girt  about by demons. I look upon him with a pleasing fear. CAIN Seest thou not? ADAH. and tempt us with our o wn Dissatisfied and curious thoughts .and hope of that Which cometh not. and if thou Wert happy CAIN.so he lied not: And if he did betray you. and thy sire? ADAH. The sin I speak of is not of my making. thy children. alone - . ADAH. my Adah. Aye. I cannot abhor him.he is welcome. ADAH. this promise.was not the Tree that Of Knowledge? ADAH. my heart Beats quick. Bear all .will he? CAIN (to LUCIFER). Our parents? CAIN. As true. I will. others? But he is welcome. we are the slaves OfLUCIFER. Remorse of that which was . ADAH. ADAH. Beloved Adah! ADAH. ADAH. Aye . More than thy mother. ADAH. And all the unnumbered and innumerable Multitudes. myriads. So did the Serpent. What is the sin which is not Sin in itself? Can circumstance make sin Or virtue? . She is my sister. Are there. my mother! thou Hast plucked a fruit more fatal to thine o ffspring Than to thyself. In hymns and harpings. But there are spirits loftier still The archangels. for their daring.no. Oh. Was it so in Eden? ADAH. not yet It one day will be in your children. in innocent And happy intercourse with happy spirits: But we.and we Have less without thee. To that which is omnipotent. And dread. ADAH. LUCIFER. I must away with him.and our children. and She wrung from me. I have come for thee. And yet that grief is knowledge . LUCIFER. your mother: bears she not the knowledge Of good and evil? ADAH.to our eternal sorrow. Be thou happy. And leave us? CAIN. Omnipotence Must be all goodness. He is not God .if they sinned. LUCIFER. I would half Forget . ADAH. I see an angel. and sweat. but I have done thy task: the fruits Are ripe.that they are miserable. But all we know of it has gathe red Evil on ill.or few.and all the few that are. No. ignorant of Eden.nor God's: I have beheld The Cherubs and the Seraphs. who assume The words of God. Then follow me! CAIN. Begot me . And cannot be a sin in you . my Cain! go not Forth with this spirit. Cain! walk not with this Spirit. 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? .Cherubim know most And this should be a Cherub .since he loves not. What must he be you cannot love when known? Since the all-knowing Cherubim love least. and not from love. LUCIFER. and yet draws me near. Should we not love them . CAIN. he awes me. I am not wretched.the unknown! Methinks the Tree of Knowledge Hath not fulfilled its promise: . CAIN. We were not born then . their father.] ADAH. LUCIFER. and Rather than see her weep. Thou hast labored not This morn. My little Enoch! and his lisping sister! Could I but deem them happy. What dreads my Adah? This is no ill spirit. which may be. He speaks like A God. he looks not Like them.if it doth. LUCIFER. then. as they were: they deigned To be our guest . No. of the same womb. LUCIFER.It was Born with me . proves.since there is No other choice: your sire hath chosen already: His worship is but fear. ADAH.but not blessed. I cannot answer this immortal thing Which stands before me. Bear with what we have borne. Higher things than ye are slaves: and higher Than them or ye would be so.And as I love thee.as thou Wert worked on by the snake. and it lied.Cain . It is our hour of rest and joy . and love me .whate'er It seem in those who will replace ye in Mortality. But he is not like The angels we have seen. Thou errest. Who Art thou that steppest between heart and heart? CAIN. he is not of ours.but I love nought else. Wilt thou? LUCIFER. What do they know? . And me? CAIN. Did they love us when they snatched from the Tree That which hath driven us all from Paradise? ADAH. LUCIFER. And still loftier than the archangels. ADAH. For thee. And if the higher knowledge quenches love. CAIN. And Truth in its own essence cannot be But good.and worship aught. ADAH. expulsion from our home. Let me go with thee. And yet I fly not from him: in his eye There is a fastening attraction which Fixes my fluttering eyes on his. ADAH. but still of sorrow. Is that a sin too? LUCIFER. in thy most flushed And heedless. But lead them and ourselves through many years Of sin and pain . I choose not . did they not Prefer an independency of torture To the smooth agonies of adulation. All we love in our children and each other. What! Must not my daughter love her brother Enoch? LUCIFER. because It is omnipotent. The Seraphs love most . the doom Of thy fond parents. and as false.and. My brother. He is a God. Ask Eve.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 . harmless wantonness of bliss.CAIN. Choose betwixt Love and Knowledge . with tears. The rapturous moment and the placid hour. What need of snakes and fruits to teach us that? ADAH. and toil. and heaviness. Aye . 'twas with Truth. Adah! . millions. ADAH. then. LUCIFER.my love and joy. and glowing as the light which ripens: Come away. Not as thou lovest Cain. LUCIFER.I Love thee.Cain . ADAH. I have heard it said. Born on the same day. Cain! choose Love. Cain. thou art fairer Than was the Serpent. If the blessedness Consists in slavery .and the mystery of Death. ADAH. [Enter ADAH. How know'st thou? CAIN.
Alone! Oh. Alas! those tears! Couldst thou but know what oceans will be shed ADAH. If I were not that which I have said. Will he. But the symbols Of the Invisible are the loveliest Of what is visible. as I know it not. Ask of your sire. who are like to thee And brighter. Aye. Not dazzling. Which. So they were when the fair Serpent Spoke with our mother first. LUCIFER. Him will I follow. If I am not.and heaven and earth . Alone I could not. [Exeunt LUCIFER and CAIN. CAIN. ADAH. I will not say. knowing nought beyond their shallow senses. and I will show What thou dar'st not deny. unnumbered. Or hath destroyed in few? CAIN. and so dost thou. which directs To right. ADAH. Since better may not be without: there is A wisdom in the spirit.and sink not! doubt . I tread on air.in his works. and the mortals to make happy. A man shall say to a man.and present. but with those around us I think I could be so. Yet thy God is alone. I love it for Its beauty LUCIFER. ADAH. And why not adore? ADAH. ADAH. And some of us resist . he hath The angels. when. So beautiful. save ONE)  shall come back to thee. He shall. Worship the word which strikes their ear.] ADAH (follows exclaiming).and both in vain. Of which thy bosom is the germ. Will he return? LUCIFER. Could I stand here? His angels are within Your vision. enquire The cause of this all-spreading happiness (Which you proclaim) of the all-great and good Maker of life and living things. Dost thou not recognize The dust which formed your father? CAIN. and good? ADAH. and yon bright star Is leader of the host of Heaven. yet less beautiful and powerful In seeming: as the silent sunny noon. Nor would be happy. and unnumbe red stars Spangle the wonderful mysterious vault With things that look as if they would be suns. Cain! my brother! Cain! ACT II. but peopled with Those who once peopled or shall people both These are my realms! so that I do divide His. And walk the waters. And I will weep for thee. . 0 Cain! This spirit curseth us. And they who guard them? LUCIFER. it is His secret. His Seraphs say: but it is worth the trial. By me? LUCIFER. Show in an hour what he hath made in many. swinging in far ether. Where dwellest thou? LUCIFER. and is he happy? Lonely. and our parents. Have faith in me. Cain. ADAH. The million millions The myriad myriads . Which looks like that which lit our earthly night? Is this our Paradise? Where are its walls. and our children. Whither? LUCIFER. ADAH. Throughout all space. who is God's own image. of which I am the Prince. and sink not . His brother. Believe in me. LUCIFER. Which. and he keeps it. and of future worlds. LUCIFER. But in his being? ADAH. which humbles me and mine. LUCIFER. It is not tranquil. Our father Adores the Invisible only. Point me out the site . How can that be? LUCIFER. but fly with me o'er the gulf Of space an equal flight. And thou couldst not Alone. nor be Amerced  for doubts beyond thy little life. But in that hour see things of many days. Did not your Maker make Out of old worlds this new one in few days? And cannot I.yet I fear To sink. What else can joy be. I will have none such: Worship or worship not. ADAH. We must bear. Can I do so without impiety? LUCIFER. To a place Whence he shall come back to thee in an hour. He is not so. Where should I dwell? Where are Thy God or Gods . welcoming the morn. ADAH. In sooth. Lead on. and yet drawing us to them.-The Abyss of Space. Alas! no! and you Are you of Heaven? LUCIFER. CAIN. Cain! thou hast heard. LUCIFER. come on with me. SCENE 1.and perish! thus Would run the edict of the other God. Hast thou seen him? ADAH." and the man shall walk The billows and be safe. "Believe in me. Thou seems'st unhappy: do not make us so. as in the dim blue air the eye Of you. Follow me. NoSave in my father. but thou seem'st Like an ethereal night.and that Which is not heaven or earth. and possess a kingdom which is not His. And thus becomes so in diffusing joy. lights at once upon The star which watches.and the o'er peopled Hell. I dread not. the exile fresh from Eden. 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. Spirit. All light. There will come An hour. ADAH. they Echo the sound to miserable things. Oh God! or Demon! or whate'er thou art. and endearing. They fill my eyes with tears. and deem Evil or good what is proclaimed to them In their abasement. Our father Saith that he has beheld the God himself Who made him and our mother. they look upon us. where long white clouds Streak the deep purple. return within an hour? LUCIFER. woman! he alone Of mortals from that place (the first and last Who shall return. thou shalt behold The worlds beyond thy little world. and we Can crowd eternity into an hour. but the spreading joy? LUCIFER. Let him say on. With torture of my dooming. Can it be? Yon small blue circle. To make that silent and expectant world As populous as this: at present there Are few inhabitants. LUCIFER. who aided in this work. ADAH.and Time Eternity . be happy? ADAH. Who names me Demon to his angels. unless When I think how soon I shall see my brother. young mortals. What all? LUCIFER. tossed upon some water -drops. despite of Death. By all.the all-peopled earth The unpeopled earth . Yes . With an inferior circlet near it still. Is yon our earth? LUCIFER. ADAH. CAIN. Or of his first-born son: ask your own heart.if I may Judge from what I have heard. Or stretch an hour into eternity: We breathe not by a mortal measurement But that's a mystery. as a conditional creed To save thee. CAIN. Or in his angels. If thou dost long for knowledge. LUCIFER. I have said it. With us acts are exempt from time.there am I: all things are Divided with me: Life and Death . or good? To me my solitude seems sin.the history Of past . thou say'st. LUCIFER. ADAH. Believe .I will have nought to do with happiness. though It seems an awful shadow . my God! Who could be happy and alone. CAIN. and thou shalt be Borne on the air. It is a beautiful star.
with me. or accidents. CAIN. And if there should be Worlds greater than thine own . have had one as mean As thou. Must both be guided. Spirit! if It be as thou hast said (and I within Feel the prophetic torture of its truth). Spirit! I Know nought of Death. Thou hast said. for moments only and the space Have been and must be all unchangeable. and die Methinks is merely propagating Death. Here let me die: for to give birth to those Who can but suffer many years.what thou wilt . I know not what thou art: I see thy power. than thou in it. CAIN. The Other Spake not of this unto my father. CAIN.and. I knew not This until lately .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. By suffering. LUCIFER. as we move on. And some till now grew larger as we approached. of which thy world Is but the wreck. But. I am angelic: wouldst thou be as I am? CAIN. I must be Immortal in despite of me.and wretched. 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 . CAIN. If I may judge. though my dust is. (If that they die). To what was before thee! The phantasm of the world. Away. We and thy sons will try. And wore the look of worlds. Less. And multiplying murder. Yea. Let me. I should be proud of thought Which knew such things. Yet deem not that thou canst escape it. LUCIFER. all foredoomed to be As frail.and all doomed to death . what are things? LUCIFER. LUCIFER. Clay . in the universe. LUCIFER. Wouldst thou behold things mortal or immortal? CAIN. How? LUCIFER. Art thou not nearer? look back to thine earth! CAIN. and that was ere thou Or I were. How should I? As we move Like sunbeams onward. Oh! how we cleave the blue! The stars fade from us! The earth! where is my earth? Let me look on it. The things I see. For I was made of it. as atoms die. thou hast shown naught I dare not gaze on further. The little shining fire-fly in its flight.inhabited By greater things . And the immortal star in its great course. But changes make not death. LUCIFER. and canst range Nature and immortality . 'Tis now beyond thee. when He shut him forth from Paradise. Look there! CAIN. which makes both beautiful. But thou art clay . as of A hideous heritage I owe to them No less than life . which would pretend to have Had no beginning. or know ye in your might And knowledge! My thoughts are not in this hour Unworthy what I see. And science still beyond them. Show me. And men? . that I may be in the rest as angels are.but since it must be. As I have shown thee much which cannot die? CAIN. Why. or see them nearer. Appear to join the innumerable stars Which are around us. Dar'st thou behold? 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. On. LUCIFER. were chained down To the most gross and petty paltry wants. All foul and fulsome . LUCIFER. Where dost thou lead me? LUCIFER. Each bright and sparkling . But at least Let what is mortal of me perish. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. All living . The things I have not seen. CAIN. And therefore do I ask of thee. LUCIFER. A most enervating and filthy cheat To lure thee on to the renewal of Fresh souls and bodies. What. I have seen the fire-flies and fire-worms Sprinkle the dusky groves and the green banks In the dim twilight.what dost think of them? CAIN. But the lights fade from me fast. or the things which seem to us Greater than either: many things will have No end. where ye roll along.there is what must survive. as to sojourn With worms in clay? CAIN. And what art thou who dwellest So haughtily in spirit. Thou hast seen both worms and worlds. learn To anticipate my immortality. What! is it not then new? LUCIFER.and they themselves far more In number than the dust of thy dull earth. And must torture be immortal? LUCIFER. till now.and yet Seem'st sorrowful? LUCIFER.and the very best Of thine enjoyments a sweet degradation. LUCIFER. LUCIFER.the mysteries of Death. LUCIFER. And see thou show'st me things beyond my power. and such thou shalt behold. Where is it? I see nothing save a mass Of most innumerable lights. LUCIFER. or happy or unhappy. then! on our mighty wings! CAIN. What wouldst thou think? CAIN. and mine. or whatsoe'er They may be! Let me die. And such they are. CAIN.a heritage not happy. Nor ever shall .I can survey. Oh. except to clay. But what Sate nearest it? CAIN. That! . And that the night. when I Beheld them from the skirts of Paradise: Methinks they both. And Edens in them? LUCIFER. and. Thou didst before I came upon thee. It may be. thou Shalt soon return to earth. Both partly: but what doth Sit next thy heart? CAIN.yonder! LUCIFER. But by whom or what? CAIN. Do so. then! CAIN.and canst but comprehend That which was clay. aspiring to such things. save as a dreadful thing Of which I have heard my parents speak. I seem that which I am. LUCIFER. Although inferior still to my desires And my conceptions. and all its dust: 'Tis part of thy eternity. as we recede from them. if thou Wouldst be immortal? CAIN. and few so happy CAIN. Beyond all power of my born faculties. And as it waxes little. And wilt thou tell me so? Why. if I show to thee things which have died. CAIN. Spirit! let me expire. CAIN. Though multiplied to animated atoms. Thou canst not All die . But if that high thought were Linked to a servile mass of matter . LUCIFER. But now. and mightier things have been extinct To make way for much meaner than we can Surmise. I cannot see it. That they are beautiful in their own sphere. it grows small and smaller. behold! Is it not glorious? CAIN. Gathers a halo round it. and some. CAIN. CAIN. How know I what I dare behold? As yet. What are they which dwell So humbly in their pride. then. Away. LUCIFER. CAIN. Knowing such things. like the light Which shone the roundest of the stars.Of Paradise. and then less. Increase their myriads. brighter than yon world Which bears them. No more than life is. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. with death Written upon his forehead. Yet it sparkles still.Spirit .
Through agonies unspeakable. LUCIFER. Living. at once. LUCIFER.no moon . of deep valleys and vast mountains. as The sixty-thousandth generation shall be. CAIN. CAIN. Rather than life itself. True. but as I know there are Such. that I Had deemed them rather the bright populace Of some all unimaginable Heaven. CAIN. 'Tis darkness! LUCIFER. happy! when unfolded.LUCIFER. Though rare in time. that. save that all shall die. the features of fair earth: . It is too little and too lowly to Sustain such creatures. good. but needs must forfeit it Even for the innocent! LUCIFER. judge But thy own flesh. CAIN. but of inexplicable Shape. And all that we inherit. That which Thou shalt be. Yes. CAIN. that I scarce Can call them living. Haughty. On! on! [They disappear through the clouds. Can I return? LUCIFER. to innumerable Yet unborn myriads of unconscious atoms. '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. and all Mighty and melancholy . Return! be sure: how else should Death be peopled? Its present realm is thin to what it will be. I cannot answer. Enormous vapours roll Apart . Let them share it With me. . Pass on. LUCIFER. CAIN.the stars are gone! LUCIFER.no lights innumerable The very blue of the empurpled night Fades to a dreary twilight . It is the realm Of Death. Nor form of mightiest brute. And thou! LUCIFER. what I Must one day see perforce. LUCIFER. which took. CAIN. and in mine. But not as now. What are these mighty phantoms which I see Floating around me? . and showed them taking shapes Unequal. rose higher than the first. CAIN. and clogged With agonies eternal. Yea. On what thou callest earth They did inhabit. nor in my children's: And yet they have an aspect. And wherefore did it fall? LUCIFER. Intelligent. great. LUCIFER. high. 'Tis awful! LUCIFER. ye interminable gloomy realms Of swimming shadows and enormous shapes. As much superior unto all thy sire. Behold! CAIN.They wear not the form Of the Intelligences I have seen Round our regretted and unentered Eden. in daring To pluck the fruit forbidden? LUCIFER. which. or have ye lived? LUCIFER. which Are beings past. and make widening circles round us! LUCIFER. or things higher. mighty yet and beautiful As the most beautiful and mighty which Live. But here. and gaze upon the past. . as thou wilt fade from thine. which seemed made for life to dwell on. CAIN. LUCIFER. But what were they? LUCIFER. But was mine theirs? LUCIFER. Seemed full of life even when their atmosphere Of light gave way. But that on drawing near them I beheld Their swelling into palpable immensity Of matter. Where Thou livest. and some displaying Enormous liquid plains.Wouldst have it present? CAIN. Of thine. CAIN. being life. but unlike the worlds We were approaching. and yet so unlike them. CAIN. In its dull damp degeneracy. But it grows dark. save the erect ones? CAIN. and glorious things. and high. as a chaos Subsiding has struck out a world: such things. Ah me! and did they perish? LUCIFER.without me thou Couldst not have gone beyond thy world. CAIN. Fear not . are frequent in eternity. They bear not The wing of Seraph. Thou seekest to behold Death. for I never saw such. The clouds still open wide And wider.] SCENE II.but we will Unfold its gates! CAIN. CAIN. and shadows still to come. liable To such. What? Hath not he who made ye Said 'Tis another life? CAIN. I would behold. Aye! and serpents too? LUCIFER. Behold these phantoms! they were once Material as thou art. If not the last. and so full of twilight. I seek it not. CAIN. Yes. Where? LUCIFER. . and floating moons. all is So shadowy. Dost thou curse thy father? CAIN.and how weak they are.but too mean to be The last of these. CAIN. But if it be as I have heard my father Deal out in his long homilies. their sire and brother! What else is Bequeathed to me? I leave them my inheritance! Oh.yet I see Huge dusky masses. . Some fully shown. Adam is the first. and that my sire's sin makes him and me. though not Of men nor angels. and yet more peopled Than the huge brilliant luminous orbs which swung So thickly in the upper air. How the lights recede! Where fly we? LUCIFER.what are ye? Live ye. it was more glorious. Could not retain. Nor wear the form of man as I have viewed it In Adam's and in Abel's. and full Of seeming strength. Like them. Ask him who fells. CAIN. And yet thou seest. Cursed he not me in giving me my birth? Cursed he not me before my birth. And so it shall be ever . And some emitting sparks. When? LUCIFER. looks like something.what's this? LUCIFER. Advance! CAIN. Than things to be inhabited themselves. All here seems dark and dreadful. Till I know That which it really is. and beautiful. But how? LUCIFER. Enter LUCIFER and CAIN.Hades. To the world of phantoms. How silent and how vast are these dim worlds! For they seem more than one. And what are they? LUCIFER. Adam.instead. which. and dead things? CAIN. nor aught that is Now breathing. 'Tis a fearful light! No sun . Yet they lived. to Thee and thy son. Somewhat of both. and some begirt With luminous belts. and dark . that It speaks of a day past. LUCIFER. some indistinct. By a most crushing and inexorable Destruction and disorder of the elements. But distinct. Nor in my sister-bride's. All to be animated for this only! CAIN. which. Which struck a world to chaos. Through thee and thine. from their earth. Enter! CAIN. nor the face of man. Thou say'st well: The curse is mutual 'twixt thy sire and thee But for thy sons and brother? CAIN. I grant thee . CAIN. Till now he hath Said nothing. Happy the day! LUCIFER. Then what is Death? LUCIFER. Wouldst thou have men without them? must no reptiles Breathe. It was. begirt with light. And true. Perhaps He one day will unfold that further secret. could e'er have been in Eden. CAIN.
Thou knowest that there is A state. all had stood. but I know them not. CAIN. I rather would remain.war with all things. LUCIFER.what were they? LUCIFER. Eve. I understand not this. But behold What these superior beings are or were. Are its inhabitants. Your father saw him not? CAIN. That which The Mammoth is in thy world. LUCIFER. Forth from the abyss. Phantoms inferior in intelligence (At least so seeming) to the things we have passed. .is it Not so? CAIN. And must I be Like them? LUCIFER. And pangs. plighted to return. and that state again. I know not but for pain. But do not think to dwell here till thine hour Is come! CAIN. In its redoubled wretchedness. nor allay my thousand fears Of Death and Life. And yon immeasurable liquid space Of glorious azure which floats on beyond us. untoiling. LUCIFER. But there Are some things still which woman may tempt man to. How long? CAIN. Like them. And those enormous creatures. 'Tis like another world. Your Maker told ye.CAIN. too. LUCIFER. The happier thou! Thy world and thou are still too young! Thou thinkest Thyself most wicked and unhappy . in degree Inferior as thy petty feelings and Thy pettier portion of the immortal part Of high intelligence and earthly strength. But all Seems dim and shadowy. from which Knowledge was barred as poison. My spirit buoys thee up to breathe in regions Where all is breathless save thyself. are both Eden In all its innocence compared to what Thou shortly may'st be. 'tis true.but 'tis something To know there are such realms. CAIN. they were made for you. and disease to most things. LUCIFER. thou Must pass through what the things thou seest have passed The gates of Death. thy task . and which I should deem  The river which flows out of Paradise Past my own dwelling. peopled with Things whose enjoyment was to be in blindness A Paradise of Ignorance. Let He who made thee answer th at. and of an ethereal hue .let thy sons look to it! My counsel is a kind one.I'll waft thee there in safety. LUCIFER. it will Seem clearer to thine immortality. Many of the same kind (at least so called) But never that precisely.she tempted by the serpent.let me dwell in shadows. Because Thy hour is yet afar. what a beautiful world it was! CAIN. like his sons.but knowledge still: but what knows man? LUCIFER.Death: the rest Of your poor attributes is such as suits Reptiles engendered out of the subsiding Slime of a mighty universe. But None on it? LUCIFER. And what they were thou feelest. At least it promised knowledge at the price Of death . and bitterness.can they ne'er repass To earth again? LUCIFER. and thy children shall Dwell near it . or thy sons' wives. for 'tis even Given chiefly at my own expense. CAIN. Hast thou ne'er beheld him? CAIN. I have felt much. CAIN. Like them. LUCIFER. but that it is bankless And boundless. 'Twill not be followed. CAIN. Their earth is gone forever So changed by its convulsion. though deadly.What is it? LUCIFER. What thy world is. CAIN. No: I'll stay here. The past Leviathans. CAIN. they would not Be conscious to a single present spot Of its new scarcely hardened surface . CAIN. And is! It is not with the earth. You have forgotten the denunciation Which drove your race from Eden . LUCIFER. We knew already That there was Death. By mine! But. As you for him. these were the fruits Of the forbidden tree. . LUCIFER. too . thy mother. No doubt the other Had more of beauty. though I must till it. crushed into A scarcely-yet shaped planet. Nor know I now. I am sick of all That dust has shown me . too. LUCIFER. best Can tell what shape of serpent tempted her. Be content. that they must die? LUCIFER. 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. CAIN. This seems too terrible. Although inferior. And man tempt woman: . No: for thy frail race to war With them would render the curse on it useless 'Twould be destroyed so early. Thy precept comes too late: there is no more For serpents to tempt woman to. LUCIFER. but ten-fold In magnitude and terror. too. accumulating In generations like to dust (which they . I show thee what thy predecessors are. To make thyself fit for this dwelling. And these. if it irk thee. without the so dear-bought knowledge! It was a lying tree . What ye in common have with what they had Is Life. and many states beyond thine own And this thou knewest not this morn. Resembling somewhat the wild habitants Of the deep woods of earth. without having shared th e apple. I feel at war .and thou sufferest. Good man! whene'er thy wife. nor even of the same aspect. Of sorrow . a liquid sun And those inordinate creatures sporting o'er Its shining surface? LUCIFER. which rears his dripping mane and vasty Head.but that I may not profit By what it bears of beautiful. These dim realms! I see them. CAIN. Or. Be sure thou seest first who hath tempted them! CAIN. No: 'twas my mother Who tempted him . the hugest which Roar nightly in the forest. Nor gratify my thousand swelling thoughts With knowledge.'twas Oh.for we know nothing.with Eyes flashing like the fiery swords which fence them And tusks projecting like the trees stripped of Their bark and branches . and matter cannot Comprehend spirit wholly . But not what was beyond it. which persuaded The fatal fruit.You would not have their doom Superior to your own? Had Adam not Fallen. CAIN. so there's little lost. Alas! the hopeless wretches! They too must share my sire's fate. CAIN. LUCIFER. But canst not comprehend the shadow of That which it was. Tempt thee or them to aught that's new or strange. And death to all things. CAIN. taller than The cherub-guarded walls of Eden .'tis the phantasm of an Ocean. CAIN. By what gate have we entered Even now? LUCIFER. At least leads to the surest science: therefore The Tree was true. It cannot be: thou now beholdest as A vision that which is reality. CAIN. a Paradise To what thy sons' sons' sons. CAIN. ten times higher than the haughtiest cedar. eat of it. But animals Did they. and what ye shall have . Which looks like water. There is still some such on earth. And being of all things the sole thing certain. LUCIFER. It may be death leads to the highest knowledge.and thou art evil. For crime. Forever! Since I must one day return here from the earth. Gaze on.but these lie By myriads underneath its surface. thou see'st. First-born of the first man! Thy present state of sin . And yon immense Serpent. turn thee back and till The earth. But why war? LUCIFER.
Can make its offspring. of which our own Is the dim and remote companion. CAIN. But time has passed. Within those glorious orbs which we behold. since the Serpent was the first To win it. CAIN. 'Tis fair as frail mortality. Thou hast it. You think so. LUCIFER. CAIN. All these are nothing. being not her brother. Mortal! My brotherhood's with those who have no children. and giveth hers Unto thy children CAIN. LUCIFER. My sister Adah. What does thy God love? CAIN. A part of all things. CAIN. Behold. I pity thee who lovest what must perish. Cease to be beautiful! how can that be? LUCIFER. LUCIFER. CAIN. and lifelessness. Distant. though Dispelled by antidotes. I Ne'er saw him. When nearer. 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.he being Good? I asked This question of my father. LUCIFER. therefore. CAIN. speak n ot of mine. lit by an orb Which looks a spirit. in Infinity of life: thou hast shown me shadows Of that existence with the dreaded name . LUCIFER. But Sufficiently to see they love your brother: His sacrifices are acceptable. What is that To me? should I not love that which all love? LUCIFER. the bird's voice The vesper bird's. LUCIFER.the indulgent Lord. my son! said Adam. but love more What makes my feelings more endurable. If truth be so. Thou lovest it. CAIN. too. And is more than myself. LUCIFER. I have done this The loveliest thing I know is loveliest nearest. What didst thou answer? CAIN. must be more ineffable. But if thou dost possess a beautiful Being beyond all beauty in thine eyes. Snows! what are they? LUCIFER. who o'er it tremulous Stood licking its reviving limbs with joy. And is his mother's favorite. CAIN. And bounteous planter of barred Paradise He. And dost thou love thyself? CAIN.Spirit! Here we are in thy world. But ignorance of evil doth not save From evil. but Cannot conceive my love for her the less: And when her beauty disappears. No I'll not believe it . Like Adah's face: I turn from earth and heaven To gaze on it. But as thou saidst Of all beloved things thou lovest her Who shared thy mother's milk. as the maker Of things unhappy! To produce destruction Can surely never be the task of joy. Then my father's God did well When he prohibited the fatal Tree. because 'tis beautiful. Rarely. CAIN. Yes. like any other appetite. And wherefore didst thou Lead me here only to inform me this? LUCIFER. CAIN. which seems to sing of love. It may be that thine own shall be for me. And thy brother Sits he not near thy heart? CAIN.so does thy God. to my eyes and heart. my father says. Not of all things. because I love it! LUCIFER.the Sun's gorgeous coming His setting indescribable. how from Evil Springs Good! LUCIFER. but I confess I see it not in their allotment here. shall endure and do. . . Yes .All the stars of heaven. Because this Evil only was the path To Good. And mingles with the song of Cherubim. thy love Will cease.What is that Which being nearest to thine eyes is still More beautiful than beauteous things remote? CAIN. LUCIFER. still it is delusion. All things. LUCIFER. CAIN. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. Ill cannot come: they are too beautiful. CAIN. methinks He who creates all beauty will lose more Than me in seeing perish such a work. why recall a thought that . Most assuredly: What should I be without her? LUCIFER. But dost thou not love something like thyself? LUCIFER. and dazzling. And when it ceases to be so. Then there must be delusion. And. CAIN. Thy father loves him well . But you have seen his angels. that must arise from out Its deadly opposite. Let him keep Her favor. And the Jehovah . and I know not if he smiles. LUCIFER. CAIN. LUCIFER. LUCIFER. Thou hast seen them from afar. and laid them to The wound. With time. As was the apple in thy mother's eye.for I thirst for good.In fact but add to). LUCIFER. Why should he not? LUCIFER. CAIN. or a spirit's worldThe hues of twilight . and rose to drain The mother's milk. My father plucked some herbs. it must still roll on the same. Why art thou wretched? CAIN. But bask beneath the clime which knows no winter.(he pauses as agitated) . CAIN. CAIN. To which particular things must melt like snows. In the first dawn and bloom of young crea tion. Meekly! LUCIFER. But had done better in not planting it. Then thou canst have no fellowship with us. and by degrees the helpless wretch Resumed its careless life. I lately saw A lamb stung by a reptile: the poor suckling Lay foaming on the earth. Why do I exist? Why art thou wretched? why are all things so? Ev'n he who made us must be. beneath the vain And piteous bleating of its restless dam. I'm sorry for it.except some vast and general purpose. And earliest embraces of earth's parents. thou canst not see if I love Or no . 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. What am I? CAIN. CAIN. Approach the things of earth most beautiful. Because thou hast thought of this ere now. And I thee who lov'st nothing. and feel my heart float softly with him Along that western paradise of clouds The forest shade. And who and what doth not? Who covets evil For its own bitter sake? . LUCIFER. for He is my father: but I thought. LUCIFER. Was not thy quest for knowledge? CAIN.as being The road to happiness! LUCIFER. 'Tis well and meekly done. And if I have thought. And what of that? Distance can but diminish glory . And yet my sire says he's omnipotent: Then why is Evil . And judge their beauty near. Dost thou love nothing? LUCIFER. the green bough. Now let us back to earth! CAIN. and innumerable. and he said. And so do I. CAIN. CAIN. He is the second born of flesh. The deep blue noon of night. Nothing.None . So be they! wherefore speak to me of this? LUCIFER.nothing! 'tis The leaven of all life. Strange good. looks smilingly on Abel. Ere we came down into this phantom realm. And his father's? CAIN. which fills My eyes with pleasant tears as I behold Him sink. As the day closes over Eden's walls. Be happier in not knowing What thy remoter offspring must encounter. and hitherto Even Adam and my mother both are fair: Not fair like Adah and the Seraphim But very fair. All that must pass away In them and her.they.
So shall you nearer be the spiritual Nature. But ye Have some allotted dwelling . Clay has its earth.through all Eternity. and try the rest Of his celestial boons to you and yours. One good gift has the fatal apple given. Alas! I seem Nothing. Our little Enoch sleeps upon yon bed Of leaves. too. That sight is for the other state. sleep . And star by star. Enter CAIN and ADAH. Here. CAIN. And you. Hast a superior. and things which have Long ceased to breathe our breath.but none from me: I battle it against him. Thou! for If thou canst do man good. You have said well.let it not be overswayed By tyrannous threats to force you into faith 'Gainst all external sense and inward feeling: Think and endure. Did ye not tell me that Ye are both eternal? LUCIFER. from beneath them the clear blue Laughs out. Cypress! 'Tis A gloomy tree. you shall not Kiss him. but the time will come thou shalt see one Of them for evermore. But if he gives you good . How came ye. which he Holds. but were it not so. but our dwellings are asunder. . is boundless? LUCIFER. though of Spirits. Then leave us His creatures. We are brethren. Or mutual and irrevocable hate? He as a conqueror will call the conquered Evil. weep.as all things. and sleeps! . LUCIFER. And the interminable realms of space. Art not thou Abel's brother? CAIN.For what? LUCIFER. 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. ADAH. or his dwelling. Yea! CAIN.sleep on. I could show thee Both. CAIN. as thou say'st we are. to know mortal nature's nothingness. Till ye know better its true fount. Haughty spirit! Thou speak'st it proudly. till the great Conflict shall cease. although in slumber. till he or I be quenched! And what can quench our immortality. CAIN.why should ye differ? LUCIFER. in your little world? CAIN. And to what end have I beheld these things Which thou hast shown me? LUCIFER. And why not he who made? I made ye not. Evil and Good are things in their own essence.lead me to him. . at least not now: he will awake soon His hour of mid-day rest is nearly over. No! By heaven. All temporary breathing creatures their Peculiar element. Cain! CAIN. and universe by universe. And cannot ye both reign. and 'Twill spare them many tortures. But one of you makes evil.and your nature. And this should be the human sum Of knowledge.so call him. How beautifully parted! No. CAIN. toil. as I battled In highest Heaven . CAIN.but wherefore? ADAH. SCENE 1. why dost thou not? LUCIFER. all. Eat. being Spirits wise and infinite. Aye. ADAH. and other worlds their tenants. tremble. so I see them! LUCIFER. near Eden. dark as the cypress which waves o'er them. if Evil springs from him.] How lovely he appears! his little cheeks.or thine: Where is it? LUCIFER. and not mine. No. In their pure incarnation. vying with The rose leaves strewn beneath them.and die! CAIN. [They disappear. And not made good or evil by the Giver. wherefore didst thou choose it For our child's canopy? ADAH.No! I have a Victor . And shining lids are trembling o'er his long Lashes. LUCIFER.true. CAIN. but thyself. LUCIFER. ye new And scare-born mortals. CAIN Aye. Half open. In his especial Paradise . though proud. And let me perish. and o'er all space. And the infinity of endless ages. thou say'st. To reign. Which? CAIN. for to see Either of these would be for thee to perish! CAIN. And his lips. Didst thou not require Knowledge? And have I not in what I showed. Ye are his creatures. CAIN. young inheritor Of a world scare less young: sleep on. and the immensity Of worlds and life. and judge Not by words.is there not Enough? . Which were not thine nor mine? But now sleep on! His cheeks are reddening into deeper smiles. CAIN. do not name it mine. My disinherited boy! 'Tis but a dream.Which my sire brought us . LUCIFER. CAIN. and war triumphant with your o wn. Then I dread it less.and form an inner world In your own bosom .where the outward fails. drink.Infinity with Immortality? Jarring and turning space to misery . beneath the cypress. CAIN. to thine earth. thou little. as in Act 1. But few. and some of those bu t bitter. I will contain My heart till then. He smiles. we reign Together. Would there were only one of ye! perchance An unity of purpose might make union In elements which seem now jarred in storms. And what I have seen Yon blue immensity. He must dream Of what? Of Paradise! .Aye! dream of it. Taught thee to know thyself? CAIN. There The son of her who snatched the apple spake! But thou wouldst only perish. which I hold with him . his works would be deemed The only evil ones. have theirs. And why not now? LUCIFER. but the fruits Of your existence. All. [They go up to the child. but no superior. Shall tremble in the balance. To separate? Are ye not as brethren in Your essence . LUCIFER. laugh. Back With me. CAIN. and not see them. LUCIFER. CAIN. the last And longest. which looks as if it mourned O'er what it shadows. thou hast shown me much But not all: show me where Jehovah dwells. what have been his gifts To you already. And smile.The Earth. I will .Death. Which it ne'er shall. Were thou shalt multiply the race of Adam. But it were pity to disturb him till 'Tis closed. but what will be the Good he gives? Were I the victor. And the Jehovah and thyself have thine Ye do not dwell together? LUCIFER. Is spirit like to flesh? can it fall out . and the abyss. but no matter .] ACT III. will I dispute! And world by world. Of Death? LUCIFER. then?. Bequeath that science to thy children. Homage he has from all . Hush! tread softly. And the unfathomable gulfs of Hades. Because its branches Shut out the sun like night. and therefore seemed Fitting to shadow slumber. if ever it shall cease. 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!  And gaze upon them on their secret thrones! Dust! limit thy ambition. . And so we shall remain. That is the prelude. We both reign. or show me Thy dwelling. then. Now that I know it leads to something definite. and your glory? LUCIFER. Your reason: . And now I will convey thee to thy world. such as it must be.
but since That saying jars you.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.Death.] Oh. Would have composed thy mind into the calm Of a contented knowledge. Surely. leave us for awhile We mean to sacrifice. And opens wide his blue eyes upon thine. far Beyond our wonted range. I have toiled. then. CAIN. but I see Thy guide hath done thee evil: still I thank him. 'tis well done. One altar may suffice. Yes . who withdrew thee hence. and dashed him 'gainst The rocks. with her child. nourishing. we are innocent: what have we Done. nor fathers. nameless sin If it be such a sin to seek for knowledge? ADAH. Sweet Enoch! [She goes to the child. Oh.as a bribe To the Creator? ADAH. Then leave me! ADAH. Here. Thy brother Abel. upon our seed. Thou know'st Even for our parents error. as they are In the clear water. and tilled. Term him! your words are strange today. May his soft spirit. my God! Touch not the child . Of that I doubt. To save thee from the Serpent's curse! ADAH. I had beheld the immemorial works Of endless beings. Talk not of pain! The childless cherubs well might envy thee The pleasures of a parent! Bless him. According to the curse: . Cain! look on him. Well said the Spirit. Welcome. By sacrificing The harmless for the guilty? what atonement Were there? why.our sweet sister. or Where'er thou wilt: where'er thou art. or need have victims to Atone for this mysterious. The germs of an eternal misery To myriads is within him! better 'twere I snatched him in his sleep. but only hours upon the sun. The mother's joys of watching. In high communion with a Spirit. why so awful in thy speech? CAIN. It shall. which he daily brings With a meek brow. Hardly hours. gazing on eternity. The peace of God be on thee! CAIN. our features are Reflected in each other. for we love thee. and thine own too. Nor hand it down to those who spring from him. do not say so! Where were then the joys. resolves It back to dust again . I feel not The want of this so much regretted Eden. I have no offering. whose base hu mility Shows more of fear than worship . ADAH. [Enter ABEL. like to our father? CAIN. Little deems our young blooming sleeper. what have we here? ADAH. Say. boy! If that a mortal blessing may avail thee. Would I could die for them. my brothe r. CAIN. But bless him ne'er the less. Why. ADAH. To hail his father. there. so they might live! CAIN. and grovelling in the dust.] . CAIN. Given with a gentle and a contrite spirit. bequeath. my Cain: thy words Sound impious in mine ears. hail! ABEL. And loving him? Soft! he awakes. And that our little rosy sleeper there Might never taste of death nor human sorrow. Surely a father's blessing may avert A reptile's subtlety. What is that To us? they sinned.for what? ADAH. Have I not thee . The fruits of the earth. ADAH. that he so soon Hath given thee back to us. 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. my Cain! And love thyself for our sakes. of bloom. Of strength. recall thee To peace and holiness! [Exit ADAH. Has the Most High been so . and our Eve. CAIN. ADAH. Two altars. see how full of life. Farewell. Then. ADAH. and son. CAIN. my Cain. Cain? Mother. already Expiate with what we all have undergone. and. Hath saddened thine still deeper. so say I .] ABEL. Cain! CAIN. and all the power Which sways them I would not accost yon infant With ruder greeting than a father's kiss. And seem well-pleased with pain? For what should I Be contrite? for my father's sin. but His heart will. ADAH. CAIN. that we must be victims for a deed Before our birth. of beauty. CAIN. but of the Spirit who was with thee. Thou hast not spoken well. Fear not! for all the stars. To whom we own so much besides our birth? CAIN. Our sister tells me that thou hast been wandering.our boy . So soon? ADAH.our sire. and never more Shall light. ABEL. CAIN. and sire. then let them die! ADAH. beautiful. Oh. Where? ADAH. But first embrace thy son. too. methought I had borrowed more by a few drops of ages From its immensity: but now I feel My littleness again. Dear Cain! Nay. The mind then hath capacity of time. skirred  extinguished worlds. My sister Adah. Was he of those We have seen and spoken with. Shall walk in that forbidden place of joy! ADAH. and When thou art gentle. And Zillah . Wherefore said he so? Jehovah said not that. And to be more than expiated by The ages prophesied.my child! thy child! Oh. No. And yet I have approached that sun. and brother. CAIN. Visions. Abel. CAIN. is't not so. Pleasing or painful. And how knew he. while his little form Flutters as winged with joy. 'Tis scarcely Two hours since ye departed: two long hours To me. let us only say 'Twere better that he never had been born. thou say'st of past and present worlds. Blossom and bud -and bloom of flowers and fruits These are a goodly offering to the Lord. when they are gentle. Look! how he laughs and stretches out his arms. I had hoped The promised wonders which thou hast beheld.For never more thyself. that I would be so ready With the burnt offerings. than let him live to ADAH. And. Love us. thy sons. ADAH. CAIN. harder still. And Abel's pious ministry. How know we that some such atonement one d ay May not redeem our race? CAIN. And after flattering dust with glimpses of Eden and Immortality. which our brother Abel made During thine absence. when gentle For then we are all alike. Cain! My brother. I said. Why then commune with him? he may be A foe to the Most High. CAIN. Bless thee. is among the debts we owe her. Cain! that proud Spirit. ADAH. and of joy How like to me .provided that one victim Might satiate the Insatiable of life. and worlds he never lit: methought Years had rolled o'er my absence. little or almighty. Our brother comes CAIN. CAIN. the early. 'Twere better that he ceased to live. and seen Worlds which he once shone on. Till I return to dust? If I am nothing For nothing shall I be an hypocrite. That I was nothing! ADAH.how like to thee. And measures it by that which it beholds. Never! Though thy God left thee. No: he contents him With making us the nothing which we are.if so you term him? ABEL. And friend to man. nor is that thought Thy own. Alas! thou sinnest now. Cain! As yet he hath no words to thank thee. And can forgive him all. and sweaten in the sun. whereupon to offer A sacrifice to God on thy return. than give Life to so much of sorrow as he must Endure.
Choose for me: they to me are so much turf And stone. if the sweet and blooming fruits of earth. moons. [The fire upon the altar of ABEL kindles into a column of the brightest flame. and ascends to heaven. and of thy name. Thou art fitter for his worship than I am. [He gathers fruits.] ABEL [kneeling]. To the pain of the bleating mo thers.add not impious works to impious Words! let that altar stand . Jehovah upon earth! and God in heaven! And it may be with other names. except to some good end Of thine omnipotent benevolence! Inscrutable. Now prepare Thine offerings. and kindle a flame upon them. Thy fruits are scattered on the earth. when thick with blood! ABEL.] Behold them in their various bloom and ripeness. called not On thee to join me. CAIN. CAIN.the Omnipotent The overpowering mysteries of space The innumerable worlds that were and areA whirlwind of such overwhelming things. I pray thee. Why so? ABEL.but yet accept it for The thanksgiving of him who spreads it in The face of thy high heaven . I know not. the shepherd's shrine. In his great name. and who breathed the breath of life Within our nostrils. And suits thee.before It is too late. I revered thee not.ABEL. as to Accord a pardon like a Paradise. 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. It means . Choose one of those two altars. [They dress their altars. If thou lov'st blood. see How Heaven licks up the flames. CAIN. But make another of thine own . If. to shame creation! ABEL. But I have ne'er Asserted it. Nothing can calm me more. it may be . I will build no more altars. give back! thou shall not touch my altar With violence: if that thou wilt adopt it. as the elder. as the elder. although I have seen the elements stilled. as they might have been. What shall I do? ABEL. Abel. as have made me Unfit for mortal converse: leave me. His! His pleasure! what was his high pleasure in The fumes of scorching flesh and smoking blood. Neither. Both well. ABEL [kneeling]. 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. ABEL. Nor what thou hast seen? CAIN. I pray thee To do so now: thy soul seems laboring in Some strong delusion.thy God loves blood! .an offering. Thou shalt not: . CAIN. and may'st For what can he oppose? If he be good. may seem Good to thee . My brother. because Thine attributes seem many. From earth they came. Spirit whate'er or whose'er thou art. I should ill Deserve the name of our great father's son.in honor Of thee. Not till we have prayed and sacrificed together. and Good and Evil seem To have no power themselves. which thus far I have endured. and seeks nothing Which must be won by kneeling: if he's evil. Two beings here erect them unto thee. I hope. lead thou the way. Calm! say I? Never Knew I what calm was in the soul. ABEL. And in the worship of our God. to make His children all lost. Their seed will bear fresh fruit there ere the summer: Thy burnt-flesh offering prospers better. it will calm thee. Strike him! or spare him. He is . Or. then . Shown in the exemption of thy deeds from evil. Which fed on milk. If it must be so . Another sacrifice! Give way. and glory. leave me.'tis hallowed now By the immortal pleasure of Jehovah.then look to it: Give way. and fat thereof A shepherd's humble offering. for evermore! CAIN [standing erect during this speech]. as my elder. Revere him. ABEL [opposing him]. or else That sacrifice may be ABEL. Cain! what meanest thou? CAIN. ABEL.I am new to this.the Unbounded . In his acceptance of the victims.and. The dead The Immortal . and with whom Nothing can err. What mean'st thou? CAIN. CAIN. 'Tis the highest. CAIN. God! Who made us. we must perform our task togethe r. than supplication To look on ours! If a shrine without victim. Where hast thou been? CAIN. but still to be fulfilled! Accept from out thy humble first of shepherds' First of the first-born flocks . and precede me in Our priesthood . ere he hath more! ABEL. and scatters the fruits abroad upon the earth. Think not upon my offering's acceptance. which smokes On my right hand. despite our father's sin. brother. I have chosen.such as thou mad'st him. The smoky harbinger of thy dull prayers Thine altar. hath shed it for thy service In the first of his flock. without me. pray! Jehovah's wroth with thee. To try another sacrifice. as thy work s: If thou must be propitiated with prayers.as I may. if good. CAIN. But thee the better: I care not for that. Compared with our great crimes: . and must Yield what it yieldeth to my toil .I pray thee. ABEL. Abel. To cast down yon vile flatterer of the clouds.but merely to endure Its mandate. which the unstained turf I spread them on now offers in the face Of the broad sun which ripened them.well. And milder seasons.as what offering can be Aught unto thee? .'tis thy place.inasmuch as they have not Suffered in limb or life .Sole Lord of light! Of good. The more my grief. then. No. Take them! If thou must be induced with altars.and rather form A sample of thy works. And I will follow . ABEL. leave me! Or let me leave thee to thy pious purpose. My Abel. to earth let them return. whose limbs now reek In sanguinary incense to thy skies. upon their loud-voiced spheres Singing in thunder round me. of which he is .] ABEL. Look on it! and for him who dresseth it. ABEL.but let it be alone At least. Give Give way! . CAIN. Omnipotent. CAIN. I have no flocks. ABEL. Strike him! thou art omnipotent. ABEL. CAIN. Brother. with its blood of lambs and kids. while a whirlwind throws down the altar of CAIN. CAIN. to be destroyed in blood. Not being omnipotent. and earth. And altar without gore. Where are thine? ABEL. In itself nothing . Suns. Oh. Brother. who hath blessed us. offer first Thy prayer and thanksgiving with sacrifice. 'tis thine. may win thy favor. receive them. as thou wilt! since all Rests upon thee.bowing his own Even to the dust. nor fit to judge Omnipotence . Spurn me not. I am a tiller of the ground.its fruit. Behold them hereThe firstlings of the flock. . No . And spared. sacrifice alone Jehovah loves thee well. CAIN. Choose thou! CAIN. save in thy will And whether that be good or ill I know not. Nor suffer any ABEL [rising]. And softened with a sacrifice. and eternity! Without whom all were evil. I stand between thee and the shrine which hath Had his acceptance. CAIN. Had not thy justice been so tempered with The mercy which is thy delight. Oh. ABEL. CAIN.
Life cannot be so slight. Stir . what can it be? 'Tis Cain. Eve! let not this.No! . His lips.No. ADAH. We will return again.Eve! Adah! .he hath spoken to me since What shall I say to him? . else I am become The native of another and worse world . Since he loves lives. ADAH. Mother. and with What? [A long pause. 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. and assure us. so .what is this? . . And I none! .me no son! for thus I curse him from my sight for evermore! All bonds I break between us. My hand! 'tis all red. What's he who speaks of God? CAIN. Yet one kiss on yon pale clay.His heart! . And now that it begins. The earth swims round me: .thou wert full of life this morn! Abel! I pray thee. Thy natural grief.who hath done this? He moves not.stir .Oh Death! Death! Why didst thou not take me. and ZILLAH.speak. Come.I . Zillah! ZILLAH. 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 .Who makes me brotherless? His eyes are open! then he is not dead! Death is like sleep. mother.that's well! . Which grief wrings from our parent. As if he would not have asserted his Inexorable claim without my aid.speak to me. [ABEL dies. And covers his ferocious eye with hands Incarnadine! ADAH. Thy murderer. Who. Then may God forgive him! Cain. He hath left thee no brother Zillah no husband . A voice of woe from Zillah brings me here What do I see? . Hear. for his is my brother. ABEL [falls].] ZILLAH. It was! I see it now .] ADAM. and red with ADAM. no! It is not blood.his heart! Let me see. when he is gone Who hath provided for us this dread office. Ah! a livid light Breaks through. why then he breathes. my father: do not Add thy deep curse to Eve's upon his head! ADAM. And black with smoke.give me thy hand. whom I have brought upon the earth To strew it with the dead.No: He will not answer to that name. What hast thou done . . before I knew His aspect . EVE. Who shall abhor thee. behold the Serpent's work. lead to impiety! A heavy doom was long forespoken to us. for who would shed his blood? Abel! what's this? . Heaven! What means this paleness. ADAH. since thou Wert present. let it be borne In such sort as may s how our God. for brethren Smite not each other. brother? Doth he sleep? Oh. EVE [pointing to CAIN]. on the temples. And only done to daunt me: .'Tis true! . mock me not! I smote Too fiercely. etc.snakes spring up in his path Earth's fruits be ashes in his mouth . and thine! EVE.] Where am I? alone! Where's A bel? where Cain? Can it be that I am he? My brother. Cain. then let me watch by him.Cain. Oh. Jehovah! May the eternal Serpent's curse be on him! For he was fitter for his seed than ours. And my betrothed. thou dost him wrong Cain! clear thee from this horrible accusal.my son! [To EVE. and watching by my husband. Then take thy life unto thy God. EVE. which he snatches from the altar].my brother? CAIN.come hither! Death is in the world! [Exit ZILLAH. he will wake. doth it beat? methinks . Zillah! ZILLAH. [Puts his hand to his brow. part not with him thus. CAIN [striking him with a brand. Depart! and leave the dead to me .nay. and given My brother to his cold and still embrace. Thou wert the stronger.we never must meet more.thou breathest! breathe upon me! Oh God! Oh God! ABEL [very faintly]. Brother! ABEL. was it some more hostile angel. that the thought Empoisoned all my life. for he knew not what He did . Yet . Oh.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.Looking slowly round. Hold! Curse him not.I am Henceforth alone . as to be quenched Thus quickly! . are apart. why Wouldst thou oppose me? This is mockery.] ADAM. but not fatally. and then looks at it.a dreary dream Had maddened me.else ABEL [opposing him].My son! . What Dost thou there. fratricide! henceforth that word is Cain. Speak. Come. May all his days be desolate! May ADAH. Speak. I love God far more Than life. If thou lov'st thyself. and yon stream? .who abhor The name of Death so deeply. EVE. Through all the coming myriads of mankind. only stir! Why. 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.[1'9] ADAM. as from a thunder -cloud! yon brand Massy and bloody! snatched from off the altar. Cain! and say it was not thou! EVE. and tell Poor Zillah CAIN [after a moment's stupefaction]. Awake! . His will! the will of yon Incarnate Spirit Of Death.] And yet there are no dews! 'Tis blood . I curse him not: his spirit be his curse. for he is thy son Curse him not. ABEL. And yet I feel it not. like us From Eden. Oh! speak not of it now: the Serpent's fangs Are in my heart! My best beloved. Oh! for a word more of that gentle voice. Ah. Comfort poor Zillah: . That we are not more miserable still. And who hath brought him there? .he hangs his guilty head.] CAIN [solus]. God! receive thy servant! and Forgive his slayer. in yon . Cain! get thee forth: we dwell no more together. who first incurred thee? Why dost thou not so now? ADAM.why so pale? What hast thou! . That I may bear to hear my own again! [Enter ZILLAH. as he broke That of his nature.why liest thou so long on the green earth? 'Tis not the hour of slumber: . that we Are faithful servants to his holy will. my son! Speak.she has but one brother Now.but he shall ne'er awake! [Enter ADAM. too.CAIN. calling on her Parents. give me .My brother! .I have led him here. and shouldst have stepped in Between him and aggression! Fath er! . I must watch my husband's corse.'twas a blow And but a blow. Or what hath done this deed? . . mother. I heard a heavy sound.my blood My brother's and my own! and shed by me! Then what have I further to do with life. Abel! Jehovah! this is punishment beyond A mother's sin.] Woman.] CAIN. May all the curses Of life be on him! and his agonies Drive him forth o'er the wilderness. Stand back till I have strewed this turf along Its native soil: .'tis wet.yet . Since I have taken life from my own flesh? But he can not be dead! .no! This is a vision. wretched as we are. Who walks not with Jehovah? or some wild Brute of the forest? EVE. . I am awake at last .Is silence death? No. and sleep shuts down our lids. to take him from me! ADAM.
Am I then My brother's keeper? ANGEL. and suits my steps. much as I Shrink from the deed which leaves thee brotherless. but nought to that which is within it! Is there more? let me meet it as I may.] ADAH. I did not seek For life. And who shall warrant thee against thy son? ADAH. Not only for thyself. 5 The quotation is from Sir Walter Scott's Waverly (1814). Then he would but be what his father is. I think thou wilt forgive him.] ANGEL. Cain! Cain! ADAH. of course. we must go forth. is done. [The ANGEL sets the mark on CAIN 's brow. I am ready.] ADAH. He's gone. 9 Prayers. heaven and hell all take on such Manichean aspects in Cain. a fugitive shalt thou Be from this day. A VOICE from within exclaims. Stern hast thou been and stubborn from the womb. so that he may go forth in safety. Did not the milk of Eve give nutriment To him thou now seest so besmeared with blood? The fratricide might well engender paricides. and my sire still mourned for Eden. 3 Solomon Gesner's "Death of Abel (trans. But who bath dug that grave? Oh. But with me![Exeunt. Who slayeth Cain. CAIN. 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. dare not touch what I have made thee. To mark upon thy brow Exemption from such deeds as thou hast done. This punishment is more than he can bear. nor even dare To do that for thee. 4 The Manicheans in the third century A. I fear Nothing except to leave thee. CAIN. A fugitive and vagabond on earth. speak to me. It burns My brow. Eastward from Eden will we take our way. Cain! thou hast heard. ADAM. Think'st thou my boy will bear to look on me? ADAH. In fondness brotherly and boyish. and not to shed them. 6 Thomas Warburton. It soundeth like an angel's tone. 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.thine own. but him who slew thee. and of his father. Why. Angel of Light! be merciful. Even from the ground. So shall our children be. my brother. Who shall heal murder? what is done. 18 Passed swiftly through. But it shall not be so . it shall not Yield thee her strength. CAIN. 10 Willingly. drained The same breast clasped thee often to my own. by Mary Collyer) was published in 1791.I will follow thee. 19 Corpse. who sprung from the same womb with thee. earth! Oh. And you his sister. If I thought that he would not. I alone must not weep. and vagabond on earth! ADAH. Uniting with our children Abel's offspring! 0 Abel! ADAH. surrounded 13 That One. 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. God and Lucifer. Cain! Cain! ADAH. . CAIN. Go forth! fulfil thy days! and be thy deeds Unlike the last! [The ANGEL disappears. I. As the ground thou must henceforth till. Come hither! CAIN. good and evil. 15 Judge or conclude. CAIN. and may our God Be thine! Now let us carry forth our children. A dreary. 20 Four rivers were said to encircle Eden. Thou hast slain thy brother. Peace be with him! CAIN. And he who lieth there was childless! I Have dried the fountain of a gentle race. Cain! what hast thou done? The voice of thy slain brother's blood cries out. Would they could! but who are they Shall slay me? Where are these on the lone earth As yet unpeopled? ANGEL. I am. 'Tis the most desolate. earth! For all the fruits thou hast rendered to me. No. Ah! little knows he what he weeps for! And I who have shed blood cannot shed tears! But the four rivers  would not cleanse my soul.] ADAH. I hear our little Enoch cry within Our bower. nor his own soul. ANGEL. Ere the sun declines Let us depart. I Can never meet thee more. ANGEL. 2 The allusion is to Paradise Lost (1667). And from the face of God shall he be hid. Leave me! ADAH. let me die! ANGEL.the Lord thy God And mine commandeth me to set his seal On Cain. .] CAIN. But yet of all who mourn.D.Now art thou Cursed from the earth. a sevenfold vengeance shall Be taken on his head. Where is thy brother Abel? CAIN. . CAIN. It must not be. I Give thee back this. and an early doom. 12 Girdled. when thou shalt till the ground. What Wouldst thou with me? ANGEL. but he Thou slew'st was gentle as the flocks he tended. CAIN. Behold thou drivest him from the face of earth. And might have tempered this stern blood of mine. Ere yet my mother's mind subsided from The Serpent. Henceforth. Now.Nay.Now for the wilderness! [ADAH stoops down and kisses the body of ABEL. Lead! thou shalt be my guide. 16 These two Principles may be an insta nce of the Manicheism that Byron confessed to putting in the poem: light and dark. I will bear Enoch. CAIN. which thou shouldst have done For me . 14 Punished. [Enter the ANGEL of the Lord. And I lie ghastly! so shall be restored By God the life to him he loved. nor say That this poor aching breast now nourishes A murderer in my boy. ANGEL.] 1822] NOTES 1 Richard Watson (1737-1816) was appointed Moderator of the Schools in 1762. After the fall too soon was I begotten. 17 Both blood-red and of the flesh. will be Jesus. 7 Cuvier's studies of fossilized bones were being published in France at about the same time that Byron was writing Cain. 8 See Opere Inediti (1804) by Vittorio Alfieri ( 1749-1803). The Divine Legation of Moses Demonstrated on the Principles of a Religious Deast (1741). I would CAIN [interrupting her].my heart! my heart! [Exeunt ADAM and ZILLAH weeping. whom his God Can ne'er forgive. none mourn like me. 'Twill come to pass. Cain! I will divide thy burden with thee. . just below the Seraphs. To me . unto the Lord! . And wherefore lingerest thou? Dost thou not fear To dwell with one who hath done this? ADAH. That which I am. nor walk the wilderness Under the cloud of night.And those lips once so warm . 11 The Cherubs are members of the second order of angels. Regius Professor of Divinity in 1771. No more of threats: we have had too many of them: Go to our children . that whoso findeth him Shall slay him. all have left thee.it is between thee And the great God. Has been thy lot! Of all who mourn for thee. ADAH. I will not leave thee lonely with the dead Let us depart together.Farewell! I must not. and taken From me a being I ne'er loved to bear. Which might have graced his recent marriage couch. let us go forth. and Bishop of Llandaff in 1782. I must not speak of this . which opened late her mouth To drink thy brother's blood from thy rash hand. My office is Henceforth to dry up tears. CAIN.compose thy limbs into their grave The first grave yet dug for mortality. Hear'st thou that voice? THE VOICE WITHIN. No.