« ÎnapoiContinuă »
Or cushion, when his heaviness shall please
To loll, or thump it for his better ease;
Or a vile butt for noon or night bespoke,
When the peer rashly swears he ll club his joke?
Who'd shake with laughter, tho' he could not find
His Lordship's jest; or, if his nose broke wind,
For blessings to the Gods profoundly bow,
That can cry chimney-swerp, or drive a pough?
With terms like these how mean the Tribe that close!
Scarce meaner They, who terms, like these, impose.
AFFECTATION of DELICACY ridiculed..
THE languid lady next appears in state,
Who was not born to carry her own weight;
She lolls, reels, staggers, 'till some foreign aid
To her own stature lifts the feeble maid.
Then, if ordain'd to so severe a' doom,
She, by just stages, journeys round the room:
But knowing her own weakness, she despairs
To scale the Alps- -that is, ascend the stairs.
My fan! let others say who laugh at toil;
Fan! hood! glove! scarf! is her laconic style;
And that is spoke with such a dying fall,
That Betty rather sees than hears the call:
The motion of her lips, and meaning eye,
Piece out th' idea her faint words deny.
O listen with attention most profound!
Her voice is but the shadow of a sound:
And help! O help! her spirits are so dead,
One hand scarce lifts the other to her head.
If, there, a stubborn pin it triumphs o'er,
She pants! she sinks away! and is no more.
Let the robust and the gigantic care,
Life is not worth so much, she'd rather starve;
But chew she must herself; ah cruel fate!
That Rosalinda can't by proxy eat.
The EMPTINESS of RICHES.
CAN gold calm passion, or make reason shine?
Can we dig peace, or wisdom, from the mine?
Wisdom to gold prefer, for 'tis much less
To make our fortune, than our happiness;
That happiness which great ones often see,
With rage and wonder in a low degree,
Themselves unblest: the poor are only poor;
But what are they who droop amid their store?
Nothing is meaner than a wretch of state;
The happy only are the truly great.
Peasants enjoy like appetites with Kings,
And those hest satisfied with cheapest things.
Could both our Indies buy but one new sense,
Our envy would be due to large expence;
Since not, those pomps, which to the great belong,
Are but poor arts to mark them from the throng.
See, how they beg an alms of flattery!
They languish! oh support them with a lye!
A decent competence we fully taste;
It strikes our sense, and gives a constant feast:
More, we perceive by dint of thought alone.
The rich must labour to possess their own,
To feel their great abundance; and request
Their humble friends to help them to be blest;
To see their treasures, hear their glory told,
And aid the wretched impotence of gold.
But some great souls, and touch'd with warmth divine,
Give gold a price, and teach its beams to shine.
All hoarded treasure they repute a load,
Nor think their wealth their own, till well bestow'd.
Grand reservoirs of public happiness,
Thro' secret streams diffusively they bless;
And while their bounties glide conceal'd from view,.
Relieve our wants, and spare our blushes too.
BE wise to-day; 'tis madness to defer;
Next day the fatal precedent will plead;
Thus on, 'till wisdom is push'd out of life.
Procrastination is the thief of time;
Year after year it steals, till all are fled,
And to the mercies of moment leaves
The vast concerns of an eternal scene.
Of man's miraculous mistakes, this bears
The palm, "That all men are about to live,"
For ever on the brink of being born.
All pay themselves the compliment to think
They, one day, shall not drivel; and their pride
On this reversion takes up ready praise;
At least, their own; their future selves applauds;
How excellent that life they ne'er will lead!
Time lodg'd in their own hands is Folly's vails;
That lodg'd in Fate's, to Wisdom they consign;
The thing they can't but purpose, they postpone;
'Tis not in Folly, not to scorn a foot;
And scarce in human wisdom to do more.
All Promise is poor dilatory man,
And that thro' ev'ry stage. When young, indeed,
In full content we, sometimes, nobly rest,
Un-anxious for ourselves; and only wish,
As duteous sons, our fathers were more wise.
At thirty man suspects himself a fool;
Knows it at forty, and reforms his plan;
At fifty chides his infamous delay,
Pushes his prudent purpose to resolve;
In all the magnanimity of thought
Resolves, and re-resolves; then dies the same.
And why? Because he thinks himself immortal.
All men think all men mortal, but themselves;
Themselves, when some alarming shock of fate
Strikes through their wounded hearts the sudden dread;
But their hearts wounded, like the wounded air,
Soon close; where pass'd the shaft, no trace is found.
On the BEING of a GOD.
RETIRE; the world shut out ;-Thy thoughts call home;-
Imagination's airy wing repress ;-
Lock up thy senses ;-Let no passion stir ;-
Wake all to Reason ;-Let her reign alone;~
Then, in thy Soul's deep silence, and the depth
Of Nature's silence, midnight, thus inquire,
As I have done.-
What am I? and from whence ?—I nothing know, But that I am; and since I am, conclude
Something eternal: had there e'er been nought,
Nought still had been: Eternal there must be.-
But what eternal? — Why not human race?
And ADAM's ancestors without an end?-
That's hard to be conceiv'd; since ev'ry link
Of that long chain'd succession is so frail;
Can ev'ry part depend, and not the whole?
Yet grant it true; new difficulties rise;
I'm still quite out at sea; nor see the shore.
Whence earth, and these bright orbs ?-Eternal too ?—
Grant matter was eternal; still these orbs
Would want some other father;- Much design
Is seen in all their motions, all their makes;
Design implies intelligence, and art:
That can't be from themselves-or man 1;
Man scarce can comprehend, could man bestow?
And nothing greater, yet allow'd, than man.
Who motion, foreign to the smallest grain,"
Shot thro' vast masses of enormous weight?
Who bid brute matter's restive lump assume
Such various forms, and gave it wings to fly?
Has matter innate motion? Then each atom,
Asserting its indisputable right
To dance, would form an universe of dust:
Has matter none? Then whence these glorious forms,
And boundless flights, from shapeless, and repos'd?
Has matter more than motion? Has it thought,
Judgment, and genius? Is it deeply learn'd
In Mathematics? Has it fram'd such laws,
Which, but to guess, a NEWTON made immortal?
If art, to form; and counsel, to conduct;
And that with greater far than human skill,
Resides not in each block ;-a GODHEAD reigns.
And, if a GOD there is, that GOD HOW GREAT!
The IGNORANCE of MAN,
WITH REGARD TO THE GENERAL LAWS OF THE UNIVERSE. A Reason why he should be contented with his present Stake. (POPE.) SAY, first, of God above, or man below, What can we reason, but from what we know? Of man, what see we but his station here, From which to reason, or to which refer?
'Thro' worlds unnumber'd tho' the God be known,
'Tis ours to trace him only in our own.
He, who through vast immensity can pierce,
See worlds on worlds compose one universe,
Observe how system into system runs,
What other planets circle other suns,
What vary'd being peoples ev'ry star,
May tell why Heaven has made us as we are.
But of this frame the bearings and the ties,
The strong connections, nice dependencies,
Gradations just, has thy pervading soul
Look'd through? or can a part pervade the whole?
Is the great chain, that draws all to agree,
And drawn supports, upheld by God, or thee?
Presumptuous man! the reason would'st thou find,
Why form'd so weak, so little, and so blind?
First, if thou canst, the harder reason guess,
Why form'd no weaker, blinder, and no less?
Ask of thy mother earth, why oaks are made
Taller and stronger than the weeds they shade?
Or ask of yonder argent fields above,
Why Jove's satellites are less than Jove?
Of systems possible, if 'tis confest
That Wisdom Infinite must form the best;
Where all must full or not coherent be,
And all that rises, rise in due degree;
Then, in the scale of reas ning life, 'tis plain,
There must be somewhere, such a rank as man :
And all the question (wrangle e'er so long)
Is only this, if God has plac'd him wrong?
Respecting man, whatever wrong we call,
May, must be right, as relative to all.
In human works, tho' labour'd on with pain,
A thousand movements scarce one purpose gain;
In God's, one single can its end produce;
Yet serves to second too some other use.
So man, who here seems principal alone,
Perhaps acts second to some sphere unknown,
Touches some wheel, or verges to some goal;
'Tis but a part we see, and not the whole.
When the proud steed shall know why man restrains
His fiery course, or drives him o'er the plains;
When the duli ox, why now he breaks the clod,
Is now a victim, and now Egypt's god: