Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Asia
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Asia: Vols. XXI–XXIII.  1876–79.
Syria: Moriah (Zion), the Mount
The Temptation
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882)
(From The Divine Tragedy)

TOO weak, alas! too weak is the temptation
For one whose soul to nobler things aspires
            Than sensual desires!
Ah, could I, by some sudden aberration,
Lead and delude to suicidal death        5
            This Christ of Nazareth!
Unto the holy Temple on Moriah,
With its resplendent domes, and manifold
            Bright pinnacles of gold,
Where they await thy coming, O Messiah!        10
Lo, I have brought thee! Let thy glory here
            Be manifest and clear.
Reveal thyself by royal act and gesture,
Descending with the bright triumphant host
            Of all the highermost        15
Archangels, and about thee as a vesture
The shining clouds, and all thy splendors show
            Unto the world below!
Cast thyself down, it is the hour appointed;
And God hath given his angels charge and care        20
            To keep thee and upbear
Upon their hands his only Son, the Anointed,
Lest he should dash his foot against a stone,
            And die, and be unknown.

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