« AnteriorContinuar »
He climbs, he pants, he grasps them! At his heels,
Close at his heels, a demagogue ascends,
And with a dexterous jerk soon twists him down,
And wins them, but to lose them in his turn.
Here rills of oily eloquence in soft
Meanders lubricate the course they take;
The modeit speaker is alhained and grieved
To engross a moment’s notice, and yet begs,
Begs a propitious ear for his poor thoughts,
However trivial all that he conceives.
Sweet bashfulness! it claims at least this praise;
The dearth of information and good sense,
That it foretells us always comes to pass.
Cataracts of declamation thunder here;
There forests of no meaning spread the page,
In which all comprehension wanders loft;
While fields of pleasantry amuse us there
With merry descants on a nation's woes.
The rest appears a wilderness of strange
But gay confufion; roses for the cheeks,
And lilies for the brows of faded age,
Teeth for the toothless, ringlets for the bald,
Heaven, earth, and ocean, plundered of their sweets,
Nectareous essences, Olympian dews,
Sermons, and city feasts, and favourite airs,
Ætbereal journies, submarine exploits,
And Katterfelto, with his hair on end
At his own wonders, wondering for his bread.
'Tis pleasant through the loop-holes of retreat To peep at such a world; to see the ftir Of the great Babel, and not feel the crowd; To hear the roar she sends through all her gates At a safe distance, where the dying sound Falls a soft murmur on the uninjured ear. Thus sitting, and surveying thus at ease The globe and its concerns, I seem advanced To some secure and more than mortal height, That liberates and exempts me from them all. It turns submitted to my view, turns round With all its generations; I behold The tumult, and am still. The sound of war Has lost its terrors ere it reaches me; Grieves, but alarms me not. I mourn the pride And avarice, that make man a wolf to man; Hear the faint echo of those brazen throats, By which he speaks the language of his heart, And figh, but never tremble at the found.
He travels and expatiates, as the bee
From flower to flower, so he from land to land;
The manners, customs, policy, of all
Pay contribution to the store he gleans;
He sucks intelligence in every clime,
And spreads the honey of his deep research
At his return-a rich repast for me.
He travels, and I too. I tread his deck,
Ascend his topmast, through his peering eyes
Discover countries, with a kindred heart
Suffer his woes, and share in his escapes;
While fancy, like the finger of a clock,
Runs the great circuit, and is still at home.
Oh Winter, ruler of the inverted year, Thy scattered hair with fleet like alhes filled, Thy breath congealed upon thy lips, thy cheeks Fringed with a beard made white with other snows Than those of age, thy forehead wrapt in clouds, A leafless branch thy sceptre, and thy throne A sliding car, indebted to no wheels, But urged by storms along its flippery way, I love thee, all unlovely as thou seemest, And dreaded as thou art! Thou boldeft the fun
A prisoner in the yet undawning east,
Shortening his journey between morn and noon,
And hurrying him, impatient of his stay,
Down to the rosy weft; but kindly still
Compensating his loss with added hours
Of social converse and instructive ease,
And gathering, at short notice, in one group
The family dispersed, and fixing thought,
Not less dispersed by day-light and its cares.
I crown thee king of intimate delights,
Fire-fide enjoyments, home-born happiness,
And all the comforts, that the lowly roof
Of undisturbed retirement, and the hours
Of long uninterrupted evening, know.
No rattling wheels stop short before these gates;
No powdered pert proficient in the art
Of sounding an alarm assaults these doors
Till the street rings; no stationary steeds
Cough their own knell,while, heedless of the sound,
The filent circle fan themselves, and quake:
But here the needle plies its busy task,
The pattern grows, the well-depicted flower,
Wrought patiently into the snowy lawn,
Unfolds its bosom; buds, and leaves, and sprigs,
And curling tendrils, gracefully disposed,
Follow the nimble finger of the fair ;
A wreath, that cannot fade, or flowers, that blow
With moft success when all besides desay.
The poet's or bittorian's page by one
Made vocal for the amusement of the rest;
The sprightly lyre, whose treasure of sweet sounds
The touch from many a trembling chord Thakes
And the clear voice symphonious, yet distinct,
And in the charming ftrife triumphant ftill;
Beguile the night, and set a keener edge
On female induftry: the threaded steel
Flies swiftly, and unfelt the talk proceeds.
The volume closed, the customary rites
Of the last meal commence. A Roman meal;
Such as the mistress of the world once found
Delicious, when her patriots of high note,
Perhaps by moonlight, at their humhle doors,
And under an old oak’s domestic shade,
Enjoyed, spare feaftl a radish and an egg.
Discourse ensues, not trivial, yet not dull,
Nor such as with a frown forbids the play
Of fancy, or proscribes the found of mirth: