תמונות בעמוד

Buryed in floth, and loft in eafe I lay:
The night I revelled; and I flept the day.
New heaps of fewel damped my kindling fires;
And daily change extinguifh'd young defires.
By its own force deftroy'd, fruition ceas'd;
And, always weary'd, I was never pleas'd.
No longer now does my negle&ted mind
Its wonted ftores, and old Ideas find.
Fix'd judgment there no longer does abide,
To take the true, or fet the falfe afide.
No longer does fwift memory trace the ccIIs, -
Where fpringing wit, or young invention dwells.
Frequent debauch to habitude prevails:
Patience of toil, and love of virtue fai!s.
By fad degrees impaired my vigour dies ;
*Till I command no longer e'en in vice.

The women on my dotage build their fway :
They afk; I grant: they threaten; I obey,
In regal garments now I gravely ftride,
Aw'd by the Perfian damfe!'s haughty pride.
Now with the loofer Syrian dance, and fing,
In robes tuck'd up, opprobrious to the king.

Charm'd by their eyes, their manners I acquire,
And fhape my foo'i{hnef$ to their defire,
Seduced and awed by the Philiftine dame,
At Dagon's fhrine I kindle impious flame.
With the Chaldean's charms her rites prevail;
And curling frankincenfe afcends to Baal.
To each new harlot I new altars drefs;

And ferve her God, whofe perfon I caref. Where, Where, my deluded fenfe, was Reafon fiown ? Where the high majefty of David's throne ? Where all the maxims of eternal truth, With which the living God inform'd my youth ? When with the lewd Egyptian I adore Vain idols, deities that ne'er before In Ifrael's land had fix'd their dire abodes, Beaftly divinities, and droves of Gods: Ofiris, Apis, powers that chew the cud, And dog Anubis, fiatterer for his food ; When in the woody hills forbidden fhade I carv'd the marble, and invok'd its aid: When in the fens to fnakes and flies, with zea! Unworthy human thought, I proftrate fel1; To fhrubs and plants my vile devotion paid; And fet the bearded leek, to which I pray'd: When to ali beings facred rites were given; Forgot the arbiter of earth and heaven.

Through thefe fad fhades, this Chaos in my foul, Some feeds of light at length began to roll. The rifing motion of an infant ray Shot glimmering thro' the cloud, and promis'd day. And now, one moment able to refle&t, I found the king abandoned to negle&, $ Seen without awe, and ferved without refpe&t. I found my fubjeéîs amicab!y join, To leffen their defe&ts by citing mine. The prieft with pity prayed for David's race ; And left his text, to dwell on my difgrace. - - 'I'he

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

To fad examples which he ought to fhun,
Defcrib'd and only named not Solomon.
Each bard, each fire did to his pupil fing,
A wife child better than a foolifh king.
Into myfelf my reafon's eye I turn'd ;
And as I much refle&ted, much I mourn'd.
A mighty king I am, an earthly God :
Nations obey my word, and wait my nod ;
I raife or fink, imprifon or fet free ;
And life or death depends on my decree.
Fond the Idea, and the thought is vain :
O'er Judah's king ten thoufand tyrants reign ;
Legions of luft, and various powers of ill
Infult the mafter's tributary will:

The father, whilft he warn'd his erring fon, 3

'And he, from whom the nations fhould receive

Juftice and freedom, lies himfelf a flave,
Tortur'd by cruel change of wild defires,
Lafhed by mad rage, and fcorched by brutal fires.
O Reafon! once again to thee I call:
Accept my forrow, and retrieve my fall.
Wifdom, thou fay*ft, from Heaven received her birth ;
Her beams tranfmitted to the fubje&t earth:
Yet this great emprefs of the human foul
Does only with imagin'd power controul ;
If reftlefs paffion by rebellious fway
Compels the weak ufurper to obey.
O troubled, weak, and coward, as thou art!
Without thy poor advice the laboring heart
To worfe extremes with fwifter fleps would rum,

[ocr errors]

Oft have I faid ; the praife of doing well Is to the ear, as ointment to the fmell. Now, if fome flies perchance, however fma!I, Into the alabafter urn fhou'd fall ; 'The odours of the fweets inclofed, would die ; And ftench corrupt (fad change!) their place fupply. So the leaft faults, if mixed with faireft deed, Of future ill become the fatal feed : Into the balm of pureft virtue caft, Annoy all life with one contagious blaft.

Loft Solomon! purfue this thought no more : Of thy paft errors recolle&t the flore : And filent weep, that while the deathlefs Mufe Shal! fing the juft, fhall o'er their heads diffufe. Perfumes with lavifh hand ; fhe fhall proclaim Thy crimes alone; and to thy evil fame } Impartia!, fcatter damps and poifons on thy name.

Awaking therefore, as who long had dream'd, Much of my womem, and their Gcds afham'd; From this abyfs of exemplary vice Refolved, as time might aid my thought, to rife; Again Ibid the mournful Goddefs write The fond purfuit of fugitive delight: Bid her exalt her melancholy wing, And, raifed from earth, and fav'd from paflion, fing Of human hope by crofs event deftroy'd, Of ufelefs wealth, and greatnefs unenjoy'd, Of luft and love, with their fantaftic train, Their wifhes, fmiles, and looks deceitful, all and vain.


[ocr errors]

Or ever the filver cord be loofed, or the golden bowl be broken, or the pitcher be brokem at the fountain, or the wheel broken at the ciftern. Ecclefiaftes, chap. xii. verf. 6.

The fun arifeth, and the fun goeth down, and hafteth to his place where he arofe. Ecclefiaftes, chap. I. verf. 5.

The wind goeth towards the fouth, and turneth about unto the north. It whirleth about continually ; and the wind returneth again, according to his circuit. Verf. 6.

All the rivers run into the fea: yet the fea is not full. Unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again. Verf. 7.

Then fhall the duft return to the earth, as it was :
and the fpirt fhall returm unto God who gave it.
Ecclefiaftes, chap. xii. verf. 7.
Vol. II. F - Nowy

« הקודםהמשך »