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To whirl the faulchion, and direct the blow;
To ward the stroke, or bear
Early in hardships through the woods they fly,
Nor feel the piercing frost, or wintry sky;
Some prowling wolf or foamy boar to meet,
And fretch the panting favage at their feet:
Inurd by this, they seek a nobler war,
And show an honest pride in ev'ry scar ;
With joy the danger and the blood partake,
Whilft ev'ry wound is for their country's fake.
But you, foft warriors, forc'd into the field,
Or faintly strike, or impotently yield;
For well this universal truth
you know, Who fights for tyrants is his country's foe.
I envy not your arts, the Roman schools,
Improv'd, perhaps, but to inslave your souls.
May you to stone, or nerves or beauty give,
And teach the soft'ning marble how to live;
May you the pallions in your colours trace,
And work up every piece with every gracę ;
In airs and attitudes be wondrous wife,
And know the arts to please, cr to surprize;
In mafick's softest found consume the day,
Sounds that would melt the warrior's soul away :
Vain efforts these, an honest fame to raise ;
Your painters, and your eunuchs, be your praise :
Grant us more real goods, you heav'nly powers !
Vistue, and arms, and liberty be curs,
Weak are your offers to the free and brave ;
No bribe can purchase me to be a flave.
Hear me, ye rocks, ye mountains, and ye plains,
The happy bounds of our Helvetian swains !
In thee, my country, will I fix my
Nor envy the poor wretch, that would be great :
My life and arms I dedicate to thee ;-
For, know, it is my int'reft to be free.
LIFE burthensome, because we know
not how to use it.
WHAT, air, a month, and not one line afford ?
HAT, fir, a month, and not one line afford ?
'Tis well :---how finely some folk keep their word! I own my promise.---But to steal an hour, 'Midst all this hurry---'tis not in my pow'r, Where life each day does one fix'd order keep, Successive journies, weariness and sleep. Or if our scheme some interval allows, Some hours design'd for thought and for repose ; Soon as the scatter'd images begin In the mind to rally---company comes in :
Reason, adieu! there's no more room to think;
For all the day behind is noise and drink,
Thus life rolls on, but not without regret ;
Whene'er at morning, in some cool retreat,
I walk alone:'tis then in thought I view
Some sage of old ; 'tis then I think of you:
Whose breast no tyrant paffions ever seize,
No pulse that riots, blood that disobeys;
Who follow but where judgment points the way,
And whom too busy sense ne'er led aftray.
Not that you joys with moderation fhun,
You taste all pleasures, but indulge in none.
Fir'd by this image, I resolve anew :
'Tis reason calls, and peace and joy's in view.
How bless'd a change! a long adieu to fense :
O fhield me, fapience ! virtue's reign commence !
Alas, how short a reign ?---the walk is o’er,
The dinner waits, and friends fome half a score :
At firft to virtue firm, the glass I fly ;
"Till fome fly fot ---- Not drink the family!”
Thus gratitude is made to plead for fin;
My trait'rous breaft a party forms within:
And inclination brib'd, we never want
Excuse---- 'Tis hot, and walking makes one faint.”
Now sense gets strength; my bright resolves decay,
Like stars that melt at the approach of day :
Thought dies, and ev'n, at last, your image fades away.
My head grows Warm; all reason I despise :
“ To-day be happy, and to-morrow wife!"
Betray'd so oft, I'm half perfuaded now,
Surely to fail, the first step is to vow.
The country lately, 'twas my wish: oh there!
Gardens, diversions, friends, relations, air:
For London now, dear London, how I burn!
I must be happy, sure, when I return.
Whoever hopes true happinefs to see,
Hopes for what never was, nor e'er will be:
The nearest ease, since we muft fuffer ftill,
Are they, who dare be patient under ill.
Whilom a fool faw where a fiddle lay;
And after pouring round it, ftrove to play:
Above, below, across, all ways he tries;
He tries in vain, 'tis discord all and noise:
Fretting he threw it by: then thus the lout;
« There's mufick in it, could I fetch it out."
If life does not its harmony impart,
We want not instruments, but have not art,
'Tis endless to defer our hopes of ease,
Till crosses end, and disappointments cease.
The sage is happy, not that all goes right,
His cattle feel no rot, his corn no blight;
The mind for ease is fitted to the wife,
Not so the fool's;-'tis here the difference lies :
Their prospect is the fame, but various are their eyes.
EW people know it, yet, dear fir, 'tis true,
Man should have somewhat evermore to do.
Hard labour's tedious, every one must own ;
But surely better such by far, than none;
The perfect drone, the quite impertinent,
Whose life at nothing aims, but--to be spent;
Such heaven visits for some mighty ill:
'Tis sure the hardest labour, to fit ftill.
Hence that unhappy tribe who nought pursue:
Who fin, for want of something else to do.
Sir John is bless'd with riches, honour, love
And to be bless’d indeed, needs only move.
For want of this, with pain he lives away,
A lump of hardly-animated clay:
Dull till his double bottle does him right:
He's easy just at twelve o'clock at night.
Thus for one sparkling hour alone he's bleft;
While spleen and head-ach seize on all the rest.