from Jubilate Agno

By Christopher Smart 1722–1771 Christopher Smart

let elizur rejoice with the partridge

Let Elizur rejoice with the Partridge, who is a prisoner of state and is proud of his keepers.
For I am not without authority in my jeopardy, which I derive inevitably from the glory of the name of the Lord.
Let Shedeur rejoice with Pyrausta, who dwelleth in a medium of fire, which God hath adapted for him.
For I bless God whose name is Jealous—and there is a zeal to deliver us from everlasting burnings.
Let Shelumiel rejoice with Olor, who is of a goodly savour, and the very look of him harmonizes the mind.
For my existimation is good even amongst the slanderers and my memory shall arise for a sweet savour unto the Lord.
Let Jael rejoice with the Plover, who whistles for his live, and foils the marksmen and their guns.
For I bless the prince of peace and pray that all the guns may be nail’d up, save such [as] are for the rejoicing days.
Let Raguel rejoice with the Cock of Portugal—God send good Angels to the allies of England!
For I have abstained from the blood of the grape and that even at the Lord’s table.
Let Hobab rejoice with Necydalus, who is the Greek of a Grub.
For I have glorified God in greek and latin, the consecrated languages spoken by the Lord on earth.
Let Zurishaddai with the Polish Cock rejoice—The Lord restore peace to Europe.
For I meditate the peace of Europe amongst family bickerings and domestic jars.
Let Zuar rejoice with the Guinea Hen—The Lord add to his mercies in the west!
For the host is in the west—the Lord make us thankful unto salvation.
Let Chesed rejoice with Strepsiceros, whose weapons are the ornaments of his peace.
For I preach the very gospel of christ without comment and with this weapon shall I slay envy.
Let Hagar rejoice with Gnesion, who is the right sort of eagle, and towers the highest.
For I bless God in the rising generation, which is on my side.
Let Libni rejoice with the Redshank, who migrates not but is translated to the upper regions.
For I have translated in the charity, which makes things better and I shall be translated myself at the last.
Let Nahshon rejoice with the Seabreese, the Lord give the sailors of his Spirit.
For he that walked upon the sea, hath prepared the floods with the Gospel of peace.
Let Helon rejoice with the Woodpecker—the Lord encourage the propagation of trees!
For the merciful man is merciful to his beast, and to the trees that give them shelter.
Let Amos rejoice with the Coote—prepare to meet thy God, O Israel.
For he hath turned the shadow of death into the morning, the Lord is his name.
Let Ephah rejoice with Buprestis, the Lord endue us with temperance and humanity, till every cow can have her mate!
For I am come home again, but there is nobody to kill the calf or to pay the musick.
Let Sarah rejoice with the Redwing, whose harvest is in the frost and snow.
For the hour of my felicity, like the womb of Sarah, shall come at the latter end.
Let Rebekah rejoice with Iynx, who holds his head on one side to deceive the adversary.
For I shou’d have avail’d myself of waggery, had not malice been multitudinous.
Let Shuah rejoice with Boa, which is the vocal serpent.
For there are still serpents that can speak—God bless my head, my heart and my heel.
Let Ehud rejoice with Onocrotalus, whose braying is for the glory of God, because he makes the best musick in his power.
For I bless God that I am of the same seed as Ehud, Mutius Scœ vola, and Colonel Draper.
Let Shamgar rejoice with Otis, who looks about him for   the glory of God, and sees the horizon compleat at once.
For the word of God is a sword on my side—no matter what other weapon a stick or a straw.
Let Bohan rejoice with the Scythian Stag—he is beef and breeches against want and nakedness.
For I have adventured myself in the name of the Lord, and he hath mark’d me for his own.
Let Achsah rejoice with the Pigeon who is an antidote to malignity and will carry a letter.
For I bless God for the Postmaster general and all conveyancers of letters under his care, especially Allen and Shelvock.
Let Tohu rejoice with the Grouse—the Lord further the cultivating of heaths and the peopling of deserts.
For my grounds in New Canaan shall infinitely compensate for the flats and maynes of Staindrop Moor.
Let Hillel rejoice with Ammodytes, whose colour is deceitful and he plots against the pilgrim’s feet.
For the praise of God can give to a mute fish the notes of a nightingale.
Let Eli rejoice with Leucon—he is an honest fellow, which is a rarity.
For I have seen the White Raven and Thomas Hall of Willingham and am myself a greater curiosity than both.
Let Jemuel rejoice with Charadrius, who is from the height and the sight of him is good for the jaundice.
For I look up to heaven which is my prospect to escape envy by surmounting it.
Let Pharaoh rejoice with Anataria, whom God permits to prey upon the ducks to check their increase.
For if Pharaoh had known Joseph, he would have blessed God and me for the illumination of the people.
Let Lotan rejoice with Sauterelle. Blessed be the name of the Lord from the Lote-tree to the Palm.
For I pray God to bless improvements in gardening until London be a city of palm-trees.
Let Dishon rejoice with the Landrail, God give his grace to the society for preserving the game.
For I pray to give his grace to the poor of England, that Charity be not offended and that benevolence may increase.
Let Hushim rejoice with the King’s Fisher, who is of royal beauty, tho’ plebeian size.
For in my nature I quested for beauty, but God, God hath sent me to sea for pearls.
Let Machir rejoice with Convolvulus, from him to the ring of Saturn, which is the girth of Job; to the signet of God from Job and his daughters blessed be jesus.
For there is a blessing from the stone of jesus which is founded upon hell to the precious jewell on the right hand of God.
Let Atad bless with Eleos, the nightly Memorialist ελεησον κϮ..ριε.
For the nightly Visitor is at the window of the impenitent, while I sing a psalm of my own composing.
Let Jamim rejoice with the Bittern blessed be the name of Jesus for Denver Sluice, Ruston, and the draining of the fens.
For there is a note added to the scale, which the Lord hath made fuller, stronger and more glorious.
Let Ohad rejoice with Byturos who eateth the vine and is a minister of temperance.
For I offer my goat as he browses the vine, bless the Lord from chambering and drunkeness.
Let Zohar rejoice with Cychramus who cometh with the quails on a particular affair.
For there is a traveling for the glory of God without going to Italy or France.
Let Serah, the daughter of Asher, rejoice with Ceyx, who maketh his cabin in the Halcyon’s hold.
For I bless the children of Asher for the evil I did them and the good I might have received at their hands.
Let Magdiel rejoice with Ascarides, which is the life of the bowels—the worm hath a part in our frame.
For I rejoice like a worm in the rain in him that cherishes and from him that tramples.
Let Becher rejoice with Oscen who terrifies the wicked, as trumpet and alarm the coward.
For I am ready for the trumpet and alarm to fight, to die and to rise again.
Let Shaul rejoice with Circos, who hath clumsy legs, but he can wheel it the better with his wings.
For the banish’d of the Lord shall come about again, for so he hath prepared for them.
Let Hamul rejoice with the Crystal, who is pure and translucent.
For sincerity is a jewel which is pure and transparent, eternal and inestimable.
Let Ziphion rejoice with the Tit-Lark who is a groundling, but he raises the spirits.
For my hands and my feet are perfect as the sublimity of Naphtali and the felicity of Asher.
Let Mibzar rejoice with the Cadess, as is their number, so are their names, blessed be the Lord Jesus for them all.
For the names and number of animals are as the names and number of the stars.
Let Jubal rejoice with Cœcilia, the woman and the slow-worm praise the name of the Lord.
For I pray the Lord Jesus to translate my magnificat into verse and represent it.
Let Arodi rejoice with the Royston Crow, there is a society of them at Trumpington and Cambridge.
For I bless the Lord Jesus from the bottom of Royston Cave to the top of King’s Chapel.
Let Areli rejoice with the Criel, who is a dwarf that towereth above others.
For I am a little fellow, which is intitled to the great mess by the benevolence of God my father.
Let Phuvah rejoice with Platycerotes, whose weapons of defence keep them innocent.
For I this day made over my inheritance to my mother in consideration of her infirmities.
Let Shimron rejoice with the Kite, who is of more value than many sparrows.
For I this day made over my inheritance to my mother in consideration of her age.
Let Sered rejoice with the Wittal—a silly bird is wise unto his own preservation.
For I this day made over my inheritance to my mother in consideration of her poverty.
Let Elon rejoice with Attelabus, who is the Locust without wings.
For I bless the thirteenth of August, in which I had the grace to obey the voice of Christ in my conscience.
Let Jahleel rejoice with the Woodcock, who liveth upon suction and is pure from his diet.
For I bless the thirteenth of August, in which I was willing to run all hazards for the sake of the name of the Lord.
Let Shuni rejoice with the Gull, who is happy in not being good for food.
For I bless the thirteenth of August, in which I was willing to be called a fool for the sake of Christ.
Let Ezbon rejoice with Musimon, who is from the ram and she-goat.
For I lent my flocks and my herds and my lands at once unto the Lord.
Let Barkos rejoice with the Black Eagle, which is the least of his species and the best-natured.
For nature is more various than observation tho’ observers be innumerable.
Let Bedan rejoice with Ossifrage—the bird of prey and the man of prayer.
For Agricola is Γηωοργος.
Let Naomi rejoice with Pseudosphece who is between a wasp and a hornet.
For I pray God to bless polly in the blessing of Naomi and assign her to the house of david.
Let Ruth rejoice with the Tumbler—it is a pleasant thing to feed him and be thankful.
For I am in charity with the French who are my foes and Moabites because of the Moabitish woman.
Let Ram rejoice with the Fieldfare, who is a good gift from God in the season of scarcity.
For my Angel is always ready at a pinch to help me out and to keep me up.
Let Manoah rejoice with Cerastes, who is a Dragon with horns.
For christopher must slay the Dragon with a pheon’s head.
Let Talmai rejoice with Alcedo, who makes a cradle for its young, which is rock’d by the winds.
For they have seperated me and my bosom, whereas the right comes by setting us together.
Let Bukki rejoice with the Buzzard, who is clever, with the reputation of a silly fellow.
For Silly fellow! Silly fellow! is against me and belongeth neither to me nor my family.
Let Michal rejoice with Leucocruta who is a mixture of beauty and magnanimity.
For he that scorneth the scorner hath condescended to my low estate.
Let Abiah rejoice with Morphnus who is a bird of passage to the Heavens.
For Abiah is the father of Joab and Joab of all Romans and English Men.
Let Hur rejoice with the Water-wag-tail, who is a neighbour, and loves to be looked at.
For they pass me by in their tour, and the good Samaritan is not yet come.
Let Dodo rejoice with the purple Worm, who is cloathed sumptuously, tho he fares meanly.
For I bless God in behalf of trinity college in cambridge and the society of purples in london.
Let Ahio rejoice with the Merlin who is a cousin german of the hawk.
For I have a nephew christopher to whom I implore the grace of God.
Let Joram rejoice with the Water Rail, who takes his delight in the river.
For I pray God bless the cam—Mmr higgs and mr and mrs washbourne as the drops of the dew.
Let Chileab rejoice with Ophion who is clean made, less than an hart, and a Sardinian.
For I pray God bless the king of Sardinia and make him an instrument of his peace.
Let Shephatiah rejoice with the little Owl, which is the wingged Cat.
For I am possessed of a cat, surpassing in beauty, from whom I take occasion to bless Almighty God.
Let Ithream rejoice with the great Owl, who understandeth that which he professes.
For I pray God for the professors of the University of Cambridge to attend and to amend.
Let Abigail rejoice with Lethophagus—God be gracious to the widows indeed.
For the Fatherless Children and widows are never deserted of the Lord.


FOOTNOTES: Antiphonal lines 1-70, Fragment A

Source: Poets of the English Language (Viking Press, 1950)

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Poet Christopher Smart 1722–1771

POET’S REGION England

Subjects Nature, Religion, Christianity, Animals, God & the Divine

 Christopher  Smart

Biography

It is notable that beginning with Robert Browning, it has been poets rather than critics who have been the warmest and most perceptive admirers of the poetry of Christopher Smart. In a 1975 radio broadcast in Australia, Peter Porter spoke of Smart as "the purest case of man's vision prevailing over the spirit of his times." While it would be facile and unilluminating to characterize Smart as a proto-Romantic, there can be no . . .

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SUBJECT Nature, Religion, Christianity, Animals, God & the Divine

POET’S REGION England

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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