Imatges de pÓgina


Dream of a Shadow ! A Reflexion made
From the false Glories of the gay reflected Bow,

Is a more solid thing than thou.
Thou weak built ifbmus! which do'st proudly rise

Up betwixt two Eternities;

Yet canst not Wave or Wind sustain,
But broken or o'er-whelm'd, the endless Oceans meet again.

From the inaternal Tomb
To the Grave's fruitful Womb,
We call here Life; but Life's a Name

Which nothing here can truly claim.
This wretched Inn, where we scarce stay to bait,

We call our dwelling Place;

We call one Step a Race. We grow at last by Custom to believe

That really we live; Whilst all these Shadows that for Things we take, (Comi, Are but the empty Dreams which in Death's Sleep we make.

When I consider Life, 'tis all a Cheat ; Yer, fool'd wich Hope, Men favour the Deceit: Truft on, and think To-morrow will repay; To-morrow's faller than the former Day ; Lies more, and while it says we shall be bless'd With some new Joys, cuts off what we poffefs'd. Strange Couz’nage! none would live past Years again, Yet all hope Pleasure in what yet remain; And from the Dregs of Life think to receive What the first sprightly Running could not give. I'm tir'd with waiting for this Chymick Gold, Which fools us young, and beggars us when old. Dryd. Auren.

For Life can never be sincerely blest, Heav'n punibes the Bad and proves the Beit. Dryd. To-morrow, Tomorrow, and To-morrow,

(Achit. Creep in a stealing Pace from Day to Day, To the last Minute of revolving Time ; And all our Yesterdays have lighted Fools To their eternal Homes. Life's but a walking Shadow, a poor Player, That frets and struts his Hour upon a Stage, And then is heard no more. It is a Tale Told by an Idiot, full of Sound and Fury, Signifying nothing,

Shak. Macb, Life is but Air, That yields a Paffage to the whistling Sword, And closes when 'cis gone.

Dryd. Don Seb. Nor love thy Life, nor hate ; but what thou liv'it, Live well, how long or short permit to Heav'n.

Milt. : They live too long who Happiness out-live.



For Life and Death are things indifferent ;
Each to be chose as either brings Content. Dryd. Ind. Emp.

'Tis not for Nothing that we Life pursue ;
It pays our Hopes with something still that's new :
Each Day's a Mistress unenjoy'd before ;
Like Travellers we're pleas'd with seeing more. Dryd. Auren.

Indulge, and to thy Genius freely give ; For not to live at Ease, is not to live : Death stalks behind thee, and each flying Hour Does some loose Remnant of thy Life devour. Live while thou liv'st, for Death will make us all A Name, a Nothing but an old Wife's Tale. Dryd. Pers.

Short Bounds of Life are set to mortal Man; ' Tis Virtue's Work alone to stretch the narrow Span.Dryd. Virg. Improperly we measure Life by Breath

; They do not truly live who merit Death.

Stepx. Juv. Gods! Life's your Gift ; then season't with such Fate, That what you meant a Blessing prove no Weight. Let me to the remotest Part be whirl'd Of this your Play-thing, made in Haste, the World: But grant me Quiet, Liberty, and Peace; By Day what's needful, and at Night soft Ease; The Friend I trust in, and the She I love : Then fix me, and if e'er I wish Remove, Make me as great, that's wretched, as you can; Set me in Pow'r, the wofull'st State of Man ; To be by Fools milled, to Knaves a Prey. But make Life what I ask, or take't away.

Learn to live well, that thou may'st die fo too:
To live and die is all we have to do.

LIGHT. See Creation:
First-born of Chaos! who fo fair didft come

From the old Negro's darkfom Womb !

Which, when it saw the lovely Child,
The melancholy Mafs put on kind Looks, and smil'd.
Thou Tide of Glory! which no Reft do'st know !

But ever ebb, and ever flow!
Hail active Nature's watchful Life and Health !

Her Joy, her Ornament, and Wealth!

Hail to thy Husband Heat and thee ! Thou the World's beauteous Bride, the lusty Bridegroom he. ġ Say, from what golden Quivers of the Sky

Do all thy winged Arrows fly.

Swiftness and Pow'r by Birth are thine, From thy great Sire they came, thy Sire the Word Divine ! Swift as Kight Thoughes their empty Career run, Thy Race is finish'd when begun.


Thou, in the Moon's bright Chariot, proud and gay,

Doft thy bright Wood of Stars survey:

And all the Year dost with thee bring
Of thousand flow ry Lights thy own nocturnal Spring.
Thou, Scythian-like, dost round thy Lands above,

The Sun's guilt Tent, for ever move;

And still as thou in Pomp doft go,
The shining Pageants of the World attend thy Show.
Nor amidst all those Triumphs dost thou scorn

The humble Glow-worms to adorn;

And with those living Spangles guild (O Greatness without Pride !) the Bushes of the Field. Night, and her ugly Subjects thou doft fright,

And Sleep, the lazy Owl of Night,

Alham'd and fearful to appear, They skreen their horrid Shapes with the black Hemisphere. With them there hastes, and wildly takes th'Alarm,

Of painted Dreams, a busy Swarm.

At the first Op'ning of the Eye,
The various Clusters break, the antick Atoms fly.
The guilty Serpents and obscener Beasts

Creep conscious to their secret Rests :

Nature to chee does Rev'rence pay,
Ill Omens and ill Sights remove out of thy Way.
At thy Appearance Grief it self is said

To shake his Wings, and rouse his Head ;

And cloudy Care has ofren took
A gentle beamy Smile, reflected from thy Look.
At thy Appearance Fear it self grows bold;

The Sun-shine melts away his Cold.
Ev'n Lust, the Master of a harden'd Face,

Blushes if thou be'st in the Place ;

To Darkness's Curtains he retires,
In fympathizing Night he rouls his smoaky Fires.
When, Goddess ! thou life'st up thy waken’d Head,

Out of the Morning's purple Bed,

Thy Choire of Birds about thee play, And all the joyful World salutes the rising Day. All the World's Brav'ry that delights our Eyes,

Is but thy fev'ral Liveries.

Thou the rich Dye on them bestow'st;
Thy nimble Pencil paints this Landskip as thou go'it.
A crimson Garment in the Rose thou wear'st,

A Crown of studded Gold thou bear'ft..

The Virgin Lillies in their White,
Are clad but with the Lawn of almost naked Light,
The Violet, Spring's little Infant, ftands
Girt in thy purple Swadling. bands :


On the fair Tulip thou dost doat,
Thou cloach'ft it with a gay and party-colour'd Coat.
But the vast Ocean of unbounded Day

In the Empyrean Heav'n does stay ;

Thy Rivers, Lakes, and Springs below; From thence took firit their Rife, thither at laft must flow.Coxl.

Thro' the rude Chaos thus the running Light Shot the first Ray that piered the native Night : Then Day and Darkness in the Mass were mix'd, Till gather'd in a Globe, the Beams were fix'd. Last Thone the Sun, who radiant in his Sphere, Illumin'd Heav'n and Earth, and roul'd around the Year. Dryd

(Cym. Ipb
Hail holy Light! Offspring of Heav'n, first-born,
Or of th'Eternal Co-eternal Beam :
Bright Effluence of bright Essence increate !
Or hear'ft thou rather pure etherial Stream,
Whose Fountain who shall tell ? Before the Sun,
Before the Heav'ns thou wert, and at the Voice
Of God, as with a Mantle didft invest
The rising World of Waters dark and deep,
Won from the void and formless Infinite :

Thee I revisit now with bolder Wing,
Escap'd the Stygian Pool, tho long detain'd
In that obscure Sojourn ; while in my Flight
Thro' utter, and thro'middle Darkness born,
With other Notes than to the Orphean Lyre
I fong of Chaos and Eternal Night;
Taught by the heav'nly Muse to venture down
The dark Descent, and up to re-ascend,
Tho' hard and rare : Thee I re-visit safe,
And feel thy Sov'reign vital Lamp; but thou
Re-visit'ft not these Eyes, that roul in vain
To find thy piercing Ray, and find no Dawn:
So thick a Drop serene has quench'd their Orbs,
Or dim Suffusion veil'd. Yet not the more
Cease I to wander where the Muses haunt,
Clear Spring, or shady Grove, or sunny Hill,
Smit with the Love of facred Song: But chief
Thee, Sion, and the flow'ry Brooks beneath,
That wash thy hallow'd Feet, and warbling flow
Nightly I visit: Nor sometimes forget
Those other Two, equall'd with me in Fate,
So were I equall'd with them in Renown,
Blind Thamyrus, and blind Meonides,
And Phineas and Tyresias, Prophets old:
Then feed on Thoughts that voluntary move


Harmonious Numbers, as the wakeful Bird
Sings darkling, and in shadiest Covert hid
Tunes her nocturnal Notę. Thus with the Year
Seasons return, but not to me returns
Day, or the sweet Approach of Ev'n and Morn,
Or Sight of vernal Bloom, or Summer's Rose,
Or Flocks, or Herds, or humane Face divine:
But Cloud instead, and ever-during Dark
Surrounds me ; from the chearful ways of Man
Cut off, and for the Book of Knowledge fair,
Presented with a universal Blank
Of Nature's Works to me expung'd and ras'd;
And Wisdom at one Entrance quite shut out.
So much the rather, thou Coelestial Light,
Shine inward, and the Mind thro' all her Pow'rs
Irradiate; there plant Eyes, all Mift from thence
Purge and disperse, that I may fee and tell
Of things invisible to mortal Sight. Milton. Spoken of himself.
LIGHTNING. See Greatness, Sickness, Singing, Ne

cromancer, Storm, Thunder.
Quick Lightning flies when heavy Clouds rush on,
And strikes like Steel and Flint, or Stone and Stone :
For then small Sparks appear, and scatter'd Light
Breaks swiftly forth, and wakes the sleepy Night.
The Night amaz'd begins to haste away,
As if those Fires were Beams of coming Day. Cre. Lucr.

As when some dreadful Thunder-clap is nigh,
The winged Fire shoots swiftly thro' the Sky,
Strikes and consumes e'er scarce it does appear,
And by the sudden Ill prevents the Fear. Dryd. Ind. Emp.

As when tempestuous Storms o'erspread the Skies,
In whose dark Bowels in-born Thunder lies;
The watry Vapours numberless conspire
To smother and opprefs th'imprison'd Fire ;
Which, thus colle&ed, gathers greater Force,
Breaks out in Flames, and with impetuous Course
From the Clouds gaping Womb in Lightning flies,
Flashing in ruddy Streaks along the Skies.

The dismal Lightnings all around,
Some flying thro' the Air, fome running on the Ground,
Some swimming o'er the Waters Face,
Fill’d with bright Horrour ev'ry Place.

The Clouds,
Justling, or push'd by Winds, rude in their Shock,
Tine the slant Lightning, whose thwart Flame driven down
Kindles the gummy Bark of Firr, or Pine.

Milt. As where the Lightning runs along the Ground, No Husbandry can heal the blafting Wound



« AnteriorContinua »