Sidebilder
PDF

Temper'd with such superior art,

| Yet still we hug the dear deceit, That both were proof to ev'ry dart.

And still exclaim against the cheat.
'Two warlike chiefs approach'd the green, | But whence this inconsistent part?
And wondrous far rites with the queen ; Say, moralists, who know the heart :
Both were of Amazonian race;

If you'll this labyrinth pursue,
Both high in merit and in place..

I'll go before, and find the clue. Here Resolution marchd, whose soul

I dream'd ('twas ou a birth-day night) No fear could shake, no pow'r control; A sumptuous palace rose to sight . The heroine wore a Roman vest;

The builder had, thro' ev'ry part, A lion's heart inform’d her breast.

Observ'd the chastest rules of art ; There prudence shone, whose bosom wrought Raphacl and Titian had display'd With all the various plans of Thought; All the full force of light and shade: "Twas hers to bid the troops engage,

Around the liveried servants wait; And teach the lattle where to rage.

An aged porter kept the gate. And now the Syren's armies press;

As I was traversing the ball, "Their van was headed by Excess;

Where Brussels looms adornd the wall The'mighty wings that formid the side, (Whose tap'stry shows, without my aid, Commanded by that gianı Pride;

A nun is no such useless maid), While Sickness, and her sisters, Pain

A graceful person came in view And Poverty, the centre gain :

(His form, it seems, is known to few); Repentance, with a brow severe,

His dress was unadorn'd with lace, And Death were station d in the rear! But charms! a thousand in his face.

Health rang d her troops with matchless art, « This, Sir, your property?' I cried ; And acted the defensive part:

1. Master and mansion coincide: Her army posted on a hill,

" Where all, indeed, is truly great, Plainly bespoke superior skill.

' And proves that bliss may dwell with state: Hence were discover'd, through the plain, · Pray, Sir, indulge a stranger's clalın, The motions of the hostile train :

1' And grant the favor of your name.' While Prudence, to prevent surprise,

Content!' the lovely form replied ; Oft sallied with her trusty spies;

But think not here that I reside : Explor'd each ambuscade below,

* Here lives a courtier, base and sly; And reconnoitred well the foc.

' An open, honest rustic, I. Afar when Luxury descried

Our taste and manncrs disagree; Inferior force by art supplied,

1. His levee boasts no charms for ine : Thc Syren spake - Let Fraud prevail, * For titles, and the siniles of kings, • Since all my num'rous hosts must fail ; 'To me are cheap, unheeded things. • Henceforth hostilities shall cease;

• ('Tis virtue can alonc impart • 171 send to Health and offer peace.'

• The patent of a ducal heart: Straight she dispatch'd, with pow'rs complete," Unless this herald speaks him great, Pleasure, her minister, to treat.

• What shall avail the glare of state ?) This wicked strumpet topp'd her part, 1. Those secret charins are my delight, And sow'd sedition in the heart !

1. Which shine remote from public sight 'Fhro' ev'ry troop the poison ran ;

1 Passions subdued, desires at rest: All were infected to a man.

' And hence his chaplain shares my breast. The wary generals were won

• There was a time (his grace can tell) By Pleasure's wiles, and both undonc

1. I knew the duke exceeding well; 'Jove held the troops in high disgrace,

1. Knew ev'ry secret of his heart; Aud bade discases blast the race;

l'In truth, we never were apart: Look'd on the quecn with melting eyes,

1. But when the court became his end, And snatch'd his darling to the skies ·

• He turn'd his back upon his friend. Who still regards those wiser few, .

One day I cali'd upon his grace, That dare her dictates to pursue.

Just as the duke had got a place: For where her strictei law prevails,

"I thought (but thought arniss, 'tis clear) Tho' passion prompts or vice assails,

' I should be welcome to the peer; . Long shall they cloudless skies behold,

· Yes, welcome to a man in pow'r; And their calm sun-set beam with guld.

And so I was -- for half an hour : 1. But he grew weary of his guest,

1 And soon discarded me his breast; $ 84. Vision IV. Content, | Upbraided ine with want of merit,

l' But most for poverty of spirit. Man is deceiv'd by outward show

"You relish not the great man's lot! "Tis a plain homespun truth I know;

Come, hasten to my humbler cot. The fraud prevails at ev'ry age,

· Think me not partial to the great, Su says the school-boy and the sage:

· I'm a sworn fue to pride and state!

No

'No monarch shares my kind embrace; Much less, by pride or int'rest drawn,
"There's scarce a monarch knows my face; Sigh for the mitre and the lawn.
'Content shuns courts, and oftner dwells | Observe the secrets of my art,
With modest worth in rural cells;

I'll fundamental truths impart; There's no complaint, tho'brown the bread, If you 'll my kind advice pursue, • Or the rude turf sustain the head;

I'll quit my hut, and dwell with you. • Thu' hard the couch, and coarse the meat, The passions are a num'rous crowd, * Sull the broviti loaf and sleep are sweet. Iinperious, positive, and loud : *Far from the city I reside,

Curb these licentious sons of strife; And a thatch'd cottage all my pride. Hence chiefly rise the storms of life: • True to my heart, I seldom roam,

If they grow mutinous, and rave, • Because I find my joys at home:

| They are thy masters, thou their slave. For foreign visits then begin

Regard the world with cautious cye, . When the man feels a void within.

Nor raise your expectation high ' But tho' from towns and crowds I fly, See that the balanc'd scales be such, No humorist, nor cynic, I.'

You neither fear nor hope too inuch : * Amidst sequester'd shades I prize

For disappointment's not the thing; * The friendships of the good and wise. | 'Tis pride and passion point the sting, · Bid Virtue and her sons attend,

Life is a sea, where storms must risc; • Virtue will tell thee, I'm her friend; "Tis folly talks of cloudless skics; . Tell thee I'm faithful, constant, kind, | He who contracts his swelling sail, "And meek, and lowly, and resign'd;

Eludes the fury of the gale.
Will say, there's no distinction known, | Be still, nor anxious thoughts employ;
• Betwixt her houschold and my own.' Distrust embitters present joy :

On God for all events depend;
AUTHOR.

You cannot want when God's your friend. If these the friendships you pursue,

Wcigh well your part, and do your best ; Your friends, I fear, are very few.

Leave to your Maker all the rest. So little company, you say,

The hand which form’d thee in the womb. Yet fond of home from day to day !

Guides from the cradle to the tomb. How do you shun Detraction's rod?

Can the fond mother slight her boy?
I doubt your neighbours think you odd!

Can she forget her pratting joy?
CONTENT.

Say then, shall sov'reign love desert
I commune with myself at night,

The hunible and the honest heart? And ask my heart if all be right :

Heav'n may not grant thee all thy mind; If« Right' replies my faithful breast,

Yet say not thou, that Heav'ns unkind. I smile, and close my eyes to rest.

God is alike both good and wise , AUTHOR.

In what he grants and what denies: You seem regardless of the town:

Perhaps, what Goodness gives to-day,

To-morrow Goodness takes away.
Pray, Sir, how stand you with the gown?

You say, that troubles intervene;
CONTENT.

That sorrows darken all the scene.
The clergy say they love me well;

True — and this consequence you see, Whether they do, they best can tell :

The world was ne'er design'd for thee: They paint me modesi, friendly wise,

You're like a passenger below, And always praise me to the skies:

| That stays perhaps a night or so; But if convictions at the heart,

But still his native country lies Why not a correspondent part?

Beyond the boundries of the skies. For shall the learned tongue prevail,

Of Heav'n ask virtue, wisdoin, health, If actions preach a diff'rent tale?

But never let thy pray'r be wealth. Who'll seek my door, and grace my walls, If food be thine (thoʻlittle gold), When neither dean nor prelate calls ?

And raiment to repel the cold ;
With those my friendships must obtain, Such as may Nature's wants suffice,
Who prize their duty more than gain ;

Not what from pride and folly rise :
Soft flow the hours whene'er we meet, If soft the notions of thy soul,
And conscious virtue is our treat;

And a calm conscience crown the whole
Our harmless brcasts no envy know,

Add but a friend to all this store, And hence we fear no secret foc;

You can't in reason wish for more : Our walks Ambition de'er attends,

And if kind Heav'n this comfort brings. And hence we ask no pow'rful friends : 'Tis more than Heav'n bestows on kings. We wish the best to church and state,

He spake the airy spectre flies, But leave the steerage to the great;

And straight the sweet illusion dics,
Careless who rises or who falls, i

The vision, at the early dawn, i
And never dream of vacant stalls: En Consiguid me to the thoughtful morn;

To To all the cares of waking clar,

1This moment seen aloft to soar, Aud inconsistent dreams of day.

The next to fall, and rise no more.

"Twas here Ambition kept her court, S 85. l'ision V. Ilappiness.

A phantom of gigantic port: Ye ductile youths, whose rising sun

The fav'rite that sustain'd her throne Hlath many circles still to run ;

Was falsehood by her vizard known; Who wisely wish the pilot's chart,

Next stood Mistrust, with frequent sigh, To steer thro' life th' unsteady heart;

Disorder'd look, and squinting eye ; And, all thc thoughtful voyage past,

While meagre Envy claim'd a place; To gain a happy port at last:

And Jealousy, withi jaundic'd face. Attend a Scer's instructive song;

But where is Happiness? I cried. For inoral truths to dreams belong.

My guardian turu'd, and thus replied : I saw this wondrous Vision soon,

i Mortal, by Folly still beguild, Long ere my sun had reach'd its noon; 1. Thou hast not yet outstripp'd the child; Just when the rising beard began

Thou who hast twenty winters scen To grace my chin, and call me inan.

(I hardly think thee past fifteen) One night, when balmy slumbers shed To ask if happiness can dwell Their peaceful poppies o'er my head,

" With ev'ry dirty imp of hell! My fancy led me to explore

Go to the school-boy; he shall preach A thousand scorres ugknown before.

What twenty winters cannot teach; I saw a plain extended wide,

"He'll tell tice, froin his weekly thene, And crowels pour'd in from ev'ry side;

1. That the pursuit is all a dream ; All seemd to start a diff'rent game,

" That bliss ambitious vows disowns, Yet all declar'd their views the same:

• And, self-dependent, lauglis at thrones; The chace was llappiness, I found;

1. Prefers the shades, and lowly seats, But all, alas ! enchanted ground.

1. Whither fair Innocence retreats. Indeed, ljudy'd it wondrous strange,

So the coy lily of the vale To see the giddy numbers range

Shuns eminence, and loves the dale." Thro' roads, which pronus'd nought, at best, I blush'd; and now we cross d the plain, But serrotv to the human breast.

To find the money-getting train ; Methonght, if bliss was all their view,

Those silent, soug, commercial bands, Why did the difl'rout paths pursue ?

With busy looks, and dirty hands.
The waking world has long agreed,

Amidst these thoughtful crowds, the old
That Bagshe's not the road to Tweed : Plac'd all their happiness in gold;
And he who Berwick seeks thro' Staines, And surely, if there's bliss below,
Shall have bis labor for his pains.

These hoáry heads the secret know.
As Parnell savs, my bosom wrought We journey'd with the ploding crew,
Wir travail of imcurtain thought;

When suon a temple rose to view; And, as an angel heipit the dean,

A Gothic pile! with inoss o'ergrown; Aly angel chose to incriere.

Strong were the walls, and built with stonc., The dress of cach Wils much the same; Without a thousand mastiffs wait; And virtue was my seripi's name.

A thousand bolts semire the gate. Vhen thus the angel silence broke;

17e sought admission long in vain, licr voice was music as she spoke :

For here all favors sell for gain. • Attend, O man! nor leave my side, . The greedy porter yields to greld; • And safety shall thy footsteps guide; His fee receiv'd, the gates unfold. • Such truths I'll leach, suchi secrets show, | Assembled nations here we found, • As none but favor d mortals know.

| And view'd the cringing herds around, She said and straight we march'd along Who daily sacrific'd to Wealth To join Ambition's active throng:

Their honor, conscience, peace, and healtli, Crowds urg'd on crowds with eager pace, I saw no charins that could engage; And happy he who led the race.

The rod appcar'd like sordid age, Axes and dangers lay unseen

With hooked nose, and famish'd jaws, . In ambuscade along the green :

But serpent's eyes, and harpy's clairs : While vapors shed delusive light,

Behind stood Fear, that restless sprite, Aud bubliles inock'd the distant sight.

Which haunts the watches of the night; We saw a shining mountain rise,

And viper Care, that stinga so deep, Whose ton 'ring suininit reach'd the skies; Whose deadly venom inurders sleep. The slopes were steep, and forind of glass, W'chasten now to Pleasure's bow'rs, Painful and hazardous to pass :

Where the gav tribes sat crown'd with flowers: Courtiers and statesmen led the way;

ller beauty ev'ry charın display'd, The futhless rathes their sieps betray;

And love inflam'd the yielding maid;
See the Herznit, page 59.

Delicious

[ocr errors]

Delicious wine our taste employs;

'Folly exclaims, and well she may, His crimson bowl exalts our joys.

| Because I take her mask-away; I felt its gen'rons pow'r, and thought

* If once I bring her to the sun, The pearl was found that long I sought. • The painted harlot is undone. Determin'd here to fix my home,

• But prize, my child, oh prize my rules, I bless'd the change, nor wish'd to roam : * And leave Deception to her fools. The seraph disapprov'd my stay;

' Ambition deals in tinsel toys; Spread her fair plumes, and wing'd away. l'Her traffic gewgaws, fleeting joys, Alas! whene'er we talk of bliss,

* An errant juggler in disguise, How prone is man to judge amiss !

• Who holds false optics to your cyes. Sce, a long train of ills conspires

But ah! how quick the shadows pass! To scourge our uncontrol'd desires;

• Tho' the bright visions thro' her glass Like summer swarms discases crowd,

• Charm at a distance! yet, when near, Each bears a crutch, or each a shroud ·

· The baseless fabrics disappear. Fever, that thirsty fury came,

Nor riches boast intrinsic worth; With inextinguishable fame;

· Their charms, at best, superior earth : Consumption, sworn ally of Death!

• These oft the heaven-born mind enslave, Crept slowly on with panting breath ;

• And make an honest man a knave.' Gout roar'd, and show'd his throbbing feet; “ Wealth cures my wanıs!" the miser cries : And Drops took the drunkard's seat;

• Be not deceiv'd the miser lies; Stone brought his tort'ring racks: and near • One want he has, with all his store, Sat Palsy, shaking in his chair.

" That worst of wants - the want of more.' A mangled youth, beneath a shade,

“ Take Pleasure, Wealth, and Pomp away, A inelancholy scene display'd :

“ And where is Happiness,” you say. His noseless face, and loathsome stains,

'Tis here – and may be yours - for, know, Proclaim'd the poison in his veins;

• I'nı all that's Happiness below. He rais'd his eyes, he smote his breast,

"To Viced leave tumultuous joys; He wept aloud, and thus address'd;

| Mine is the still and softer voice! Forbear the harlot's false einbrace, · That whispers peace when storms invade, Tho' lewdness wear an angel's face :

And music through the inidnight shade. Be wise, by my experience taught;

. Come, then, be mine in ev'ry part, • I die, alas! for want of thought !

· Nor give me less than all your heart; As he who travels Lybia's plains,

When troubles discompose your breast, Where the fierce lion lawless reigns,

• I'll enter there a cheerful guest : Is seis:d with fear and wild dismay,

· My converse shall your cares beguile, Wher the griin foe obstrụcts his way;

· The little world within shall smile. My soul was pierc'd with equal fright,

• And then it scarce imports a jot, My tott'ring linbs oppos'd my flight:

• Whether the great world frowns or not. I call on Virtue, but in vain;..

' And when the closing scenes prevail, Her absence quicken'd ev'ry pain.

"When wealth, state, pleasure, all shall fail ; At length the slighted angel beard;

« All that a foolish world admires, The dear refulgcni form appeard :

• Or Passion craves, or Pride inspires : Presumptuous youth! she said, and frown'd l' At that important hour of need, (My heart-strings Hutter'd at the sound);

• Virtue shall prove a friend indeed ! "Who turns to me reluctant ears,

• My hands shall smooth thy dying bed, Shall shed repeated floods of tears.

• My arms sustain thy drooping head : • These rivers shall for ever last;

• And when the painful struggle's o'er, · There's no retracting what is past :

· And that vain thing, the world, no more; Nor think arenging ills to shun; .

• I'll bear niy fav’rite son away **Play a false card, and you 're undone.

To rapture and etcrnal day.'' • Of Pleasure's gilded baits beware, . Nor tempt the Syren's fata} sparo:

$ 86. Vision VI. Friendship. * Forego this curs d detested place;

FRIENDSHIP! thou soft propitious pow's! · Abhor the strumpet, and her race.

Sweet regent of the social hour! · Had you those softer paths pursu'd,

Sublime thy joys, nor understood • Perdition, stripling, had ensued :

But by the virtuous and the good ! Yes, fly- you stand upon its brink! Cabal and Riot take thy name, · To-morrow is too late to think.

But 'tis a false affected claim; lodeed, unwelcome truths I tell,

In heaven if Love and Friendship dwell, But mark my sacrerl lesson well;

Can they ass..iate c'er with hell? . With me whoever lives at strife,

Thou art the same thro' change of times, • Loses his better friend for life ;

| Thro' frozen zones and burning climes; With me, who lives in friendship’s ties, From the equator to the pole, • Finds all that's sought for by the wise. The same kind angel through the whole :

* And

[ocr errors]

And, since thy choice is always free,

But Prudence most attracts the sight, I bless thee for thy smiles on me.

And shines pre-eminently bright. When sorrows swell the tempest high, To view her various thoughts that rise, Thou, a kind port, art always nigh;

She holds a mirror to her eyes; For aching hearts a sov'reign cure,

The mirror, faithful to its charge, Not soft nepenthe * half so sure !

Reflects the virgin's soul in large.
And, when returning comforts rise,

A Virtue with a softer air
Thou the bright sun that gilds our skies. Was handmaid to the regal fair :

While these ideas warm'd ny breast, This nymph, indulgent, constant, kind,
My weary eyelids stole to resi;

Derives from heaven her spotless mind; When fancy re-assum'd the theme,

When actions wear a dubious face, And furnish'd this instructive dream:

Puts the best meaning on the case ; I sail'd upon a stormy sea

She spreads her arins, and bares her breasts, (Thousands embark'd alike with me);

Takes in the naked and distress'd ; Miy skiff was small, and weak beside,

Prefers the hungry orphan's crics, Not built, methought, to stem the tide.

ind from her queen obtains supplies. The winds along the surges sweep,

The maid, who acts this lovely part, The wrecks lie scatter'd through ihe deep; Graspd in her hand a bleeding heart. Aloud the foaming billows roar;

Fair Charity, be thou my guest, Unfriendly rocks forbid the shore.

And be thy constant couch my breast! While all our various course pursue,

But virties of inferior name A spacious isle salutes our view:

Crowu round the throne with equal claim , Two queens with tempers difl'ring wide, In Lovalty by none surpass'd, This new-discover'd world divide :

They hold allegiance to the last : A river parts their proper claim,

Notantient records e'er can show And Truth its celebrated name.

| That one deserted to the foe. One side a beauteous tract of ground | The river's other side display'd Presents, with living verdure crown'd:

Alternate plots of flow'rs and shade, The seasons temp'rate, soft, and mild,

Where poppies slone with various hue, And a kind sun chat always smil'd:

Where yielding willows plenteous grew : Few storis molest the natives here;

And humble plants t, by trav’llers thought Cold is the only ill they fear.

With ylow but certain poison fraught. This happy clime and grateful soil,

Beyond these scenes the eye descried
With plenty crowns the laborer's toil.

A pow'rful tealm extended wide ;
Here Friendship's happy kingdom grew : Whose boundries from north-cast begun,
Her realms were small, her subjects few : , And stretch'd to meet the south-west sun.
A thousand charms the palace grace;

Ilere Flatt'ry boasts despotic sway,
A rock of adamant its base.

And basks in all the warmth of day.
Tho' thunders roll, and lightwings fiv,

Long practis'd in Deception's school,
This structure braves th’inclement sky: The tyrant knew the arts to rule;
E'en time, which other piles devours,

Elated with th' imperial robe,
And mocks the pride of human pow'rs, She plans the conquest of the globe;
Partial to Friendship's pile alone,

And, aided by her servile trains,
Cements the joints, and binds the stone : Leads kings, and sons of kings, in chains.
Ripens the beauties of the place,

Her darling minister is Pride
And calls to life each latent grace.

(Who ne'er was known to change his side), Around the throne in order stand,

A friend to all her int'rests just, Four Amazons, a trusty band!

And active to discharge his trust; Friends ever faithful to advise,

Careys'd alike by high and low, Or to defend when dangers rise.

The idol of the belle and beau : Here Fortitudc, in coat of mail;

In ev'ry shape he shows his skill, There Justice lifts her golden scale;

And forins her subjects to bis will ; Two hardy chiefs, who persevere,

Enters their houses and their hearts, Witli form erect, and brow severe :

And gains his point before he parts; Who smile at perils, pains, and death,

Sure never minister was known And triumph with their latest brcath.

So zealous for his sov'reign's throne ! Temp’rance, that coincly matron 's niear, 1 Thrce sisters, similar in micn, Guardian of all the virtues here;

Were maids of honor to the queen; Adorn'd with ev'ry blooining grace, ' . Who farther favors shar'd beside, Without one wrinkle in her face.

As daughters of her statesman, Pride. * Nepenthe is an herb which, being infused in wine, dispels grief. It is unknown to the moderns; but some believe it a kind of opium, and others take it for a species of bugloss. Plin. xvi. 21. f. & XIV.2.

4 The humble plant bends down before the touch, as the sensitive plant shrinks from the touch; and is said by some to be the story poison of the Indians.

The

« ForrigeFortsett »