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Take back that grace, those sorrows, and those
No, iy me, fly me, far as pole from pole ;
See in her cell sad Eloïsa spread, Propt on some tomb, a neighbour of the dead. In each low wind methinks a spirit calls, And more than echoes talk along the walls. Here, as I watch'd the dying lamps, around, From yonder shrine I heard a hollow sound. • Come, sister, come !' it said, or seem'd to say' • Thy place is here, sad sister, come away! Once like thyself, I trembled, wept, and pray'd, Love's victim then though, now a sainted maid: But all is calm in this eternal sleep; Here grief forgets to groan, and love to weep: Ev’n superstition loses every fear ; For God, not man, absolves our frailties here.'
I come, I come! prepare your roseate bowers, Celestial palms, and ever-blooming flowers. Thither, where sinners may have rest, I go, Where flames refin'd in breasts seraphic glow: Thou, Abelard! the last sad office pay, And smooth my passage to the realms of day;
See my lips tremble, and my eye-balls roll,
Then too, when fate shall thy fair frame destroy
May one kind grave unite each hapless name,
Condemn'd whole years in absence to deplore,
THE TEMPLE OF FAME.
Written in the Year 1711.
The hint of the following piece was taken from
Chaucer's House of Fame. The design is in a manner entirely altered, the descriptions and most of the particular thoughts my own; yet I could not suffer it to be printed without this acknowledgement. The reader who would compare this with Chaucer, may begin with his third book of Fame, there being nothing in the first two
books that answers to their title. The poem is introduced in the manner of the Pro
vençal poets, whose works were for the most part visions, or pieces of imagination, and constantly descriptive. From these, Petrarch and Chaucer frequently borrowed the idea of their poems. See the Trionfi of the former, and the Dream, Flower and the Leaf, &c. of the latter. The author of this, therefore, chose the same sort of exordium.
THE TEMPLE OF FAME.
As balmy sleep had charm'd my cares to rest,
I stood, methought, betwixt earth, seas, and skies;
O'er the wide prospect as I gaz'd around, Sudden I heard a wild promiscuous sound, Like broken thunders that at distance roar, Or billows murmuring on the hollow shore : Then gazing up, a glorious pile beheld, Whose tow'ring summit ambient clouds conceal'd High on a rock of ice the structure lay, Steep its ascent, and slippery was the way: The wondrous rock like Parian marble shone, And seem'd, to distant sight, of solid stone. Inscriptions here of various names I view'd, The greater part by hostile time subdued ; Yet wide wus spread their fame in ages past, And poets once had promis'd they should last. Some fresh engrav'd appear'd of wits renown'd; I look'd again, nor could their trace be found. Critics I saw, that other name deface, And fix their own, with labour, in their place: Their own, like others, soon their place resign'd, Or disappear', and left the first behind. Nor was the work impair'd by storms alone, But felt th' approaches of too warm a sun; For fame, impatient of extremes, decays Not more by envy, than excess of praise.