Sunday, March 6, 2011

A very hacked and mauled Genesis IV

Part four of Genesis A is not even marked as such, since its beginning has been lost. The rest of the section is incomplete due to missing pages as well, though it is not certain how many leaves have been lost. At any rate, what survives I deliver to you.


…Nor did it seem suitable to the Guardian of the Skies
that Adam should be alone for long in Paradise-plain,
that recent creation, as its shepherd and keeper.
Therefore the High-King, the Lord Almighty,
produced a help for him; a woman wrought and a support given,
the Light’s-Origin of Life, to that beloved man. (169-75)

God pulled out some material from Adam’s body,
and artfully extracted a rib from his side. Adam was fast at rest,
and sleeping softly, he knew neither pain, no deal of trouble,
nor did there come any blood from the wound,
but the Lord of Angels drew forth that burgeoning bone
from his body, the man unwounded, and from that God
created a beautiful woman. A spirit was formed inside her,
a perpetual soul. She was like an angel, and that Eve,
Adam’s wife,* was imbued with spirit. They were both
brightly beautiful in their youth, brought forth into the world
by the might of the Maker. They knew how to do nothing evil
nor how to accomplish it, but the love of the Lord
was burning in both their breasts. (176-91)

Then the Blithe-Hearted King blessed them, the Maker of All Creation,
those first two, the mother and father, the woman and weaponed man.*
God spoke to them by word: “Thrive and multiply,
fill the ever-greening earth with your offspring,
your family, your sons and daughters.
The salt waters must remain in both your power
as well as all this world’s creation. Brook these blessed days
and the ocean’s bounty and the birds of heaven.
You are given dominion over the wild beasts
and the clean cattle and all things living,
those that tread upon the land, imbued with life,
and those that the flood rouses throughout the whale-road—
all shall heed you.”(192-205)

[at least one page is missing here]

Then our Shaper observed his lovely work
and the fruit of his blossoms of this recent creation.
Paradise-plain stood good and ghostly,
filled with the enduring goods of grace.
Flowing waters from gushing springs
beautifully irrigated that pleasant land,
The heavens did not yet carry the rains
across the spacious earth, black upon the wind,
however the earth stood adorned with blooms. (206-15a)

Four noble rivers held their outward course
from that youthful Paradise. These were parted
by the power of the Lord, all from one source,
waters beauty-bright, when he wrought the earth,
and sent them into the world. Men of nations
dwelling on the earth called one of these Phison.
It enfolds broadly that portion of the earth about,
Havilah with bright streams. In that homely ground,
men, the children of human nations, discover near and far
gold and the best kinds of gemstones, just as books say to us.
Then the second river flows around the rim of Ethiopian land
and possessions, that enormous kingdom, that one is named the Gihon.
The third is the Tigris, that one along the nation, a river overflowing,
surrounding Assyria. Likewise is that fourth, which now among
many peoples and men widely name it the Euphrates. (215b-34)

[at least one page is missing here]

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