Imatges de pÓgina
PDF
EPUB

a

[ocr errors]

Whose lips grew pale, and cold as clay : \“Is bliss a vague, unmeaning name?
I thought the chit would swoon away.

Speak then the pallions' use or aim:
The god was studious to employ

Why rage defires without controul, His cares to aid the vanquilh d boy ;

"And rouse fich whirlwinds in the scul? and therefore ilued his decree,

• Why Hope erects her tow'ring crest, That the two parties straight agree :

And laughs and riots in the breait : When both obcy'd the god's commands,

Think not my weakur brain turns round; And Love and Riches joind their hanus. Think not I trcad on fairy ground;

What wondrous change in each was wrought, • Think not your pulle alone beats trueBelieve nie, fair, surpalies thought.

Mine makes as healthful music too. If Love had many charms before,

"Our joys, when Life's soft spring we trace, He now had chains ten thousand more :

Put forth their early buds apace, If Wcalth had ferpents in his breast,

See the bloom loads the tender shoot; They now were dead, or lullid to rest.

• The bloom conccals che furvre fruit. Beauty, that vaio, affected thing,

Yes, manhocd's warm meridian fun Who join'd the hymencal ring,

Shall ripen what in Ipring begun. Approach'd, with round unthinking face; · Thus infant roles, ere thcy blow, And chus the trificr states her case:

In germinating clusters grow ; She said that Love's complaints, 'twas known, ' And only wait the summer's tav, Exactly ta'lied with her own :

• To burst, and bloffom to the dwy.' That Wealth had learn'd the felon's arts,

What said the gay unthinking boy? And rubb'd her of a thoutand hearts;

Mcthought Hilario talk 'd of joy! Deliring judgment against Wealih,

Tell, if thou canst, whence joys arise, For falichood, perjury, and stealth :

Or what those mighty joys sou prize. All which the could on oath depose ;

You 'll find (and trust fuperior years)
And hop'd the court would llit his nose.

The vale of life a vale of tears.
But Hymer, when he heard her name, Could wisdom teach where joys abound,
Call d her an interloping dame ;

Or riches purchate them when found,
Look'd through the crowd with angry state, Would fccptred Solomon complain
And blam'd the porter at the gate

That all was flecting, falle, and vain? For giving entrance to the fair,

Yet sceptrid Solomon could tay, When the was no eilential there.

Returning clouds obscur'd his day. To fink this haughiy tyrant's pride,

Thofe maxims, which the preacher drew, He order'd Fancy to prende.

The royal fage experienc'd true. Hence, when debates on beauty rise,

He know the various ills that wait And cach bright fair disputes the prize,

Our infant and meridian state; To Fancy's cout we straight apply,

That toys our earliest thoughts engage, And wait the sentence of her eye;

And diff'rent toys maturer ige; In Beauty's realms the holds the feals,

That grief at cv'ry stage appears, And her awards preclude appeals.

But diff'rent griefs at diff'rent years ;

That vanity is feen, in part, $ 18. Vision VIII. Lisi.

lufcrib’d on ev'ry human heart;

In the child's breast the spark began, LET not the young my precepts thun;

Who flight good counsels are undone. Grows with his growth, and glares in man. Your poer sung of love's delights,

But n hen in life we journey late, Of halcyon days and joyous nights ;

If follies die, do griefs abaic? To the gay fancy lovely themes ;

Ah! what is life at fourtcore years?

(tears! And fain i 'd hope they ’re more than dreams. One dark, rough road, of lighs, yrvans, pains, and But, if you please, before we part,

Perhaps you 'll think I act the same I'd speak a language to your heart.

As a fly tharper plays his game:
We'll talk of Life, tho' much I fear

You triumph ev'ry deal that's past,
Th' ungrateful tale will wound your car. He's sure to triumph at the last !
You raise your fanguine thoughts too high, Who often wins fome thousands more
And hardly know the reason why:

Than twice the sums you won before.
But say, Life's tree bears golden fruit,

But I'm a loser with the rest; Some canker thal corrode i he rrot;

For life is all a deal at best, Some unexpected storin shall rise,

Where not ihe prize of wealth or fame Or scorching funs, or chilling skics;

Repays the trouble of the gameAnd (if experienc'd truths avail)

(A truth no winner e'er denied, All your autumal hopes thall fail.

An hour before that winner diod). But, poet, whence such wide extremes ? Not that with me these prizes shine ; • Well may you style your labours drcains. For neither fame nor wealth is mine. • A fon of sorrow thou, I ween,

My cards, a weak plebeian band, • Whole Visions are the brats of Spleen. With Icarcc an honour in my hand !

6

6

[ocr errors]

And, fince my trumps are very few,

There a commission'd angel stands, What have I inore to boast than you !

With desolation in his hands! Nur am I gainer by your fall;

He sends the all-devouring fame, That harlot Fortune bubbles all!

And cities hardly boast a name: 'Tis truth (receive it ili or well),

Or wings the pestilential blast, 'Tis melancholy truthi I tell.

And, lo! ten thousands breathe thcir last. Why should the preacher take your pence,

He speaks-obcdient tempests roar, And smother truth to flatter sense?

And guilty nations are no more : I'm jure physicians have no merit,

He speaks--the fury Discord raves, Who kill thiro' lenty of spirit.

And sweeps whole armies to their graves : That life's a game, divines.confefs ;

Or Famine lifts her mildew'd hand, This lays at card, and that at cheis:

And Hunger howls thro' all the land. But, if our views be centred here,

• Oh! what a wretch is man!' I cried ; 'Tis all a losing game, I fear.

Expos'd to death on ev'ry fidc ! Sailors, von know, when wars obtain,

And sure as born to be undone And hoftile relluis crowd the main,

By evils which he cannot shun! If they dilcover from afar

• Besides a thousand baits to lin, A bark as diftant as a liar,

" A thousand traitors lodg'd within ! Hold the perspective to their eyes,

: For foon as Vice assaults the heart, To learn its colours, strength, and size;

• The rebels take the dæmon's part.' And, when this secret once they know,

I sigh, my aching bosom bleeds; Make ready to receive the foe.

When straight the milder plan succeeds. Let you and I from sailors learn

The lake of tears, the dreary Thore, Important truths of like concern.

The same as in the piece before : I clos'd the day, as custom led,

But gleams of light are here display'd, With reading, till the time of bed ;

To cheer the eye, and gild the thade; Where Fancy, at the midnight hour,

Afiction speaks a softer stylc, Again display'd her magic pow'r

And Disappointment wears a smile : (For know that Fancy, like a sprite,

A
group

of virtue, blossom near ; Prefers the filent scenes of niglit.)

Their roots improve by ev'ry tear. She lodg'd me in a neighb'ring wood,

Here Patience, gentle maid ! is pigh, No matter where the thicket food;

To calm the storm, and wipe the eye : The Genius of the place was nigh,

Hope acts the kind physician's part, And held two pictures to my eye:

And warms the solitary heart: The curious painter had portray'd,

Religion nobler comfort brings,
Life in each just and genuine ihade.

Difarins our griefs, or blunts their stings ;
They, who have only known its dawn, Points out the balance on the whole,
May think these lines too deeply drawn;

And Heaven rewards the struggling foul
But riper years, I fear, will thew

Bur while there raptures I pursue,
The wiler artists paint too true.

The Genius suddenly withdrew.
One piece presents a rucfui wild,
Where not a summer's fun had imild:

§ 119. Vision the last. Dearb. The road with thorns is cover'd wide, 'Tis thought my Visions are too grave * , And Grief fits weeping by thc fidc;

A proof I'm no designing knave. Her tears with constant tenor flow,

Perhaps, if int'reft held the scales, And forin a mournful lake below;

I had devis d quite diff'rent tales; Whose si'ent waters, dark and decp,

Had join'd the laughing, low buffoon, Thro' all the gloomy valley creep.

And icribbled fatise and lampoon; Pallons that fatter, or that day,

Or stirr'd each fource of soft desire, Are beasts that fawn, or birds that prey.

And fann'd the coals of wanton Gre : Here Vice assumes the ferpent's thape; Then had my paltry Visions fold; There Folly perfonates the ape :

Yes, all my dreams had turn'd to gold , Here Av'rice gripes with harpy's claws; Had pror'd the darlings of the town, There Malice grins with tiger's jaws :

And I-a poct of renown! While sons of Mischief, Art and Guile

Let not my awful theme surprise ;
Are alligators of the Nile.

Let no unmanly fears arise.
E'en Pleasure acts a treach'rous part; I wear no melancholy hue ;
She charms the sense, but stings the heart : No wreaths of cypress, or of yew.
And when the gulls us of our wealth,

The shroud, the coffin, pall, or hearso,
Or that superior pearl, our health,

Shall ne'er deform my sofrer verse. Restores us nought but pains and woe,

Let me consign the fun'ral plume, And drowns us in the lake below,

The herald's paint, the sculptur'd tomb,

a

• Sce the Monthly Review of New Books, for February 1791.

H

And

And all the folcmn farce of graves,

• Farewel to ev'ry joy around! To undertakers and their slaves.

Oh, the heart fickens at the sound ! You know that moral writers say,

Stay, stripling-thou art poorly taught : The world's a stage, and life a play; Joy, didst thou lay ? discard the thought. That in this drama to fucceed,

Joys are a rich celestial fruit, Requires much thought and toit indecd! And scorn a lublunary root: There still remains onc labour more,

What wears the face of joy below, Perhaps a greater than before.

Is often found but splendid woe. Indulge the search, and you shall find

Joys here, like unfubftantial fame, The harder task is fill bebind :

Are nothings with a pompous name; That harder taik, to quit the fage

Or else, like comets in the fphere, In early youth, or riper age;

Shine with destruction in their rear. To Icave the company and place

Paffions, like clouds, obscure the fight, With firmness, dignity, and grace.

Hence mortals seldom judge aright. Come, then, the closing scenes surrcy; The world 's a harfh unfruitful soil, "Tis the last act which crowns the play. Yet still we hope, and still we toil ; Do well this grand decisive part,

Deceive ourselves with wondrous art, And gain the plaudit of your heart.

And disappointment wrings the heart. Few greatly live in Wisdom's eye-

Thus, when a mist collects around, But, ob ! how few who greatly die!

And hovers o'er a barren ground, Who, when their days approach an end, The

poor

deluded trav'ller (pies Can meet the foe as friend ineets friend.

Imagin'd trees and structures rise ; Instructive hcrocs! tell us whence

But, when the throuded sun is cicar, Your noble fcorn of Heth and fente!

The desert and the rocks appear. You part from all we prize so dear,

« Ah-but when youthful blood runs high, Nor drop one fofi, reluctant tear;

• Surc 'tis a dreadful thing to die ! Part from those tender jovs of life,

• To die ! and what exalts the gloom, The friend, the parent, child, and wife.

· I'm told that man survives the tomb ! Death’s black and stormy gulph you bravc, • () ! can the learned prelate find And ride exulting on the wave ;

What future scenes await the mind ? Deem thrones but crifics all !--no moica "Where wings the foul, dislodg'd from clay? Nor send one withful lock to there.

* Sonic courtcous angel point the way! For foreign ports, and lands unknoin, • That unknown fomewhere in the kies, Thus the firm Tailor Icaves his own;

Say, where ihat unknown fomewhere lies; Obedient to the rising gale,

. And kincly prove, when life is o'er, Unmoors his bark, and tpreads his fail ;

That pains and forrows are no more : Defics the ocean and the wind,

For, doub:lefs, dying is a curse, Nor mourns the joys he left behind.

If present ills be chang'd for worse.' Is Death a pow'iful monarch? True:

Huth, my young friend, forego the theme, Perhaps you dread the terant too!

And lition in your poct's dream. Fcar, like a fog, precludes the lights

Er while I took an ev'ning walk, Or livells the object to the figlit.

Honorio join'd in social talk. Attend my visionary page,

Along the lawns the zephyrs sweep; And I'll disarm the tyrant's rage.

Each ruder wind was lull'd asleep. Come, let this ghafily form appear;

The sky, all bcautcous to behold, He's not fo terrible when ncar.

"as iticak'd with azure, green, and guid; Distance deludes tli'unwary (46;

But, tho' screncly fort and fair, So clouds fcom monfters in theils :

Fever hung brooding in the air ; Hold frequent converte with him now,

Then settled on Honorio's brcaft, He 'll daily wear a milder brow.

(Vhich thudder'd at the fatal gulst. Why is niy theme with terror fraught? No drugs the kindly wish fultil; Because you thun the frequent thouglit.

Disease cludes the doctor's skill :
Say, when the captive pard is nigh,

The poison, spread thro' all the frame,
Whence thy pale cheek and frighted eye? Ferments, and kindles into flame.
Sav, why dilmay'd thy manly breat,

from side to side Honorio turns, When the grim lion ihakes his creft?

And now with thirst insatiate burns : Because there favage 110 hts are new;

His eyes resign their wonted grace, No keeper thudders at the view :

Thole friendly lamps expire apace! Keepers, accustom'd to the scene,

The brain's an useless organ grown; Approach the dens with look ferenc !

And Reason tumbled from his throne. Füüricts their gritiv charge explore,

But, while the purple furges glow, And smile to hear the tyrants roar.

The currents thicken as they flow: • Avelut to die! to bid izlieu !

The blood in ev'ry distant part * Ancverlasting farewci tou!'

Stagnates, and disappoints the heart;

Defraud:

a

Defrauded of its crimson store,

All shudder'd at the black account, The vital engine plays no more.

And scarce believ'd the vast amount! Honorio dead, the fun'ral bell

All vow'd a sudden change of heart, Calld ev'ry friend to bid farewell.

Would death relent, and sheath his dart. I juin'd the melancholy bier,

But, when the avvful foe withdrew,
And dropp'd the unavailing tear.

All to their follies fled anew.
The clock ftruck twelve—when nature sought So when a wolf, who scours at large,
Repose from all the pangs of thought; Springs on the shepherd's ficecy charge,
And, while my limbs were sunk to rest, The Hock in wild disorder fly,
A Vifion sooth'd my troubled breast.

And cast behind a frequent eye;
I dream'd the fpectre Death appear'd ! But, when the victim 's borne away,
I dream'd his hollow voice I heard !

They ruth to pasture and to play.
Methought th' imperial tyrant wore

Indulge my dream, and let my pen A ftate no prince allum'd before;

Paint those unmeaning creatures, men. All nature fetchd a general groan,

Carus, with pain and sicknels worn, And lay expiring round his throne.

Chides the flow night, and fighs for morn. I gaz'd-when straight arose to light

Soon as he views the castern ray, The most detefted fiend of night.

He mourns the quick return of day; He shufiled with unequal pace,

Hourly laments protracted breath, And conscious shame deform'd his face.

And courts the healing hand of dcath. With jealous leer he squinted round,

Verres, oppress’d with guilt and fame, Or fix'd his eyes upon the ground.

Shipwreck'd in fortune, health, and fame From hell this frightful monster came;

l'ines for his dark, sepulchral bed, Sin was his fire, and Guilt his name.

To ringle with th' unhecded dead. This fury, with officious care,

With four score years grey Natho bends, Waited around the fov'reign's chair;

A burden to himself and friends! In robes of terror dress'd the king,

And with impatience seems to wait And arm d him with a bancful iting;

The friendly hand of ling‘ring Fate. Gave fierceness to the tyrant's eye,

So hirclings with their labour done, And hung the sword upon his thigh.

And often eye the western sun. Diseases next, a hidcous crowd !

The monarch hcars their various grief; Proclaim'd their master's empire loud ;

Descends, and brings the wilh'd relief. And all, obedicnt to his will,

On Death with wild surprise they star'd; Flw in commillion'd troops to kill.

All feem'd averse! all unprepar'd!
A rising whirlwind fhakes the poles,

As torrents fivcep with rapid force,
And lightning glares, and thunder rolis. The grave's pale chief pursued his course.
The monarch and his train prepare

No human pow'r can or withstand,
To range the foul tempestuous air.

Or thun, the conquests of his hand. Straight to his shoulders he applics

Oh! could the prince of upright mind, Two pinions of enormous fize!

And as a guardian angel kind, Methought I saw the ghaftly form

With ev'ry heart-felt worth beside, Stretch his black wings, and mount the storm : Turn the keen shaft of Death afide, When Fancy's airy horse I Itrode,

When would the brave Auguftus join And join'd the army on the road.

The ashes of his sacred line ? As the grind conqu’ror urg'd his way,

But Death maintains no partial war; He scatter'd terror and dismay.

He mocks a sultan or a czar:
Thousands a penfive aspect wore,

He lays his iron hand on all-
Thousands who ľneer'd at death before, Yes, kings, and sons of kings, must fall!
Life's records rise on ev'ry side,

A truth Britannia lately felt, And Conscience spreads those volumes wide; And trembled to her centre- Which faithful registers were brought

Cound ableft itatelmen ward the blow, By pale-eyed Fear and busy Thought.

Would Grenville own this common foe? Thöfe faults which artful 'men conccal, For greater talents ne'er were known Stand here engravid with pen of steel,

To grace thc fav'rite of a throne. Bv Conscience, that impartial scribe!

Could genius save-wit, learning, firem Whose honest palm disdains a bribe :

Tell me, would Chesterfield expire ? Their actions all like critics view,

Say, would his glorious sun decline, And all like faithful critics too.

And fet like your pale star or mirt? As Guilt had stain'd life’s various stage,

Could ev'ry virtue of the sky What tears of blood bedew'd the page! Would Herring t, Butler I, Secker), die?

a

* Referring to the death of his late Royal Highness Frederic Prince of Wales.
+ Archbishop of Canterbury, # Late Bith p of Durhain. # Bishop of Oxford,

[ocr errors]

Whis

6

a

Why this address to peerage all ?

• Tho' deeply read in Blato's school, Untitled Allen's virtues call!

• With all his knowledge, is a fool. If Allen's worth demands a place,

• Proclaim the truth-Say, what is man? Lords, with your leave, 'tis no disgrace.

His body from the dust began; Though high your ranks in heraids rolls, " And when a few short years are o'er, Know, Virtue too ennobles souls.

• The crumbling fabric is no more. By her that private man's renown'd

• But whence the foul:- From heaven it came ! Who pours a thousand blessings round. '() prize this intelleétual flame! While Allen takes Afiction's part,

· This nobler self with rapture scan ; And draws out all his gen'rous hcarta

« 'Tis mind alone which makes the man. Anxious to seize the ficering day,

Trust me, there 's not a joy on earth, Left unimprov'd it steal away;

But from the soul derives its birth. While thus he walks, with jealous strife, * Ask the young rake (he 'll answer right), Through goodness, as he walks through life; • Who creats by day, and drinks by night, Shall not I mark his radiant path : –

" What makes his entertainments thine ? Rise, Mufe, and sing the Man of Bath! • What gives the relish to his wine? Publish abroad, could goodness save,

" He'll tell thec (if he fcorns the beast) Allen would disappoint the grave ;

* That social pleasures form the feast. Translated to the heavenly Thore,

• The charms of beauty too shall cloy, Like Enoch, when his walk was o'er.

• Unless the fool exalts the joy. Nor Beauty's pow'rful pleas reftiain : • The mind must animate the face, Her pleas are triding, weak, and vain ; • Or cold and afteless ev'ry grace. For women pierce with thrieks the air,

What! muit the foul her pou’rs dispense, Smite their bare brcafts, and rend their hair ; • To raise and swell the joys of sense? All have a doleful talc to tell,

• Know, too, the joys of sense controul How friends, fons, daughters, husbands fell! And clog the motions of the foul; Alas! is life our fav'rite theme

· Forbid her pinions to aspire, 'Tis all a vain or painful dream;

Damp and impair her native fire; A dream which fools or cowards prize,

· And lure as fepfe, that tyrant! reigns, But Nighted by the brave or wile.

• She holds the empreis Soul in chains ; Who lives, for others ills muit groan,

Inglorious bondage to the mind, Or bleed for sorrows of his own;

Heaven-born, fublime, and unconfind! Must journey on with weeping eve,

. She 's independent, fair, and great, Then pant, link, agonize, and die.

And justly claims a large cftate ; . And thall a man arraign the skics,

She alks no borrow'd aids to shine; • Because man lives, and nourns, and dies?' She boasts within a golden mine; Impatient repult !' Reason cried;

But, like the treasures of Peru, Arraign thy passion and thy pride:

ller wealth lies deep, and far from vieir. • Retire, and commune with thy licart;

Say, thall the man who knows her worth, • Alk whence thou cain'it, and what ihou art ? Debase her dignity and birth? • Explore thy body and ti.y mind,

Or e'er repine at Heaven's decree, • Thy station too why here allig. d.

• Who kindly gave her leave to be ; • The search shall teach the life to prize, · Call'd her from nothing into day, • And make thee grateful, good, and wile. And built her tenement of clay? • Why do you roam to foreign climes,

• Hvar and accept me for your guidle • To ftudy nations, modes, and times;

(Reason íall ne'er desert

your

lide): • A science often dearly bought,

Who listens to iny nifer voice, • And often what avails you nought?

Can't but applaud his Maker's choice ; • Go, man, and act a wiser part,

Pleas'd with that first and fuv'reign caue, Study the science of your list:

Pleas'd with unerring Wisdom's laws: • This home philofophy, you know,

Secure, since lov’reign goodness reigns; • Vas priz'd some thoutand ycars ago

• Secure, fince lov’reign pow'r obtains. • Then why abroad a frequent guclt?

• With curious eyes review Thy frame; • Why such a stranger to your breast ?

· This fcicnce thall direct thy claim. • !Vhy turn la many volumes o’ur,

• Dost thou indulge a double view, • Till Dodsev can supply no more?

• A long, long life, and happy tvo: • Not all the volumes on thy thelf

Perhaps a farther boon you crave• Are worth that single volume, Self:

To lie down caly in the grave. • For who this facred beck declincs,

• Know, then, my dictates must prevail, • Jlowe'er in other arts he thines,

Or surely cach fond with shall fail. • Tho' fuit with Pindar's noble rage,

• Come, then, is happiness thy aim ? • Or vers'd in Tully's maniy page ;

• Let mental joys be all thy game. Krow thyself;' a celebrated saying of Chilo, one of the Seven Wise Men of Greece.

• Repeat

6

6

[ocr errors]

6

6

[ocr errors]

a

« AnteriorContinua »