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Each loves itself, but not itself alone,
Each fex defires alike, 'till two are one.
Nor ends the pleasure with the fierce embrace;
They love themselves, a third time, in their race.
Thus beast and bird their common charge attend,
The mothers nurse it, and the fires defend;
The young dismiss'd to wander earth or air,
There stops the instinct, and there ends the care;
The link diffolves, each feeks a fresh embrace,
Another love fucceeds, another race.
A longer care man's helpless kind demands;
That longer care contracts more lasting bands:
Reflection, reason, still the ties improve,
At once extend the intereft and the love:
With choice we fix, with fympathy we burn;
Each virtue in each paffion takes its turn;
And still new needs, new helps, new habits rife,
That graft benevolence on charities.
Still as one brood, and as another rofe,
Thefe nat'ral love maintain'd, habitual thofe :
The last, scarce ripen'd into perfect man,
Saw helpless him from whom their life began:
Mem'ry and fore-cast just returns engage,
That pointed back to youth, this on to age:
While pleasure, gratitude, and hope combin'd,
Still spread the interest and preferv'd the kind. [trod;
IV. Nor think, in NATURE'S STATE they blindly
The state of nature was the reign of God:
Self-love and focial at her birth began,
Union the bond of all things, and of man.
Pride then was not; nor arts, that pride to aid : Man walk'd with beaft, joint tenant of the fhade; The fame his table, and the fame his bed;
No murder cloath'd him, and no murder fed.
In the fame temple, the refounding wood,
All vocal beings hym'd their equal GoD:
The fhrine with gore unftain 'd, with gold undrest,
Unbrib'd, unbloody, stood the blameless priest :
Heaven's attribute was univerfal care,
And man's prerogative, to rule, but fpare.
Ah! how unlike the man of times to come!
Of half that live, the butcher and the tomb;
Who, foe to nature, hears the general groan,
Murders their fpecies, and betrays his own.
But juft difcafe to luxury fucceeds,
And every death its own avenger breeds;
The fury-paffions from that blood began,
And turn'd on man, a fiercer favage, man.
See him from nature rifing flow to art!
To copy instinct then was reafon's part;
Thus then to man the voice of nature fpake--
Go, from the creatures thy instructions take :
"Learn from the birds what food the thickets yield;
"Learn from the beasts the phyfic of the field;
"Thy arts of building from the bee receive;
"Learn of the mole to plow, the worm to weave;
"Learn of the little Nautilus to fail,
"Spread the thin oar, and catch the driving gale. "Here too all forms of focial union find,
"And hence let rea.on, late, inftruct mankind:
"Here fubterranean works and cities fee;
"There towns aërial on the waving tree.
"Learn each small people's genius, policies,
"The ant s republic and the realm of bees;
"How thofe in common all their wealth bestow,
"And anarchy without confufion know;
"And thefe for ever tho' a monarch reign,
"Their fep'rate cells and properties maintain.
"Mark what unvary'd laws preferve each state,
"Laws wife as nature, and as fix'd as fate.
"In vain thy reafon finer webs shall draw,
"Entangle justice in her net of law,
66 And right, too rigid, harden into wrong: "Still for the ftrong too weak, the weak too strong. "Yet go! and thus o'er all the creatures fway, "Thus let the wifer make the rest obey; "And for those arts mere instinct could afford, "Be crown'd as monarchs, or as gods ador'd."
IV. Great nature spoke; obfervant man obey'd; Cities were built, focieties were made:
Here rofe one little state; another near
Grew by like means, and join'd, thro' love or fear!
Bid here the trees with ruddier burdens bend,
And there the streams in purer rills defcend?
What war could ravish, commerce could heftow,
And he return'd a friend, who came a foe.
Converfe and love mankind might strongly draw,
When love was liberty, and nature law.
Thus ftates were form'd; the name of king unknown,
Till common interest plac'd the sway in one.
'Twas VIRTUE ONLY (or in arts or arms,
Diffufing bleffings, or averting harms)
The fame which in a fire the fons obey'd,
A prince the father of a people made.
VI. Till then, by nature crown'd, each patriarch fate,
King, priest, and parent, of his growing state;
On him, their fecond Providence, they hung,
Their law his eye, their oracle his tongue.
He from the wond'ring furrow call'd the food,
Taught to command the fire, controul the flood,
Draw forth the monsters of th' abyfs profound,
Or fetch th' aërial eagle to the ground.
"Till drooping, fick'ning, dying they began
Whom they rever'd as GOD, to mourn as man:
Then, looking up from fire to fire, explor'd
One great first father, and that first ador'd.
Or plain tradition that this all begun,
Convey'd unbroken faith from fire to fon;
The worker from the work diftinct was known,
And fimple reason never fought but one:
Ere wit oblique had broke that steddy light,
Man, like his Maker, faw that all was right;
To virtue, in the paths of pleasure trod,
And own'd a Father when he own'd a God.
LOVE all the faith, and all th' allegiance then;
For nature knew no right divine in men,
No ill could fear in GoD; and understood
A fovereign being, but a fovereign good.
True faith, true policy, united ran,
That was but love of God, and this of man.
Who first taught fouls enflav'd, and realms undone,
Th' enormous faith of many made for one;
That proud exception to all nature's laws,
T'invert the world, and counter-work its caufe?
Force first made conquest, and that conquest, law;
"Till Superstition taught the tyrant awe,
Then shar'd the tyranny, then lent it aid,
And gods of conquerors, flaves of fubjects made:
She, midst the lightning's blaze, and thunders found,
When rock'd the mountains, and when groan'd the
She taught the weak to bend, the proud to pray,
To Power unfeen, and mightier far than they :
She, from the rending earth and bursting skies,
Saw gods defcend, and fiends infernal rife:
Here fix'd the dreadful, there the bleft abodes;
Fear made her devils, and weak hope her gods;
Gods partial, changeful, passionate, unjust,
Whofe attributes were rage, revenge, or luft;
Such as the fouls of cowards might conceive,
And, form'd like tyrants, tyrants would believe.
Zeal then, not charity, became the guide;
And hell was built on fpite, and heaven on pride.
Then facred feem'd th' ethereal vault no more;
Altars grew marble then, and reek'd with gore:
Then firft the Flamen tafted living food;
Next his grim idol fmear'd with human blood;
With heaven's own thunders shook the world below,
And play'd the god an engine on his foe.
So drives felf-love, thro' juft, and thro' unjust, To one man's pow'r, ambition, lucre, lust: