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For thee, who, mindful of th’ unhonour'd dead, ost in these lines their artless tale relate; -chance, by lonely Contemplation led,
Some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate,
Haply some hoary-headed swain may say,
“Oft have we seen him at the peep of dawn,
“ Brushing with hasty steps the dew away,
“To meet the sun upon the upland lawn.
“There at the foot of yonder nodding beech,
“That wreathes it's old fantastic roots so high,
“His listless length at noontide would he stretch,
“And pore upon the brook that bubbles by.
“Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn,
“Mutt'ring his wayward fancies he would rove;
“Now drooping, woful, wan, like one forlorn,
“Or craz'd with care, or cross'd in hopeless love.
“One morn, I miss'd him on th’ accustom'd hill,
“Along the heath, and near his fav'rite tree;
“Another came, nor yet beside the rill,
“Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was he ;
“The next, with dirges due, in sad array,
“Slow through the churchway path we saw him borne.
“Approach and read (for thou can'st read) the lay,
“Grav'd 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,
Heav'n did a recompense as largely send:
He gave to Misry all he had, a tear; -
He gain'd from Heav'n, '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. GRAY.
MARK where it's simple front yon mansion rears,
The nursery of men for future years!
Here callow chiefs and embryo statesmen lie,
And unfledg'd poets short excursions try;
While Mersey's gentle current, which too long
By fame neglected, and unknown to song,
Between his rushy banks (no poet's theme)
Had creptinglorious, like a vulgar stream,
Reflects th' ascending seats with conscious pride,
And dares to emulate a classic tide.
Soft music breathes along each op'ning shade,
And sooths the dashing of his rough cascade.
With mystic lines his sands are figur'd o'er,
And circles trac'd upon the letter'd shore.
Beneath his willows rove th' inquiring youth,
And court the fair majestic form of truth.
Here Nature opens all her secret springs,
And Heav'n-born Science plumes her eagle wings;
Too long had bigot Rage, with malice swell'd,
Crush'd her strong pinions, and her flight withheld;
Too long to check her ardent progress strove :
So writhes the serpent round the bird of Jove,
Hangs on her flight, restrains her tow'ring wing,
Twists it's dark folds, and points it's venom'd sting.
Yet still, if aught aright the Muse divine,
Her rising pride shall mock the vain design;
On sounding pinions yet aloft shall soar,
And through the azure deep untravell'd paths explore.
Where Science smiles, the Muses join the train,
And gentlest arts and purest manners reign.
Ye gen'rous Youth, who love this studious shade,
How rich a field is to your hopes display'd 1
Rnowledge to you unlocks the classic page,
And virtue blossoms for a better age.
O, golden days! O, bright unvalued hours!
What bliss (did ye but know that bliss) were yours!
With richest stores your glowing bosoms fraught,
Perception quick, and luxury of thought;
The high designs, that heave the lab'ring soul,
Panting for fame, impatient of control;
And fond enthusiastic thought, that feeds
On pictur'd tales of vast heroic deeds;
And quick afiections, kindling into flame
At virtue's or their country's honour'd name; ,
And spirits light, to ev'ry joy in tune;
And friendship, ardent as a summer's noon;
And gen'rous scorn of vice's venal tribe;
And proud disdain of int'rest's sordid bribe;
And conscious honour's quick instinctive sense;
And smiles unforc'd ; and easy considence;
And vivid fancy; and clear simple truth;
And all the mental bloom of vernal youth.
How bright the scene to Fancy's eye appears,
Through the long perspective of distant years,
When this, this little group their country calls,
From academic shades and learned halls,
To fix her laws, her spirit to sustain,
And light up glory through her wide domain!
Their various tastes in diff'rent arts display'd,
Like temper'd harmony of light and shade,
With friendly union in one mass shall blend,
And this adorn the state, and that defend.
These the sequester'd shade shali cheaply please,
With learned labour and inglorious ease;
While those, impell'd by some resistless force,
O'er seas and rocks shall urge their vent'rous courses
Rich fruits, matur'd by glowing suns, behold, -
And China's groves of vegetable gold;
From ev'ry land the various harvest spoil,
And bear the tribute to their native soil;
But tell each land (while every toil they share,
Firm to sustain, and resolute to dare)
MAN is the nobler growth our realms supply,
And Souls are ripen'd in our northern sky.
Some pensive creep along the shelly shore,
Unfold the silky texture of a flow'r,
With sharpen'd eyes inspect a hornet's sting,'.
And all the wonders of an insect's wing.
Some trace with curious search the hidden causc
Of Nature's changes, and her various laws;
Untwist her beauteous web, disrobe her charms,
And hunt her to her elemental forms;
Or prove what hidden pow'rs in herbs are found,
To quench disease, and cool the burning wound;
With cordial drops the fainting head sustain,
Call back the flitting soul, and still the throbs of pain.
The patriot passion this shall strongly feel,
Ardent, and glowing with undaunted zeal;
With lips of fire shall plead his country's cause,
And vindicate the majesty of laws.
This, cloth'd with Britain's thunder, spread alarms
Through the wide earth, and shake the pole with arms.
That to the sounding lyre his deeds rehearse,
Enshrine his name in some immortal verse,
To long posterity his praise consign,
And pay a life of hardships by a line.
While others, consecrate to higher aims,
Whose hallow'd bosoms glow with purer flames,
Love in their hearts, persuasion on their tongue,
With words of peace shall charm the list'ning throng,
Draw the dread veil that wraps th' eternal throne,
And launch our souls into the bright unknown.
O thou, the Nymph with placid eye'
O seldom found, yet ever nigh!
Receive my temp'rate vow:
Not all the storms, that shake the pole,
Can e'er disturb thy halcyon soul,
And smooth, unalter'd brow.
O come, in simplest vest array'd,
With all thy sober cheer display'd,
To bless my longing sight;
Thy mien compos'd, thy even pace,
Thy meek regard, thy matron grace,
And chaste subdu'd delight.
No more by varying passions beat,
O gently guide my pilgrim feet,
To find thy hermit cell;
Where in some pure and equal sky,
Beneath thy soft indulgent eye,
The modest virtues dwell.
Simplicity in Attic vest,
And Innocence with candid breast,
And clear undaunted eye,
And Hope, who points to distant years,
Fair op'ning through this vale of tears
A vista to the sky.
There Health, through whose calm bosom glide
The temp'rate joys in even tide,
That rarely ebb or flow;
And Patience there, thy sister meek,
Presents her mild, unvarying cheek,
To meet the offer'd blow.
Her influence taught the Phrygian sage,
A tyrant master's wanton rage
With settled smiles to meet :
Inur'd to toil and bitter bread,
He bow'd his meek submitted head,
And kiss'd thy sainted feet.
But thou, O Nymph retir’d and coy
In what brown hamlet dost thou joy
To tell thy tender tale?
The lowliest children of the ground,
Moss rose and violet blossom round,
And lily of the vale.