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With trips to town life to amuse,
To purchase books, and hear the news,
To see old friends, brush off the clown,
And quicken taste at coming down,
Unhurt by sickness' blasting rage,
And slowly mellowing in age,
When Fate extends its gathering gripe,
Fall off like fruit grown fully ripe,
Quit a worn being without pain,
Perhaps to blossom soon again.
But now more serious see me grow,
And what I think, my Memmius, know.
Th' enthusiast's hope, and raptures wild,
Have never yet my reason foil'd.
His springy soul dilates like air,
When free from weight of ambient care,
And, hush'd in meditation deep,
Slides into dreams, as when asleep;
Then, fond of new discoveries grown,
Proves a Columbus of her own,
Disdains the narrow bounds of place,
And through the wilds of endless space,
Borne up on metaphysic wings,
Chases light forms and shadowy things,
And in the vague excursion caught,
Brings home some rare exotic thought.
The melancholy man such dreams,
As brightest evidence, esteems;
Fain would he see some distant scene
Suggested by his restless Spleen,
And Fancy's telescope applies
With tinctur'd glass to cheat his eyes.
Such thoughts, as love the gloom of night,
I close examine by the light;
For who, though brib'd by gain to lie,
Dare sunbeam-written truths deny,
And execute plain common sense
On faith's mere hearsay evidence?
That superstition mayn't create,
And club its ills with those of Fate,
I many a notion take to task,
Made dreadful by its visor-mask.
Thus scruple, spasm of the mind,
Is cur'd, and certainty I find,
Since optic reason shows me plain,
I dreaded spectres of the brain;
And legendary fears are gone,
Though in tenacious childhood sown.
Thus in opinions I commence
Freeholder in the proper sense,
And neither suit nor service do,
Nor homage to pretenders show,
Who boast themselves by spurious roll
Lords of the manor of the soul;
Preferring sense, from chin that's bare,
To nonsense thron'd in whisker'd hair.
To thee, Creator uncreate,
O Entium Ens! divinely great
Hold, Muse, nor melting pinions try,
Nor near the blazing glory fly,
Nor straining break thy feeble bow,
Unfeather'd arrows far to throw :
Through fields unknown nor madly stray
Where no ideas mark the way.
With tender eyes, and colors faint,
And trembling hands, forbear to paint
Who features veil'd by light can hit?
Where can, what has no outline, sit?
My soul, the vain attempt forego,
Thyself, the fitter subject, know
He wisely shuns the bold extreme,
Who soon lays by th' unequal theme,
Nor runs, with Wisdom's syrens caught,
On quicksands swall'wing shipwreck'd thought
But, conscious of his distance, gives
Mute praise, and humble negatives.
In one, no object of our sight,
Immutable, and infinite,
Who can't be cruel or unjust,
Calm and resign'd, I fix my trust;
To him my past and present state
I owe, and must my future fate.
A stranger into life I'm come,
Dying may be our going home,
Transported here by angry Fate,
The convicts of a prior state.
Hence I no anxious thoughts bestow
On matters I can never know;
Through life's foul way, like vagrant pass'd,
He'll grant a settlement at last,
And with sweet ease the wearied crown,
By leave to lay his being down.
If doom'd to dance th' eternal round
Of life no sooner lost but found,
And dissolution soon to come,
Like sponge, wipes out life's present sum,
But can't our state of pow'r bereave
An endless series to receive;
Then, if hard dealt with here by Fate,
We balance in another state,
And consciousness must go along,
And sign th' acquittance for the wrong.
He for his creatures must decree
More happiness than misery,
Or be supposed to create,
Curious to try, what 'tis to hate:
And do an act, which rage infers,
'Cause lameness halts, or blindness errs.
Thus, thus I steer my bark, and sail
On even keel with gentle gale;
At helm I make my reason sit,
My crew of passions all submit.
If dark and blust'ring prove some nights,
Philosophy puts forth her lights;
Experience holds the cautious glass,
To shun the breakers, as I pass,
And frequent throws the wary lead,
To see what dangers may be hid;
And once in seven years I'm seen
At Bath or Tunbridge, to careen.
Though pleas'd to see the dolphins play
I mind my compass and my way,
With store sufficient for relief,
And wisely still prepar'd to reef,
Nor wanting the dispersive bowl
Of cloudy weather in the soul,
I make, (may Heav'n propitious send
Such wind and weather to the end)
Neither becalm'd, nor over-blown,
Life's voyage to the world unknowr
ON BARCLAY'S APOLOGY FOR THE QUAKERS.*
THESE sheets primeval doctrines yield,
Where revelation is reveal'd;
Soul-phlegm from literal feeding bred,
Systems lethargic to the head
They purge, and yield a diet thin,
That turns to Gospel-chyle within.
Truth sublimate may here be seen
Extracted from the parts terrene.
In these is shown, how men obtain
What of Prometheus poets feign:
To Scripture plainness dress is brought,
And speech, apparel to the thought.
They hiss from instinct at red coats,
And war, whose work is cutting throats,
Forbid, and press the law of love;
Breathing the spirit of the dove.
Lucrative doctrines they detest,
As manufactur'd by the priest;
And throw down turnpikes, where we pay
For stuff, which never mends the way;
And tythes, a Jewish tax, reduce,
And frank the Gospel for our use.
They sable standing armies break;
But the militia useful make:
Since all unhir'd may preach and pray,
Taught by these rules as well as they;
Rules, which, when truths themselves reveal,
Bid us to follow what we feel.
The world can't hear the small still voice,
Such is its bustle and its noise;
Reason the proclamation reads,
But not one riot passion heeds.
Wealth, honor, power, the graces are,
Which here below our homage share:
They, if one votary they find
To mistress more divine inclin'd,
In truth's pursuit, t cause delay,
Throw golden apples in his way.
Place me, O Heav'n, in some retreat;
There let the serious death-watch beat,
There let me self in silence shun,
To feel thy will, which should be done.
Then comes the Spirit to our hut,
When fast the senses' doors are shut;
For so divine and pure a guest
The emptiest rooms are furnish'd best.
O Contemplation! air serene!
From damps of sense, and fogs of spleen!
Pure mount of thought! thrice holy ground,
Where grace, when waited for, is found.
Here 'tis the soul feels sudden youth,
And meets exulting, virgin Truth ;
Here, like a breeze of gentlest kind,
Impulses rustle through the mind:
Here shines that light with glowing face,
The fuse divine, that kindles grace;
Which, if we trim our lamps, will last,
Till darkness be by dying past.
And then goes out at end of night,
Extinguish'd by superior light.
Ah me! the heats and colds of life,
Pleasure's and pain's eternal strife,
Breed stormy passions, which confin'd,
Shake, like th' Eolian vale, the mind,
And raise despair; my lamp can last,
Plac'd where they drive the furious blast.
False eloquence! big empty sound!
Like showers that rush upon the ground!
Little beneath the surface goes,
All streams along, and muddy flows.
This sinks, and swells the buried grain,
And fructifies like southern rain.
His art, well hid in mild discourse,
Exerts persuasion's winning force,
And nervates so the good design,
That king Agrippa's case is mine.
Well-natur'd, happy shade forgive!
you I think, but cannot live.
Thy scheme requires the world's contempt,
That from dependence life exempt;
And constitution fram'd so strong,
This world's worst climate cannot wrong.
Not such my lot, not Fortune's brat,
I live by pulling off the hat;
Compell'd by station every hour
To bow to images of power;
And in life's busy scenes immers'd,
See better things, and do the worst.
Eloquent Want, whose reasons sway,
And make ten thousand truths give way,
While I your scheme with pleasure trace,
Draws near, and stares me in the face.
"Consider well your state," she cries,
"Like others kneel, that you may rise;
Hold doctrines, by no scruples vex'd,
To which preferment is annex'd;
Nor madly prove, where all depends,
Idolatry upon your friends.
See, how you like my rueful face,
Such you must wear, if out of place.
Crack'd is your brain to turn recluse
Without one farthing out at use.
They, who have lands, and safe bank-stock,
With faith so founded on a rock,
May give a rich invention ease,
And construe Scripture how they please.
The honor'd prophet, that of old Us'd Heav'n's high counsels to unfold, Did, more than courier angels, greet The crows, that brought him bread and meat.
*This celebrated book was written by its author, both in Latin and English, and was afterwards translated into High Dutch, Low Dutch, French, and Spanish, and probably into other languages. It has always been esteemed a very ingenious defence of the principles of Quakerism, even by those who deny the doctrines which it endeavors to establish. The author was born at Edinburgh in 1648, and received part of his education at the Scots College in Paris, where his uncle was principal. His father became WHEN I first came to London, I rambled about, one of the earliest converts to the new sect, and from his example, the son seems to have been induced to tread in his steps. He died on the 3d of October, 1690, in the 42 year of his age.
From sermon to sermon, took a slice and went out
Then on me, in divinity bachelor, tried
Many priests to obtrude a Levitical bride;
And urging their various opinions, intended
To make me wed systems, which they recommended.
Said a lech'rous old friar skulking near Lincoln'sinn,
(Whose trade's to absolve, but whose pastime's to sin;
Who, spider-like, seizes weak Protestant flies, Which hung in his sophistry cobweb he spies ;) "Ah! pity your soul; for without our church pale, If you happen to die, to be damn'd you can't fail; The Bible, you boast, is a wild revelation: Hear a church that can't err, if you hope for salvation."
Said a formal non-con, (whose rich stock of grace Lies forward expos'd in shop-window of face,) Ah! pity your soul: come, be of our sect:
For then you are safe, and may plead you're elect. As it stands in the Acts, we can prove ourselves saints,
Being Christ's little flock everywhere spoke against." Said a jolly church parson, (devoted to ease, While penal-law dragons guard his golden fleece,) If you pity your soul, I pray listen to neither; The first is in error, the last a deceiver:
That our's is the true church, the sense of our tribe is,
And surely in medio tutissimus ibis."
Said a yea and nay Friend, with a stiff hat and band,
(Who while he talk'd gravely would hold forth his hand,)
"Dominion and wealth are the aim of all three, Though about ways and means they may all disagree;
Then prithee be wise, go the Quaker's by-way, "Tis plain, without turnpikes, so nothing to pay."
WRITTEN BY MR GREEN, UNDER THE NAME OF PETER DRAKE, A FISHERMAN OF BRENTFORD.
Printed in the year 1732, but not published.
Scilicet hic possis curvo dignoscere rectum, Atque inter silvas Academi quærere verum.
Say, father Thames, whose gentle pace
Gives leave to view what beauties grace
Your flow'ry banks, if you have seen
The much-sung Grotto of the queen.
Contemplative, forget awhile
Oxonian towers, and Windsor's pile,
And Wolsey's pridet (his greatest guilt)
And what great William since has built,
And flowing fast by Richmond scenes,
(Honor'd retreat of two great queensi)
From Sion-House, whose proud survey
Browbeats your flood, look 'cross the way,
And view, from highest swell of tide,
The milder scenes of Surrey side.
Though yet no palace grace the shore,
To lodge that pair you should adore;
Nor abbeys, great in ruin, rise,
Royal equivalents for vice;
Behold a grot, in Delphic grove,
The Graces' and the Muses' love.
(O, might our laureate study here,
How would he hail his new-born year!)
A temple from vain glories free,
Whose goddess is Philosophy,
Whose sides such licens'd idols crown
As Superstition would pull down:
The only pilgrimage I know,
That men of sense would choose to go:
Which sweet abode, her wisest choice,
Urania cheers with heavenly voice,
While all the Virtues gather round,
To see her consecrate the ground.
If thou, the god with winged feet,
In council talk of this retreat,
And jealous gods resentment show
At altars rais'd to men below;
Tell those proud lords of Heaven, 'tis fit
Their house our heroes should admit;
While each exists, as poets sing,
A lazy, lewd immortal thing,
They must (or grow in disrepute)
With Earth's first commoners recruit.
Needless it is in terms unskill'd
To praise whatever Boyle § shall build ;
Needless it is the busts to name
Of men, monopolists of fame;
Four chiefs adorn the modest stone,
For virtue as for learning known;
The thinking sculpture helps to raise
Deep thoughts, the genii of the place:
Our wits Apollo's influence beg,
The Grotto makes them all with egg:
Finding this chalkstone in my nest,
I strain, and lay among the rest.
ADIEU awhile, forsaken flood,
To ramble in the Delian wood,
And pray the god my well-meant song
May not my subject's merit wrong.
* A building in Richmond Gardens, erected by Queen Caroline, and committed to the custody of Stephen Duck. At the time this poem was written, many other verses appeared on the same subject.
† Hampton Court, begun by Cardinal Wolsey, and improved by King William III.
Queen Anne, consort to King Richard II. and Queen Elizabeth, both died at Richmond.
Sion-House is now a seat belonging to the Duke of Northumberland.
Richard Boyle, Earl of Burlington, a nobleman remarkable for his fine taste in architecture. "Never were protection and great wealth more generously and judiciously diffused than by this great person, who had every quality of a genius and artist, except envy." He died December
The author should have said five; there being the busts of Newton, Locke, Wollaston, Clarke, and Boyle
To the mind's ear, and inward sight,
Their silence speaks, and shade gives light:
While insects from the threshold preach,
And minds dispos'd to musing teach:
Proud of strong limbs and painted hues,
They perish by the slightest bruise;
Or maladies, begun within,
Destroy more slow life's frail machine;
From maggot-youth through change of state,
They feel like us the turns of fate;
Some born to creep have liv'd to fly,
And change earth-cells for dwellings high;
And some that did their six wings keep,
Before they died been forc'd to creep;
They politics like ours profess,
The greater prey upon the less:
Some strain on foot huge loads to bring,
Some toil incessant on the wing,
And in their different ways explore
Wise sense of want by future store;
Nor from their vigorous schemes desist
Till death, and then are never miss'd.
Some frolic, toil, marry, increase,
Are sick and well, have war and peace,
And, broke with age, in half a day
Yield to successors, and away.
Let not profane this sacred place,
Hypocrisy with Janus' face;
Or Pomp, mixt state of pride and care;
Court Kindness, Falsehood's polish'd ware;
Scandal disguis'd in Friendship's veil,
That tells, unask'd, th' injurious tale;
Or art politic, which allows
The Jesuit-remedy for vows;
Or pri est, perfuming crowned head,
"Till in a swoon Truth lies for dead;
Or tawdry critic, who perceives
No grace, which plain proportion gives,
And more than lineaments divine
Admires the gilding of the shrine;
Or that self-haunting spectre Spleen,
In thickest fog the clearest seen;
Or Prophecy, which dreams a lie,
That fools believe and knaves apply;
Or frolic Mirth, profanely loud,
And happy only in a crowd;
Or Melancholy's pensive gloom,
Proxy in Contemplation's room.
O Delia! when I touch this string,
To thee my Muse directs her wing.
Unspotted fair! with downcast look
Mind not so much the murm'ring brook;
Nor fixt in thought, with footsteps slow
Through cypress alleys cherish woe:
I see the soul in pensive fit,
And moping like sick linnet sit.
With dewy eye, and moulting wing,
Unperch'd, averse to fly or sing;
I see the favorite curls begin
(Disus'd to toilet discipline)
To quit their post, lose their smart air,
And grow again like common hair;
And tears, which frequent kerchiefs dry,
Raise a red circle round the eye;
And by this bur about the Moon,
Conjecture more ill weather soon.
Love not so much the doleful knell:
And news the boding night-birds tell;
Nor watch the wainscot's hollow blow;
And hens portentous when they crow;
Nor sleepless mind the death-watch beat;
In taper find no winding-sheet:
Nor in burnt coal a coffin see,
Though thrown at others, meant for thee:
Or when the coruscation gleams,
Find out not first the bloody streams;
Nor in imprest remembrance keep
Grim tap'stry figures wrought in sleep;
Nor rise to see in antique hall
The moonlight monsters on the wall,
And shadowy spectres darkly pass
Trailing their sables o'er the grass,
Let vice and guilt act how they please
In souls, their conquer'd provinces;
By Heaven's just charter it appears,
Virtue's exempt from quartering fears,
Shall then arm'd fancies fiercely drest,
Live at discretion in your breast?
Be wise, and panic fright disdain,
As notions, meteors of the brain;
And sights perform'd, illusive scene!
By magic-lantern of the Spleen.
Come here, from baleful cares releas'd,
With Virtue's ticket, to a feast,
Where decent Mirth and Wisdom, join'd
In stewardship, regale the mind.
Call back the Cupids to your eyes,
I see the godlings with surprise,
Not knowing home in such a plight,
Fly to and fro, afraid to light.-
Far from my theme, from method far,
Convey'd in Venus' flying car,
I go compell'd by feather'd steeds,
That scorn the rein, when Delia leads.
No daub of elegiac strain
These holy wars shall ever stain;
As spiders Irish wainscot flee,
Falsehood with them shall disagree;
This floor let not the vulgar tread,
Who worship only what they dread:
Nor bigots who but one way see
Through blinkers of authority.
Nor they who its four saints defame
By making virtue but a name;
Nor abstract wit, (painful regale
To hunt the pig with slippery tail!)
Artists, who richly chase their thought,
Gaudy without, but hollow wrought,
And beat too thin, and tool'd too much
To bear the proof and standard touch.
Nor fops to guard this sylvan ark,
With necklace bells in treble bark:
Nor cynics growl and fiercely paw,
The mastiffs of the moral law.
Come, nymph, with rural honors drest,
Virtue's exterior form confest,
With charms untarnish'd, innocence
Display, and Eden shall commence ;
When thus you come in sober fit,
And wisdom is preferr'd to wit;
And looks diviner graces tell,
Which don't with giggling muscles dwell,
And Beauty like the ray-clipt Sun,
With bolder eye we look upon;
Learning shall with obsequious mien
Tell all the wonders she has seen;
Reason her logic armor quit,
And proof to mild persuasion sit;
Religion with free thought dispense,
And cease crusading against sense;
Philosophy and she embrace,
And their first league again take place:
And Morals pure, in duty bound,
Nymph-like the sisters chief surround;
Nature shall smile, and round this cell
The turf to your light pressure swell,
And knowing Beauty by her shoe,
Well air its carpet from the dew.
The Oak, while you his umbrage deck,
Lets fall his acorns in your neck;
Zephyr his civil kisses gives,
And plays with curls instead of leaves :
Birds, seeing you, believe it spring,
And during their vacation sing;
And flow'rs lean forward from their seats,
To traffic in exchange of sweets;
And angels bearing wreaths descend,
Preferr'd as vergers to attend
This fane, whose deity entreats
The fair to grace its upper seats.
O kindly view our letter'd strife,
And guard us through polemic life;
From poison vehicled in praise,
For Satire's shots but slightly graze;
We claim your zeal, and find within,
Philosophy and you are kin.
What virtue is we judge by you;
For actions right are beauteous too;
By tracing the sole female mind,
We best what is true nature find:
Your vapors bred from fumes declare
How steams create tempestuous air,
Till gushing tears and hasty rain
Make Heav'n and you serene again.
Our travels through the starry skies
Were first suggested by your eyes;
We, by the interposing fan,
Learn how eclipses first began:
The vast ellipse from Scarbro's home,
Describes how blazing comets roam:
The glowing colors of the cheek
Their origin from Phœbus speak;
Our watch how Luna strays above
Feels like the care of jealous love;
And all things we in science know
From your known love for riddles flow.
Father! forgive, thus far I stray, Drawn by attraction from my way. Mark next with awe the foundress well Who on these banks delights to dwell; You on the terrace see her plain, Move like Diana with her train. If you then fairly speak your mind, In wedlock since with Isis join'd, You'll own, you never yet did see, At least in such a high degree, Greatness delighted to undress; Science a sceptred hand caress; A queen the friends of freedom prize; A woman wise men canonize.
I LATELY saw, what now I sing, Fair Lucia's hand display'd; This finger grac'd a diamond ring, On that a sparrow play'd.
The feather'd play thing she caress'd, She strok'd its head and wings; And while it nestled on her breast, She lisp'd the dearest things.
With chisel'd bill a spark ill-set
He loosen'd from the rest, And swallow'd down to grind his meat, The easier to digest.
She seiz'd his bill with wild affright,
Her diamond to descry:
"Twas gone! she sicken'd at the sight,
Moaning her bird would die.
The tongue-tied knocker none might use, The curtains none undraw,
The footmen went without their shoes, The street was laid with straw.
The doctor us'd his oily art
Of strong emetic kind, Th' apothecary play'd his part, And engineer'd behind.
When physic ceas'd to spend its store,
To bring away the stone,
Dicky, like people given o'er,
Picks up, when let alone.
His eyes dispell'd their sickly dews,
He peck'd behind his wing;
Lucia, recovering at the news,
Relapses for the ring.
Meanwhile within her beauteous breast
Two different passions strove; When av'rice ended the contest,
And triumph'd over love.
Poor little, pretty, fluttering thing,
Thy pains the sex display,
Who, only to repair a ring,
Could take thy life away.
fair Drive av'rice from your breasts, ye Monster of foulest mien: Ye would not let it harbor there,
Could but its form be seen.
It made a virgin put on guile,
Truth's image break her word,
A Lucia's face forbear to smile,
A Venus kill her bird.