« AnkstesnisTęsti »
Beneath those rugged elms, that yew-tree's fhade,
Where heaves the turf in many a mould'ring heap,
Each in his narrow cell for ever laid,
The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep.
The breezy call of incenfe-breathing morn,
The swallow twitt’ring from the straw-built shed,
The cock's fhrill clarion, or the echoing horn,
No more shall rouse them from their lowly bed.
For them no more the blazing hearth shall burn,
Or busy housewife ply her ev'ning care,
No children run to lisp their fire's return,
Or climb his knees the envied kiss to share.
Oft did the harvest to their fickle yield,
Their furrow oft the stubborn glebe has broke;
How jocund did they drive their team afield!
How bow'd the woods beneath their sturdy stroke!
Let not Ambition mock their useful toil,
Their homely joys and destiny obscure;
Nor Grandeur hear with a disdainful smile,
The short and simple annals of the poor.
The boast of heraldry, the pomp of pow'r,
And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave,
Await alike th' inevitable hour:
The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
Nor you, ye Proud, impute to These the fault,
If Mem'ry o’er their Tomb no Trophies raise,
Where thro' the long-drawn ille and fretted vault
The pealing anthem swells the note of praise.
Can storied urn or animated bust
Back to its mansion call the fleeting breath?
Can Honour's voice provoke the silent duft,
Or Flatt'ry soothe the dull cold ear of Death?
Perhaps in this neglected spot is laid
Some heart once pregnant with celestial fire:
Hands, that the rod of empire might have sway'd,
Or wak’d to extasy the living lyre,
But knowledge to their eyes her ample page
Rich with the spoils of time did ne'er unroll
Chill Penury repress'd their noble rage,
And froze the genial current of the foul.
Full many a gem of parest ray serene,
The dark, unfathom’d caves of ocean bear;
Full many a flow'r is born to blush unseen,
And waste its sweetness on the desert air.
Some village-Hampden, that with dauntless breast
The little Tyrant of his fields withstood;
Some mute inglorious MILTON here may rest,
Some CROMWELL guiltless of his country's blood.
Th' applause of liftning fenates to 'command,
The threats of pain and ruin to despise,
To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land,
And read their hift'ry in a nation's eyes,
Their let forbad: nor circumscrib'd alone
Their growing virtues, but their crimes confin'd;
Forbad to wade through slaughter to a throne,
And shut the gates of mercy on mankind,
The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide,
To quench the blushes of ingenuous shame,
Or heap the shrine of Luxury and Pride
With incense kindled at the Muse's flame.
Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife,
Their sober wishes never learn'd to stray;
Along the cool sequefter'd vale of life
They kept the noiseless tenor of their way.
Yet, ev'n these bones from insult to protect,
Some frail memorial still erected nigh,
With uncouth rhimes and shapeless sculpture deck'd,
Implores the passing tribute of a figh.
Their name, their years, spelt by th' unletter'd Muse,
The place of fame and elegy supply:
And many a holy text around the strews,
That teach the rustic moralist to die.
For who to dumb Forgetfulness a prey, This pleasing anxious being e'er resign'd, Left the warm precincts of the chearful day, Nor cast one longing, ling’ring look behind?
On some fond breast the parting soul relies,
Some pious drops the closing eye requires :
Ev’n from the tomb the voice of Nature cries,
Ev'n in our Ashes live their wonted Fires.
For thee, who mindful of th' unhonour'd Dead
Doft in these lines their artless tale relate;
If chance, by lonely Contemplation led,
Some kindred Spirit shall inquire thy fate.
Haply some hoary-headed fwain may say, . Oft' have we seen him at the peep of dawn,
Brushing with hafty steps the dews away, • To meet the sun upon the upland lawn.
“There at the foot of yonder nodding beech (That wreathes its old fantastic roots so high, • His listless length at noon-tide would he stretch, • And pour upon the brook that babbles by.
Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn, • Mutt'ring his wayward fancies he would rove;
Now drooping, woeful wan, like one forlorn,
"Or craz'd with care, or cross’d in hopeless love.
One morn I miss’d him on th' custom'd hill,
Along the heath and near his fav’rite tree:
Another came; nor yet beside the rill,
up the lawn, nor at the wood was he. « The next with dirges due in fad array • Slow through the church-way path we saw him borne.
Approach and read (for thou can'st read) the lay,
Gravid on the stone beneath yon aged thorn.'
ERE 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 recompence as largely send :
He gave to Mis’ry all he had, a tear,
He gain'd from Heav'n ('twas all he wish'd) a friend.
No farther feek 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.
HYMN то, ADVERSITY.
AUGHTER of JOVE, relentless power,
Thou tamer of the human breast,
Whose iron fcourge and tort'ring hour,
The bad affright, afflict the best!
Bound in thy adamantine chain
The proud are taught to taste of pain,
And purple tyrants vainly groan
With pangs unfelt before, unpitied and alone,
When first thy fire to send on earth
Virtue, his darling child, design'd,
To thee he gave the heav'nly birth,
And bade to form her infant mind.
Stern rugged nurse! thy rigid lore
With patience many a year the bore:
What sorrow was, thou bad'ft her know,
And from her own she learn'd to melt at others' woe.
Scar'd at thy frown terrific, fly
Self-pleasing Folly's idle brood,
Wild Laughter, Noise, and thoughtless Joy,
And leave us leisure to be good.
Light they disperse, and with them go
The summer friend, the flatt'ring foe;
By vain Prosperity receiv'd,
To her they vow their truth, and are again believ'd.
Wisdom in fable garb array'd
Immers'd in rapt'rous thought profound,
And Melancholy, filent maid
With leaden eye, that loves the ground,
Still on thy folemn steps attend:
Warm Charity, the gen'ral friend,
With Justice to herself fevere,
And Pity, dropping foft the fadly-pleasing tear.
Oh, gently on thy suppliant's head,
Dread Goddess, lay thy chastning hand !
Not in thy Gorgon terrors clad,
Nor circled with the vengeful band
(As by the impious thou art seen)
With 'thund'ring voice, and threat'ning mien,
With screaming Horror's funeral cry,
Despair, and fell Disease, and ghastly Poverty.
Thy form benign, oh Goddess, wear,
Thy milder influence impart,
Thy philosophic train be there
To soften, not to wound my heart.
The gen'rous spark extinct revive,
Teach me to love and to forgive,
Exact my own defects to scan,
What others are, to feel, and know myself a man.
ODE on a distant Prospect of ETON COLLEGE.
That crown the wat'ry glade,
Where grateful science still adores
Her HENRY's holy shade;
And ye that from the stately brow
OF WINDSOR's heights th' expanse below
Of grove, of lawn, of mead survey,
Whose turf, whose fhade, whose flowers among
Wanders the hoary Thames along
His filver-winding way.
Ah happy hills, ah pleasing fhade,
Ah fields belov'd in vain,
Where once my careless childhood stray'd,
A stranger yet to pain!
I feel the gales, that from ye blow,
A momentary bliss bestow,