Poets of John Company/The Jogi's Address to the Ganges

The Jogi's Address to the Ganges.

Dread power, beside thy sacred wave,
We meet as ever now;
To thee we pray, for thee we lave.
But where, oh where, art thou!
The charmed lamp floats trembling by,
And braves the tempest's burst;
'Tis thus for thee we burn and die,
But let us find thee first.

I've sought thee in the cell of stone
From which thy waters rise;
I've sought thee where thy icy throne
Is lost amid the skies;
And where the sister current meets
Thine own in billowy jar;
In Cashee's ancient dark retreats.
In wild and lone Hurdwar;

I've shouted where thy torrent boiled,
I've slumbered where it slept.
From eager youth, to age o'ertoiled,
I've looked for thee and wept;
Where'er thy sacred wave is drunk,
In every haunted spot,
I've sought thee—till my spirit sunk.
For oh! I found thee not.

And still in holy dream I pace
Thy sands the livelong day.
And pray that our and thy disgrace.
May quickly pass away;
And oft I look, but still in vain,
To see thy hoary head,
In all an injured God's disdain,
Uprising from thy bed.

And when upon thy glassy stream
Descends the glow of even,
It seems—oh does it only seem—
Thy wave to mix with heaven:
I thither bend my ardent gaze,
Till every hue be past,
Assured that in that radiant blaze,
Thou wilt descend at last.

And in the solemn hour of night,
When Nature's pulse has died.
With many a dark and nameless rite,
I haunt thy gloomy tide;
And oft I lift my voice on high,
To chaunt the magic line,
And start at echo's far reply,
Half dreading it is thine.

And now chill age begins to creep
In languor thro' my blood,
And soon I seek thee—low and deep,
Beneath thy gushing flood:
But oh! not yet—for still I yearn,
And still I look to see.
The splendours of the past return.
And all bow down to thee.

Say, is it that thou loath'st the land
Where pallid Mullicks reign?
Then aid, oh aid, our feeble hands,
Or we shall fight in vain:
For think not that we tamely bow
To be the things we are,
No, they are strong—but Ganges, thou,
Oh! thou art stronger far.

Lost is our sway, our land, our name,
Low—low beneath the yoke,
Our spirits bend in grief and shame.
Oh! haste ere they be broke.
From Himalay to Serendeep,
Ascends one endless prayer.
Thou canst not die—thou canst not sleep,
Then where art thou—oh where?