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Nor children run to lisp their sire's return,
Oft did the harvest to their sickle yield,
Their furrow oft the stubborn glebe has broke; How jocund did they drive their teams afield! How bow'd the woods beneath their sturdy stroke!
Let not Ambition mock their useful toil,
Their homely joys, and destiny obscure; Nor Grandeur hear, with a disdainful smile, The short and simple annals of the poor.
The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
Nor you, ye proud, impute to these the fault,'
Can storied urn, or animated bust,
Back to its mansion call the fleeting breath ? Can Honor's voice provoke the silent dust,
Or Flattery soothe the dull cold ear of death? Perhaps, in this neglected spot is laid
Some heart once pregnant with celestial fire; Hands that the rod of empire might have sway'd, Or waked to extacy the living lyre.
But Knowledge to their eyes her ample page,
And froze the genial current of the soul.
of purest ray serene,
many a gem
Some village Hampden, that with dauntless breast
Th' applause of listening senates to command,
And read their history in a nation's eyes,
Their growing virtues, but their crimes confined: Forbade to wade through slaughter to a throne, And shut the gates of mercy on mankind;
The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide,
With incense kindled at the Muse's flame.
Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife,
Their sober wishes never learn'd to stray; Along the cool sequester'd vale of life
They kept the noiseless tenor of their way.
Yet ev'n these bones from insult to protect,
With uncouth rhymes and shapeless sculpture deck'd,
Their name, their years, spelt by the unletter'd Muse, The place of fame and elegy supply;
And many a holy text around she strews,
For who, to dumb forgetfulness a prey,
This pleasing anxious being e'er resign'd, Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day,
Nor cast one longing, lingering look behind? On some fond breast the parting soul relies,
Some pious drops the closing eye requires; Ev'n from the tomb the voice of Nature cries, Ev'n in our ashes live their wonted fires.
For thee, who, mindful of the unhonor'd dead,
Some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate:
"Oft have we seen him at the peep of dawn, "Brushing with hasty steps the dews away,
"To meet the sun upon the upland lawn. "There at the foot of yonder nodding beech
"That wreathes its old fantastic roots so high, "His listless length at noontide would he stretch, "And pore upon the brook that babbles by.
Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn, "Muttering his wayward fancies, he would rove; "Now drooping, woful, wan, like one forlorn,
"Or crazed with care, or cross'd in hopeless love.
"One morn I miss'd him on the custom'd hill,
"The next, with dirges due, in sad array,
"Slow through the church-yard path we saw him borne; "Approach and read (for thou canst read) the lay Graved on the stone beneath yon aged thorn."
Here rests his head upon the lap of earth,
A youth to fortune and to fame unknown; Fair Science frown'd not on his humble birth, And Melancholy mark'd him for her own. Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere ; Heaven did a recompence as largely send: He gave to misery all he had, a tear;
He gain'd from Heaven ('twas all he wish'd) a friend.
No farther seek his merits to disclose,
Or draw his frailties from their dread abode, (There they alike in trembling hope repose) The bosom of his Father and his God.
ODE TO ADVERSITY.
DAUGHTER of Jove, relentless Power,
And purple tyrants vainly groan,
When first thy Sire to send on earth
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,
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,
Warm Charity, the general friend,
And Pity, dropping soft the sadly-pleasing tear.
Oh, gently on thy suppliant's head,
Dread Goddess, lay thy chastening hand!
With thundering voice, and threatening mien,.