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Ev'n Lust, the master of a harden'd face,
Blushes, if thou be'st in the place,
To Darkness' curtains he retires ; In sympathizing night he rolls his smoky fires. When, Goddess ! thou lift'st up thy waken'd head,
Out of the morning's purple bed,
Thy quire of birds about thee play, And all the joyful world salutes the rising day. The ghosts, and monster-spirits, that did presunie
A body's privilege to assume,
Vanish again invisibly,
Is but thy several liveries ;
Thou the rich dye on thém bestow'st, Thy nimble pencil paints this landscape as thou go'st, A crimson garment in the rose thou wear'st;
A crown of studded gold thou bear'st;
The virgin-lilies, in their white, Are clad but with the lawn of almost naked light. The violet, Spring's little infant, stands
Girt in thy purple swaddling-bands :
On the fair tulip thou dost doat; Thou cloth'st it in a gay and parti-colour'd coat. With flame condens'd thou dost thy jewels fix,
And solid colours in it mix :
Flora herself envies to see Flowers fairer than her own, and durable as she. Ah, Goddess! would thou couldst thy hand withhold,
And be less liberal to gold !
Didst thou less value to it give, Of how much care, alas! might'st thou poor man
relieve! To me the sun is more delightful far,
And all fair days much fairer are.
But few, ah! wondrous few, there be, Who do not gold prefer, O Goddess ! ev'n to thee. Through the soft ways of heaven, and air, and sea,
Which open all their pores to thee,
Like a clear river thou dost glide, And with thy living stream through the close
channels slide. But, where firm bodies thy free course oppose,
Gently thy source the land o'erflows;
Takes there possession, and does make, Of colours mingled light, a thick and standing lake. But the vast ocean of unbounded day
In th' empyræan heaven does stay.
Thy rivers, lakes, and springs, below, From thence took first their rise, thither at last
LIFE AND FAME.
So like, that one might take one for the other!
What's somebody, or nobody?
As 't is “to be," or “ not to be."
Is a more solid thing than thou. Vain, weak-built isthmus, which dost proudly rise
Up betwixt two eternities!
Yet canst nor wave nor wind sustain, But, broken and o'erwhelm’d, the endless oceans
Ourselves then to survive?
That Nothing Man's no wit-
“Here lies the great”-false marble! where? Nothing but small and sordid dust lies there. Some build enormous mountain-palaces,
The fools and architects to please;
So he, who on th' Egyptian shore
He, since that toy his death, Does fill all mouths, and breathes in all men's breath. T is true, the two immortal syllables remain;
But oh, ye learned men! explain
What essence, what existence, this,
In six poor letters is !
'T is all the conquer'd world could give.
We Poets, madder yet than all,
Fain would I see that prodigal,
Who his to-morrow would bestow, For all old Homer's life, e'er since he dy'd, till now!
HAIL, old patrician trees, so great and good !
Hail, ye plebeian underwood !
Pay, with their grateful voice.
Hail, the poor Muses' richest manor-seat;
Ye country-houses and retreat,
Which all the happy gods so love, That for you oft they quit their bright and great
Here Nature does a house for me erect,
Nature, the wisest architect,
Who those fond artists does despise That can the fair and living trees neglect;
Yet the dead timber prize.
Here let me, careless and unthoughtful lying,
Hear the soft winds, above me flying,
With all their wanton boughs dispute,
Nor be myself, too, mute.
Gilt with the sun-beams here and there;
On whose enamel'd bank I'll walk,
How prettily they talk.
Who loves not his own company !
He'll feel the weight of't many a day,
To help to bear 't away.
Which bless'd remain’d, till man did find
Ev'n his own helper's company. As soon as two, alas' together join’d,
The serpent made up three. Though God himself, through countless ages, thee
His sole companion chose to be,
Thee, sacred Solitude, alone,
Sprang from the trunk of one.
Thou (though men think thine an unactive part)
Dost break and time th' upruly heart,
Which else would know no settled pace,
With swiftness and with grace.
Dost, like a burning-glass, unite ;
Dost multiply the feeble heat,
And noble fires beget.
The monster London laugh at me;
I should at thee too, foolish city!
But thy estate I pity.
And all the fools that crowd thee so,
Even thou, who dost thy millions boast, A village less than Islington wilt grow,
A solitude almost.
UPON LIBERTY. FREEDOM with Virtue takes her seat;
Her proper place, her only scene, Is in the golden mean, She lives not with the poor nor with the great. The wings of those Necessity has clipt,
And they're in Fortune's bridewell whipt
To the laborious task of bread;
And servile Avarice yokes them now,