Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

When nightingales, when sweetest bards

How wretched! who, through cruel fate, Confine their charming song

Have nothing to lainent ! To summer's animating heats,

With the poor alms this world affords Content to warble young?

Deplorably content ! Yet write I must; a lady'sues ;

Had not the Greek his world mistook, How shameful her request !

His wish had been must sise; My brain in labour for dull rhyme !

To be content with but one world, Hers teeming with the best !

Like him, we should despise. But you a stranger will excuse,

Of Earth's revenue would you state Nor scorn his feeble strain ;

A full account, and fair? To you a stranger, but, through fate,

We hope; and hope; and hope; then cast
No stranger to your pain.

The total up-
The ghost of grief deceas'd ascends,
His old wound bleeds anew;

Despair.
His sorrows are recall'd to life
By those he sees in you;

Since vain all here, all future, rast,

Embrace the lot assign'd; Too well he knows the twisting strings

Heaven wonuds to heal ; its frowns are friends; Of ardent hearts combin'd

Its stroke severe, most kind.
When rent asunder, how they bleed,
How hard to be resign'd:

But in laps'd Nature rooted deep,

Blind errour domineers; Those tears you pour, his eyes have shed;

And on fools' errands, in the dark,
The pang you feel, he felt;

Sends out our hopes and fears;
Thus Nature, loud as virtue, bids
His heart at yours to melt.

Bids us for ever pains deplore,

Our pleasures overprize; But what can heart, or head, suggest ?

These oft persuade us to be weak;
What sad experience say?

Thuse urge us to be wise.
Through truths austere, to peace we work
Oar rugged, gloomy way:

From virtue's rugged path to right

By pleasure are we brought, What are we? Whence? For what? and whither?

To flowery fields of wrong, and there
Who know yot, needs must mourn;

Pain chides us for our fault:
But thought, bright daughter of the skies !
Can tears to triumph turn.

Yet whilst it chides, it speaks of peace,

If folly is withstood; Thought is our armour, 't is the mind's

And says, time pays an easy price, Impenetrable shield,

For our eternal good. When, sent by fate, we meet our foes, lu sore amiction's field;

In Earth's dark cot, and in an hour,

And in delusion great, It plucks the frightful mask from ills,

What an economist is man
Forbids pale fear to hide,

To spend his whole estate,
Beneath that dark disguise, a friend,
Which turns affection's tide.

And beggar an eternity!

For which as he was born, Affection frail! train'd up by sense,

More worlds than one against it weigh’d,
From reason's channel strays :

As feathers he should scorn.
And whilst it blindly points at peace,
Our peace to pain betrays.

Say not, your loss in triumph leads

Religion's feeble strife; Thonglat winds its fond, erroneous stream

Joys future amply reimburse
From daily-dying flowers,

Joys bankrupts of this life.
To nourish rich immortal blooms,
In amaranthine bowers;

But not deferr'd your joy so long,

It bears an early date; Whence throngs, in ecstasy, look down

Amiction's ready pay in hand,
On what once shock'd their sight;

Befriends our present state :
And thank the terrours of the past
For ages of delight.

What are the tears, which trickle down

Her melancholy face, All witbers here; who most possess

Like liquid pearl ? Like pearls of price, Are losers by their gain,

They purchase lasting peace. Stung by full proof, that, bad at best,

Grief softens hearts, and curbs the will,
Life's idle all is vain :

Impetuous passion tames,
Vain, in its course, life's murmuring stream; And keeps insatiate, keen desire
Did not its course offend,

From lanching in extremes.
But murmur ccase; life, then, would seem

Through time's dark womb, our judgment right, Still rainer, from its end.

If our dimn eye was thrown,

Clear should we see, the will divine 1 Mrs, M.--

Has but forestall’d our own ;

At variance with our future wish,

Now need I, madam ! your support.Self-sever'd we complain;

How exquisite the smart ; If so, the wounded, not the wound,

How critically tim’d the news? Must answer for the pain :

Which strikes me to the heart! The day shall come, and swift of wing,

The pangs of which I spoke, I feel : Though you may think it slow,

If worth like thine, is born, When, in the list of fortune's smiles,

O long-belor'd! I bless the blow,You'll enter frowns of woe.

And triumph, whilst I mourn. For mark the path of Providence;

Nor mourn I long; by grief subdued This course it has pursued

By reason's empire shown ; “ Pain is the parent, woe the womb,

Deep anguish comes by Heaven's decree, Of sound, important good :"

Continues by our own; Our hearts are fasten'd to this world

And when continued past its point, By strong and endless ties :

Indulg'd in length of time, And every sorrow cuts a string,

Grief is disgrace, and, what was fate, And urges us to rise :

Corrupts into a crime : 'T will sound severe-Yet rest assurd

And shall I, criminally mean, I'm studious of your peace;

Myself and subject wrong? Though I should dare to give you joy~

No; my example shall support Yes, joy of bis decease :

The subject of my song. An hour shall come (you question this)

Madam! I grant your loss is great; An hour, when you shall bless,

Nor little is your gain? Beyond the brightest beams of life,

Let that be weigh'd; when weigh'd aright, Dark days of your distress.

It richly pays your pain : Hear then without surprise a truth,

When Heaven would kindly set us free, A daughter-truth to this,

And Earth's enchantment end ; Swift turns of fortune often tic

It takes the most etlectual means, A bleeding heart to bliss:

And robs us of a friend. Esteem you this a paradox?

But such a friend ! and sigh no more? My sacred motto read;

'Tis prudent; but severe : A glorious truth! divinely sung

Heaven aid my weakness, and I drop, By one, whose heart had bled;

All sorrow—with this tear. To Resignation swift he flew,

Perhaps your settled grief to sooth, In her a friend he found,

I should not vainly strive, A friend, which bless-d him with a smile

But with soft balm your pain assuage, When gasping with his wound.

Had he been still alive; On Earth naught precious is obtain'd

Whose frequent aid brought kind relief, But what is painful too;

In my distress of thought, By travel, and to travel born,

Ting'd with his beams my cloudy page, Our sabbaths are but few :

And beautify'd a fault : To real joy we work our way,

To touch our passions' secret springs Encountering many a shock,

Was his peculiar care; Ere found what truly charms; as found

And deep his happy genius div'd A Venus in the block.

In bosoms of the fair; In some disaster, some severe

Nature, which favours to the few, Appointment for our sins,

All art beyond, imparts, That mother blessing (not so call’d,)

To him presented at his birth, True happiness, begins.

The key of human hearts. No martyr e'er desy'd the flames,

But not to me by him bequeath'd By stings of life unvext ;

His gentle, smooth address; First rose some quarrel with this world,

His tender hand to touch the wound Then passion for the next.

In throbbing of distress ; You see, then, pangs are parent pangs,

Howe'er, proceed I must, unbless'd The pangs of happy birth;

With Esculapian art: Pangs, by which only can be born

Know, love sometimes, mistaken love! True happiness on Earth.

Plays disaffection's part : The peopled Earth look all around,

Nor lands, nor seas, nor suns, nor stars, Or through time's records run ;

Can soul from soul divide; And say, what is a man unstruck ?

They correspond from distant worlds,
It is a man undone.

Though transports are denied :
This moment, am I deeply stung-
My bold pretence is tried;

. Whilst the author was writing this, he received When vain man boasts, Heaven puts to proof the news of Mr. Samuel Richardson's death, who The vauntings of his pride ;

was then printing the former part of the poem.

Are you not, then, unkindly kind ?

The clear deceas'd so fam'd in arms, Is not your love severe?

With what delight he'll view O! stop that crystal source of woe;

His triumphs on the main outdone, Nor wound him with a tear.

Thus conquer'd, twice, by you. As those above from human bliss

Sharr his delight; take heed to sbun Receive increase of joy ;

Of bosoms most diseas'd May not a stroke from human woe,

That odd distemper, an absurd In part, their peace destroy ?

Reluctance to be pleas'd: He lives in those he left ;-to what?

Some seem in love with sorrow's charins, Your, now, paternal care,

And that foul fiend embrace : Clear from its clond your brighten'd eye,

This temper let me justly brand, It will discern bim there ;

And stamp it with disgrace : In features, not of form alone,

Sorrow! of horrid parentage! But those, I trust, of mind;

Thou second-horn of Hell ! Auspicious to the public weal,

Against Heaven's endless mercies pour'd And to their fate resign'd.

How dar'st thou to rebel? Think on the tempests he sustain'd;

From black and noxious vapours bred Revolve his battles won ;

And nursid by want of thought, And let those prophesy your joy

And to the donr of phrensy's self From such a father's son:

By perseverance brought, Is consolation what you serk?

Thy most ingloriolis, coward tears Fan, then, his martial fire:

Froin brutal eyes hate ran : Ard animate to fame the sparks

Smiles, incommunicable siniles ! Bequeath'd him by his sire :

Are radiant marks of man; As nothing great is born in haste,

They cast a sudden glory round Wise Nature's time ailow;

Th'illumin'd human face; His father's laurels may descend,

And light in sons of honest joy And nourish on his brow.

Somc beams of Moses' face : Ror, madam! be surprisid to hear

Is resignation's lesson hard ? That laurels may be due

Examine, we shall find No more to heroes of the field,

That duty gives up little more (Imoud boasters !) than to you:

Than anguish of the mind; Tender as is the female frame,

Resign; and all the load of life Like that brave man you mourn,

That moment you remove, You are a soldier, and to fight

Its heavy tax, ten thousand cares Superior battles born;

Devolve on ope aboke; Beneath a banner nobler far

Who bids us lay our burthen down Than eror was unfurl'd

On his almig . y hand, In fields of blood; a banner bright!

Softeps our duty to relief, High wav'd o'er all the world.

To blessing a command. It, like a streaming meteor, casts

For joy what cause ! how every sense An universal light;

Is courted from above. Sheds day, sheds more, eternal day

The year around, with presents rich, On nations whelm'd in night.

The growth of endless love! Beneath that banner, what'exploit

But most o'erlook the blessings pour'd, Can mount our glory higher,

Forget the wonders done, Than to sustain the dreadful blow,

And terminate, wrapp'd up in sense, When those we love expire?

Their prospect at the Sun; Go forth a moral Amazon ;

From that, their final point of view, Arm'd with undaunted thonght;

From that their radiant goal, The battle won, though costing dear,

On travel infinite of thought, You'll think it cheaply bought:

Sets out the pobler soul, The passive hero, who sits down

Broke loose from time's tenacious ties, Unactive, and can smile

And Earth's involving gloom, Beneath affliction's galling load,

To range at last its vast doinain, Out-acts a Cæsar's toil :

And talk with worlds to come: The billms stain'd hy slaughter'd foes

They let unmark'd, and unemploy'd, Inferior praise afford;

Life's idle moments run; Reason 's a bloodless conqueror,

And, doing nothing for themselves, More glorious than the sword.

Imagine nothing done ; Nor can the thunders of huzzas,

Fatal mistake their fate goes on, From shouting nations, cause

Their dread account proceeds, Sucli smeet delight, as from your heart

And their not-doing is sot down Soft whispers of applause :

Amongst their darkest deeds;

1

[ocr errors]

Though man sits still, and takes his ease; Consummate love! the list how large God is at work on man;

Of blessings from thy hand ! No means, no moment unemploy'd,

To banish sorrow, and be blest, To bless him, if he can.

Is thy supreme command. But man consents not, boldly bent

Are such commands but ill obey'd? To fashion his own fate;

Of bliss, shall we complain? Man, a mere bungler in the trade,

The man, who dares to be a wretch, Repents his crime too late;

Deserves still greater pain. Hence loud laments : let me thy cause,

Joy is our duty, glory, health; Indulgent Father! plead;

The sunshine of the soul; Of all the wretches we deplore,

Our best encomium on the power Not one by thee was made.

Who sweetly plans the whole : What is thy whole creation fair?

Joy is our Eden still possess'd: Of love divine the child;

Be gone, ignoble grief! Love brought it forth; and, from its birth,

'T is joy makes gods, and men exalts, Has o'er it fondly smild:

Their nature, our relief;

Relief, for man to that must stoop,
Now, and through periods distant far,

And his due distance know ;
Long ere the world began,
Heaven is, and has in travail been,

Transport's the language of the skies, Its birth the good of man;

Content the style below. Man holds in constant service bound

Content is joy, and joy in pain The blustering winds and seas;

Is joy and virtue too;

Thus, whilst good present we possess Nor suns disdain to travel hard

More precious we pursue : Their master, man, to please :

Of joy the more we have in hand, is To final good the worst events

The more have we to come; Through secret channels run;

Joy, like our money, interest bears, Finish for man their destin'd course,

Which daily swells the sum. As 'twas for man begun.

“ But how to smile; to stem the tide One point (observ'd, perhaps, by few)

Of nature in our veins ; Has often smote, and smites

Is it not hard to weep in joy? My mind, as demonstration strong;

What then to smile in pains?!! "That Heaven in man delights:

Victorious joy! which breaks the clouds, What's known to man of things unseen,

And struggles through a storm; Of future worlds, or fates?

Proclaims the mind as great, as good; So much, por more, than what to man's

And bids it doubly charm : Sublime affairs relates ;

If doubly charming in our sex, What's revelation then? a list,

A sex, by nature, bold; An inventory just

What then in yours ? 't is diamond there, Of that poor insect's goods, so late

Triumphant o'er our gold. Call'd out of night and dust.

And should not this complaint repress ? What various motives to rejoice!

And check the rising sigh? To render joy sincere,

Yet farther opiate to your pain Has this no weight? our joy is felt

1 labour to supply. Beyond this narrow sphere:

Since spirits greatly damp'd distort Would we in Heaven new Heaven create,

Ideas of delight, And double its delight?

Look through the medium of a friend, A smiling world, when Heaven looks down,

To set your notions right : How pleasing in its sight!

As tears the sight, grief dims the soul;

Its object dark appears;
Angels stoop forward from their thrones
To hear its joyful lays;

True frienu hip, like a rising sun,

The soul's horizon clears.
As incense sweet enjoy, and join,
Its aromatic praise :

A friend's an optic to the mind

With sorrow clouded o'er; Have we no cause to fear the stroke

And gives it strength of sight to see Of Heaven's avenging rod,

Redress unseen before. When we presume to counteract

Reason is somewhat rough in man; A sympathetic God?

Extremely smooth and fair, If we resign, our patience makes

When she, to grace her manly strength, His rod an armless wand;

Assumes a female air:
If not, it darts a serpent's sting,
Like that in Moses' band;

A friend 3 yon bare, and I the same,

Whose prudent, soft address Like that, it swallows up whate'er

Will bring to life those healing thoughts Earth's vain magicians bring,

Which died in your distress ;
Whose baffled arts would boast below
Of joys a rival spring.

3 Mrs. Montague. VOL. XIII,

KK

That friend, the spirit of my theme

This revolution, fix'd by fate, Extracting for your ease,

In fable was foretold; Will leave to me the dreg, in thoughts

The dark prediction puzzled wits, Too common; such as these :

Nor could the learn'd unfold : Let those lament, to whom full bowls

But as those ladies' 5 works I read, Of sparkling joys are given;

They darted such a ray, That triple bane inebriates life,

The latent sense burst out at once, Imbitters death, and hazards Heaven :

And shone in open day : Woe to the soul at perfect ease!

So burst, full ripe, distended fruits, "T is brewing perfect pains;

When strongly strikes the Sun; Lull'd reason sleeps, the pulse is king;

And from the purple grape unpress'd Despotic body reigns :

Spontaneous nectars run. Have you 4 ne'er pity'd joy's gay scenes,

Pallas, ('t is said) when Jove grew dull, And deem'd their glory dark ?

Forsook his drowsy brain ; Alas! poor Envy! she's stone-blind,

And sprightly leap'd into the throne And quite mistakes her mark:

Of wisdom's brighter reiga; Her mark lies hid in sorrow's shades,

Her helmet took ; that is, shot rayı But sorrow well subdued ;

Of formidable wit; And in proud fortune's frown defy'd

And lance,-or, genius most acute, By meek, unborrow'd good.

Which lines immortal writ; By resignation; all in that

And gorgon shield,-or, power to fright A double friend may find,

Man's folly, dreadful shone, A wing to Heaven, and, while on Earth,

And many a blockhead (easy change !) The pillow of mankind :

Turn'd, instantly, to stone, On pillows void of down, for rest

Our authors male, as, then, did Jove, Our restless hopes we place ;

Now scratch a damag'd head, When hopes of Heaven lie warm at heart,

And call for what once quarter'd there, Our hearts repose in peace:

But find the goddess fled. The peace, which resignation yields,

The fruit of knowledge, golden fruit ! Who feel alone can guess;

That once forbidden tree, "T is disbeliev'd by murmuring minds,

Hedg'd-in by surly man, is now They must conclude it less :

To Britain's daughters free: The loss, or gain, of that alone

In Eve (we know) of fruit so fair Have we to hope, or fear;

The noble thirst began; That fate controls, and can invert

And they, like her, have caus'd a fall, The seasons of the year :

A fall of fame in man : O! the dark days, the year around,

And since of genius in our sex, Of an impatient mind!

O Addison with thee Through clouds, and storms, a summer breaks, The sun is set; how I rejoice To shine on the resign'd:

This sister lamp to see! While man by that of every grace,

It sheds, like Cynthia, silver beams And virtue, is possess'd;

On man's nocturnal state; Foul vice her pandæmonium builds

His lessen'd light, and languid powers, In the rebellious breast;

I show, whilst I relate,
By resignation we defeat

The worst that can annoy ;
And suffer, with far more repose,

PART IL
Than worldlings can enjoy.

But what in either sex, beyond From small experience this I speak;

All parts, our glory crowns ? 0! grant to those I love

" In ruffling seasons to be calm, Experience fuller far, ye powers,

And smile, when fortune frowns." Who form our fates above !

Heaven's choice is safer than our owns My love where due, if not to those

Of ages past inquire, Who, leaving grandeur, came

What the most formidable fate? To shine on age in mean recess,

“ To have our own desire." And light me to my theme !

If, in your wrath, the worst of foors A theme themselves! A theme, how rare!

You wish extremely ill; The charms, which they display,

Expose him to the thunder's stroke, To triumph over captive heads,

Or that of his own will. Are set in bright array:

What numbers, ritshing down the steep With his own arms proud man's o'crcome,

Of inclination strong, His boasted laurels die:

Have perish'd in their ardent wish! Learning and genius, wiser grown,

Wish ardent, ever wrong! To female bosoms fly.

1 Mrs. Montague.

s Mrs. Montague. Mrs. Carter.

« ZurückWeiter »