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Yet is there nothing men can do,
When chilling Age comes creeping on? Cannot we yet some good pursue ?
Are talents buried ? genins gone? If passions slumber in the breast,
If follies from the heart be fled; Of laurels let us go in quest,
And place them on the poet's head.
Yes, 'tis too late,-now Reason guides
The mind, sole judge in all debate;
For laurels, 'tis, alas! too late.
But for new conquests strive in vain.
Yes, we'll redeem the wasted time,
And to neglected studies flee;
Or live, Philosophy, with thee;
Eternal fame reward shall be ;
Th' admiring crowd shall envying see.
Beware then, Age, that what was won,
If life's past labours, studies, views, Be lost not, now the labour's done,
When all thy part is,-not to lose: When thou canst toil or gain no more,
Destroy not what was gain'd before.
Shall man, in happier state, enjoy.
For study's cares, for virtue's strife;
In that renew'd, that endless life!
Begin the song! begin the theme !
Alas! and is Invention dead ?
Is Mem'ry with her treasures fled ?
SIR EUSTACE GRE Y.
And show (as one from frenzy freed)
The proud-lost mind, the rash-done deed. PERSONS-VISITOR, PHYSICIAN, AND PATIENT.
That cell to him is Greyling Hall :-
Approach; he'll bid thee welcome there;
And sometimes point the vacant chair:
He can, with free and easy air, I'll know no more ;-the heart is torn Appear attentive and polite;
By views of wo, we cannot heal; Can veil his woes in manners fair, Long shall I see these things forlorn, And pity with respect excite.
And oft again their griefs shall feel,
As each upon the mind shall steal; That wan projector's mystic style,
That lumpish idiot leering by, That peevish idler's ceaseless wile,
Who comes ? — Approach! – 'tis kindly And that poor maiden's half-form'd smile,
done :While struggling for the full-drawn sigh!
My learn'd physician, and a friend, I'll know no more.
Their pleasures quit, to visit one,
Who cannot to their ease attend,
Nor joys bestow, nor comforts lend,
As when I lived so blest, so well,
And dreamt not I must soon contend
With those malignant powers of hell. When thou hast view'd, what yet remain, The ruins of Sir Eustace Grey, The sport of madness, misery's prey:
PHYSICIAN. But he will no historian need,
His cares, his crimes, will he display, Less warmth, Sir Eustace, or we go.
But I deserved; for all that time,
When I was loved, admired, caress'd, See! I am calm as infant-love,
There was within, each secret crime, A very child, but one of wo,
Unfelt, uncancell'd, unconfess'd: Whom you should pity, not reprove :-|I never then my God address'd, But men at ease, who never strove
In grateful praise or humble prayer; With passions wild, will calmly show And if His Word was not my jest, How soon we may their ills remove, (Dread thought!) it never was my care. And masters of their madness grow.
I doubted :-fool I was to doubt! Some twenty years I think are gone,- If that all-piercing eye could see,
(Time fies, I know not how, away,) If He who looks all worlds throughout, The sun upon no happier shone,
Would so minute and careful be, Nor prouder man, than Eustace Grey.
As to perceive and punish me:Ask where you would, and all would say, With man I would be great and high,
The man admired and praised of all, But with my God so lost, that He, By rich and poor, by grave and gay, In his large view, should pass me by. Was the young lord of Greyling Hall.
Thus blest with children, friend, and wife, Yes! I had youth and rosy health ;
Blest far beyond the vulgar lot; Was nobly form’d, as man might be; Of all that gladdens human life, For sickness then, of all my wealth, Where was the good, that I had not? I never gave a single fee:
But my vile heart had sinful spot, The ladies fair, the maidens free,
And Heaven beheld its deep'ning stain, Were all accustom'd then to say, Eternal Justice I forgot, Who would a handsome figure see
And mercy sought not to obtain. Should look upon Sir Eustace Grey.
Come near, - I'll softly speak the rest!He had a frank and pleasant look,
Alas! 'tis known to all the crowd, A cheerful eye and accent bland; Her guilty love was all confess’d; His very speech and manner spoke
And his, who so much truth avow'd, The generous heart, the open hand; My faithless friend's.-In pleasure proud About him all was gay or grand,
Í sat, when these cursed tidings came; He had the praise of great and small; Their guilt, their flight was told aloud, He bought, improved, projected, plann'd; And Envy smiled to hear my shame; And reign'd a prince at Greyling Hall.
I callid on Vengeance; at the word My lady!—she was all we love;
She came :-Can I the deed forget? All praise (to speak her worth) is faint; I held the sword, th' accursed sword, Her manners show'd the yielding dove, The blood of his false heart made wet; Her morals the seraphic saint:
And that fair victim paid her debt, She never breathed nor look'd complaint: She pined, she died, she loath'd to live;No equal upon earth had she:- I saw her dying-see her yet: Now, what is this fair thing I paint? Fair fallen thing! my rage forgive ! Alas! as all that live shall be.
Those cherubs still, my life to bless, There was, beside, a gallant youth,
Were left; could I my fears remove, And him, my bosom's friend, I had :- Sad fears that check'd each fond caress, Oh! I vas rich in very truth,
And poison'd all parental love? It made me proud-it made me mad !- Yet that with jealous feelings strove, Yes, I was lost-but there was cause ! And would at last have won my will,
Where stood my tale? -- I cannot find- Had I not, wretch! been doom'd to prove But I had all mankind's applause,
Th' extremes of mortal good and ill. And all the smiles of womankind.
In youth! health! joy! in beauty's pride! There were two cherub-things beside, They droop'd : as flowers when blighted A gracious girl, a glorious boy ;
bow, Yet more to swell my full-blown pride, The dire infection came :—They died, To varnish higher my fading joy,
And I was cursed -as I am nowPleasures were ours without alloy, Nay, frown not, angry friend, allow
Nay, Paradise,-till my frail Eve That I was deeply, sorely tried; Our bliss was tempted to destroy; Hear then, and you must wonder how Deceived and fated to deceive.
I could such storms and strifen abide.
Storms !-- not that clouds embattled make, | And gave a mild and sober glow,
When they afflict this earthly globe; Where all were still, asleep, or dead; But such as with their terrors shake Vast ruins in the midst were spread,
Man's breast, and to the bottom probe; Pillars and pediments sublime, They make the hypocrite disrobe,
Where the gray moss had form'd a bed, They try us all, if false or true;
And clothed the crambling spoils of time. For this, one devil had pow'r on Job; And I was long the slave of two.
There was I fix'd, I know not how,
Condemnd for untold years to stay: Yet years were not;- one dreadful Now
Endured no change of night or day;
The same mild evening's sleeping ray Peace, peace, my friend ; these subjects fly;
Shone softly-solemn and serene, Collect thy thoughts-go calmly on.
And all that time I gazed away,
The Betting sun's sad rays were seen.
And shall I then the fact deny ?
I was,-thou knowst,-I was begone, Like him who fill'd the eastern throne,
To whom the Watcher cried aloud ; That royal wretch of Babylon,
Who was so guilty and so proud.
At length a moment's sleep stole on,
Again came my commission'd foes :
No peace, no respite, no repose :
We ran through bleak and frozen land;
An infant in a giant's hand.
Like him, with haughty, stubborn mind, 1, in my state, my comforts sought;
They placed me where those streainers Delight and praise I hoped to find,
play, In what I builded, planted, bought!
Those nimble beams of brilliant light; Oh! arrogance! by misery taught
It would the stoutest heart dismay, Soon came a voice! I felt it come:
To see, to feel, that dreadful sight: Full be his cup, with evil fraught,
So swift, so pure, .60 cold, so bright, Demons his guides, and death his doom!
They pierced my frame with icy wound, And all that half-year's polar night,
Those dancing streamers wrapp'd me round. Then was I cast from out my state;
Two fiends of darkness led my way;
Slowly that darkness pase'd away,
When down upon the earth I fell,-
But, soon as tolld the evening-bell,
Far-distant men in cities fair, Is sad to tell :—but you shall hear.
Cities of whom no trav'lers tell,
Nor feet but mine were wanderers there. And first, before they sent me forth, Through this unpitying world to run,
Their watchmen stare, and stand aghast, They robb'd Sir Eustace of his worth, Lånds, manors, lordships, every one;
As on we hurry through the dark ;
The watch-light blinks as we go past, So was that gracious man undone, Was spurn'd as vile, was scorn'd as poor, The watch-tower's bell sounds shrill; and,
The watch-dog shrinks and fears to bark; Whom erery former friend would shun,
hark ! And menials drove from every door.
The free wind blows - we've left the
townThen those ill-favour'd Ones, whom none A wide sepulchral ground I mark, But my unhappy eyes could view,
And on a tombstone place mc down.
What monuments of mighty dead!
What tombs of various kinds are found! And halted on a boundless plain; Where nothing fed, nor breathed, nor grew,
And stones erect their shadows shed
On humble graves, with wickers bound; Bat silence ruled the still domain.
Some risen fresh, above the ground,
Some level with the native clay, Upon that boundless plain, below,
What sleeping millions wait the sound : The setting sun's last rays were shed, Arise, ye dead, and come away!
I've furl'd in storms the flapping sail, Pilgrim, burthen’d with thy sin,
By hanging from the topmast-head; Come the way to Zion's gate, I've served the vilest slaves in jail, There, till Mercy let thee in,
And pick'd the dunghill's spoil for bread; Knock and weep and watch and wait. I've made the badger's hole my bed, Knock!-He knows the sinner's cry: I've wander'd with a gipsy crew;
Weep!-He loves the mourner's tears : I've dreaded all the guilty dread,
Watch !—for saving grace is nigh: And done what they would fear to do. Wait,—till hcavenly light appears,
On sand, where ebbs and flows the flood, Hark! it is the Bridegroom's voice:
Midway they placed and bade me die; Welcome, pilgrim, to thy rest; Propt on my staff, I stoutly stood Now within the gate rejoice,
When the swift waves came rolling by; Safe and seal'd and bought and blest!
Till my lips drank the bitter brine; Seal'd-by signs the chosen know,
And saw the tide's re-flowing sign. Blest—the mighty debt to owe.
Holy Pilgrim! what for thee
Would not so proud a soul disdain
The madness of the poorest mind ?
Fear-the hope of Heaven shall fly,
No! for the more he swell’d with pride, Pain-in endless bliss expire.
The more he felt misfortune's blow; Disgrace and grief he could not hide,
And poverty had laid him low : But though my day of grace was come, Thus shame and sorrow working slow, Yet still my days of grief I find ;
At length this humble spirit gave; The former clouds' collected gloom Madness on these began to grow, Still saddens the reflecting mind;
And bound him to his fiends a slave. The soul, to evil things consign'd,
Will of their evil some retain ; The man will seem to earth inclined,
Though the wild thoughts had touch'd his And will not look erect again.
Then was he free:-So, forth he ran; Thus, though elect, I feel it hard
To soothe or threat, alike were vain : To lose what I possess'd before,
He spake of fiends; look'd wild and wan; To be from all my wealth debarr’d,
Year after year the hurried man The brave Sir Eustace is no more:
Obey'd those fiends from place to place; But old I wax and passing poor,
Till his religious change began
To form a frenzied child of grace.
For, as the fury lost its strength,
The mind reposed; by slow degrees Must you, my friends, no longer stay ? Came lingering hope, and brought at length,
Thus quickly all my pleasures end; To the tormented spirit, ease : But I'll remember, when I pray,
This slave of sin, whom fiends could seize, My kind physician and his friend;
Felt or believed their power had end;And those sad hours, you deign to spend 'Tis faith, he cried, my bosom frees,
With ine, I shall requite them all; And now my Saviour is my friend.
But ah! though time can yield relief,
And soften woes it cannot cure;
Would we not suffer pain and grief,
To have our reason sound and sure ? The poor Sir Eustace!--Yet his hope Then let us keep our bosoms pare, Leads him to think of joys again ;
Our fancy's favourite fights suppress; And when his earthly visions droop, Prepare the body to endure,
His views of heavenly kind remain;- And bend the mind to meet distress; But whence that meek and humbled strain, And then his guardian care implore,
That spirit wounded, lost, resign'd ? Whom demons dread and men adore.