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One thinks on Calvin Heav'n's own spirit fell;
Another deems him instrument of hell :
If Calvin feel Heav'n's blessing or its rod,
This cries there is, and that there is no God.
What shocks one part will edify the rest;
Nor with one system can they all be blest.
The very best will variously incline,
And what rewards your virtue punish mine.
Whatever is is right.---This world 'tis true,
Was made for Cæsar---but for Titus too :
And which more bless'd whochain'd his country, say,
Og he whose virtue sigh'd to lose a day?
"But sometimes virtue starves while vice is sed."
What thep? is the reward of virtue bread?
That vice may merit; 'tis the price of toil;
The knave deserves it when he tills the soil,
The koare deserves it when he tempts the main,
Where folly fights for kings or dives for gain.
The good man may be weak, be indoleni;
Nor is his claim to plenty but content.
But grant him riches, your demand is o’er?
"No---shall the good want health, the good want
pow'r?" Add health and pow'r, and every earthly thing. **Why hounded pow'r? why private ? why no king? Nay, why external for internal given ? Why is not man a god, and earth a heav'n?” Who ask and reason thus will scarce conceive God gives enough while he has more to give : Immense the pow'r, immense were the demand; Say at what part of nature will they stand ?--
What nothing earthly gives or can destroy, The soal's calm sunshine and the heartfelt joy, Is virtue's prize. A better would you fix ? Then give humility a coach and six, Justice a conqueror's sword, or truth a gown, Or public spirit its great cure, a crown, Weak, foolish man! will Heav'n reward us there With the same trash mad mortals wish for here? The boy and man an individual makes, Yet sigh’st thou now for apples and for cakes? Go, like the Indian, in another life, Expect thy dog, thy bottle, and thy wife; As well as dreáin such tribles are assignà,
As toys and empires, for a godlike mind:
Rewards, that either would to virtue bring
No joy, or be destructive of the thing..
How oft by these at sixty are undone
The virtues of a saint at twenty-one !
To whom can riches give repute or trust,
Content or pleasure, but the good and just ?
Judges and senates have been bought for gold;
Esteem and love were never to be sold.
O fool! to think God hates the worthy mind,
The lover and the love of human kind,
Whose life is healthful, and whose conscience clear,
Pecause he wants a thousand pound a year,
Honor and shame from no condition rise,
Act well your part, there all the honour lies.
Fortune in men has some difference made,
One flaunts in rags, one flutlers in brocade;
The cobbler apron'd, and the parson yown'd,
The friar hooded, and the monarch crown'd.
- What differ more (you cry) than crown and cowl?":
I'll tell you, friend, a wise man and a fool.
You'll find, if once the monarch acts the monk,
Or, cobbler-like, the parson will be drunk---
Worth makes the man, and want of it the sellow;
The rest is all but leather and prunella.
Stuck o'er with titles, and hung round with
strings; That thou mayst be by kings, or whores of kings. Boast the pure blood of an illustr ous race, In quiet flow from Lucrece to Lucrece: But by your father's worth if your's you rate, Count me those only who were good and great. Go! if your ancieni but ignoble blood Has crept Urough scoundrels ever since the flood; Go! and pretend your family is young, Nor own your fathers have been fools so long. What can ennoble sots, or slaves, or cowards ?-Alas! not all the blood of all the Howards. Look next on greatness: say where greatness lies? - Where but among the heroes and the wise ?" Heroes are much the same, the point's agreed, From Macedonia's madm in to the Swede; The whole strange purpose of their lives to find Or make an enemy of all mankind!
Not one looks backward, onward still he goes,
Yet ne'er looks forward further than his nose.
No less alike the politic and wise;
All sly-slow things with circumspective eyes:
Men in the loose unguarded hours they take,
Not that themselves are wise, but others weak.
But grant that those can conquer, these can cheat:
'Tis phrase absurd to call a villain great:
Who wickedly is wise, or madly brave,
Is but the more a fool, the more a knave,
Wbo noble ends by noble means obtains,
Or failing, smiles in exile or in chains,
Like good Aurelius let him reign, or bleed
Like Socrates;--that man is great indeed.
What's fame? a fancied life in others' breath :
A thing beyond us, ev'n before our death ;
Just what you hear you have : and what's unknoir?:
The same (my lord) if Tully's or your own.
All that we feel of it begins and ends
In tbe small circle of our foes and friends;
To all beside as much an empty shade,
An Eugene living as a Cæsar dead;
Alike or when or where, they shone or shinc,
Or on the Rubicon or on the Rhine.
A wit's a feather, and a chief a rod :
An honest man's the noblest work of God.
Fame but from death a villain's name can save
As justice tears his body from the grave;,
When what t'oblivion better were resign'd
Is hung on high, to poison half mankind.
All fame is foreign but of true desert,
Plays round the head, but comes not to the heart :
One self-approving hour whole years outweighs
Of stupid starers and of loud huzzas;
And more true joy Marcellus exil'd feels
Than Cæsar with a senate at his heels.
In parts superior what advantage lies?
Tell (for you can) what is it to be wise?
'Tis but to know how little can be known,
To see all other's faults, and feel our own :
Condemn'd in business or in arts to drudge,
Without a second, or without a judge :
Truths would you tench, or save a sinking land?
All fear, none aid you, and few understand.
Painful pre-eminence! yourself to view
Above life's weakness and its comforts too
Bring then these blessings to a strict account:
Make fair deductions; see to what they 'mount ;
How much of other each is sure to cost;
How each for other oft is wholly lost ;
How inconsistent greater goods with these ;
How sometimes life is risk'd, and always ease;
Think, and if still the things thy envy call,
Say wouldst thou be the man to whom they fall ?
To sigh for ribbands if thou art so silly,.
Mark how they grace Lord Umbra or Sir Billy.
Is yellow dirt the passion of thy life?
Look but on Gripús or on Gripus' wife.
If paris allure thee, think how Bacon shin'd,
The wisest, brightest, meanest, of mankind!
Or ravish'd with the whistling of a name,
See Cromwell damn'd to everlasting fame!
If all united thy ambition call,
From ancient story learn to scorn them all :
There in the rich, the honour'd, fam'd, and great,
See the false scale of happiness complete !
In hearts of kings or arms of queens who lay,
How happy! those to ruin, these betray.
Mark by what wretched steps their glory grows,
From dirt and sea-weed, as proud Venice rose ;
In each how guilt and greatness equal ran,
And all that rais'd the hero sunk the man ;
Now Europe's laurels on their brows behold,
But stain'd with blood, or ill exchang'd for gold;
Then see tliem broke with toils, or sunk in case,
Or infamous for plunder'd provinces.
O wealth ill-fated !' which no act of fame
E'er taught to shine, cr sanctified from shame!
What greater bliss attends their close of life?
Some greedy minion, or imperious wife,
The trophied arches, storied halls invade,
And haunt their slumbers in the pompous shade.
Alas! not dazzled with their noon-tide ray,
Compute the morn and evening to the day;
The whole amount of that enormous fame,
A tale that blends their glory with their shame!
Know then this truth (enough for man to know), - Virtue alone is happiness below:"
The only point where human bliss stands still,
And tastes the good without the fall to il;
Where only merit constant pay receives,
ts bless'd in what it takes and what it gives;
The joy unequall'd if its end it gain,
And, if it lose, attended with no pain ;
Without satiety, though e'er so bless'd,
And but more relish'd as the more distress'd :
The broadest mirth unfeeling folly wears,
Less pleasing far than virtue's very tears :
Good from each object. from each place acquirid,
For ever exercis'd, yet never tir'd:
Never elated while one man's oppressed;
Never dejected while another's bless'd;
And where no wants no wishes can remain;
Since but to wish niore virtue is to gain.
See the sole bliss Heav'n could on all bestow !
Wbicle who but feels can taste, but thinks can know;
Yet poor with fortune, and with learning blind,
The bad must miss, the good untaught will find;
Slave to no sect, who takes no private road,
But looks through nature up to nature's God;
Pursues that chain which links th'immense design,
Joins Heav'n and earth, and mortal and divine;
Sees that go being any bliss can know,
But touches some above and some below :
Learns from this union of the rising whole
The first, last purpose of the human soul;
And knows where faith, law, morals, all began,
All end, in love of God and love of man.
For him alone hope leads from goal to goal, And opens still and opens on his soul, Till lengthen'd on to faith, and unconfin'd It pours the bliss that fills up all the mind. He sees why nature plants in man slone Hope of known bliss, and faith in bliss unknown ; (Nature, whose dictates to no other kind Are giv'n in vain, but what they seek they find) Wise is her present; she connects in this His greatest virtue with his greatest bliss; At once his own bright prospect to be blest, And strongest motive to assist the rest.
Self-love thus push'd to social, to divine, Gires thee to make thy neighbour's blessing thive.