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Let not ambition mock their useful toil, For who, to dumb forgetfulness a prey,
Their homely joys, and deftiny obscure; This pleasing anxious being e'er resign'd, Nor grandeur liear with a disdainful smile Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day,
The short and simple annals of the poor. Nor cast one longing, ling’ring, look behind ? The boast of heraldry, the pomp of pow'r,
On some fond breast the parting foul relics, And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave,
Some pious drops the closing eye requires : Await, alike, th’incvitable hour;
Ev'n from the tomb the voice of mature cries, The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
Ev'n in our alhes live their wonted fires. Nor you, ye proud, impute to these the fault,
For thee, who, mindful of th’unhonour'd dead,
Doft in these lines their artless tale relate; If mein'ry o'er their tomb no trophies raile,
If, chance, by loncly Contemplation led, Where thro’the long-drawn ille and fretted vault,
Some kindred fpirit fhail inquire thy fate, The pealing anthem swells the note of praise.
Haply fome hoary-headed (wain may say, Can storied urn, or animated bust,
« Oft have we seen him at the peep of dawn, Back to its mansion call the fleeting breath? Brushing, with hasty steps, the dews away, Can Honour's voice provoke the silent duft, To meet the fun upon the upland lawn.
Or Flatt'ry soothe the dull cold ear of death? | There at the foot of yonder nodding beech, Perhaps in this neglected fpot is laid
That wreathes its old fantastic roots so high, Some heart once pregnant with celestial fire :
His littlefs length at noon-tide would he stretch, Hands, that the rod of empire might have fivay'd,
And pore upon the brook that bubbles by. Or wak'd to ecstasy the living lyre.
Hard by yon wood, now siniling, as in scorn,
Mutt’ring his wayward fancies, he would rove; But knowledge to their eyes her ample page, Rich with the spoils of Time, did ne'er unroll;
Now drooping, woeful wan, like one forlorn,
Or craz'd with care, or cross'd in hopeless love. Chill Penury repress’d their noble rage, And froze the genial current of the foul.
One morn I miss'd him on the custom'd hill,
Along the heath, and near his fav'rite tree: Full many a gem, of purest ray serene,
Another came; nor yet beside the rill, The dark unfathom'd caves of ocean bear.
Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was he. Full many a flow'r is born to blush unicen, And waste its sweetness on the defart air. The next, with dirges due, in sad array, [borne :
Slow thro’ the church-yard path we faw hin Some village-Hampden, that with dauntless breast Approach and read (for thou canst read) the lay, The little tvra:t of his helds withstood;
Grav'd on the stone beneath yon aged thorn.” Some mute inglorious Milton here may rest; Some Cromwell guiltless of his country's blood.
THE EPITAPH. Th'applause of liftning fenates to command, Here rests his head upon the lap of earth,
The threats of pain and ruin to despise, A youth to Fortune and to Faine unknown; To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land,
Fair Science frown'd not on his humble birth, And read their history in a nation's eyes, And Melancholy mark'd him for her own. Their lot forbade: nor circumscrib'd alone (fin'd; Large was his bounty, and his foul sincere, Their growing virtues, but their crimes con
Heav'n did a recoinpence as largely fend: Forbace to wade through laughter to a throne, He gave to Mis’ry all he had, a tear; [a friend,
And shut the gates of mercy on mankind; He gain’d from Heav'n ('twas all he withd) The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide, No farther feek his merits to disclose,
To quench The blushes of ingenuous thame, Or draw his frailtics from their dread abode, Or heap the fhrine of Luxury and Pride (There they alike in trembling hope repole)
With incense kindled at the Muse's flame. The botom of his Father and his God. Far from the madding crowd's ignoble itrife
Their fober withes never learn'd to stray; § 45. Death. Dr. PORTEUS, Bp. of London. Along the cool sequester'd vale of life
They kept the noisclefs tenor of their way. FRIEND to the wretch whom every friend Yet ev'n these bones from insult to protect,
, Some frail memorial ftill erected nigh,
I woo thee, Death! In fancy's fairy paths With uncouth rhimes and fapelels sculpture The strain of empty joy. Life and its joys
Let the gay songster rove, ar.d gently trill Implores the passing tribute of a sigh. [deck d, I leave to those that prize them. At this hour, Their name, their years, spelt by th’unletter'd This solemn hour, when filence rules the world,
The place of fame and elegy supply: [muse, And wearied nature makes a gen’ral pause; And many a holy text around the Itiews, Wrapt in night's fable robe, through cloysters That teach tlie ruflic inovalifi to die, And charnels pale, tenanted by a throng (drear
Of meagre phantoms shooting cross my path The troubled air, and form'd a veil of clouds
Th’infection of his milery. He alone
Forfook not in this uttermoft distress Bufies hertelf in pointing all his ftings,
His best lov'd work. That confort still remain'd Ard dipping every shaft with venom drawn (That best, that greatest comfort in affliction) From her infernal store : around him rang'd The countenance of God, and thro’ the gloom In terrible array, and mixture strange
Shot forth fome kindly gleams, to cheerand warm Of uncouth shapes, stand his dread Ministers. Th'offender's sinking foul. Hope sent from Heav'n Foremost Old Age, his natural ally
Uprais'd his drooping head, and thew'd afar And fiimcft friend: next him discales thick, A happier scene of things; the Promis'd Seed À motley train; Fever, with cheek of fire; Trampling upon the Serpent's huinbied crest; Conlumption wan; Pally, half warın with life, Death of his sting disarm’d; and the dark grave, And half a clay-clod lump; joint-tort'ring Gout, Made pervious to the realms of endless day, And ever-gnawing Rheum; Convulfion wild; No more the limit but the gate of life. [ground, Soln Droply; panting Asthma; Apoplex Chcer'd with the view, Man went to till the Fui-gorg'd. There too the Pestilence that walks From whence he rose; fentenc'd indeed to toil In darkness, and the Sickness that destroy's As to a punishment, yet (cv'n in wrath, Atbroad noon-day. Thele, and a thousand more, So merciful is Heav'n) this toil became Horrid to tell, attentive wait; and, when The folace of his woes, the sweet employ ByHcar'n's commandDeath waves his ebonwand, Of many, a live-long hour, and surelt guard Sudden rush forth ts execute his purpose, Against DiseaseandDeath. Death, tho’denounc'd, dod icatter defolation o’er the Earth.
Was yet a distant ill, by feeblc arm Ill-fated Van, for whom such various forins Of Age, his fole support, led flowly on. Of mis’ry wait, and mark their future prey! Not then, as since, the short-liv'd fons of men Ah! whý, all-righteous Father, didit thou make Flock'd to his realms in countless multitudes; This creature, Man? why wake th’unconscious Scarce in the course of twice five hundred years, To life and wietchcdness O better far (dust One folitary ghost went thiv'ring down Still had he slept in uncreated night,
To his unpeopled thore. In sober state, If this the lot of Being! Was it for this Through the sequcster'd vale of rural life, Thy Brcath divine kindled within his breast The venerable Patriarch guileless held The vital fiamc? For this was thy fair image The tenor of his way; Labour prepar'd Stampe on his foul in godlike lineaments ? His fimple fare, and Temp’rancc rul’d his board, For this dominion giv’n him absolute
Tir'd with his daily toil, at early eve O'er all thy works, only that he might reign He sunk to fudden rett; gentle and pure Supreme in woc? From the blest source of Good As breath of evening Zephyr, and as sweet, Could Pain and Death proceed: Could such foulills Were all his ilumbers; with the Sun he rose, Fall from fairMercy's hands: Far be the thought, Alert and vigorous as He, to run (strength The impious thought! God never made a creature His destin'd course. Thus nerv'd with giant But what was good. He made a living Soul; He stemm’d the ride of time, and stood the thock Tbe wretched Mortal was the work of Man. Of ages rolling harmless o'er his head. Forth from his Maker's hands he sprung to life, At life's meridian point arriv'd, he stood, Freth with immortal bloom; no pain he knew, And looking round, faw all the valleys fillid No fear of change, no check to his desires, (stood With nations from his loins; full-well content Save one command. That one command, which To leave his race thus scatter'd o'er the earth, 'Twixt him and Death, the test of his obedience, Along the gentle slope of life's decline Urg'd on by wanton curiosity,
He bent his gradual way, till full of years, He broke. "There in one moment was undone He dropt like mellow fruit into his grave. The fairest of God's works. The same rath hand, Such in the infancy of Time was Man; That pluck'd in evil hour the fatal fruit, So calm was life, fo iinpotent was Death! Labart'd the gates of Hell, and let loose Sin O had he but preserv'd these few remains, And Death, and all the family of Pain, The latter'd fragments, of loft happiness, To prey upon Mankind. Young Nature law Snatch'd by the hand of Heav'n from the sad wreck The monstrous crew,and shook thro’all her frame. Of innocence primæval ; still had he liv'd Then fled her new-born lustre, then began In ruin great; tho'fall’n, yet not forlorn; Heaven's cheerful face to low'r, then vapours Though mortal, yet not every where beset choak'd With Death in every shape! But he, impatient
To be completely wretched, haftes to fill up In earliest prime, a generous
First Envy, eldest-born of Hell, embrued Ye Sons of Pleasure, by th’Almighty ítrick’n,
One joy 10 gild the evening of thy days;
Though life seem one uncomfortable void, To late the lust of power: more horrid fill, Guilt at thy heels, before thy face despair; The fouleft itain and scandal of our nature, Yet gay this focne, and light this load of woe, Became its boast. One Murder made a Villain; Compar'd vith thy hereafter. Think, O think, Millions a Hero. Princes were privileg'd And, ere thou plunge into the vast abyss, To kill, and numbers fanélified the crine. Pause on the verge a while: look down and see Ah! why will Kings forget that they are Men? Thy future manfion. Why that start of horror And Men that they are brethren: Why delight From thy Ilack hand why drops th’uplifted steel? In human facritice? Why burit the tic's Didst thou not think fuch vengeance must await Of Nature, that thould knit their fouls together The wretch, that with his crimes all freih about In one soft bond of amity and love?
Ruthus irreverent, unprepar'd, uncall’d, [hiin Yut still they breathe destruction, still go on Irtulis Maker's presence, throwing back Inhuinanly ingenious to find out
With infolent disdain his choicett gift? New pains for life, new terrors for the grave, Livethen, while Ileav’n in pity lends the life, Artificers of Death! Still Monarchis dicam And think it all too fho.t to wash away, Of universal empire growing up
By penitential tears and deep contrition, Fiom univerfal ruin. Blatt the design, Tie fourlet of thy crine3. So sh thou find Great God of Ilotts, nor let thy cieatures fall Reft to thy foul, fo unappali'd fhalt moet L'npitied victims at Ambition's thrine! Death when he comes, not wantonly invite
Yet say, should Tyiants learn at lait to feel, His ling'ring stroke. Bu it thy fule concern And the loud din of battle cease to biay; With innocence to live : with patience wait Should dove-eyed Peace o'er all the earth extend Thappointed hour; too toon that hour will come, Her olive branch, and give the world repole, Tho’ Nature run her course. Dut Nature's God, Would Death be fuild? Would health, and If need requirc, by iboutind various ways, strength, and youth
Without thy aid, can horten that short ipan, Defy his pow'r? Has he no arts in store, And quench the lamp of life. () when he comes, No oher shafts save thote of war? Alas! Rou'd by the cry of wickedness extreme, Ev’n in the smile of Peace, that tinile which thcds To Hlcar'n afcending from fome guilty land, A heav'nly iunshine o'er the soul, there buks Now ripe for vergeance; when he comes array'd That ferpent Luxury. War its thousands flays; In all the terrors of Almigry wrath, Peace its ten thoutinds. In th’embattled pain, Forth from his bofoin pluchs his ling’ring arm, Tho' Death exults, and claps his raven wings, And on the miscreants pours destruction down; Yet reigns he not ev’n there to absolute, Who can abide his coming. Who can bear So mercilets, as in yon frantic scenes
His whole sitpleafure: 11 no common form Of midnight revel and tumultuous mirth, Death their appears, but itarting into 1120 Where in th’intoxicating draught conceil', Enormous, meatures rith gigantic ftride Or couch'd beneath the glance of lawlets love, Th’attonith'd Erth, and fiom his looks throw's Tie snaresthesimple youth, whonoughtíuípecting, L'nutterable horror and dilinay.
[round Means to be bleft---but finds hitelf undone. All Nature lends her aid. Each Element Down the smooth stream of lifethett ipling darts, Arms in his caute. Ope fly the doors of Heav'n; Gay as the morn; bright glows the vernaal iky, The fountains of the deep their barriers break; Hopelwells his tails, and passion fteers his courtc. Above, below, the rival torrents pour, Safe glides his little bark along the shore And drown Creation; or in floods of fire Where virtue takes her ftand; but if too far Defcends a livid cataract, and confumes He launches forth bevond discretion's mark, Animpious race. Sometimes, when all seems peace, Sudden the tumpest fowls, the surges roar, Wakesthegrin whirlwind, anduvihrudcembrace Blot his fair day, and plunge him in the deep. Siveeps nations to their grave, or in the deep O fad but sure inilcliance! ( happier far Wheims the proud wooden world; full many a To lie like gallant Howe 'midft Indian wilds Floats on his wat'iy bicr, or lies uswepe (voinn A bieshile si coile, cut off by invage hands On some find detaii ihuic' Alden'dui niyit,
In fullen filence ftalks forth Peftilence : Till my rapt Soul, anticipating Heav'n,
§ 46. The Grave. BLAIR.
The house appointed for all living. JOB. Thule tout'ring feet? Earth to its center fcels WHILST fome affect the sun, and some the The Godhead's pow'r, and trembling at his touch
shade, Thragh all its pillars, and in ev'ry pore, Some flee the city, fome the hermitage, Hurls to the ground, with one convullive heave, Their aims as various as the roads they take Precipitating domes, and towns, and tow'rs, In journeying through life; the task be mine The work of ages. Cruth'd beneath the weight To paint the gloomy horrors of the tomb; Of genral devastation, millions find
Th'appointed place of rendezvous, where all One common grave; not ev’n a widow left These travllers meet. Thy fuccours I implore, To wil her fons: the house, that should protect, Eternal King! whose potent arın luftains Entombs its master; and the faithless plain, The keys of hell and death. The Grave, dread If there he flies for help, with sudden yawn
thing! Stars from beneath him. Shield me, gracious Men shiver when thou'rt nam'd: Nature appal'a Hear'n,
Shakes off her wonted firinncís. Ah! how dark O snatch me from destruction! If this Globe, Thy long-extended realms, and rueful wastes; This folid Globe, which thinc own hand hath made Where nought but filence reigns, and night, dark So firm and sure, if this my steps betray; Dark as was Chaos ere the infant Sun [night, If my own mother Earth, from whence I sprung, Was roll'd together, or had tried its beams Pile up with rage unnatural to devour Athwart the gloom profound! The fickly taper, Hor wretched offspring, whither shall I fly? By glimm’ring thro’thy low-brow'd misty vaults Where look for fuccour: Where, but up to thee, Furr'd round with mouldy damps, and ropy slime, Almighty Father? Save, O save, thy suppliant Lets fall a supernumerary horror, Fron horrors fuch as these! At thy good time And only serves to make thy night more irksome. Let Death approach; I reck not--Ict him but come Well do I know thee by thy trusty ycw, In genuine form, not with thy vengeance arm’d, Cheerless, unsocial plant ! that loves to dwell Too much for man to bear. O rather lend 'Midit fculls and coffins, epitaphs and worms; Thy kindly aid to mitigate his stroke; Where light-hcel'd ghosts, and visionary thades, And at that hour when all aghaft I stand Beneath the wan cold moon (as fame reports) (A trembling candidate for thy compaflion) Embodied thick, perform their mystic rounds. On this World's brink, and look into the next; No other merriméit, dull tree! is thine. When my soul, starting from the dark unknown, Sec yonder hallow'd fane! the pious work Caits back a wishful look, and fondly clings Of names once fain’d, now dubious or forgot, To her frail prop, unwilling to be wrench'd And buricd midst the wreck of things which were: From this fair scene, from all her custom'd joys, There lie interr’d the more illustrious dead. And all the lovely relatives of life;
The wind is up: hark! how it howls ! Mcthinks, Then shed thy comforts o'er me, then put on Till now, I never heard a found so dreary : [bird The gentlest of thy looks. Let no dark crimes, Doors creak, and windows clap, and night's foul In all their hideous forms then starting up, Rook d in the spire screams loud; the gloomy isles Piant themselves round my couch in grim array, Black plaster'd, and hung round with threds of And ftab my bleeding heart with two.edg'd Tcutchcons, torture,
And tatter'd coats of arms, send back the sound Scnfe of past guilt, and dread of future woe. Laden with heavier airs, from the low vaults, Far be the ghastly crew! And in their stead The mansions of the dead. Rous'd from their Let cheerful Memory from her purest cells In grim array the grizly fpectres rife, [llumbers, Lead forth a goodly train of Virtues fair, Grin horrible, and obtinarely sullen Cherith d in earliest youth, now paying back Pass and repass, huth'd as the foot of night. With tenfold ufury the pious care,
Again! thcicreech-owl thricks: ungracious found! And pouring o'er my wounds the heav'nly balm rl hear no more; it makes one's blood run chill. Of conscious innocence. Put chicfly, Thou, Quite round the pile, a row of rev'rend clis, Whom soft-eyed Pity once led down from Heav'n Coxval near with that, all ragged thew, To biced for man, to teach him how to live, Long lath'd by the rude winds: fome rift half down And, oh! ftill harder leilon! how to die;
Their branch less trunks; others fo thin a-top, Didin not Thou to for.ooth the reftlefs bed That scarce two crows could lodge in the fame Oi Sicknefs and of Pain. Forgive the tear
[pen J here: 'That feeble Nature drops, calm all her fears, Strange ihings, the neighbours 111, have hapWake all her hopes, and animate her faith, Wild ibricks have islaud from the holon toinba;
Dead men have come again, and walk'd about; , Branding our laughter with the name of madness.
Oft in the lone church-yard at night I've feen, To clapping theatres and shouting crowds, By glimpse of moon-thine, cheq'ring thro' the And made ev’n thick-lipp'd muling Melancholy trees,
To gather up her face into a smile The school-boy, with his satchel in his hand, Before she was aware? Ah! sullen now, Whistling aloud to bear his courage up, And dumb as the green turf that covers them! And lightly tripping o'er the long flat stones Where are the mighty thunderbolts of war? (With nettles ik irted, and with mors o'ergrown) The Roman Cæfars and the Grecian chiefs, That tell in homcly phrase who lie below; The boast of story: Where the hot-brain d youch? Sudden he starts ! and hears, or thinks hic hears, Who the tiara at his pleasure tore The found of something purring at his heels: From kings of all the then discover'd globe; Full fast he fies, and dares not look behind him, And cried, forsooth, because his arm was hamTill out of breath he overtakes his fellows; And had not room enough to do its work: (per'd, Who gather round, and wonder at the tale Alas! how ilim, dishonourably lim! Of horrid apparition, tall and ghasily,
And crammid into a space we blush to name. That walks at dead of niglit, or takes his stand Proud royalty! how alter'd in thy looks ! O'er fomc new-open'd grave; and, strange to tell! How blank thy features, and how wan thy hue! Evanishes at crowing of the cock.
Son of the morning! whither art thou gone? The new-made widow tool're sometimes spied, Where haft thou hid thy many-spangled head, Sad Tight! Now imoving o'er the proftrate dead: And the majestic menace of thinc cycs Liftleis, the craw is along in doleful black, Felt from afar: Pliant and pow'rleis now, While bursis of sorrow guth from either eye, Like new-born infant bound up in his swathes, Fast-falling down her now untasted check. Or victim tumbled flat upon his back, Prone on the lonely grave of the dear man That throbs beneath the facrificer's knife: She drops; whilft busy meddling memory
Mute inuli thou bear the strife of little tongues, In barbarous fuccellion, musters up
And coward insults of the base-born crowd, The past endtarinents of their fofter hours, That grudge a privilege thou never hadít, Tenacious of its theme Still, ftill the thinks But only hop'd for in the peaceful Grave, She fees him, and indulging the fond thought, Of being unmoleited and alone. Clings yet more closely to the fenfeless turt, Araby's gums and odoriferous drugs, Nor hecds the passenger who looks that way. And honours by the heralds duly paid
Invidious Grave! how dofi thou rend in under In mode and form, ev'n to a very scruplc; Whom love has knit, and sympathy made one ! O crucl irony! these come too late; A tic more stubborn far than nature's band. And only mock whom they were meant to honor. Friendship! mytierious cement of the soul! Surely, there's not a dungeon-Save that's buried Sweet'ner of life, and folder of society!
In the highway, unshrouded and uncoffin'd, I owe thee much. Thou haft deserv'd from mc, But lies as foft, and Neeps as sound, as he. Far, far beyond what I can ever pay.
Sorry pre-eminence of high defcent Oft have I prov'd the labours of thy love, Above the vulgar-born, to rot in Itate! [on, And the warm efforts of the gent icheart
But fce! the well-plum'd hearse comes nodding Anxious to please. O! when my friend and I Stately and flow; and properly attended In some thick wood have wanger cheedless on, By the whole sable tribc, that painful watch Hid from the vulgar eye arcia ius down The fick man's door, and live upon the dead, Upon the hoping cowllip-cover'd bank, By letting out their persons by the hour Where the pure limpid stream has flid along To mimic sorrow, when the heart's not fad ! In grateful errors thro'the underwood [thrush How rich the trappings, now they're all unfurl'd Sweet murm ring; methought, the thrill-tongued And glitt'ring in the fun! triumphant entries Mended his song of love; the footy blackbird Of conquerors, and coronation pomps, Mellow'd his pip., and soften'd ev'ry note; In glory scarce exceed. Great gluts of people The eglantine imelld sweeter, and the role Retard th' unwicidy Thow; whilft from the Alium'd a dye more deep; whilft ev'ry flow'r
calements, Vied with his fellow-plant in luxury
And houfes tops, ranks behind ranks close wedg’d, Of dress. Oh! then the longest summer's day Hang bellying o'er. But tell us, why this walic? Seem'd too, too much in haste; still the full hcart Why this ado in earthing up a carcase Had not imparted half: 'twas happiness That's fall'n into disgrace, and in the noftril Too cxquilitc to last. Of joys departed, Smells horrible: Ye undertakers ! tell us, Not to return, how painful the remembrance ! 'Midst all the gorgeous figures you exhibit, Dull Grave! thou spoil'st the dance of youth - Why is the principal conceald, for which ful blood,
You make this mighty stir? 'Tis wisely done : Strik'st out the dimple from the cheek of mirth, What would offend the eye in a good picture, And ev'ry (mirking fcature from the face; The Painter caits discreetly into Thades.