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A fretful temper will divide
By ceaseless sharp corrosion;
At one immense explosion.
In vain the talkative unite
The secret just committed
And by themselves outwitted.
How bright soe'er the prospect seems,
If envy chance to creep in; .
But not a friend worth keeping.
As envy pines at good poffessed
On good, that seems approaching,
And if success bis steps attend,
And hates him for encroaching.
Hence authors of illuftrious name, Unless belied by common fame,
Are sadly prone to quarrel, To deem the wit a friend displays A tax upon their own just praise,
And pluck each others laurel.
A man renowned for repartee
With friendship's finest feeling, Will thrust a dagger at your breast, And say he wounded you in jest,
By way of balm for healing.
Whoever keeps an open ear
The trumpet of contention;
And rush into diffenfion.
A friendship, that in frequent fits
The sparks of disputation,
The thought of conflagrațion.
Some fickle creatures boast a soul
Their humour yet so various
Their love is so precarious.
The great and small but rarely meet
Plebeians must surrender,
Obscurity with splendour.
Some are so placid and serene
They sleep secure from waking;,
And are indeed a bog, that bears
Unmoved and without quaking.
Courtier and patriot cannot mix
Without an effervescence,
A friendly coalescence.
Religion should extinguish strife,
But friends that chance to differ
No combatants are stiffer!
To prove at last my main intent
No cutting and contriving-
With ftill less hope of thriving.
Sometimes the fault is all our own, Some blemish in due time made known
By trefpass or omission; Sometimes occasion brings to light Our friend's defect long hid from fight,
And even from suspicion. ,
Then judge yourself, and prove your man As circumspectly as you can,
And having made election, Beware no negligence of yours, . Such as a friend but ill endures,
Enfeeble his affection.
That secrets are a sacred trust,
That constancy befits them,
And all the world admits them.
But 'tis not timber, lead, and stone,
To finish a fine building .