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Say, Father Thames, for thou hast seen
Full many a sprightly race
The paths of pleasure trace;
The captive linnet which enthral ?
Or urge the flying ball ?
Their murmuring labours ply
To sweeten liberty :
And unknown regions dare descry:
And snatch a fearful joy.
Less pleasing when possess'd;
The sunshine of the breast: Theirs buxom Health, of rosy hue, Wild Wit, Invention ever new,
And lively Cheer, of Vigour born; The thoughtless day, the easy night, The spirits pure, the slumbers light,
That fly the approach of morn.
The little victims play!
Nor care beyond to-day:
Yet see, how all around them wait
And black Misfortune's baleful train !
Ah, tell them they are men! These shall the fury Passions tear,
The vultures of the mind,
And Shame that sculks behind;
That inly gnaws the secret heart;
And Sorrow's piercing dart. Ambition this shall tempt to rise,
Then whirl the wretch from high,
And grinning Infamy.
That mocks the tear it forced to flow;
Amid severest woe.
A grisly troop are seen,
More hideous than their Queen :
Dryden's Fable of Palamon and Arcite.
Those in the deeper vitals rage:
To each his sufferings; all are men,
And happiness too swiftly flies? Thought would destroy their paradise. No more;-where ignorance is bliss, "Tis folly to be wise.
DAUGHTER of Jove, relentless power, Thou tamer of the human breast, Whose iron scourge and torturing hour The bad affright, afflict the best! Bound in thy adamantine chain, The proud are taught to taste of pain, And purple tyrants vainly groan With pangs unfelt before, unpitied and alone.
When first thy sire to send on earth
Virtue, his darling child, design'd, To thee he gave the heavenly birth,
And bade to form her infant mind. Stern rugged nurse! thy rigid lore With patience many a year she bore:
What sorrow was, thou badest her know, And from her own she learn’d to melt at others'woe.
Scared at thy frown terrific, fly
Self-pleasing Folly's idle brood, Wild Laughter, Noise, and thoughtless Joy,
And leave us leisure to be good. Light they disperse; and with them go The summer friend, the flattering foe;
By vain Prosperity received, To her they vow their truth, and are again believed. Wisdom in sable garb array'd,
Immersed in rapturous thought profound, And Melancholy, silent maid,
With leaden eye that loves the ground,
With Justice, to herself severe,
Dread Goddess, lay thy chastening hand! Not in thy Gorgon terrors clad,
Not circled with the vengeful band (As by the impious thou art seen) With thundering voice, and threatening mien,
With screaming Horror's funeral cry, Despair, and fell Disease, and ghastly Poverty: Thy form benign, oh Goddess ! wear,
Thy milder influence impart,
heart, The generous spark extinct revive, Teach me to love, and to forgive,
Exact my own defects to scan, What others are to feel, and know myself a man.
THE PROGRESS OF POESY.
A PINDARIC ODE.
Φωνάντα συνετοίσιν ες
PINDAR, Olymp. II.
A thousand rills their mazy progress take:
Awake, my glory: awake, late and harp.-David's Psalms. Pindar styles his own poetry, with its musical accompaniments, Αίολης μολπή, Αιόλίδες χορδαί, Αιολίδων σνοαι, αυλών, Æolian song, Æolian strings, the breath of the Æolian flute.
The subject and simile, as usual with Pindar, are here anited. The various sources of poetry, which gives life and lastre to all it touches, are here described; as well in its quiet majestic progress enriching every subject (otherwise dry and barren) with all the pomp of diction, and luxuriant harmony of numbers, as in its more rapid and irresistible course, when swoln and hurried away by the conflict of tumultuous passions.