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Therefore be firm, be patient!—There is strength,
And a fierce instinct, e'en in common souls,
To bear up manhood with a stormy joy,
When red swords meet in lightning!—But our task
Is more, and nobler'—We have to endure,
And to keep watch, and to arouse a land,
And to defend an altar !—If we fall,
So that our blood make but the millionth part
Of Spain's great ransom, we may count it joy
To die upon her bosom, and beneath
The banner of her faith !—Think but on this,
And gird your hearts with silent fortitude,
Suffering, yet hoping all things—Fare ye well.
GARCIAS.
Father, farewell. [Exeunt GARCIAs and his followers.
HERNANDEZ.
These men have earthly ties
And bondage on their natures —To the cause
Of God, and Spain's revenge, they bring but half
Their energies and hopes. But he whom Heaven
Hath call'd to be th’ awakener of a land,
Should have his soul's affections all absorbed
In that majestic purpose, and press on
To its fulfilment, as a mountain-born
And mighty stream, with all its vassal-rills,

Sweeps proudly to the ocean, pausing not
To dally with the flowers.

Hark! What quick step Comes hurrying through the gloom at this dead hour *

ELMINA enters.

ELMINA.
Are not all hours as one to misery —Why
Should she take note of time, for whom the day
And night have lost their blessed attributes
Of sunshine and reposef

HERNANDEZ.
I know thy griefs;

But there are trials for the noble heart
Wherein its own deep fountains must supply
All it can hope of comfort. Pity's voice
Comes with vain sweetness to th’ unheeding ear
Of anguish, e'en as music heard afar
On the green shore, by him who perishes
"Midst rocks and eddying waters.

ELMINA.

Think thou not

I sought thee but for pity. I am come
For that which grief is privileged to demand

With an imperious claim, from all whose form,
Whose human form, doth seal them unto suffering !
Father I ask thine aid.
HERNANDEZ.
There is no aid
For thee or for thy children, but with Him
Whose presence is around us in the cloud,
As in the shining and the glorious light.
ELMINA.
There is no aid —Art thou a man of God?
Art thou a man of sorrow—(for the world
Doth call thee such)—and hast thou not been taught
By God and sorrow—mighty as they are,
To own the claims of misery
HERNANDEZ.
Is there power
With me to save thy sons —Implore of Heaven!
ELMINAs
Doth not Heaven work its purposes by man f
I tell thee, thou canst save them —Art thou not
Gonzalez’ counsellor!—Unto him thy words
Are e'en as oracles—
HERNANDEZ.
And therefore ?—Speak |
The noble daughter of Pelayo's line

Hath nought to ask, unworthy of the name
Which is a nation's heritage.—Dost thou shrink f
ELMINA.
Have pity on me, father!—I must speak
That, from the thought of which, but yesterday,
I had recoiled in scorn!—But this is past.
Oh! we grow humble in our agonies,
And to the dust—their birth-place—bow the heads
That wore the crown of glory !—I am weak—
My chastening is far more than I can bear.
HERNANDEZ.
These are no times for weakness. On our hills
The ancient cedars, in their gather'd might,
Are battling with the tempest; and the flower
Which cannot meet its driving blast must die.
—But thou hast drawn thy nurture from a stem
Unwont to bend or break-List thy proud head,
Daughter of Spain!—What wouldst thou with thy lord :
ELMINA.
Look not upon me thus !—I have no power
To tell thee. Take thy keen disdainful eye
Off from my soul!—What! am I sunk to this?
I, whose blood sprung from heroes!—How my sons

Will scorn the mother that would bring disgrace

On their majestic line !—My sons ! my sons !
—Now is all else forgotten —I had once
A babe that in the early spring-time lay
Sickening upon my bosom, till at last,
When earth's young flowers were opening to the sun,
Death sunk on his meek eyelid, and I deem'd
All sorrow light to mine !—But now the fate
Of all my children seems to brood above me
In the dark thunder-clouds !—Oh! I have power
And voice unfaltering now to speak my prayer
And my last lingering hope, that thou shouldst win
The father to relent, to save his sons!
HERNANDEz.
By yielding up the city ?
ELMINA.
Rather say
By meeting that which gathers close upon us
Perchance one day the sooner!—Is’t not so *
Must we not yield at last?—How long shall man
Array his single breast against disease,
And famine, and the sword *
HERNANDEZ.
How long 2—While he,
Who shadows forth his power more gloriously

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