« AnteriorContinua »
Amidst the running stream he slakes his thirst,
Toils all the day, and at th' approach of night,
On the first friendly bank he throws him down,
Or rests his head upon a rock till morn;
Then rises fresh, pursues his wonted game,
And if the following day he chance to find
A new repast, or an untasted spring,
Blesses his stars, and thinks it luxury.
CATO'S ADDRESS to the SENATE..
Lar us appear nor rash nor diffident;
Immod'rate valour swells into a fault;
And fear admitted into public councils
Betrays like treason. Let us shun 'em both.
Fathers, I cannot see that our affairs
Are grown thus desp'rate; we have bulwarks round us;
Within our walls are troops innur'd to toil
In Afric's heat, and season'd to the sun;
Numidia's spacious kingdom lies behind us,
Ready to rise at its young prince's call.
While there is hope, do not distrust the Gods;
But wait at least 'till Caesar's near approach
Force us to yield. Twill never be too late
To sue for chains, and own a conqueror.
Why should Rome fall a moment ere her time?
No, let us draw her term of freedom out
To its full length, and spin it to the last,
So shall we gain still one day's liberty:
And let me perish, but, in Cato's judgment,
A day, an hour of virtuous liberty,
Is worth a whole eternity in bondage.
DESCRIPTION of a HURRICANE.
So, where our wide Numidian wastes extend,
Sudden, th' impetuous hurricanes descend,
Wheel through the air, in circling eddies play,
Tear up the sands, and sweep whole plains away.
The helpless traveller, with wild surprise
Sees the dry desart all around him rise,
And, smother'd in the dusty whirlwind, dies.
CATO'S ADVICE to his FRIENDS.
REMEMBER, O my friends, the laws, the rights,
The gen'rous plan of pow'r deliver'd down
From age to age, by your renown'd forefathers,
(So dearly bought, the price of so much blood :)
Oh, let it never perish in your hands!
But piously transmit it to your
Do thou, great Liberty, inspire our souls,
And make our lives in thy possession happy,
Or our deaths glorious in thy just defence.
CATO'S ADVICE to his SON.
PORTIUS, draw near: my son, thou oft has seen
Thy sire engag'd in a corrupted state',
Wrestling with vice and faction: now thou see'st me
Spent, overpower'd, despairing of success;
Let me advise thee to retreat betimes
To thy paternal se it, the Sabine field,
Where the great Censor toil'd with his own hands,
And all our frugal ancestors were bless'd
In humble virtues, and a rural life;
There live retir'd, pray for the peace of Rome;
Content thyself to be obscurely good.
When vice prevails, and impious men bear sway,
The post of honour is a private station.
ACTION opposed to CONTEMPLATION.
THIS were to lose the very end of being,
And render virtue useless to the world.
'Tis Action gives its beauteous image life,
As it diffuses health to human kind,
Which is, without it, but a fair idea,
A painted prospect, void of all the worth
Which its appearance boasts. This were to
The mere outside, the statue of a man.
AMBITION inseparable from GREAT MINDS.
AMBITION is the stamp, impress'd by Heav'n,'
To mark the noblest minds; with active heat
Inform'd, they mount the precipice of pow'r,
Grasp at command and tow'r in quest of empire;
While vulgar souls compassionate their cares, .
Gaze at their height, and tremble at their danger;
Thus meaner spirits with amazement mark
The varying seasons, and revolving skies,
And ask what guilty pow'r's rebellious hand
Rolls with eternal toil the pond'rous orbs;
While some Archangel nearer to perfection,
In easy state presides o'er all their motions,
Directs the planets with a careless nod,
Conducts the sun, and regulates the spheres.
The UNSTEADINESS of an ARBITRARY GOVERN-
MENT and the MISERY of a DESPOTIC PRINCE.
No government can e'er be safe that's founded
On lust, on murder, and despotic power.
'Tis not in lawless strength to turn and manage
This cumb'rous and unwieldy bulk of empire,
Which like the restless sea still works and tosses,
Vex'd with continual change and revolution.
How few of my unhappy successors
Will 'scape my fate? Ev'n while we keep the throne,
We fear those subjects' threats on whom we frown,
Infringe their liberty, and lose our own;
And hourly prove by arbitrary sway,
That he's the greatest slave, whom none but slaves obey.
The HAPPINESS of a FREE GOVERNMENT.
If there be any land, as fame reports,
Where common laws restrain the prince and subject,
A happy land, where circulating pow'r
Flows through each member of th embodied state,
Sure not unconscious of the mighty blessing,
Her grateful sons shine bright with ev'ry virtue;
Untainted with the lust of innovation,
Sure all unite to hold her league of rule
Unbroken as the sacred chain of nature,
That links the jarring elements in peace.
The KILLING of a BOAR.
FORTH from the thicket rush'd another Boar,
So large, he seem'd the tyrant of the woods,
With all his dreadful bristles rais'd up high;
They seem'd a grove of spears upon his back :
Foaming he came at me, where I was posted,
Whetting his huge long tusks, and gaping wide,
As he already had me for his prey;
Till brandishing my well-pois'd javelin high,
With this bold executing arm I struck
The ugly brindled monster to the heart.
WB pursued the chace,
When from behind the wood, with rustling soung
A monstrous Boar rush'd forth: his baleful eyes
Shot glaring fire, and his stiff-pointed bristles
Rose high upon his back: at me he made,
Whetting his tusks, and chewing hideous foam.
Then, then Hypolitus flew in to aid me!
Collecting all himself, and rising to the blow,
He launch'd the whistling spear, the well-aim'd javelin
Pierc'd his tough side, and quiver'd in his heart;
The monster feil, and gnashing with huge tusks,
Plough'd up the crimson earth.
DESCRIPTION of a POPULOUS CITY. (YOUNG.)
THIS ancient city,
How wanton sits she, amidst nature's smiles!
Nor from her highest turret has to view
But golden landscapes and luxuriant scenes,
A waste of wealth, the store-house of the world;
Here fruitful vales far stretching fly the sight,
There sails unnumber'd whiten all the stream,
While from the banks full twenty thousand cities
Survey their pride, and see their gilded towers
Float on the waves, and break against the shore.
Various nations meet
As in a sea, yet not confin'd in space,
But streaming freely thro' the spacious streets,
Which send forth millions at each brazen gate;
Whene'er the trumpet calls high over head,
On the broad walls the chariots bound along.
--HE preferr'd me
Above the maidens of my age and rank;
Still shun'd their company, and still sought mine.
I was not won by gifts; yet still he gave;
And all his gifts, tho' small, yet spoke his love:
He pick'd the earliest strawberries in the woods,
The cluster d filberts, and the purple grapes:
He taught a prating Stare to speak my name;
And when he found a nest of nightingales,
Or callow linnets, he would shew 'em me,
And let me take 'em out.
DESCRIPTION of a PERSON left on a DESART ISLAND.
NEXT night-a dreary night!
Cast on the wildest of the Cyclad Isles,
Where never human foot had mark'd the shore,
These ruffians left me.-
-Beneath a shade
I set me down, more heavily oppress'd,
More desolate at heart, than e'er I felt
Before. When Philomela o'er my head
Began to tune her melancholy strain,
As piteous of my woes; till, by degrees,
Composing sleep on wounded nature shed
A kin but short relief. At early morn
Wak'd by the chaunt of birds, I look'd around
For usual objects: objects found I none,
Except before me stretch'd the toiling main;
And rocks and woods, in savage view, behind.