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The great and small but rarely meet
Plebeians must surrender,
Obscurity with splendor.
Some are so placid and serene,
They sleep secure from waking; And are indeed a bog, that bears Your unparticipated cares,
Unmov'd and without quaking.
Courtier and patriot cannot mix
Without an effervescence,
A friendly coalescence.
Religion should extinguish strife,
But friends that chance to differ
No combatants are stiffer.
To prove at last my main intent
No cutting and contrivingSeeking a real friend, we seem T'adopt the chymists' golden dream,
With still less hope of thriving.
Sometimes the fault is all our own, Some blemish in due time made known,
By trespass or omission ; Sometimes occasion brings to light Our friend's defect long hid from sight,
And even from suspicion.
Then judge yourself and prove your man As circumspectly as you can,
And, having made election, Beware no negligence of yours, Such as a friend but ill endures,
Enseeble his affection.
That secrets are a sacred trust,
That constancy befits them,
And all the world admits them.
But 'tis not timber, lead, and stone, An architect requires alone,
To finish a fine buildingThe palace were but half complete, If he could possibly forget
The carving and the gilding.
As similarity of mind,
First fixes our attention ;
Must save it from declension.
Some act upon this prudent plan,
Safe policy, but hateful
Unpleasant and ungrateful.
No subterfuge or pleading
A spy on my proceeding.
Of evils yet unmention'd
To be at least expedient,
A principal ingredient.
Though some have turn'd and turn'd it
Have not, it seems, discern'd it.
To mortify and grieve me,
Or may my friend deceive me.
studiis florens ignobilis oti.
Virg. Georg d. iv.
HACKNEY'D in business, wearied at that oar
All wish, or seem to wish, they could forego);
And add a smile to what was sweet before, He may possess the joys he thinks he sees, Lay his old age upon the lap of Ease, Improve the remnant of his wasted span, And, having liv'd a trifler, die a man.
The man that hails you Torn or Jack,
How he esteems your merit,
To pardon or to bear it.
Thus Conscience pleads her cause within the breast, At such a sight to catch the poet's flame,
“ These are thy glorious works, thou source of good
This universal frame, thus wondrous fair; From cities humming with a restless crowd, Thy pow'r divine, and bounty beyond thought, Sordid as active, ignorant as loud,
Ador'd and prais'd in all that thou hast wrought.
I may resemble thee, and call thee mine."
The recompense that arts or arms can yield, In the last scene of such a senseless play,
The bar, the senate, or the tented field, True wisdom will attend his feeble call,
Compar'd with this sublimest life below, And grace his action ere the curtain fall.
Ye kings and rulers, what have courts to show ! Souls, that have long despis'd their heav'nly birth, Thus studied, us'd and consecrated thus, Their wishes all impregnated with Earth,
On Earth what is, seems form'd indeed for us For threescore years employ'd with ceaseless care Not as the plaything of a froward child, In catching smoke and feeding upon air,
Fretful unless diverted and beguild, Conversant only with the ways of man,
Much less to feed and fan the fatal fires Rarely redeem the short remaining ten.
Of pride, ambition, or impure desires, Invet'rate habits choke th' unfruitful heart, But as a scale, by which the soul ascends Their fibres penetrate its tend'rest part,
From mighty means to more important ends, And, draining its nutritious pow’rs to feed Securely, though by steps but rarely trod, Their noxious growth, starve ev'ry better seed. Mounts from inferior beings up to God,
Happy, if full of days—but happier far, And sees, by no fallacious light or dim, If. ere we yet discern life's ev’ning-star,
Earth made for man, and man himself for him. Sick of the service of a world, that feeds
Not that I mean t'approve, or would enforce Its patient drudges with dry chaff and weeds, A superstitious and monastic course : We can escape from Custom's idiot sway,
Truth is not local, God alike pervades To serve the Sov'reign we were born l' obey. And fills the world of traffic and the shades, Then sweet to muse upon his skill display'd And may be fear'd amidst the busiest scenes, (Infinite skill) in all thai he has made!
Or scorn'd where business never intervenes. To trace in Nature's most minute design
But 'tis not easy, with a mind like ours, The signature and stamp of power divine, Conscious of weakness in its noblest pow’rs, Contrivance intricate, express'd with ease,
And in a world, where, other ills apart, Where unassisted sight no beauty sees,
The roving eye misleads the careless heart, The shapely limb and lubricated joint,
To limit thought, by nature prone to stray Within the small dimensions of a point,
Wherever freakish fancy points the way; Muscle and nerve miraculously spun,
To bid the pleadings of Self-love be still, His mighty work, who speaks and it is done, Resign our own, and seek our Maker's will; Th' invisible in things scarce seen reveald, To spread the page of Scripture, and compare To whom an atom is an ample field ;
Our conduct with the laws engraven there ; To wonder at a thousand insect forms,
To measure all that passes in the breast, These hatch'd and those resuscitated worms, Faithfully, fairly, by that sacred test ; New life ordain'd and brighter scenes to share; To dive into the secret deeps within, Once prone on earth, now buoyant upon air, To spare no passion and no fav’rite sin, Whose shape would make them, had they bulk and size, And search the themes, important above all, More hideous foes than fancy can devise ; Ourselves, and our recov'ry from our fall. With helmet-heads, and dragon-scales adorn'd, But leisure, silence, and a mind releas'd The mighty myriads, now securely scorn'd, From anxious thoughts how wealth may be increas . Would mock the majesty of man's high birth, How to secure in some propitious hour, Despise his bulwarks, and unpeople earth : The point of int'rest, or the post of pow'r, Then with a glance of fancy to survey,
A soul serene, and equally retir'd Far as the faculty can stretch away,
From objects too much dreaded or desir'd, Ten thousand rivers pour'd at his command Safe from the clamors of perverse dispute, From urns, that never fail, through ev'ry land; At least are friendly to the great pursuit. These like a deluge with impetuous force,
Op'ning the map of God's extensive plan, Those winding modestly a silent course;
We find a little isle this life of man; The cloud-surmounting Alps, the fruitful vales; Eternity's unknown expanse appears Seas, on which ev'ry nation spreads her sails ; Circling around and limiting his years. The Sun, a world whence other worlds drink light, The busy race examine and explore The crescent Moon, the diadem of night; Each creek and cavern of the dang rous shore, Stars countless, each in his appointed place, With care collect what in their eyes excels
, Fast anchor'd in the deep abyss of space
Some shining pebbles, and some weeds and shell:
Thus laden, dream that they are rich and great, In sighs he worships his supremely fair,
Wins in return an answer of disdain.
Rough elm, or smooth-graind ash, or glossy beech, A few forsake the throng; with lifted eyes In spiral rings ascends the trunk, and lays Ask wealth of Heav'n, and gain a real prize, Her golden tassels on the leafy sprays, Truth, wisdom, grace, and peace, like that above, But does a mischief while she lends a grace, Seald with his signet, whom they serve and love; Strait’ning its growth by such a strict embrace; Scorn'd by the rest, with patient hope they wait So love, that clings around the noblest minds, A kind release from their imperfect state,
Forbids th' advancement of the soul he binds ; And, unregretted, are soon snatch'd away
The suitor's air, indeed, he soon improves, From scenes of sorrow into glorious day.
And forms it to the taste of her he loves, Nor these alone prefer a life recluse,
Teaches his eyes a language, and no less Who seek retirement for its proper use;
Refines his speech, and fashions his address; The love of change, that lives in ev'ry breast, But farewell promises of happier fruits, Genius and temper, and desire of rest,
Manly designs, and learning's grave pursuits ; Discordant motives in one centre meet,
Girt with a chain he cannot wish to break, And each inclines its vot'ry to retreat.
His only bliss is sorrow for her sake;
Who will may pant for glory and excel,
Thyrsis, Alexis, or whatever name
And lovers, of all creatures, tame or wild, Or forest, where the deer securely roves,
Can least brook management, however mild, The fall of waters, and the song of birds,
Yet let a poet (poetry disarms And hills that echo to the distant herds,
The fiercest animals with magic charms) Are luxuries excelling all the glare
Risk an intrusion on thy pensive mood,
Pastoral images and still retreats,
Sweet birds in concert with harmonious streams,
Are all enchantments in a case like thine, The clouds that flit, or slowly float away,
Conspire against thy peace with one design, Nature in all the various shapes she wears,
Soothe thee to make thee but a surer prey, Frowning in storms, or breathing gentle airs, And feed the fire that wastes thy pow'rs away. The snowy robe her wintry state assumes,
Up—God has form'd thee with a wiser view, Her summer heats, her fruits, and her perfumes, Not to be led in chains, but to subdue; All, all alike transport the glowing hard,
Calls thee to cope with enemies, and first Success in rhyme his glory and reward.
Points out a confliet with thyself, the worst.
Woman, indeed, a gift he would bestow
Deserves to be belov'd, but not ador’d.
Post away swiftly to more active scenes, Thy genuine charms, and guide an artless hand, Collect the scatter'd truths that study gleans, That I may caich a fire but rarely known,
Mix with the world, but with its wiser part, Give useful light, though I should miss renown, No longer give an image all thine heart; And, poring on thy page, whose ev'ry line
Its empire is not hers, nor is it thine, Bears proof of an intelligence divine,
"Tis God's just claim, prerogative divine. May feel a heart enrich'd by what it pays,
Virtuous and faithful Heberden, whose skill That builds its glory on its Maker's praise.
Attempts no task it cannot well fulfil, Woe to the man, whose wit disclaims its use, Gives melancholy up to Nature's care, Glitt'ring in vain, or only to seduce,
And sends the patient into purer air. Who studies Nature with a wanton eye,
Look where he comes in this embower'd alcove Admires the work, but slips the lesson by;
Stand close conceal'd, and see a statue move : His hours of leisure and recess employs
Lips busy, and eyes fix'd, foot falling slow, In drawing pictures of forbidden joys,
Arms hanging idly down, hands clasp'd below, Retires to blazon his own worthless name,
Interpret to the marking eye distress, Or shoot the careless with a surer aim.
Such as its symptoms can alone express. The lover, too, shuns business and alarms, That tongue is silent now; that silent tongue Tender idolater of absent charms.
Could argue once, could jest or join the song, Saints offer nothing in their warmest pray’rs, Could give advice, could censure or commend. That he devotes not with a zeal like theirs ; Or charm the sorrows of a drooping friend. 'Tis consecration of his heart, soul, time,
Renounc'd alike its office and its sport And ev'ry thought that wanders is a crime. ¡Its brisker and its graver strains fall short; 93
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Both fail beneath a fever's secret sway,
Ye groves, (the statesman at his desk exclaims And like a summer-brook are past away.
Sick of a thousand disappointed aims.) This is a sight for Pity to peruse,
My patrimonial treasure and my pride, Till she resemble faintly what she views,
Beneath your shades your grey possessor hide, Till Sympathy contract a kindred pain,
Receive me languishing for that repose, Pierc'd with the woes that she laments in vain. The servant of the public never knows. This, of all maladies that man intest,
Ye saw me once (ah those regretted days, Claims most compassion and receives the least : When boyish innocence was all my praise !) Job felt it, when he groan'd beneath the rod Hlour after hour delightfully allot And the barb'd arrows of a frowning God; To studies then familiar, since forgot, And such emollients as his friends could spare, And cultivate a taste for ancient song, Friends such as his for modern Jobs prepare. Catching its ardor as I mus'd along; Blest, rather curst, with hearts that never feel, Nor seldom, as propitious Heav'n might send, Kept snug in caskets of close-hammer'd steel, What once I valued, and could boast, a friend, With mouths made only to grin wide and cat, Were witnesses how cordially I press'd And minds, that deem derided pain a treat, His undissembling virtue to my breast; With limbs of British oak, and nerves of wire, Receive me now, not uncorrupt as then, And wit that puppet-prompters might inspire, Nor guiltless of corrupting other men, Their soy'reign nostrum is a clumsy joke,
But vers'd in arts, that, while they seem to stay Or pangs enforc'd with God's severest stroke. A falling empire, basten its decay. But with a soul, that ever felt the sting
To the fair haven of my native home, of sorrow, sorrow is a sacred thing:
The wreck of what I was, fatigued I come; Not to molest, or irritate, or raise
For once I can approve the patriot's voice, A laugh at his expense, is slender praise ; And make the course he recommends my choice He, that has not usurp'd the name of man, We meet at last in one sincere desire, Does all, and deems 100 litile all, he can,
His wish and mine both prompi me to retire. T'assuage the throbbings of a fester'd part, "Tis done--he steps into the welcome chaise, And stanch the bleedings of a broken heart. Lolls at his ease behind four handsome bays, "Tis not, as heads that never ache suppose, That whirl away from business and debate Forg'ry of fancy, and a dream of woes ;
The disencumber'd Atlas of the state. Man is a harp, whose chords elude the sight, Ask not the boy, who, when the brecze of morn Each yielding harmony dispos'd aright;
First shakes the glitt'ring drops from ev'ry thom, The screws revers d, (a task which, if he please, Unfolds his flock, then under bank or bush God in a moment executes with ease,)
Sits linking cherry-stones, or platting rush, Ten thousand thousand strings at once go loose, How fair is Freedom ?-he was always free : Lost, till he tune them, all their power and use. To carve his rustic name upon a tree, Then neither heathy.wilds, nor scenes as fair To snare the mole, or with ill-fashion'd hook As ever recompens'd the peasant's care,
To draw th' incautious minnow from the brook, Nor soft declivities with tufted hills,
Are life's prime pleasures in his simple view, Nor view of waters turning busy mills,
His flock the chief concern he ever knew; Parks in which Art preceptress Nature weds, She shines but little in his heedless eyes, Nor gardens interspers'd with flow'ry beds, The good we never miss we rarely prize : Nor gales, that catch the scent of blooming groves, But ask the noble drudge in state affairs, And wait it to the mourner as he roves,
Escap'd from office and its constant cares, Can call up life into his faded eye,
What charms he sees in Freedom's smile express d. That passes all he sees unheeded by;
In Freedom lost so long, now repossessid ; No wounds like those a wounded spirit feels, The tongue, whose strains were cogent as an No cure for such, till God who makes them heals.
mands, And thou, sad suff’rer under nameless ill,
Rever'd at home, and felt in foreign lands, That yields not to the touch of human skill, Shall own itself a stamm'rer in that cause, Improve the kind occasion, understand
Or plead its silence as its best applause. A Father's frown, and kiss his chast'ning hand. He knows indeed that whether dress d or rude, To thee the day-spring, and the blaze of noon, Wild without art, or arifully subdued, The purple ev'ning, and resplendent Moon, Nature in ev'ry form inspires delight, The stars, that, sprinkled o'er the vault of night, But never mark'd her with so just a sight. Seem drops descending in a show'r of light, Her hedge-row shrubs, a variegated store, Shine not, or undesir'd and hated shine,
With woodbine and wild roses mantled o'er, Seen through the medium of a cloud like thine: Green balks and furrow'd lands, the stream tha Yet seek hiin, in his favor life is found,
spreads All bliss beside a shadow or a sound :
Its cooling vapor o'er the dewy meads,
That melt and fade into the distant sky,
Beauties he lately slighied as he passid, Borrowing a beauty from the works of grace, Seemn all created since he travel'd last. Shall be despis'd and overlook'd no more, Master of all th' enjoyments he designd, Shall fill thee with delights unfelt before,
No rough annoyance rankling in his mind, Impart to things inanimate a voice,
What early philosophic hours he keeps, And bid her mountains and her hills rejoice; How regular his meals, how sonnd he sleeps! The sound shall run along the winding vales, No sounder he, that on the mainmast-head, And thou enjoy an Eden ere it fails.
While morning kindles with a windy red,
Begins a long look-out for distant land,
And ignorance of better things makes man,
Th'unpitied victim of ill-judg'd expense,
With one consent to rush into the sea.But nowhere with a current so serene,
Ocean exhibits, fathomless and broad, Or half so clear, as in the rural scene.
Much of the pow'r and majesty of God. Yet how fallacious is all earthly blies,
He swathes about the swelling of the deep, What obvious truths the wisest heads may miss! That shines and rests, as infants smile and sleep; Some pleasures live a month, and some a year, Vast as it is, it answers as it flows But short the date of all we gather here;
The breathing of the lightest air that blows; No happiness is felt except the true,
Curling and whitning over all the waste,
Abrupt and horrid as the tempest roars,
Till he, that rides the whirlwind, checks the rein, The spot he lov'd has lost the pow'r to please ;
Then all the world of waters sleeps again.To cross his ambling pony day by day,
Nereids or Dryads, as the fashion leads, Seems at the best but dreaming lise away;
Now in the floods, now panting in the meads, The prospect, such as might enchant despair, Vot'ries of Pleasure still, where'er she dwells, He views it not, or sees no beauty there;
Near barren rocks, in palaces, or cells, With aching heart, and discontented looks, O grant a poet leave to recommend Returns at noon to billiards or to books,
(A poet fond of Nature, and your friend) But feels, while grasping at his faded joys, Her slighted works to your admiring view; A secret thirst of his renounc'd employs.
Her works must needs excel, who fashion'd you. He chides the tardiness of ev'ry post,
Would ye, when rambling in your morning ride, Pants to be told of battles won or lost,
With some unmeaning coxcomb at your side, Blames his own indolence, observes, though late, Condemn the pratiler for his idle pains, "Tis criminal to leave a sinking state,
To waste unheard the music of his strains, Flies to the levée, and, receiv'd with grace,
And, deaf to all th' impertinence of tongue, Kneels, kisses hands, and shines again in place. That, while it courts, affronts and does you wrong Suburban villas, highway-side retreats,
Mark well the finish'd plan without a fault, That dread the encroachment of our growing streets, The seas globose and huge, ih' o'er-arching vault, Tight boxes, neatly sash'd, and in a blaze
Earth's millions daily fed, a world employ'd With all a July sun's collected rays,
In gath'ring plenty yet to be enjoy'd, Delight the citizen, who, gasping there,
Till gratitude grew vocal in the praise Breathes clouds of dust, and calls it country air.
of God, beneficent in all his ways; O sweet retirement, who would balk the thought, Grac'd with such wisdom, how would beauty shine! That could afford retirement, or could not ?
Ye want but that to seem indeed divine.
Not to redeem his time, but his estate,
Sighs o'er the beauties of the charming scene. But still 'tis rural-trees are to be seen
Nature indeed looks prettily in rhyme; From ev'ry window, and the fields are green; Streams tinkle sweetly in poetic chime: Ducks paddle in the pond before the door,
The warblings of the blackbird, clear and strong, And whas could a remoter scene show more ? Are musical enough in Thomson's song; A sense of elegance we rarely find
And Cobham's groves, and Windsor's green retreats, The portion of a mean or vulgar mind,
When Pope describes them, have a thousand sweels