Page images
PDF
EPUB

The Saviour Son be glorify'd,

To sober thought confind ! i Who for loft man's redemption dy'd ;.

Thou sweetly lad ideal guest, And equal adoration be,

In all thy foothing charms confeft,
Eternal Paracletc; to thee!

Indulge my pensive mind.
No longer wildly hurried through

The tides of mirth that ebb and flow
$ 262. A Night Piece. Miss CARTER.

In folly's noisy stream, WHILE night in folemn fhade invests the pole, I from the busy crowd retire,

And calm reflection toothes the pensive soul; To court the objects that inspire
While rcafon undisturb’d afferts her sway,

Thy philosophic dream.
And life's deceitful colours fade away;
To chce, All-conscious Presence! I devote

Thro yon

dark
grove

of mournful yews, This peaceful interval of sober thought:

With folitary tteps, I mufe,
Here all my better faculties confine ;

By thy direction led :
And be this hour of facred silence thine ! Herc, cold to pleasure's tempting forms,

Confociate with my fifter worms,
If, by the day's illusive scenes milled,
My erring soul from virtue's path has stray'd;

And mingle with the dead.
Snard by example, or by paffion warın'd, Ye midnight horrors ! awful gloom !

Some falte delight my giddy sense has charm’d; Ye filent regions of the tomb, =; My calmer thoughts thc wretched choice reprovc, My future peaceful bed ;

And my best hopes are center'd in thy love. Here shall my weary eyes be closid,
Depriv’d of this, can life one joy afford ? And ev'ry sorrow lic repos'd
Its utmost boait a vain unmeaning word.

In death's refreshing fhade.
But, ah! how oft my lawless pallions rove,
And break those awful precepts I approve !

Ye pale inhabitants of night,
Pursue the fatal impulse I abhor,

Before my intellectual light

In folemn pomp ascend : And violate the virtue I adore !

O tell how trifling now appears
Oft, when thy better Spirit's guardian care

The train of idle hopes and fears,
Warn’d my fond soul to thun the tempting snare,
My stubborn will his gentle aid represt,

Thar varying life attend !
And check'd the rising goodness in my breast;

Ye faithless idols of our sense,
Mad with vain hopes, or urg'd by false desires,

Here own how vain your fond pretence,
Stillid his foft voice, and quench'd his sacred fires. Ye empty names of joy!
With grief opprefs'd, and proftrate in the dust,

Your transient forms like shadows pals,
Should'lt thou condemn, I own thy sentence juít

. Frail offspring of the inagic-glass, But, oh, thy fofter titles let me claim,

Before the mental eye.
And plead my cause by Mercy's gentle name. The dazzling colours, falsely, bright,
Mercy! that wipes the penitential tear, Attract the gazing vulgar sight:
And diffipates the horrors of despair;

With superficial state:
From righteous justice ftcals the vengeful hour, Thro' reason's clearer optics view'd,
Softens the dreadful attribute of pow'r, How stripp'd of all its pomp, how rude,
Difarms the wrath of an offended God,

Appears the painted chcat !
And seals my pardon in a Saviour's bloud!
All-powerful Grace, exert thy gentle sway,

Can wild ambition's tyrant pow'r,
And teach my rebel passions to obey;

Or ill-got wealth's superfluous storc, Left lurking Folly, with insidious art,

The dread of death controul ? Regain my volatile inconftant heart !

Can pleasure's more bewitching charms Shall every high resolve Devotion frames

Avert or soothe the dire alarms
Be only lifeless sounds and specious names ?

That shake the parting foul ?
O rather, while thy hopes and fears controul, Religion ! ere the hand of Fate
In this still hour, each motion of my soul, Shall make Reflection plead too late,
Secure its safety by a sudden doom,

My erring senses teach,
And be the soft retreat of sleep my tomb ! Amidst the fatt'ring hopes of youth,
Calm let me slumber in that dark repose, To meditate the solemn truth
Till the last morn its orient beain dilclose:

These awful relics prcach.
Then, when the great archangel's potent sound
Shall echo thro' creation's ample round,

Thy penctrating beams disperse
Wak'd from the sleep of death, with joy survey The inift of 'error, whence our fears
The op’ning fplendors of eternal day.

Derive their fatal spring:
'Tis thine the trembling heart to warm,

And soften to an angel form
$ 263. Ode to Melancholy. CARTER.

The pale terrific king.
OME, Melancholy ! silent pow'r,

When funk by guilt in fad despair,
Companion of my lonely hour,

Repentance breathes her humble pray'r,

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

And

And owns thy threat'nings juft; Thy voice the fhudd'ring funpliant cheers, With inercy calms hier torturing fears,

And lifts her from the dust. Sublim'd by thce, the soul aspires Beyond the range of low dçfires,

In nobler views elare ;
l'nmov'd her deftir'd change surveys,
And arm’d by faith, intrepid pays

The universal debt.
In death's soft sumber lull'd to reft,
She seeps, by fimiling visions blest,

That gently whisper peace,
Till the lait morn's fair op'ning ray
Unfolds the bright eternal day

Of active life and bliss.

$ 264. Written at Midnight in a Tkunder.

Storm. CARTER.
LET coward Guilt, with pallid Fcar,

To ihelt ring caverns fly,
And juftly dread the vengeful fate

That thunders through the sky.
Protected by that hand, whose law

The threat'ning storms obcy,
Intrepid Virtue (miles secure,

As in the blazc of day.
In the thick cloud's tremendous gloom,

The lightnings lurid glare,
It views elie same all-gracious Pow'r
That breaches the vernal air.
Thro’ Nature's ever-varying scene,

By diff'rent ways pursu'd,
The one eternal end of Heav'n

Js univertal good.
With like beneficent effect

O‘er Having ather glows, .
As when it tunes the linnet's voice,

Or blushes in the rose.
By reason tauge to scorn those fears

That vulgar minds molest,
Let no fantastic terrors break

My dear Narcitla's rest.
Thy life may all the tend'rcst care

Of Providence defend;
And delegated angels, round

Their guardian wings extend ! When thro' creation’s vast expansc

The last dread thunders roll, Untune the concord of the spheres,

And thake the rising foul; Unmov'd may't thou the final storm

Of jarriag worlds furrcy, That ushers in the glad ferenc

Of everlasting day!

§ 265. Know Thyself. ARBITHNOT. WHAT am I? how produc'd : and for what

end ? Whence drew I bcing? to what period tend : Am I th'abandon’d orphan of blind chance, Dropp'd by wild atoms in disorder'd dance ? Or froin an endless chain of causes wrought, And of unthinking substance, born with thought? By motion which began without a cause, Supremely wise, without design or laws? Am I but what I feem, '

merc flesh and blood ! A branching channel, with a mazy flood ? The purple îtream that thro' my vefsels glides, Dull and unconscious flows, like common tides; The pipes thro' which the circling juices frray, Are not that thinking I, no more than they: This frame compacted with transcendent skill, Of moving joints obedient to my will, Nurs’d from the fruitful glebe, like yonder tree, Waxes and wastes; I call it mine, not me. New matter still the mould'ring mafs fustains; The mansion chang'd, the tenant still remains, And from the fleeting ftrcam, repair'd by food, Distinct, as is the swimmer from the flood.

What am I then ? sure of a noble birth; By parents right, I own as mother, Earth; But claim fuperior lineage by my fire, Who warm'j th’unthinking clod with hearinly Ellence divine, with lifelcis clay allay'd, (fire; By double nature, double inftinat fway'd : With look erect, I dart my longing eye, Seem winy'd to part, and gain my native sky; I ftrive to mount, but strive, alas! in vain, Ty'd to this maily globe with magic chain. Now with swift thought I range from pole to pole, Vice worlds around their farning centres roll: What ficady pow’rs their endless motions guide Thro’ the same trackless paths of boundlcti void! I trace the blazing comet's fiery tail, And weigh thc whirling planets in a scale; These godlike thoughts, while eager I pursue, Some glitt'ring trifle offer'd to my vicw, A gnat, an inicet of the meanest kind, Erafe the new-born image from my mind : Some bcastly want, craving, importunate, Vile as the grinning maftiff at my gate, Calls off from heav'nly truth this reas'ning me, "And tells me I'm a brute as much as he. If, on sublimer wings of love and prailc, My foul above the starry vault I raise, Lurd by some vain conceit, or thameful lust, I flag, I drop, and Autter in the dutt. The tow'ring lark thus, froin her lofty ftrain, Stoops to an emmet, or a barley grain. By adverse gusts of jarring inftinčts toft, I rove to onc, now to the other coast ; To bliss unknown my lofty foul alpires, My lot unequal to my vat defires. As 'mongst the hinds a child of royal birth Finds his high pedigree by conscious worth, So man, amongst his fellow brutes expos’d, Sets he's a king; but 'tis a king depos.dl.

Pity him, bcasts! you by no law confin'd, Thy luft, thy curiosity, thy pride,
Are barr'd from devious paths by being blind; Curb’d, or deferv'd, or baulk'd, or gratify'd,
Whilft man, thro' op'ning views of various ways Rage on, and make thee equally unbless'd [leisd.
Confounded, by the aid of knowledge strays; In what thou want'st, and what thou haft poi
Too weak tv choose, yet choosing still in hafte, In vain thou hop'st for blits on this poor ciod;
Oac moment gives the pleasure and diftate; Return and feck thy Father and thy God;
Bilk'd by past minutes, while the present cloy, Yet think not to regain thy native sky,
The flatt'ring future still must give the joy: Borne on the wings of vain philofophy;
Not happy, but ainus upon the road,

Mysterious passage I hid froin human eves ;
And like you) thoughtless of his laft abode, Soaring you'll fink, and sinking you will rise :
Whether next lun his being thall reftrain Let huinble thoughts thy wary footsteps guides
To endless nothing, happiness, or pain. Repair by meekness what you lost by pride.
Around me, lo! the thinking thoughtless crew
(Bewilder'd each) their diff'rent paths pursue ;
Of them I ask the way; the first replies, § 266. The Frailty and Folly of Man. Prior.
Thou art a god; and sends me to the skies :
Down on the turf, the next, two two-legy'd beast, GREAT Heav'n! how frail thy creature man is

How by himself insensibly betray’d! (inade! There fix thy lot, thy bliss, and endless rest : Between these wide extremes the length is fuch, Too little cautious of the adverse pow'r;

In our own strength unhappily secure, I find I know too little or too much. • Almighty Pow'r, by whose most wife command, We wish to charm, and fcek to be belor'd.

And by the blast of self-opinion mov'd, · Helpless, forlorn, uncertain here I stand;

On pleasure's flowing brink we idly ftray, • Take this faint glimm'ring of thyself away, Masters as yet of our returning way: Or break into my soul with perfcet day!'

Seeing no danger, we disarm our mind; This said, expanded lay the sacred text, The balm, the light, the guide of fouls perplex’d. Then in the flow'ry mead, or verdánt shade,

And give our conduct to the waves and wind: Thus the benighted traveller that strays Thro' doubtful paths, enjoys the morning rays : We weave the chaplet, and we crown the bowl,

To wanton dalliance negligently laid, The nightly mist, and thick descending dew,

And fimiling fee the nearer waters roll; Parting, unfold the fields and vaulted blue.

Till the strong gusts of raging paflion rise; o Truth divine ! enlighten'd by thy ray,

Till the dire tempeft mingles carth and skies; I grope and guess no more, but fce my way;

And swift into the boundless ocean borne, • Thou clcar'dst the secret of my high defcent,

Our foolish confidence too late we mourn : • And told me what those mystic tokens mcant; Round our devoted heads the billows beat : [treal, • Marks of my birth, which I had worn in vain, And from our troubled vicw the lefsen'd lands ro • Too hard for worldly fages to explain. Zeno's were vain, rain Epicurus' schemes, • Their systems false, delufive were their dreams ; $ 267. A Paraphrase on the latter Part of the Unskillid my twofold nature to divide,

Sixth Chapter of St. Matthew. Thomson. Dae nurs'd my pleasure, and one nurs'd my pride;

Those jarring truths which human art beguile, WHEN my breast labours with opprelive care, • Thy facred page thus bids mc reconcile.'

And o'er my check descends the falling tar; Offspring of God, no less thy pedigree, [be, While all my warring pallions are at strife, What thou once wert, art now, and still may 0, let me liften to the words of life! Thy God alone can tell, alone decree; Raptures deep-felt his doctrine did impart, Faultless thou dropp'dft from his unerring skill, And thus hc rais'il from earth the drooping heart, With the bare pow'r to fin, since free of will: Think not, when all your scanty stores atford, Yet charge not with thy guilt his bounteous love: Is spread at once upon the sparing board ; For who has pow'r to walk has pow'r to rove:

Think not, when worn the homely robe appears, Who afts by force impellid can nought deserve; While on the roof the howling tempcft bears, And witcom short of infinite may swerve. What farther shall this feeble life fustain, Borne on thy new-imp'd wings, thou took't thy And what shall clothe these fhiv’ring limbs again., Left thy Creator, and the realms of light; [fight, Sav, does not life its nourishinent excced? Dildain'd his gentle precept to fulfil ;

And the fair body its investing weed ? And thought to grow a god by doing ill: Behold! and look away your low despairTho' by foul guilt thy heav'nly form defac’d, Sec the light tenants of the barren air : In nature chang’d, from happy manfions chac’d, To them, nor stores nor granaries belong ; Thou still retain'it some sparks of heav'nly fire, Nought but the woodland and the pleasing roogs Tu faint to mount, yet restless to aspire ; Yet, your kind hcav'nly Father bends his eye Angel enough to seek thy bliss again,

On the least wing that flits along the sky. And brute enough to make thy fearch in vain. To him they sing when spring renews the plain; 'The

<>creatures now withdraw their kindly use; To him they cry in winter's pinching reigni Soine fly thre, fo:ne torment, and some séduce; Nor is their music nor their plaint in vain : Ripaft ill-uited to such dır'rent guests, He hears the gay and the distressful call, For whai thy fentc desires, thy soul diftaftes ; And with unparing bounty fills their ad.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Observe the rising lily's snowy grace,

Oh could thine art arrest the Aceting found, Observe the various vegetable race ;

And paint the voice in magic numbers bound; They neither toil nor spin, but careless grow, Could the warm sun, as erst when Memnon play'd, Yet see how warm they blush! how bright they Wake with his rising beam the vocal shade, glow!

Then might he draw th'attentive angels down, What regal vestments can with them compare ! Bending to hear the lay, so sweet, so like their own. What king so shining ! or what queen so fair ! On either side the monarch's offspring fine,

If, ceaseless, thus the fowls of hcav'n he feeds, And fome adorn, and some disgrace their line. If o'er the fields such lucid robes he spreads; Hero Aminon glories ; proud incestuous lord ! Will he not care for you, ve faithluss, fay?

This hand sustains the robe, and that the fword. Is he unwife? or, are ye less than they? Frowning and fierce, with haughty ftrides ho

And on his horrid brow defiance lowrs. [tow'rs,

There Absalom the ravith'd sceptre sways, $ 268. The Gonealogy of Christ, as it is repre- And his stol'n honour all his shame displays : fented on the East Window of Winchester Col- The base usurper Youth! who joins in one lege Chapel. Written at Winton School, by The rebel subje&t and th'ungrateful fon. Dr. Lowth.

Amid the royal race, fee Nathan stand:

Fervent he seems to speak, and lift his hand; AT once to raise our rev'rence and delight, His looks th’emotion of his foul disclose,

To elevate the mind, and please the fight, And eloquence from ev'ry gesture flows. To pour in virtue at th'attentive eye,

Such, and so stern he came, ordain'd to bring And waft the foul on wings of extacy; Th’ungrateful mandate to the guilty King: For this the painter's art with nature vies, When, at his dreadful voice, a sudden smart And bids the visionary fajnt arise:

Shot thro’the trembling monarch's conscious heart Who views the sacred forms in thought afpires, From his own lips condeinn'd ; fevere decree! Catches pure zeal, and as he gazes, fires; Had his God prov'd so ftern a Judge as He, Feels the same ardour to his breaft conrey'd ; But man with frailty is ally'd by birth ; Is what he fes, and emulates the Thade.

Consummate purity ne'er dwelt on earth : Thy strokes, great Artist. 1o lublime

appear, Thro' all the soul, tho' virtuc holds the rein, They check our pleasure with an awful fear; Beats at the heart, and springs in ev'ry vein, While thro' the mortal line the God you trace ; Yet ever from the clearett source have ran Author himself, and Heir of Jeffc's race; Some gross alloy, some tincture of the man. In raptures we adınire thy bold desiga,

But who is he-deep-musing-in his mind, And, as the subject, own the hand divine. He seems to weigh in realon's fcales mankind; While thro' thy work the rising dav shall stream, Fix'd contemplation holds his steady eyes So long ihall last thinc honour, praise, and name. I know the sage t, the west of the wise. And inay thv labours to the Mufe impart Blest with all man could with, or prince obtain, Some emanation froin her hfter art,

Yet his great heart pronounc'd those bleflings vain, To animate the verse, and bid it thine

And lo! bright glittering in his facred hands, In colours casy, bright, and strong as Thine ! In miniature the glorious teinple stands.

Supine on earth an awful figure lies, Effulgcnt framc! ftupendous to behold ! While foftcst slumbers seem to feal his cres; Gold the strong valves, the roof of burnilh'd gold. The hoary fire Hcav'n's guardian care demands, The wand'ring ark, in that bright doom enshrin'd And at his feet the watchful angel fans. Spreads the strong light, eternal, unconfind! Thc forin august and larve,' the mien divine Above th’unutterable glory plays Betray the * founder of Methah's line.

Presence divine ! and the full-streaming rays Lo! from his loins the promis'd item afccnds, Pour thro' reluctant clouds intolerable blaze. And high to Heav's its facred bouglis extends; But stern opprellion rends Reboam's reign; Each limb productive of some hero fprings, See the gay prince, injurious, proud, and vain ! And blooms luxuriant with a race of kings. Th’imperial sceptre totters in his hand, Th'eternal.plant wide spreads its arms around, And proud rebellion triumphs in the land. And with the mighty branch the mystic top is Curs d with corruption's ever-fruitful spring, crown'd.

A beardless senate and a haughty king. And lo! the glories of th'illustrious' line There Alia, good and great, the sceptre bears, At their first dawn with ripen’d fplendors shine; Justice attends his peace, success his wars : In David all express’d; the good, the great, Whilc virtucwas his sword and Heav'n his shield, The king, thc hero, and the man complete. Without controul the warrior swept the field; Serene he lits, and sweeps the golden lyre, Loaded with spoils, triumphant he return'd, And blends the prophet's with the poct's fire. And half her fivarthy fons fad Ethiopia mourn'', See! with what art he strikes the vocal ftrings, But since thy Aagging picty decay’d, The God, his theme, infpiring what he fings! And barter'd Gød's defence for human aid ; Hark,-or our cars delude us--from Iris tongue See their fair laurels wither on thy brow, Swect fluers, or teens to fow,--some heav'nly Nor herbs non healthful arts avail thee now, fons

Noris Heav'nchang'd, apoftatc prince, but thou. + Solomon

No

}

* Jelica

No mean atonement does this lapse require; Ev'n now the soul maintains her latest strife, But sec the Son, you must forgive the Sire: And death's chill grasp congeals the fount of life. He, † the jatt prince-with ev'ry virtue bless'd, Yet fee, kind Heav'n rencws thy brittle thread, He reign'd, and goodness all the inan poffcss'd ; And rolls full fifteen summers o'er thy head; Around his throne fair happiness and peace

Lo! the receding sun repeats

his

way, Smooth'd cv'ry brow, and smil'd in ev'ry face. And, like thy life, prolongs the falling day, As when along the burning waste he stray'd, Tho' nature her inverted course forego, Where no pure streams in bubbling mazes play'd, The day forget to rest, the time to flow, Where drought incumbent on the thirsty ground, Yet shall Jehovah's servants stand secure, Longfince had breath'd her scorching blaits around His mercy fix’d; eternal shall endure ; The prophet calls, th'obedient floods repair On them her ever-healing rays shall thine ; To the parch'd fields, for Josaphat was there. More mild and bright, and sure, O fun! than thine, The new spring waves, in many a gurgling vein, At length the long-expected Prince behold, Trickle luxurious thro' the fucking plain ; The last good King; in ancient days foretold, Frelh honours the reviving fields adorn, When Bethel's altar fpoke his future fame, And o'er the defart Plenty pours her horn. Rent to its base, at good Josiah's name. So, from the throne his influence he sheds, Bleft, happy prince ! o'er whose lamented urn, And bids the virtues raise their languid heads : In plaintive song, all Judah's daughters mourn; Where'er he goes, attending Truth prevails, For whom sad Sion's foftest forrow flows, Oppreffion flies, and Justice lifts her scales. And Jeremiah pours his sweet melodious woes. See, on his arm the royal cagle stand,

But now fallin Sion, once the fair and great, Great type of conquest and fupreme cominand; Sits deep in duft, abandon’d, desolate ; . Th’exulting bird diftinguish'd triumph brings, Bleeds her sad heart, and ever stream her eyes, And greets the Monarch with expanded wings. | And anguish tears her with convulsive fighs. Fierce Moab's fons prevent th’impending blow, The mournful captive spreads her hands in vain, Ruth on themselves, and fall without the foe. Her hands that rankle with the servile chain; The pious hero vanquilh'd Heav'n by pray'r; Till he, t+Great Chief ! in Heav'n's appointed His faith an army, and his vows a war.

time, Thee too, Ozias, fates indulgent bleft,

Leads back her children to their native clime. And thy days thone in fairelt actions dreft : Fair liberty revives with all her joys, Till that raih hand, by fome blind frenzy sway'd, And bids her envy'd walls securely rise. Unclean, the facred office durft invade. And thou, great hallow'd doom, in ruin spread, Quick o'er thy limbs the scurfy venom ran, Again Mall lift sublime thy sacred head. And hoary filth besprinkled all the man, But, ah! with weeping eyes, the antients view

Tranfmiffive worth adorns the pious & Son, A faint refemblance of the old in you. The father's virtues with the father's throne, No more th'effulgent glory of thy God Lol there he stands : he who the rage subdu'd Speaks awful anlivers from the mystic cloud : Of Ammon's sons, and drench'd his sword in blood; No more thine altars blaze with fre divine, And dost thou, Ahaz, Judah's scourge, disgrace And Heav'n has left thy folitary shrine. With thy base front the glories of thy race ? Yet, in thy courts, hereafter shalt thou see See the vile king his iron sceptre bear Presence immediate of the Deity, [in Thee. His only praise attends the pious || Heir; The light himself reveal'd, the God confefs'd He, ia whose foul the yirtutes all conspire,

And now at length the fated term of years The best good fon from the worst wicked fire. The world's desire have larouglit, and lo! the And lo! in Hezekiah's golden reign,

God appeara! Long exild Piety returns again ;.

The Heav'nly Babe the Virgin Mother bears, Again in genuine purity she thines, [thrines. And her fond looks confess the parent's cares ; And with her presence gilds the long - neglected The pleasing burden on her breasts the lays, Ill-starr'd does proud Assyria's impious * Lord Hangs o'er his charms, and with a smile furveys: Bid Heav'n to arms, and vaunthis dreadful sword; | The Infant siniles, to her fond bosom prelt, His own vain threats th'insulting king o'erthrow, | And wantons, sportive, on the mother's breaft. But breathe new courage on the gen'rous foe. A radiant glory speaks him all Divint, Th'avenging Angel, hy divine command, And in the Child the beams of Godhead shine, The ficry livord full-blazing in his hand, But now, alas ! far other views disclose Leant down froin Heav'n: amid the storın he The blackest comprchensive scene of wocs. March'd Pestilence beforchin; as he trod, [rode See where man's voluntary facrifice Pale Desolation bath'd his steps in blood. Bows his meck head, and God eternal dies ! Thick wrapt in night, thro’che proud holt he past, Fixt to the Cross, his healing arins are bound, Dispensing Death, and drove the furious blast; While copious Mercy ftrcams from ev'ry wound. Nor bade dcítruction give her revels o'er (gore. Mark the blood-drops that life cxhausting roll, Till the gorg'd sword was drunk with human And the strong pang that rends the stubborn foul! But what avails thee, pious Prince? In vain As all death's tortures, with severe delay, Thy fceptre rescu'd, and th'AfTyrian flain! Exult and riot in the nobleft

prey. ; + Jofaphate Elitha, Josham, | Hezekiah Senacherib.

ff Zorobabel.

. And

« PreviousContinue »