Imatges de pÓgina
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Now vain their treaty-skill.-Death scorns to treat.
Here the o'erloaded slave flings down his burthen
From his gall'd shoulders;-and when the stern
tyrant,

With all his guards and tools of power about him,
Is meditating new unheard-of hardships,
Mocks his short arm;-and quick as thought

escapes

Where tyrants vex not, and the weary rest.

Here the warm lover, leaving the cool shade, The tell-tale echo, and the babbling stream, (Time out of mind the fav'rite seats of love,) Fast by his gentle mistress lay him down, Unblasted by foul tongue.-Here friends and foes Lie close, unmindful of their former feuds. The lawn-rob'd prelate and plain presbyter, Ere-while that stood aloof, as shy to meet, Familiar mingle here, like sister streams That some rude interposing rock had split. Here is the large-limb'd peasant:-here the Of a span long that never saw the Sun, [child Nor press'd the nipple, strangled in life's porch. Here is the mother, with her sons and daughters; The barren wife, and long-demurring maid, Whose lonely unappropriated sweets Smil'd like yon knot of cowslips on the cliff) Not to be come at by the willing hand. Here are the prude severe, and gay coquet, The sober widow, and the young green virgin, Cropp'd like a rose before 'tis fully blown, Or half its worth disclos'd. Strange medley here! Here garrulous old age winds up his tale; And jovial youth of lightsome vacant heart, Whose every day was made of melody, [shrew, Hears not the voice of mirth.-The shrill-tongu'd Meek as the turtle-dove, forgets her chiding. Here are the wise, the generous, and the brave; The just, the good, the worthless, the profane, The downright clown, and perfectly well bred; The fool, the churl, the scoundrel, and the mean, The supple statesman, and the patriot stern; The wrecks of nations, and the spoils of time, With all the lumber of six thousand years.

Poor man!-how happy once in thy first state!
When yet but warm from thy great Maker's hand,
He stamp'd thee with his image, and, well-pleas'd,
Smil'd on his last fair work. Then all was well.
Sound was the body, and the soul serene;
Like two sweet instruments, ne'er out of tune,
That play their several parts.-Nor head, nor heart,
Offer'd to ache; nor was there cause they should;
For all was pure within: no fell remorse,
Nor anxious castings-up of what might be,
Alarm'd his peaceful bosom.-Summer seas
Show not more smooth, when kiss'd by southern
winds,

Just ready to expire.-Scarce importun'd,
The generous soil, with a luxurious hand,
Offer'd the various produce of the year,
And ev'ry thing most perfect in its kind,
Blessed! thrice blessed days!-But, ah! how short!
Bless'd as the pleasing dreams of holy men;
But fugitive like those, and quickly gone.

Oh! slipp'ry state of things!-What sudden What strange vicissitudes in the first leaf [turns! Of man's sad history!-To-day most happy, And ere to-morrow's Sun has set, most abject. How scant the space between these vast extremes! Thus far'd it with our sire:-not long he enjoy'd His Paradise-scarce had the happy tenant

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Of the fair spot due time to prove its sweets,
Or sum them up, when straight he must be gone,
Ne'er to return again.-And must he go?
Can nought compound for the first dire offence
Of erring man?-Like one that is condemn'd,
Fain would he trifle time with idle talk,
And parley with his fate.But 'tis in vain-
Not all the lavish odours of the place
Offer'd in incense can procure his pardon,
Or mitigate his doom.-A mighty angel
With flaming sword forbids his longer stay,
And drives the loiterer forth; nor must he take
One last and farewel round-At once he lost
His glory and his God.-If mortal now,
And sorely maim'd, no wonder.-Man has sinn'd.
Sick of his bliss, and bent on new adventures,
Evil he needs would try: nor try'd in vain.
(Dreadful experiment! destructive measure!
Where the worst thing could happen, is success.)
Alas! too well he sped; the good he scorn'd
Stalk'd off reluctant like an ill-us'd ghost,
Not to return; or if it did, its visits,
Like those of angels, short and far between:
Whilst the black Demon, with his Hell-scap'd train,
Admitted once into its better room,

Grew loud and mutinous, nor would be gone;
Lording it o'er the man who now too late
Saw the rash errour, which he could not mend:
An errour fatal not to him alone,

But to his future sons, his fortune's heirs.
Inglorious bondage!-Human nature groans
Beneath a vassalage so vile and cruel,
And its vast body bleeds thro' every vein.

What havoc hast thou made, foul monster, Sin!
Greatest and worst of ills.-The fruitful parent
Of woes of all dimensions!-But for thee
Sorrow had never been.-All-noxious thing,
Of vilest nature!-Other sorts of evils
Are kindly circumscrib'd, and have their bounds.
The fierce volcano, from his burning entrails,
That belches molten stone, and globes of fire,
Involv'd in pitchy clouds of smoke and stench,
Mars the adjacent fields for some leagues round,
And there it stops.-The big-swoln inundation,
Of mischief more diffusive, raving loud,
Buries whole tracts of country, threat'ning more;
But that, too, has its shore it cannot pass.
More dreadful far than these, Sin has laid waste,
Not here and there a country, but a world:
Dispatching at a wide-extended blow
Entire mankind; and, for their sakes, defacing
A whole creation's beauty with rude hands;
Blasting the foodful grain, the loaded branches,
And marking all along its way with ruin.
Accursed thing!-Oh! where shall Fancy find
A proper name to call thee by, expressive
Of all thy horrours? Pregnant womb of ills!
Of temper so transcendently malign,
That toads and serpents of most deadly kind,
Compar'd to thee, are harmless.-Sicknesses
Of every size and symptom, racking pains,
And bluest plagues, are thine.-See how the fiend
Profusely scatters the contagion round!
Whilst deep-mouth'd Slaughter, bellowing at her
heels,

Wades deep in blood new spilt; yet for to morrow Shapes out new work of great uncommon daring, And inly pines 'till the dread blow is struck.

But hold:-I've gone too far; too much disco. ver'd

My father's nakedness, and Nature's shame.--
Here let me pause, and drop an honest tear,
One burst of filial duty and condolence,
O'er all those ample deserts Death hath spread;
This chaos of mankind.- -O great man-eater!
Whose ev'ry day is carnival, not sated yet!
Unheard-of epicure! without a fellow!
The veriest gluttons do not always cram;
Some intervals of abstinence are sought
To edge the appetite: thou seekest none.
Methinks the countless swarms thou hast devour'd,
And thousands that each hour thou gobblest up,
This, less than this, might gorge thee to the full;
But, ah! rapacious still, thou gap'st for more:
Like one, whole days defrauded of his meals,
On whom lank Hunger lays her skinny hand,
And whets to keenest eagerness his cravings;
As if diseases, massacres, and poison,
Famine, and war, were not thy caterers.

But know that thou must render up the dead,
And with high int'rest too. They are not thine;
But only in thy keeping for a season,
Till the great promis'd day of restitution;
When loud diffusive sound from brazen trump
Of strong-lung'd cherub, shall alarm thy captives,
And rouse the long, long sleepers into life,
Day-light and liberty.-

Then must thy gates fly open, and reveal
The mines that lay long forming under ground,
In their dark cells immur'd; but now full ripe,
And pure as silver from the crucible,
That twice has stood the torture of the fire
And inquisition of the forge.-We know
Th' illustrious deliverer of mankind,

The Son of God, thee foil'd.-Him in thy pow'r
Thou couldst not hold:-self-vigorous he rose,
And shaking off thy fetters, soon retook
Those spoils his voluntary yielding lent:
(Sure pledge of our releasement from thy thrall!)
Twice twenty days he sojourn'd here on Earth,
And show'd himself alive to chosen witnesses,
By proofs so strong, that the most slow assenting
Had not a scruple left-This having done,
He mounted up to Heav'n. Methinks I see him
Climb the aerial heights, and glide along
Athwart the sev'ring clouds: but the faint eye,
Flung backward in the chase, soon drops its hold,
Disabled quite, and jaded with pursuing.
Heav'n's portals wide expand to let him in;
Nor are his friends shut out: as a great prince
Not for himself alone procures admission,
But for his train.- It was his royal will,
That where he is, there should his followers be.
Death only lies between.-A gloomy path!
Made yet more gloomy by our coward fears:
But not untrod nor tedious; the fatigue
Will soon go off: besides, there's no by-road
To bliss.-Then why, like ill-condition'd children,
Start we at transient hardships in the way
That leads to purer air, and softer skies,
And a ne'er setting Sun?-Fools that we are!
We wish to be where sweets unwith'ring bloom;
But straight our wish revoke, and will not go.
So have 1 seen, upon a summer's ev'n,
Fast by a riv'let's brink a youngster play:
How wishfully he looks to stem the tide!
This moment resolute, next unresolv'd:

At last he dips his foot; but as he dips,
His fears redouble, and he runs away
From th' inoffensive stream, unmindful now
Of all the flow'rs that paint the farther bank,
And smil'd so sweet of late.-Thrice welcome Death!
That after many a painful bleeding step
Conducts us to our home, and lands us safe
On the long-wish'd-for shore. Prodigious change!
Our bane turn'd to a blessing!-Death, disarm'd,
Loses his fellness quite.-All thanks to Him
Who scourg'd the venom out.-Sure the last end
Of the good man is peace!-How calm his exit!
Night-dews fall not more gently to the ground,
Nor weary worn-out winds expire so soft.
Behold him in the evening tide of life,
A life well spent, whose early care it was
His riper years should not upbraid his green:
By unperceiv'd degrees he wears away;
Yet, like the Sun, seems larger at his setting:
(High in his faith and hopes) look how he reaches
After the prize in view! and, like a bird
That's hamper'd, struggles hard to get away:
Whilst the glad gates of sight are wide expanded
To let new glories in, the first fair fruits
Of the fast-coming harvest.-Then! Oh, then!
Each earth-born joy grows vile, or disappears,
Shrunk to a thing of nought.-Oh! how he longs
To have his passport sign'd, and be dismiss'd!
'Tis done! and now he's happy!-The glad soul
Has not a wish uncrown'd-Ev'n the lag flesh
Rests too in hope of meeting once again
Its better half, never to sunder more;
Nor shall it hope in vain;-the time draws on
When not a single spot of burial earth,
Whether on land, or in the spacious sea,
But must give back its long-committed dust
Inviolate:-and faithfully, shall these
Make up the full account; not the least atom
Embezzl'd, or mislaid, of the whole tale.
Each soul shall have a body ready furnish'd;
And each shall have his own.-Hence ye profane!
Ask not, how this can be?-Sure the same pow'r
That rear'd the piece at first, and took it down,
Can re-assemble the loose scatter'd parts,

[dust,

And put them as they were.-Almighty God
Has done much more; nor is his arm impair'd
Through length of days: and what he can, he will:
His faithfulness stands bound to see it done.
When the dread trumpet sounds, the slumb❜ring
(Not unattentive to the call) shall wake:
And ev'ry joint possess its proper place,
With a new elegance of form, unknown
To its first state.-Nor shall the conscious soul
Mistake its partner, but amidst the crowd,
Singling its other half, into its arms
Shall rush with all th' impatience of a man
That's new come home, who, having long bees
absent,

With haste runs over ev'ry different room,
In pain to see the whole. Thrice-happy meeting!
Nor Time, nor Death, shall ever part them more.
'Tis but a night, a long and moonless night;
We make the grave our bed, and then are gone.
Thus at the shut of ev'n, the weary bird
Leaves the wide air, and in some lonely brake
Cow'rs down, and dozes till the dawn of day,
Then claps his well-fledg'd wings, and bears away.

THE

POEMS

OF

ROBERT LLOYD.

THE

LIFE OF ROBERT LLOYD.

BY MR. CHALMERS.

ROBERT LLOYD was born at Westminster, in the year 1733. His father, Dr. Pierson Lloyd, was second master of Westminster-school, afterwards chancellor of York, and portionist of Weddesdon, in Bucks. His learning, judgment, and moderation endeared him to all who partook of his instructions during a course of almost fifty years spent in the service of the public at Westminster-school. He had a pension from his Majesty of 5001. conferred upon him in his old age, which was ordered to be paid without deduction, and which he enjoyed until his death, Jan. 5, 17811.

Robert was educated at Westminster-school, where, unfortunately, he had for his associates Churchill, Thornton, Colman, and some others, to whose example his erroneous life may be ascribed. In 1751, he stood first on the list of Westminster scholars, who went to Trinity College, Cambridge, at the same time that his schoolfellow Colman obtained the same rank among those sent to Oxford. In 1755, he took the degree of bachelor, and in 1761 that of master of arts.

While at the university he wrote several of his smaller pieces, and acquired the reputation of a lively and promising genius. But his conduct was marked by so many irregularities as to induce his father to wish him more immediately under his eye; and with the hope of reclaiming him to sobriety and study, he procured him the place of usher at Westminster-school. His education had amply qualified him for the employment, but his inclination led him to a renewed connection with Churchill, Thornton, and others, who deemed themselves exempt from the duties and decencies of moral life.

At what time he quitted the school we are not told. In 1760 and 1761 he superintended the poetical department of a short-lived periodical publication, entitled, The Library, of which the late Dr. Kippis was the editor. In 1760 he published the first of his productions which attracted much notice, The Actor. It was recommended by an easy and harmonious versification, and by the liberality of his censures, which were levelled at certain improprieties common to actors in general. By this poem, Churchill

1 ! Life of Dr. Newton, bishop of Bristol, prefixed to his works, 8vo. p. 16, 17,

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