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'Tis resignation's full reverse,
Haste, then, O Resignation! haste, Most wrong, as it implies
'Tis thine to reconcile Errour most fatal in our choice,
My foe, and me; at thy approach, Detachment from the skies.
My fue begins to smile: By closing with the skies, we make
O! for that summit of my wish, Omnipotence our own ;
Whilst here I draw my breath, That done, how formidable ill's
That promise of eternal life, Whole army is o'erthrown !
A glorious smile in death : No longer impotent, and frail,
What sight, Heaven's azure arch beneath, Ourselves above we rise:
Has most of Heaven to boast? We scarce believe ourselves below!
The man resign'd; at once serene, We trespass on the skies !
And giving up the ghost. The Lord, the soul, and source of all,
At Death's arrival they shall smile, Whilst man enjoys his ease,
Who, not in life o'er gay, Is executing human will,
Serious and frequent thought send out In earth, and air, and seas ;
To meet hiin on his way : Beyond us, what can angels boast ?
My gay coerals! (such there are) Archangels what require?
If happiness is dear; Whate'er below, above, is done,
Approaching death's alarming day Is done as we desire.
Discreetly let us fear : What glory this for man so mean,
The fear of death is truly wise, Whose life is but a span!
Till wisdom can rise higher; This is meridian majesty!
And, arm'd with pious fortitude, This, the sublime of man!
Death dreaded once, desire : Beyond the boast of pagan song
Grand climacteric ranities My sacred subject shines !
The vainest will despise; And for a foil the lustre takes
Shock’d, when beneath the snow of age Of Rome's exalted lines.
Man immaturely dies : “ All, that the Sun surveys, subdued,
But am not I myself the man? But Cato's mighty mind."
No need abroad to roam How grand ! most true; yet far beneath
In quest of faults to be chatis'd; The soul of the resign'd:
What cause to blush at home? To more than kingdoms, more than worlds, In life's decline, when men relapse To passion that gives law;
Into the sports of youth, Its matchless empire could have kept
The second child out-fools the first, Great Cato's pride in awe;
And tempts the lash of truth; That fatal pride, whose cruel point
Shall a mere truant from the grave Transfix'd his noble breast;
With rival boys engage ? Far nobler! if his fate sustain'd
His trembling voice attempt to sing, Had left to Heaven the rest;
And ape the poet's rage? Then he the pa'm had borne away,
Here, madam ! let me visit one, At distance Cæsar thrown;
My fault who, partly, shares, Put bim off cheaply with the world,
And tell myself, by telling him, And made the skies his own.
What more becomes our years; What cannot resignation do?
And if your breast with prudent zeal
For resignation glows,
Resentinent at its foes.
In youth, Voltaire ! our foibles plead Where, mounted on the wing,
For some indulgence due; A wing of flame, blest martyrs' souls
When heads are white, their thoughts and aims Ascended to their king :
Should change their colour too: Who is it calls thee? one whose need
How are you cheated by your wit ! Transcends the common size;
O!d age is bound to pay, Who stands in front against a foe
By Nature's law, a mind discreet, To which none equal rise:
For joys it takes away ; In front he stands, the brink he treads
A mighty change is wrought by years, Of an eternal state;
Reversing human lot ; How dreadful his appointed post !
In age 't is honvuo to lie hid, How strongly arm'd by faie :
'Tis praise to be forgot; His threatening fue ! what shadows deep
The wise, as flowers, which spread at noon, () erwhelm his gloomy brow!
And all their charms expose, His dart tremendous ! - at fourscore
When crening damps and shades descend, My sole asylum, thuu!
Their evolution, close,
What thongh your Muse has nobly scard,
May this enable couch'd Voltaire Is that our true sublime ?
To see that “All is right 9," Ours, hoary friend! is to prefer
His eye, by flash of wit struck blind, Eternity to time:
Restoring to its sight; Why close a life so justly fam'd
If so, all's well: who much hare err'd, With such bold trash as this 6?
That much have been forgiven; This for renown? yes, such as makes
I speak with joy, with joy he'll hear, Obscurity a bliss :
Voltaires are, now, in Heaven."
Nay, such philanthropy divine, Your trash, with mine, at open war,
So boundless in degree, Is obstinately bent 7,
Its marvellous of love extends Like wits below, to sow your tares
(Stoops most profound !) to me: Of gloom and discontent:
Let others cruel stars arraign, With so much sunshine at command,
Or dwell on their distress; Why light with darkness mix?
But let my page, for mercies pour'd, Why dash with pain our pleasure? why
A grateful heart express : Your Helicon with Styx ?
Walking, the present God was seen, Your works in our divided minds
Of old, in Eden fair; Repugnant passions raise,
The God as present, by plain steps Confound us with a double stroke,
Of providential care, We shudder whilst we praise ;
I behold passing through my life; A curious web, as finely wrought
His awful voice I hear; As genius can inspire,
And, conscious of my nakedness, From a black bag of poison spun,
Would hide inyself for fear: With horrour we admire.
But where the trees, or where the clouds,
Can cover from his sight? Mean as it is, if this is read
Naked the centre to that eye, With a disdainful air,
To which the Sun is night. I can't forgive so great a foe
As yonder glittering lamps on high To my dear friend Voltaire:
Through night illuinin'd roll; Early I knew him, early prais'd,
May thoughts of him, by whom they shine, And long to praise him late;
Chase darkness from my soul; His genius greatly I admire,
My soul, which reads his hand as clear Nor would deplore his fate;
In my minute affairs, A fate how much to be deplor'd !
As in his ample manuscript At which our nature starts,
Of Sun, and Moon, and stars ; Forbear to fall on your own sword,
And knows him not more bent aright To perish by your parts:
To wield that vast machine,
Than to correct one erring thought “ But great your name”-To feed on air,
In my small world within;
A world, that sball survive the fall
Of all his wonders here;
Survive, when suns ten thousand drop, Can fame your carcase from the worm
And leave a darken'd sphere.
Yon matter gross, how bright it shines ! Applauding Europe save?
For time how great his care!
Serre spirit and eternity But fame you lose ; good sense alone
Far righer glories share; Your idol, praise, can claim;
Let those our hearts impress, on those When wild wit murders happiness,
Our contemplation dwell; It puts to death our fame!
On those my thoughts bow justly thrown, Nor boast your genius, talents bright;
By what I now shall tell : E'en dunces will despise,
When backward with attentive mind If in your western beams is miss'd
Life's labyrinth I trace, A genius for the skies;
I find him far myself beyond Your taste too fails; what most excels
Propitious to my peace : True taste inust relish most !
Through all the crooked paths I trod, And what, to rival palms above,
My folly he pursued ; Cau proudest laurels boast?
My heart astray to quick return Sound heads salvation's helmet seek ,
Importunately woood; Resplendent are its rays,
Due resignation home to press Let that suffice; it needs no plume,
On my capricious will, Of sublunary praise.
How many rescues did I meet,
Beneath the mask of ill!
9 Which his romance ridicules.
How many foes in ambush laid
From what seem'd horrour, and despair, Beneath my soul's desire !
The richest harvest rose; The deepest penitents are made
And gave me in the nod divine By what we most admire.
An absolute repose. Have I not sometimes (real good
Of all the plunders of mankind, So little mortals know!)
More gross, or frequent, none, Mounting the summit of my wish,
Than in their grief and joy misplac'd, Profoundly plung'd in woe?
Eternally are shown. I rarely plann'd, but cause I found
But whither points all this parade? My plan's defeat to bless :
It says, that near you lies Oft I lamented an event ;
A book, perhaps, yet unperus’d, It turn’d to my success.
Which you should greatly prize: By sharpen'd appetite to give
Of self-perusal, science rare ! To good intense delight,
Few kuow the mighty gain ; Through dark and deep perplexities
Learn'd prelates, self-unread, may read He led me to the right.
Their Bibles o'er in vain : And is not this the gloomy path,
Self-knowledge, which from Heaven itself Which you are treading now?
(So sages tell us) came, The path most gloomy leads to light,
What is it, but a daughter fair When our proud passions bow :
Of my maternal theme? When labouring under fancy'd ill,
Unletter'd and untravel'd men My spirits to sustain,
An oracle might find, He kindly card with sovereign draughts Would they cousult their own contents, Of unimagin'd pain.
The Delphos of the mind. Pain'd sense from fancy'd tyranny
Enter your bosom; there you 'll meet Alone can set us free ;
A revelation new, A thousand miseries we feel,
A revelation personal; Till sunk in misery.
Which none can read but you. Cloy'd with a glut of all we wish,
There will you clearly read reveal'd Our wish we relish less ;
In your enlightep'd thought, Success, a sort of suicide,
By mercies manifold, through life, Is ruin'd by success :
To fresh remembrance brought, Sometimes he led me near to death,
A mighty Being ! and in him And, pointing to the grave,
A complicated friend, Bid terrour whisper kind advice ;
A father, brother, spouse; no dread And taught the tomb to save :
Of death, divorce, or end : To raise my thoughts beyond where worlds
Who such a matchless friend embrace, As spangles o'er us shine,
And lodge him in their heart, One day he gave, and bid the next
Full well, from agonies exempt, My soul's delight resign.
With other friends may part : We to ourselves, but through the means
As when o'erloaded branches bear Of mirrors, are unknown;
Large clusters big with wine, In this my fate can you descry
We scarce regret one falling leaf No features of your own?
From the luxuriant vine. And if you can, let that excuse
My short advice to you may sound These self-recording lines ;
Obscure or somewhat odd, A record, modesty forbids,
Though 't is the best that man can give, Or to small bound contines :
“E'en be content with God.” In grief why deep ingulf’d? You see
Through love he gave you the deceas'd, You suffer nothing rare;
Through greater took him hence ; Uncommon grief for common fate!
This reason fully could evince, That wisdom cannot bear.
Though murmur'd at by senise. When streams flow backward to their source, This friend, far past the kindest kind, And humbled flames descend,
Is past the greatest great; And mountains wing'd shall fly aloft,
His greatness let me touch in points Then human sorrows end;
Not foreign to your state; But human prudence too must cease,
His eye, this instant, reads your heart; When sorrows domineer,
A truth less obvious hear; When fortitude has losits fire,
This instant its most secret thoughts And freezes into fear:
Are sounding in his ear: The pang most poignant of my life
Dispute you this? O! stand in awe, Now heightens my delight;
And cease your sorrow; know, I see a fair creation rise
That tears now trickling down, he saw From chaos, and old night:
Ten thousand years ago ;
And twice ten thousand hence, if you
And yet so frightful what, or kind, Your temper reconcile
As that the rending rock, To reason's bound, will be behold
The darken'd Sun, and rising dead, Your prudence with a smile;
So formidable spoke? A smile, which through eternity
And are we darker than that Sun? Diffuses so bright rays,
Than rocks more hard, and blind? The dimmest deifies e'en guilt,
We are ;-if not to such a God If guilt, at last, obeys:
In agonies resign'd. Your guilt (for guilt it is to mourn
Yes, e'en in agonies forbear When such a sovereign reigns),
To doubt almighty love; Your guilt diminish; peace pursue ;
Whate'er endears eternity, How glorious peace in pains !
Is mercy from above; Here, then, your sorrows cease; if not,
What most imbitters time, that most 'Think how unhappy they,
Eternity endears, Who guilt increase by streaming tears,
And thus, by plunging in distress, Which guilt should wash away;
Exalts us to the spheres ; Of tears that gush profuse restrain;
Joy's fountain head! where bliss o'er bliss, Whence burst those dismal sighs?
O'er wonders wonders rise, They from the throbbing breast of one
And an Omnipotence prepares (Strange truth!) most happy rise ;
Its banquet for the wise : Not angels (hear it, and exult!)
Ambrosial banquet ! rich in wines Enjoy a larger share
Nectareous to the soul ! Than is indulg'd to you, and yours,
What transports sparkle from the stream, Of God's iinpartial care ;
As angels fill the bowl! Anxions for each, as if on each
Fountain profuse of every bliss ! His care for all was thrown;
Good-will immense prevails; For all his care as absolute,
Man's line can't fathom its profound ; As all had been but one.
An angel's plummet fails. And is he then so near! so kind!
Thy love and might, by what they know, How little then, and great,
Who judge, nor dream of more; That riddle, man! 0! let me gaze
They ask a drop, how deep the sea ! At wonders in his fate;
Mne sand, how wide the shore ! His fate, who yesterday did crawl
Of thy exuberant good-will, A worm from darkness deep,
Offended Deity! And shall, with brother-worms, beneath
The thousandth part who comprehends, A turf, to morrow sleep;
A deity is he. How mean ! - And yet, if well obey'd
How yonder ample azure field His mighty Master's call,
With radiant worlds is sown ! The whole creation for mean man
How tubes astonish us with those Is deem'd a boon too small :
More deep in ether thrown! Too small the whole creation deem'd
And those beyond of brighter worlds For emmets in the dust!
Why not a million more?Account amazing! yet most true;
In lieu of answer, let us all My song is bold, yet just :
Fall prostrate, and adore. Man born for infinite, in whom
Since thou art infinite in power, Nor period can destroy
Nor thy indulgence less ; The power, in exquisite extremes,
Since man, quite impotent and blind, To suffer, or enjoy ;
Oft drops into distress; Give him Earth's empire (if no more)
Say, what is resignation ? 'Tis He's beggar'd, and undone !
Man's weakness understood ; Imprison'd in unbounded space!
And wisdom grasping, with an hand Benighted by the Sun !
Far stronger, every good. For what the Sun's meridian blaze
Let rash repiners stand appall'd, To the most feeble ray
In thee who dare not trust; Which glimmers from the distant dawn
Whose abject souls, like demons dark, Of uncreated day?
Are murmuring in the dust; 'Tis not the poet's rapture feign'd
For man to murmur, or repine Swells here the vain to please ;
At what by thee is done, The mind most sober kindles most
No less absurd, than to complain At truths sublime as these;
Of darkness in the Sun. They warm e'en me.—I dare not say,
Who would not, with an heart at ease, Divine ambition strove
Bright eye, unclouded brow, Not to bless only, but confound,
Wisdom and goodness at the helm, Nay, fright us with its love;
The roughest ocean plough?
What, though I'm swallow'd in the deep? Nay, peace beyond, no small degree
Of rapture 't will impart;
Know, madam! when your heart's in Heaven, I’m landed, and adore:
“ All Heaven is in your heart.” Thy will is welcome, let it wear
But who to Heaven their hearts can raise ? Its most tremendous form;
Denied divine support,
The wise with ardour court :
When prayer partakes the seraph's fire, To thee, their fountain, flow.
'Tis mounted on his wing, If wise; as curl'd around to theirs
Bursts through Heaven's crystal gates, and gains Meandering streams below:
Sure audience of its king : Not less compellid by reason's call,
The labouring soul from sore distress To thee our souls aspire,
That bless'd expedient frees; Than to thy skies, by Nature's law,
I see you far advanc'uin peace ; High mounts material fire;
I see you on your knees :
How on that posture has the beam To thee aspiring they exult,
Divine for ever shone! I feel my spirits rise,
An humble heart, God's other seat 18! I feel myself thy son, and pant
The rival of his throne : For patrimonial skies;
And stoops Omnipotence so low ! Since ardent thirst of future good,
And condescends to dwell, And generous sense of past,
Eternity's inhabitant, To thee man's prudence strongly ties,
Well pleasd, in such a cell ? And binds affection fast;
Such honour how shall we repay? Since great thy lore, and great our want,
How treat our guest divine ? And men the wisest blind,
The sacrifice supreme be slain ! And bliss our aim; pronounce us all
Let self-will die: resign. Distracted, or resign'd;
Thus far, at large, on our disease; Resign'd through duty, interest, shame;
Now let the cause be shown, Deep shame! dare I complain,
Whence rises, and will ever rise, When (wondrous truth!) in Heaven itself
The dismal human groan: Joy ow'd its birth to pain?
What our sole fountain of distress?
Strong passion for this scene;
That triles make important, things
Of mighty moment mean :
When Earth's dark maxims poison shed
On our polluted souls, If pardon'd this, what cause, what crime
Our hearts and interests fly as far
Asunder, as the pules;
Like princes in a cottage nursid,
Unknown their royal race, And when to praise the man shall cease,
With abject aims, and sordid joys, Or Sun to strike the view;
Our grandeur we disgrace; A cloud dishonours both; but man's
O! for an Archimedes new, The blacker of the two :
Of moral powers possessid, For oh! ingratitude bow black !
The world to move, and quite expel With most profound amaze
That traitor from the breast. At love, which man belov'd o'erlooks,
No small advantage may be reap'd Astonish'd angels gaze.
From thought whence we descend; Praise cheers, and warms, like generous wine; From wcighing well, and prizing weigh'd Praise, more divine than prayer;
Our origin, and end : Prayer points our ready path to Heaven;
From far above the glorious Sun Praise is already there.
To this diin scene we came : Let plausive resignation rise,
And may, if wise, for ever bask And banish all complaint;
In great Jehovah's beam :
Let that bright beam on reason rous'd
In awefal lustre rise,
Earth's giant-ills are dwarf'd at once,
And all disquiet dies.
Those phantoms charm no mure ; 'Tis Nature's brightest omament,
Empire's a feather for a fool,
And Indian mines are poor :
2. Isaiah Wii. 15.