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His hopes immortal blow them by, as dust,
That dims his sight and shortens his survey,
Which longs, in infinite, to lose all bound. 5. Titles and honours (if they prove his fate)
He lays aside to find his dignity;
No dignity they find in aught besides.
They triumph in externals, (which conceal
Man's real glory,) proud of an eclipse :
Himself too much he prizes to be proud ;
And nothing thinks so great in man, as man.
Too dear he holds his int'rest, to neglect
Another's welfare, or his right invade;
Their int’rest, like a lion, lives on prey.
They kindle at the shadow of a wrong;
Wrong he sustains with temper, looks on heav'n,
Nor stoops to think his injurer his foe :
Nought, but what wounds his virtue, wounds his peace.
A cover'd heart their character defends ;
A cover'd heart denies him half his praise. 1. With nakedness his innocence agrees!
While their broad foliage testifies their fall!
Their no-joys end, where his full feast begins :
His joys create, theirs murder, future bliss.
To triumph in existence, his alone;
And his alone triunphantly to think
His true existence is not yet begun.
His glorious course was, yesterday, complete:
Death, then, was welcome ; yet life still is sweet. YOUNG.
· SECTION VIII.
The pleasures of retirement. 1. O KNEW he but his happiness, of men
The happiest he! who, far from publick rage,
Deep in the vale, with a choice few retir'd,
Drinks the pure pleasures of the rural life.
2. What tho' the dome be wanting, whose proud gate,
Each morning, vomits out the sneaking crowd
Of flatterers false, and in their turn abus'd ?
Vile intercourse! What though the glitt'ring robe,
Of every hue reflected light can give,
Or floated loose, or stiff with mazy gold,
The pride and gaze of fools, oppress him not?
What tho', from utmost land and sea purvey’d,
For him each rarer tributary life
Bleeds not, and his insatiate table heaps
With luxury and death? What tho' his bowl
Flames not with costly juice ; nor sunk in beds
Oft of gay care, he tosses out the night,
Or melts the thoughtless hours in idle state ?
What tho' he knows not those fantastick joys,
That still amuse the wanton, still deceive;
A face of pleasure, but a heart of pain;
Their hollow moments undelighted all ?
Sure peace is his ; a solid life estrang'd
To disappointment, and fallacious hope.
Rich in content, in nature's bounty rich,
In herbs and fruits; whatever greens the spring,
When heaven descends in showers; or bends the bough
When summer reddens, and when autumn beams;
Or in the wintry glebe whatever lies
Conceal'd, and faitens with the richest sap :
These are not wanting; nor the milky drove,
Luxuriant, spread o'er all the lowing vale ;
Nor bleating mountains; nor the chide of streams,
And hum of bees, inviting sleep sincere
Into the guiltless breast, beneath the shade,
Or thrown at large amid the fragrant hay;
Nor aught besides of prospect, grove, or song,
Dim grottos, gleaming lakes, and fountains clear. 4. Here too dwells simple truth; plain innocence;
Unsullied beauty ; sound unbroken youth,
Patient of labour, with a little pleas'd;
Health ever blooming; unambitious toil;
Calm contemplation, and poetick ease.
The pleasure and benefit of an improved and well-directed imao
1. On! blest of Heaven, whom not the languid songs
Of luxury, the siren! not the bribes
Of sordid 'wealth, nor all the gaudy spoils
Of pageant Honour, can seduce to leave
Those ever blooming sweets, which, from the shore
Of nature, fair imagination culls,
To charm th’ enliven’d soul! What tho' not all
Of mortal offspring can attain the height
Of envy'd life; tho only few possess
Patrician treasures, or imperial state;
Yet nature's care, to all her children just,
With richer treasures, and an ampler state,
Endows at large whatever happy man
Will deign to use them.
His the city's pomp,
The rural honours his. Whate'er adorns
The princely dome, the column, and the arch,
The breathing marble and the sculptur'd gold,
Beyond the proud possessor's narrow claim,
His tuneful breast enjoys. For him, the spring
Distils her dews, and from the silken gem
Its lucid leaves unfolds : for him, the hand
Of autumn tinges every fertile branch
With blooming gold, and blushes like the morn.
Each passing hour sheds tribute from her wings:
And still new beauties meet his lonely walk,
And loves unfelt attract him. Not a breeze
Flies o'er the meadow; not a cloud imbibes
The setting sun's effulgence; not a strain
From all the tenants of the warbling shade
Ascends; but whence his bosom can partake
Fresh pleasure, unreprov'd.
Nor thence partakes
Fresh pleasure only; for th' attentive mind,
By this harmonious action on her powers,
Becomes herself harmonious: wont so oft
In outward things to meditate the charm
Of sacred order, soon she seeks at home,
To find a kindred order; to exert
Within herself this elegance of love,
This fair inspir'd delight: her temper'd powr's
Refine at length, and every passion wears
A chaster, milder, more attractive mien.
But if to ampler prospects, if to gaze
On nature's form, where, negligent of all
These lesser graces, she assumes the port
Of that Eternal Majesty that weigh'd
The world's foundations, if to these the mind
Exalts her daring eye; then inightier far
Will be the change, and nobler. Would the forms
Of servile custom cramp her gen'rous pow'rs?
Would sordid policies, the barb’rous growth ,
Of ignorance and rapine, bow her down
To tame pursuits, to indolence and fear; 5. Lo! she appeals to nature, to the winds
And rolling waves, the sun's unwearied course,
The elements and seasons : all declare
For what th' eternal Maker has ordain'd
The pow'rs of man: we feel within ourselves
His energy divine: he tells the heart,
He nieant, he made us to behold and love
What he beholds and loves, the general orb
Of life and being; to be great like Him,
Beneficent and active. Thus the men
Whom nature's works instruct, with God himself
Hold converse ; grow familiar, day by day,
With his conceptions ; act upon his plan;
And form to his, the relish of their souls, A KENSIDA
The hermit. 1. Ar the close of the day, when the hamlet is still,
And mortals the sweets of forgetfulness prove; When nought but the torrent is heard on the hill,
And nought but the nightingale's song in the grove. 'Twas thus by the cave of the mountain afar,
While his harp rung symphonious, a hermit began; No more with himself or with nature at war,
He thought as a sage, tho' he felt as a man.
2. “ Ah! why, all abandon'd to darkness and wo;
Why, lone Philomela, that languishing fall? For spring shall return, and a lover bestow,
And sorrow no longer thy bosom inthral.' But, if pity inspire thee, renew the sad lay,
Mourn, sweetest complainer, man calls thee to mourn ; O sooth him whose pleasures like thine pass away:
Full quickly they pass—but they never return. S. “Now gliding remote, on the verge of the sky,
The moon half extinguish'd her crescent displays: But lately I mark’d, when majestick on high
She shone, and the planets were lost in her blaze. Roll on, thou fair orb, and with gladness pursue
The path that conducts thee to splendour again: But man's faded glory what change shall renew!
Ah fool! to exult in a glory so vain! 4. “'Tis night, and the landscape is lovely no more:
I mourn ; but, ye woodlands, J mourn not for you; For morn is approaching, your charms to restore,
Perfum'd with fresh fragrance, and glitt'ring-with dew. Nor yet for the ravage of winter I mourn;
Kind nature the embryo blossom will save: . But when shall spring visit the mouldering urn!
O when shall day dawn on the night of the grave! 5. “'Twas thus by the glare of false science betray'd,
That leads, to bewilder; and dazzles, to blind; My thoughts wont to roam, from shade onward to shade,
Destruction before me, and sorrow behind. O pity, great Father of light, then I cried,
Thy creature who fain would not wander from thee! Lo, humbled in dust, I relinquish my pride:
From doubt and from darkness thou only canst free. , 6. “And darkness and doubt are now flying away ;
No longer I roam in conjecture forlorn: So breaks on the traveller, faint and astray,
The bright and the balmy effulgence of morn.. See truth, love, and mercy, in triumph descending,
And nature all glowing in Eden's first bloom! On the cold cheek of death smiles and roses are blending, And beauty immortal awakes from the tomb."
BEATTIE. SECTION II.
The beggar's petition. 1. Pity the sorrows of a poor old man,
Whose trembling limbs have borné him to your door; Whose days are dwindled to the shortest span;
Oh! give relief, and Heaven will bless your store. 2. These tatter'd clothes-my poverty hespeak,
These hoary locks proclaim my lengthen’d years; And many a furrow in my grief-worn cheek,
Has been the channel to a flood of tears.
3. Yon house, erected on the rising ground,
With tempting aspect drew me from my road; For plenty there a residence has found,
And grandeur a magnificent abode.
4. Hard is the fate of the infirm and poor!
Here, as I crav'd a morsel of their bread,
A pamper'd menial drove me from the door,
To seek a shelter in an humbler shed. 3. Oh! take me to your hospitable dome;
Keen blows the wind, and piercing is the cold! Short is my passage to the friendly tomb;
For I am poor, and miserably old.
6. Should I reveal the sources of my grief,
If soft humanity e'er touch'd your breast,
Your hands would not withhold the kind relief,
And tears of pity would not be represt.
7. Heav'n sends misfortunes ; why should we repine ?
'Tis Heav'n has brought me to the state yoù see; And your condition inay be soon like mine,
The child of sorrow and of misery. 8. A little farm was my paternal lot;"
Then like the lark I sprightly hail'd the morn;
But ah! oppression forc'd me from my cot,
My cattle died, and blighted was my corn. 9. My daughter, once the comfort of my age,
Lur'd by a villain from her native home,
Is cast abandon'd on the world's wide stage,
And doom'd in scanty poverty to roam.
10. My tender wife, sweet soother of my care!
Struck with sad anguish at the stern decree,
Fell, ling’ring fell, a victim to despair;
And left the world to wretchedness and me. 11. Pity the sorrows of a poor old man,
Whose trembling limbs have borne him to your door; Whose days are dwindled to the shortest span: Oh! give relief, and Heav'n will bless your store.
Unhappy close of life.
1. How shocking must thy summons be, O Death !
To him that is at ease in his possessions!
Who counting on long years of pleasure here,
Is quite unfurnish'd for the world to come!
In that dread moment, how the frantick soul
Raves round the walls of her clay tenement;
Runs to each avenue, and shrieks for help ;
But shrieks in vain! How wishfully she looks
On all she's leaving, now no longer hers! 2. A little longer; yet a little longer;
O might she stay to wash away her stains ;
And fit her for her passage! Mournful sight!
Her very eyes weep blood ; and ev'ry groan