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THOUGHTFUL Being, long and sparè,
Our race of mortals call him Carê
(Were Homer living, well he knew
What name the Gods have call'd him too);
With fine mechanie genius wrought,
And lov'd to work, though no one bought.
This being, by a model bred
In Jove's eternal fable head,
Contriv'd a shape impower'd to breathe,
And be the worldling here beneath,
The man rose staring, like a stake;
Wondering to see himself awake!
Then look'd so wise, before he knew
The business he was made to do;
That, pleas'd to fee with what a grace
He gravely shew'd his forward face,
Jove talk'd of breeding him on high,
An under-something of the sky.
But ere he gave the mighty nod,
Which ever binds a Poet's God
(For which his curls ambrofial shake,
And mother Earth's oblig'd to quake),
He saw old mother Earth arise,
She stood confess'd before his eyes ;
But not with what we read she wore,
A castle for a crown before,
Nor with long streets and longer roads
Dangling behind her, like commodes :
As yet with wreaths alone she drest,
And trail'd a landskip-painted vest.
Then thrice she rais’d, as Ovid said,
And thrice she bow'd her weighty head.
Her honours made, Great Jove, the cry'd, This thing was fashion'd from my
His hands, his heart, his head, are mine;
Then what haft thou to call him thine?
Nay rather ask, the Monarch said,
What boots his hand, his heart, his head,
Were what I gave remov'd away?
Thy part's an idle shape of clay.
Halves, more than halves ! cry'd honest Care,
Your pleas would make your titles fair,
You claim the body, you the soul,
But I who join'd them, claim the whole.
Thus with the Gods debate began,
On such a trivial cause, as man.
And can celestial tempers rage?
Quoth Virgil, in a later age.
As thus they wrangled, Time came by;
(There's none that paint him such as I,
For what the fabling Ancients fung
Makes Saturn old, when Time was young.)
his winters had not shed Their filver honours on his head; He just had got his pinions free, From his old fire, Eternity.
A serpent girdled round he wore,
The tail within the mouth, before ;
By which our almanacks are clear
That learned Egypt meant the year.
A staff he carry'd, where on high
A glass was fix'd to measure by,
As amber boxes made a show
For heads of canes an age ago.
His vest, for day and night, was py'd ;
A bending fickle arm'd his fide;
And Spring's new months his train adorn!
The other Seasons were unborn.
Known by the gods, as near he draws,
They make him umpire of the cause.
O’er a low trunk his arm he laid,
Where since his hours a dial made;
Then leaning heard the nice debate,
And thus pronounc'd the words of Fate:
Since body from the parent Earth,
And soul from Jove receiv'd a birth,
Return they where they first began ;
But since their union makes the man,
Till Jove and Earth shall
two, To Care who join'd them, man is due.
He said, and sprung with swift career
To trace a circle for the year;
Where ever since the Seasons wheel,
And tread on one another's heel.
'Tis well, said Jove, and for consent Thundering he shook the firmament,
Our umpire Time shall have his way,
With Care I let the creature stay :
Let business vex him, avarice blind,
Let doubt and knowledge rack his mind,
Let error act, opinion speak,
And want afflict, and sickness break,
And anger burn, dejection chill,
And joy distract, and sorrow kill.
Till, arm’d by Care, and taught to mow,
Time draws the long destructive blow;
And wasted man, whose quick decay
Comes hurrying on before his day,
Shall only find by this decree,
The foul flies sooner back to me.
IMITATION OF SOME FRENCH VERSES.
ELENTLess Time! destroying power,
Whom stone and brass obey,
Who giv'st to every flying hour
To work some new decay;
Unheard, unheeded, and unseen,
Thy secret faps prevail,
And ruin man, a nice machine,
By nature form’d to fail.
My change arrives; the change I meet,
Before I thought it nigh.
My spring, my years of pleasure fleet,
And all their beauties die,
In age I search, and only find
A poor unfruitful gain,
Grave wisdom stalking flow behind,
Oppress'd with loads of pain.
My ignorance could once beguile,
And fancy'd joys inspire ;
My errors cherish'd Hope to smile
On newly-born defire.
But now experience thews, the bliss
For which I fondly fought
Not worth the long impatient wish,
And ardour of the thought.
My youth met Fortune fair array'd,
In all her pomp she shone,
And might perhaps have well essay'd
To make her gifts my own:
But when I saw the blessings shower
On some unworthy mind,
I left the chače, and own'd the Power
Was justly painted blind.
I pass'd the glories which adorn
The splendid courts of kings,
And while the persons mov'd my scorn,
I rofe to scorn the things.
My manhood felt a vigorous fire
By love encreas'd the more;
But years with coming years conspire
To break the chains I wore,