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Oh, gently on thy suppliant's head,
With vermil cheek, and whisper soft
Till April starts, and calls around
The sleeping fragrance from the ground; (As by the impious thou art seen).
And lightly o'er the living scene With thund'ring voice, and threat’ning mien, Scatters his freshest, tenderest green. With screaming horror's funeral cry, Despair, and fell disease, and ghastly pov- | New-born flocks, in rustic dance, erty.
Frisking ply their feeble feet;
Forgetful of their wintry trance, Thy form benign, oh Goddess! wear,
The birds his presence greet: Thy milder influence impart,
But chief, the sky-lark warbles high Thy philosophic train be there
His trembling thrilling extasy; To soften, not to wound my heart.
And lessening from the dazzled sight,
Melts into air and liquid light.
Yesterday the sullen year
Saw the snowy whirlwind fly;
Mute was the music of the air,
The herd stood drooping by:
Their raptures now that wildly flow, ON THE DEATH OF MR. RICHARD WEST No yesterday, nor morrow know;
'Tis man alone that joy descries (Written in 1742, the year of West's death ;
With forward, and reverted eyes. publ. posthumously by Mason.] In vain to me the smiling mornings shine,
Smiles on past misfortune's brow And redd’ning Phæbus lifts his golden fire;
Soft reflection's hand can trace; The birds in vain their amorous descant join;
And o'er the cheek of sorrow throw Or cheerful fields resume their green
A melancholy grace; attire:
While hope prolongs our happier hour, These ears, alas! for other notes repine,
Or deepest shades, that dimly lower 30 A different object do these eyes require: L And backen round
| And blacken round our weary way, My lonely anguish melts no heart but mine;
Gilds with a gleam of distant day.
Still, where rosy pleasure leads,
See a kindred grief pursue;
Approaching comfort view:
The hues of bliss more brightly glow, I fruitless mourn to him that cannot hear,
Chastised by sabler tints of woe; And weep the more, because I weep in
And blended form, with artful strife vain.
The strength and harmony of life.
ON THE PLEASURE ARISING FROM
[Written perhaps 1754, publ. posthumously by
Mason.) Now the golden morn aloft
Waves her dew-bespangled wing,
See the wretch, that long has tost
On the thorny bed of pain,
And breathe, and walk again:
The simplest note that swells the gale,
To him are opening Paradise.
| utes to increase the distemper. Like the tiger,
that seldom desists from pursuing man, after OR, A PROSPECT OF SOCIETY
having once preyed upon human flesh, the reader, who has once gratified his appetite with cal
umny, makes ever after the most agreeable [Publ. 1765]
feast upon murdered reputation. Such readers
generally admire some half-witted thing, who TO THE REV. HENRY GOLDSMITH
wants to be thought a bold man, having lost
the character of a wise one. Him they dignify DEAR SIR, -I am sensible that the friend with the name of poet : his tawdry lampoons ship between us can acquire no new force from are called satires; his turbulence is said to be the ceremonies of a Dedication; and perhaps it force, and his frenzy fire. demands an excuse thus to prefix your name to What reception a poem may find, which has my attempts, which you decline giving with neither abuso, party, nor blank verse, to supyour own. But as a part of this poem was for port it, I cannot tell, nor am I solicitous to merly written to you from Switzerland, the know. My aims are right. Without espousing whole can now, with propriety, be only in the cause of any party, I have attempted to scribed to you. It will also throw a light upon moderate the rage of all. I have endeavoured many parts of it, when the reader understands to show, that there may be equal happiness in that it is addressed to a man, who, despising states that are differently governed from our fame and fortune, has retired early to happi own; that every state has a particular principle ness and obscurity, with an income of forty of happiness, and that this principle in each pounds a year.
may be carried to a mischievous excess. There I now perceive, my dear brother, the wisdom are few can judge better than yourself how far of your humble choice. You have entered upon these positions are illustrated in this poem.' a sacred office, where the harvest is great, and I am, dear sir, your most affectionate brother, the labourers are but few; while you have left
OLIVER GOLDSMITH. the field of ambition, where the labourers are many, and the harvest not worth carrying away.
REMOTE, unfriended, melancholy, slow, But of all kinds of ambition, what from the re Or by the lazy Scheld, or wandering Po; finement of the times, from different systems
Or onward, where the rude Corinthian boor of criticism, and from the divisions of party, that which pursues poetical fame is the wildest.
Against the houseless stranger shuts the Poetry makes a principal amusement among
door; unpolished nations; but in a conntry verging Or where Campania's plain forsaken lies, to the extremes of refinement, Painting and A weary waste expanding to the skies; Music come in for a share. As these offer the
Where'er I roam, whatever realms to see, feeble mind a less laborious entertainment, they at first rival Poetry, and at length supplant
My heart, untravell’d, fondly turns to thee: her; they engross all that favour once shown Still to my brother turns, with ceaseless to her, and, though but younger sisters, seize
pain, upon the elder's birthright.
And drags at each remove a lengthening Yet, however this art may be neglected by
chain. the powerful, it is still in greater danger from the mistaken efforts of the learned to improve
Eternal blessings crown my earliest it. What criticisms have we not heard of late
friend, in favour of blank verse, and Pindaric odes, And round his dwelling guardian saints atehoruses, anapests, and iambics, alliterative
tend; care and happy negligence! Every absurdity has now a champion to defend it; and as he is
Bless'd be that spot, where cheerful guests generally much in the wrong, so he has always
retire much to say: for error is ever talkative.
To pause from toil, and trim their evening But there is an enemy to this art still more
fire; dangerous, I mean Party. Party entirely dig
Bless'd that abode, where want and pain torts the judgment, and destroys the taste. When the mind is once infected with this dis
repair, ease, it can only find pleasure in what contrib- | And every stranger finds a ready chair;
Bless'd be those feasts with simple plenty Thus to my breast alternate passions rise, crown'd,
Pleased with each good that heaven to man Where all the ruddy family around
supplies: Laugh at the jests or pranks that never fail, Yet oft a sigh prevails, and sorrows fall, Or sigh with pity at some mournful tale; 20 | To see the board of human bliss so small; Or press the bashful stranger to his food, And oft I wish, amidst the scene, to find And learn the luxury of doing good.
Some spot to real happiness consign'd, 60 But me, not destined such delights to Where my worn soul, each wandering hope share,
at rest, My prime of life in wandering spent and May gather bliss, to see my fellows bless'd. care;
But where to find that happiest spot beImpelld with steps unceasing to pursue
low, Some fleeting good, that mocks me with Who can direct, when all pretend to know? the view;
The shuddering tenant of the frigid zone That, like the circle bounding earth and Boldly proclaims that happiest spot bis own skies,
Extols the treasures of his stormy seas, Allures from far, yet, as I follow, flies; And his long nights of revelry and ease: My fortune leads to traverse realms alone, The naked negro, panting at the line, And find ro spot of all the world my own. Boasts of his golden sands and palmy wine,
E'en now, where Alpine solitudes ascend, Basks in the glare, or stems the tepid wave, I sit me down a pensive hour to spend; And thanks his gods, for all the good they And placed on bigh, above the storm's
Such is the patriot's boast, where'er we Look downward where a hundred realms roam, appear;
His first, best country ever is at home. Lakes, forests, cities, plains extending wide, And yet, perhaps, if countries we comThe pomp of kings, the shepherd's humbler
And estimate the blessings which they When thus creation's charms around com.
Though patriots flatter, still shall wisdom Amidst the store, should thankless pride
find repine ?
An equal portion dealt to all mankind: Say, should the philosophic mind disdain As different good, by art or nature given, That good which makes each humbler bos- To different nations makes their blessings om vain ?
even. Let school-taught pride dissemble all it can, Nature, a mother kind alike to all, These little things are great to little man; Still grants her bliss at labour's earnest And wiser he, whose sympathetic mind
call; Exults in all the good of all mankind. With food as well the peasant is supplied Ye glittering towns, with wealth and splen On Idra's cliff as Arno's shelvy side; dour crown'd,
And though the rocky-crested summits Ye fields, where summer spreads profusion
These rocks, by custom, turn to beds of Ye lakes, whose vessels catch the busy gale,
down. Ye bending swains, that dress the flowery From art more various are the blessings vale,
sent; For me your tributary stores combine; Wealth, commerce, honour, liberty, conCreation's heir, the world, the world is
50 Yet these each other's power so strong As some lone miser, visiting his store,
contest Bends at his treasure, counts, recounts it That either seems destructive of the rest. 90 o'er;
Where wealth and freedom reign contentHoards after hoards his rising raptures fill, ment fails; Yet still he sighs, for hoards are wanting And honour sinks where commerce long still;
Hence every state, to one loved blessing All evils here contaminate the mind, prone,
That opulence departed leaves behind; Conforms and models life to that alone: For wealth was theirs, not far removed the Each to the favourite happiness attends,
date, And spurns the plan that aims at other When commerce proudly flourish'd through ends;
the state; Till, carried to excess in each domain, At her command the palace learn'd to rise, This favourite good begets peculiar pain. Again the long fallen column sought the But let us try these truths with closer
The canvass glow'd, beyond e’en Nature And trace them through the prospect as it
100 The pregnant quarry teem'd with human Here for awhile, my proper cares resign'd,
form: Here let me sit in sorrow for mankind; Till, more unsteady than the southern gale, Like yon neglected shrub, at random cast, Commerce on other shores display'd her That shades the steep, and sighs at every
While nought remain’d of all that riches Far to the right, where Apennine ascends,
gave, Bright as the summer, Italy extends: But towns unmann'd and lords without a Its uplands sloping deck the mountain's
And late the nation found, with fruitless Woods over woods in gay theatric pride;
skill, While oft some temple's mouldering tops Its former strength was but plethoric ill. between
Yet, still the loss of wealth is here supWith memorable grandeur mark the scene.
plied Could Nature's bounty satisfy the breast, By arts, the splendid wrecks of former The sons of Italy were surely bless'd.
pride; Whatever fruits in different climes are From these the feeble heart and long-fallen found,
mind That proudly rise, or humbly court the An easy compensation seem to find. ground;
Here may be seen, in bloodless pomp arWhatever blooms in torrid tracts appear,
ray'd, Whose bright succession decks the varied The pasteboard triumph and the cavalyear;
150 Whatever sweets salute the northern sky Processions form’d for piety and love, With vernal lives, that blossom but to die; A mistress or a saint in every grove. These here disporting own the kindred soil, By sports like these are all their cares beNor ask lnxuriance from the planter's toil;
guiled, While seaborn gales their gelid wings ex The sports of children satisfy the child: pand
121 Each nobler aim, repress'd by long control, To winnow fragrance round the smiling Now sinks at last, or feebly mans the soul: land.
While low delights, succeeding fast behind, But small the bliss that sense alone be In happier meanness occupy the mind: stows,
As in those domes, where Cæsars once bore And sensual bliss is all the nation knows.
sway, In florid beauty groves and fields appear, | Defaced by time, and tottering in decay, 160 Man seems the only growth that dwindles There in the ruin, heedless of the dead, here.
The shelter-seeking peasant builds his shed; Contrasted faults through all his manners And, wondering man could want the larger reign;
pile, Though poor, luxurious; though submissive, Exults, and owns bis cottage with a smile. vain;
My soul, turn from them, turn we to Though grave, yet trifling; zealous, yet un
Where rougher climes a nobler race disAnd e'en in penance planning sins anew. 130 | play,
Where the bleak Swiss their stormy man And as a child, when scaring sounds molest, sions tread,
Clings close and closer to the mother's And force a churlish soil for scanty bread;
breast, No product here the barren hills afford So the loud torrent and the whirlwind's But man and steel, the soldier and his sword:
But bind him to his native mountains more. No vernal blooms their torpid rocks array, Such are the charms to barren states asBut winter lingering chills the lap of May;
sign'd; No zephyr fondly sues the mountain's Their wants but few, their wishes all conbreast,
210 But meteors glare, and stormy glooms in Yet let them only share the praises due, vest.
If few their wants, their pleasures are but Yet still, e'en here, content can spread a charm,
For every want that stimulates the breast Redress the clime, and all its rage disarm. Becomes a source of pleasure when reThough poor the peasant's hut, his feasts
dress'd: though small,
Whence from such lands each pleasing sciHe sees his little lot the lot of all;
ence flies, Sees no contiguous palace rear its head, That first excites desire and then supplies; To shame the meanness of his humble Unknown to them, when sensual pleasures shed;
cloy, No costly lord the sumptuous banquet deal, To fill the languid pause with finer joy; To make him loathe his vegetable meal; Unknown those powers that raise the soul But calm, and bred in ignorance and toil,
to flame. Each wish contracting, fits him to the soil. Catch every nerve and vibrate through the Cheerful at morn, he wakes from short re
. Their level life is but a mouldering fire, Breathes the keen air, and carols as he | Unquench'd by want, unfann'd by strong goes;
desire; With patient angle trolls the finny deep, Unfit for raptures, or, if raptures cheer Or drives his venturous ploughshare to the On some high festival of once a year, steep;
In wild excess the vulgar breast takes fire, Or seeks the den where snow-tracks mark Till, buried in debauch, the bliss expire. the way,
But not their joys alone thus coarsely And drags the struggling savage into day.
flow; At night returning, every labour sped, 191 Their morals, like their pleasures, are but He sits him down the monarch of a shed; Smiles by his cheerful fire, and round sur- For, as refinement stops, from sire to son veys
Unalter'd, unimproved, the manners run; His children's looks, that brighten at the | And love's and friendship's finely pointed blaze;
231 While his loved partner, boastful of her | Fall blunted from each indurated heart. hoard,
Some sterner virtues o'er the mountain's Displays her cleanly platter on the board:
breast And haply too some pilgrim, thither led, | May sit, like falcons cowering on the nest: With many a tale repays the nightly bed. But all the gentler morals, such as play
Thus every good his native wilds impart Through life's more cultured walks, and Imprints the patriot passion on his heart; 200
charm the way, And e'en those hills, that round his mansion These, far dispersed, on timorous pinions rise,
fly, Enhance the bliss his scanty fund supplies: To sport and futter in a kinder sky. Dear is that shed to which his soul con To kinder skies, where gentler manners forms,
reign, And dear that hill which lifts him to the I turn; and France displays her bright dostorms;