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Imbitter'd all our bliss. Ye good diftreft!
Ye noble few! who here unbending stand
Beneath life's preffure, yet bear up a while,
And what your bounded view, which only saw
A little part deem'd Evil, is no more.
The storms of WINTÄRY Time will quickly pass,
And one unbounded SPRING encircle all.
ON PROCRASTINATION. Be
E wise to-day ; 'tis madness to defer ;.
Next day the fatal precedent will plead;
till wisdom is push'd out of life.
Procrastination is the thief of time;
Year after year it fteals, till all are fled,
And to the
of a moment leaves The vast concerns of an eternal scene.
Of man's miraculous mistakes, this bears.
The palm, “ Tliat all men are about to live,”
For ever on the brink of being born :
All pay themselves the compliment to think
They, one day, shall not drivel; and their pride
On this reversion takes up ready praise ;
At least, their own'; their future selves applauds;
How excellent that life they ne'er will lead !
Time lodg'd in their own hands is Folly's vails;
That lodg'd in Fate's, to Wisdom they consign;
The thing they can't but purpose, they poftpone.
'Tis not in Folly, not to scorn a fool;
And scarce in human Wisdom to do more.
All Promise is poor dilatory man,
And that thro' ev'ry ftage. When young indeed,
In full content, we sometimes nobly rest,
Un-anxious for ourselves ; and only wish,
As duteous fons, our fathers were more wise,
At thirty man fufpects himself a fool;
Knows it at forty, and reforms his plan ;
At fifty chides his infamous delay,
Pushes his prudent purpose to Refolve ;
In all the magnanimity of thought,
Resolves, and re-refolves, then dies the same.
And why? Because he thinks himself immortal.
All men think all men mortal but themselves :
Themselves, when some alarming fhock of fate
Strikes thro' their wounded hearts the fudden dread;
But their hearts wounded, like the wounded air,
Soon close; where past the fhaft, no trace is found.
As from the wing no scar the sky retains ;
The parted wave no furrow from the keel';
So dies in human hearts the thought of death.
Ev'n with the tender tear which nature sheds
O'er those we love, we drop it in their grave.
The PAIN ARISING FROM VIRTUOUS EMOTIONS
ATTENDED WITH PLEASURE.
Of Heav'n's eternal destiny to man,
For ever just, benevolent and wife :
That VIRTUE's awful steps, howe'er pursued
By vexing Fortune and intrusive Pain,
Should never be divided from her chaste,
Her fair artendant, PLEASURE. Need I urge
Thy tardy thought through all the various round,
Of this exiitence, that thy foft'cing foul
At lengti may learn what energy the hand
Of Virtue mingles in the bitter tide
Of passion swelling with dillreis and pain,
To mitigate the sharp with gracious drops
Of cordial Piealure? Ak the faithful youth,
Why the cold urn of her whom long he lov'd
So often fills his arms; so often draws
His lonely footsteps at the silent hour,
the mournful tribute of his tears;
O! he will tell thee, that the wealth of worlds
Should ne'er seduce his bufom to forego
That facred hour, when, stealing from the noise
Of care and envy, sweet Remembrance soothes
With Virtue's kindest looks his aching breast,
And turns nis tears to rapture.--Ask the crowd
Which flies impatient from the village-walk
To climb the neighb'ring cliffs, when far below
The cruel winds have hurl'd upon the coast
Some hapless bark; while sacred Pity melts
The gen'ral eye, or Terror's icy hand
Smites their distorted limbs and horrent hair;
While every mother closer to her breaft
Catches her child, and pointing where the waves
Foam thro' the shatter'd vessel, Mrieks aloud,
As one, poor wretch, that spreads his piteous arms
For fuccour swallow'd by the roaring furge,
As now another, dash'd against the rock,
Drops lifeless down. O deemeft thou indeed
No kind endearment here by Nature given
To mutual terror and compassion's tears ?
No sweetly-melting softness which attracts,
O'er all that edge of pain, the social pow'rs
To this their proper action and their end ?
Ask thy own heart; when at the midnight hour,
Slow thro' that studious gloom thy pausing eye
Led by the glimm’ring taper moves around
The sacred volumes of the dead, the songs
Of Grecian bards, and records writ by Fame
For Grecian Heroes, where the prefent pow'r
Of heav'n and earth surveys th' immortal pages.
E’en as a father blessing, while he reads
The praises of his son ; if chen thy soul,
Spurning the yoke of these inglorious days,
Mix in their deeds and kindle with their flame :
Say, when the prospect blackens on thy view,
When rooted from the base, heroic states
Mourn in the dust and tremble at the frown
Of curs’d Ambition :-when the pious band
Of youths that fought for freedom and their fires
Lie. fide by fide in gore;when ruffian Pride
Usurps the throne of Justice, turns the pomp
Of public pow'r, the majesty of rule,
The sword, the laurel, and the purple robe,
To savish emp'y pageants, to adorn
A tyrant's walk and glitter in the eyes
Of such as bow the knee ;-when honour'd urns
Of patriots and of chiefs, the awful buit
And foried arch, to glut the coward-rage
Of regal Envy, frew the public way
With hallow'd ruins! When the Muse's haunt,
The marble porch where Wisdom wont to talk
With Socrates or Tully, hears no more,
Save the hoarse jargon of contentious monks,
Or female Superftition's midnight pray'r; -
When rathlets Rapine from the hand of Time
Tears the destroying scythe, with farer blow
To sweep the works of glory from their base;
Till Desolation o'er the grass-grown street
Expands his raven-wings, and up the wall,
Where fenates, once the pride of monarchs doom'd,.
Hisses the gliding fnake thro' hoary weeds
That clasp the mould'ring column ; -- thus defac'd,
Thus widely mournful when the prospect thrills
Thy beating bosom, when the patriot's tear
Starts from thine eye, and thy extended arm
In fancy hurls the thunderbolt of Jove
To fire the impious wreath on Philip's brow,
Or dalh Octavius from the trophied car ;-
Say, does thy secret foul repine to taste
The big diftress? Or would it thou then exchange
Those heart-enobling forrows, for the lot
Of him who fits amid the gaudy herd
Of mute barbarians bending to his nod,
And bears aloft his gold-invested front,
And says within himself, “ I am a king,
" And wherefore fhould the clam'rous voice of Woe
• Intrude upon mine ear ?"-The baleful dregs
Of these late ages, this inglorious draught
Of fervitude and folly, have not yet,
Bleft be th' Eternal Ruler of the World!
Defild to such a depth of fordid Mame