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Ten thousand rovers in the world at large
tools — To read engraven on the mouldy walls, In staggering types, his predecessor's tale, A sad memorial, and subjoin his own — To turn purveyor to an overgorged 421 And bloated spider, till the pampered pest Is made familiar, watches its approach, Comes at his call, and serves him for a
friend To wear out time in numbering to and fro The studs that thick emboss his iron door, Then downward, and then upward, then
aslant, And then alternate, with a sickly hope By dint of change to give his tasteless
task Some relish, till the sum exactly found 430 In all directions, he begins again:Oh comfortless existence! bemmed around With woes, wbich who that suffers would
not kneel And beg for exile, or the pangs of death ? That man should thus encroach on fellow
man, Abridge him of his just and native rights, Eradicate him, tear him from his hold Upon the endearments of domestic life And social, nip his fruitfulness and use, And doom him for perhaps a heedless word To barrenness, and solitude, and tears, 441 Moves indignation, makes the name of
king (Of king whom such prerogative can
please) As dreadful as the Manichean God, Adored through fear, strong only to de
stroy. 'Tis liberty alone that gives the flower Of fleeting life its lustre and perfume, And we are weeds without it. All con
straint, Except what wisdom lays on evil men, Is evil; hurts the faculties, impedes 450 Their progress in the road of science; blinds
The eyesight of discovery, and begets,
art, With all thy loss of empire, and though
squeezed By public exigence till annual food Fails for the craving hunger of the State, Thee I account still happy, and the chief 460 Among the nations, seeing thou art free, My native nook of earth! Thy clime is rude, Replete with vapours, and disposes much All hearts to sadness, and none more than
mine; Tbine unadulterate manners are less soft And plausible than social life requires, And thou hast need of discipline and art To give thee what politer France receives From nature's bounty - that humane ad
dress And sweetuess, without which no pleasure
470 In converse, either starved by cold reserve, Or flushed with fierce dispute, a senseless
brawl; Yet being free I love thee: for the sake Of that one feature can be well content, Disgraced as thou hast been, poor as thou
art, To seek no sublunary rest beside. But once enslaved, farewell! I could en
dure Chains nowhere patiently, and chains at
home, Where I am free by birthright, not at all. Then what were left of roughness in the graiu
480 Of British natures, wanting its excuse That it belongs to freemen, would disgust And shock me. I should then with double
pain Feel all the rigour of thy fickle clime; And if I must bewail the blessing lost For which our Hampdens and our Sidneys
bled, I would at least bewail it under skies Milder, among a people less austere, In scenes which, having never known me
free, Would not reproach me with the loss I felt. Do I forebode impossible events, And tremble at vain dreams? Heaven
grant I may!
Brt the age of virtuous politics is past, We build with what we deem eternal rock;
But there is yet a liberty unsung,
powers Incurs derision for his easy faith
Of earth and hell confederate take away; And lack of knowledge, and with cause A liberty which persecution, fraud, enough:
Oppression, prisons, have no power to bind; For when was public virtue to be found Which whoso tastes can be enslaved no more. Where private was not ? Can he love the 'Tis liberty of heart, derived from Heaven, whole
Bought with His blood who gave it to manWho loves no part? He be a nation's friend
kind, Who is, in truth, the friend of no man And sealed with the same token. It is held there?
By charter, and that charter sanctioned sure Can he be strenuous in his country's cause By the unimpeachable and awful oath Who slights the charities for whose dear And promise of a God. His other gifts 550 sake
All bear the royal stamp that speaks them That country, if at all, must be beloved ?
His, 'Tis therefore sober and good men are And are august, but this transcends them all.
His other works, the visible display For England's glory, seeing it wax pale 510 Of all-creating energy and might, And sickly, while her champions wear their Are grand, no doubt, and worthy of the
Word So loose to private duty, that no brain, That, finding an interminable space Healthful and undisturbed by factious Unoccupied, has filled the void so well, fumes,
And made so sparkling what was dark beCan dream them trusty to the general weal. Such were not they of old, whose tempered But these are not his glory. Man, 'tis true, blades
Smit with the beauty of so fair a scene, 560 Dispersed the shackles of usurped control, Might well suppose the artificer divine And hewed them link from link. Then Al Meant it eternal, had He not Himself bion's sons
Pronounced it transient, glorious as it is, Were sons indeed; they felt a filial heart And still designing a more glorious far, Beat high within them at a mother's wrongs, Doomed it as insufficient for His praise. And shining each in his domestic sphere, These therefore are occasional, and pass; Shone brighter still, once called to public Formed for the confutation of the fool, 567 view.
Whose lying heart disputes against a God; 'Tis therefore many, whose sequestered lot That office served, they must be swept away. Forbids their interference, looking on, Not so the labours of His love: they shine Anticipate perforce some dire event;
In other heavens than these that we behold, And seeing the old castle of the State, And fade not. There is paradise that fears That promised once more firmness, so as No forfeiture, and of its fruits He sends sailed
Large prelibation oft to saints below. That all its tempest-beaten turrets shake, Of these the first in order, and the pledge Stand motionless, expectants of its fall. And confident assurance of the rest, All has its date below; the fatal hour 529 Is liberty; a flight into His arms, Was registered in heaven ere time began. Ere yet mortality's fine threads give way, We turn to dust, and all our mightiest | A clear escape from tyrannizing lust, works
And full immunity from penal woe. 580 Die too: the deep foundations that we lay, Chains are the portion of revolted man, Time ploughs them up, and not a trace re- Stripes, and a dungeon; and his body serves mains.
The triple purpose. In that sickly, foul,
! The voice
Opprobrious residence he finds them all. Perversely, which of late she so condemned; Propense his heart to idols, he is held With shallow shifts and old devices, worn In silly dotage on created things,
And tattered in the service of debauch, Careless of their Creator. And that low Covering his shame from his offended sight. And sordid gravitation of his powers
“Hath God indeed given appetites to man, To a vile clod so draws him, with such | And stored the earth so plenteously with force
means Resistless, from the centre he should seek, To gratify the hunger of his wish, That he at last forgets it. All his hopes And doth He reprobate, and will He damn, Tend downwards; his ambition is to sink, The use of His own bounty ? making first To reach a depth profounder still, and still So frail a kind, and then enacting laws 640 Profounder, in the fathomless abyss
So strict, that less than perfect must deOf folly, plunging in pursuit of death.
spair ? But ere he gain the comfortless repose | Falsehood! which whoso but suspects of He seeks, and acquiescence of his soul
truth In heaven-renouncing exile, he endures — Dishonours God, and makes a slave of man. What does he not ? from lusts opposed in Do they themselves, who undertake for hire vain,
The teacher's office, and dispense at large And self-reproacbing conscience. He fore Their weekly dole of edifying strains, sees
Attend to their own music? Have they faith The fatal issue to his health, fame, peace, | In what, with such solemnity of tone Fortune and dignity; the loss of all
And gesture, they propound to our belief? That can ennoble man, and make frail life, Nay, - conduct hath the loudest tongue. Short as it is, supportable. Still worse,
.. 650 Far worse than all the plagues with which Is but an instrument on which the priest his sins
May play what tune he pleases. In the deed, Infect his happiest moments, he forebodes The unequivocal authentic deed, Ages of hopeless misery; future death, We find sound argument, we read the heart." And death still future: not an hasty stroke Such reasoniugs (if that vame must needs Like that which sends him to the dusty
To excuses in wbich reason has no part) But unrepealable enduring death. 610 Serve to compose a spirit well inclined Scripture is still a trumpet to his fears: | To live on terms of amity with vice, What none can prove a forgery, may be true; | And sin without disturbance. Often urged, What none but bad men wish exploded, (As often as, libidinous discourse 660 must.
Exhausted, he resorts to solemn themes That scruple checks him. Riot is not loud Of theological and grave import,) Nor drunk enough to drown it. In the midst They gain at last bis unreserved assent; Of laughter his compunctions are sincere, Till hardened his heart's temper in the forge And he abhors the jest by which he shines. | Of lust, and on the anvil of despair, Remorse begets reform. His master-lust He slights the strokes of conscience. NothFalls first before his resolute rebuke,
ing moves, And seems dethroned and vanquisbed. Or nothing much, his constancy in ill; Peace ensues,
- 620 Vain tampering has but fostered his disease; But spurious and short-lived, the puny child 'Tis desperate, and he sleeps the sleep of Of self-congratulating Pride, begot
death. On fancied Innocence. Again he falls, Haste now, philosopher, and set him free. And fights again; but finds his best essay Charm the deaf serpent wisely. Make him A presage ominous, portending still
671 Its own dishonour by a worse relapse, | Of rectitude and fitness; moral truth Till Nature, unavailing Nature, foiled How lovely, and the moral sense how sure, So oft, and wearied in the vain attempt, | Consulted and obeyed, to guide his steps Scoffs at her own performance. Reason now | Directly to THE FIRST AND ONLY FAIR. Takes part with Appetite, and pleads the Spare not in such a cause. Spend all the cause
Of rant and rhapsody in virtue's praise; In confirmation of the noblest claim, 720
known Smitten in vain ! such music cannot charm Till Persecution dragged them into fame, The eclipse that intercepts truth's heavenly And chased them up to heaven. Their ashes beam,
flew And chills and darkens a wide wandering No marble tells us whither. With their soul.
names The still small voice is wanted. He must No bard embalms and sanctifies his song ; speak,
And history, 80 warm on meaner themes, Whose word leaps forth at once to its effect, Is cold on this. She execrates indeed 730 Who calls for things that are not, and they The tyranny that doomed them to the fire, come,
But gives the glorious sufferers little Grace makes the slave a freeman. 'Tis a
He is the freeman whom the truth makes That turns to ridicule the turgid speech
free, And stately tone of moralists, who hoast, 690 And all are slaves beside. There's not a As if, like him of fabulous renown,
chain They had indeed ability to smooth
That hellish foes confederate for his harm The shag of savage nature, and were each Can wind around him, but he casts it off An Orpheus, and omnipotent in song. With as much ease as Samson bis green But transformation of apostate man
withes. From fool to wise, from earthly to divine, He looks abroad into the varied field Is work for Him that made him. He alone, Of nature, and though poor perhaps comAnd He by means in philosophic eyes
pared Trivial and worthy of disdain, achieves With those whose mansions glitter in his The wonder; humanizing what is brute 700 . sight,
740 In the lost kind, extracting from the lips Calls the delightful scenery all his own. Of asps their venom, overpowering strength | His are the mountains, and the valleys his, By weakness, and hostility by love. | And the resplendent rivers. His to enjoy Patriots have toiled, and in their coun With a propriety that none can feel, try's cause
But who, with filial confidence inspired, Bled nobly; and their deeds, as they de Can lift to heaven an unpresumptuous eye, serve,
And smiling say — "My Father made them Receive proud recompense. We give in
all !” charge
Are they not his by a peculiar right, Their names to the sweet lyre. The historic And by an emphasis of interest his, Muse,
Whose eye they fill with tears of holy Proud of the treasure, marches with it down
750 To latest times ; and Sculpture, in her turn, Whose heart with praise, and whose exalted Gives bond in stone and ever-during brass 710
mind To guard them, and to immortalize her trust. With worthy thoughts of that unwearied But fairer wreaths are due, though never
That planned, and built, and still upholds a To those who, posted at the shrine of truth,
world Have fallen in her defence. A patriot's blood, So clothed with beauty, for rebellious man? Well spent in such a strife, may earn indeed, Yes — ye may fill your garners, ye that And for a time ensure to his loved land,
reap The sweets of liberty and equal laws; The loaded soil, and ye may waste much But martyrs struggle for a brighter prize,
good And win it with more pain. Their blood is In senseless riot ; but ye will not find shed
1 See Hume.
In feast or in the chase, in song or dance, And in the school of sacred wisdom taught A liberty like his, who unimpeached
To read His wonders, in whose thought the Of usurpation, and to no man's wrong, 760
world, Appropriates nature as his Father's work, Fair as it is, existed ere it was. And has a richer use of yours than you. Not for its own sake merely, but for His Soo He is indeed a freeman. Free by birth Much more who fashioned it, he gives it Of no mean city, planned or ere the hills
praise; Were built, the fountains opened, or the Praise that from earth resulting, as it ought, sea
To earth's acknowledged Sovereign, finds With all his roaring multitude of waves.
at once His freedom is the same in every State, Its only just proprietor in Him. And no condition of this changeful life, The soul that sees Him, or receives subSo manifold in cares, whose every day
limed Brings its own evil with it, makes it less: 770 New faculties, or learns at least to employ For he has wings that neither sickness, pain, More worthily the powers she owned before, Nor penury, can cripple or confine.
Discerns in all things what, with stupid gaze No nook so narrow but he spreads them Of ignorance, till then she overlooked, Sog there
A ray of heavenly light gilding all forms With ease, and is at large. The oppressor Terrestrial, in the vast and the minute, holds
The unambiguous footsteps of the God His body bound, but knows not what a Who gives its lustre to an insect's wing, range
And wheels His throne upon the rolling His spirit takes, unconscious of a chain,
worlds. And that to bind him is a vain attempt Much conversant with Heaven, she often Whom God delights in, and in whom He
With those fair ministers of light to man Acquaint thyself with God, if thou That fill the skies nightly with silent pomp, wouldst taste
Sweet conference; enquires what strains His works. Admitted once to His em
were they brace,
With which heaven rang, when every star, Thou shalt perceive that thou wast blind
in haste before ;
To gratulate the new-created earth, 820 Thine eye shall be instructed, and thine Sent forth a voice, and all the sons of God heart,
Shouted for joy. — “Tell me, ye shining Made pure, shall relish with divine delight,
hosts Till then unfelt, what hands divine have That navigate a sea that knows no storms, wrought.
Beneath a vault unsullied with a cloud, Brutes graze the mountain-top with faces If from your elevation, whence ye view prone
Distinctly scenes invisible to man, And eyes intent upon the scanty herb And systems of whose birth no tidings yet It yields them; or, recumbent on its brow, | Have reached this nether world, ye spy a Ruminate heedless of the scene outspread Beneath, beyond, and stretching far away | Favoured as ours, transgressors from the From inland regions to the distant main.
829 Man views it and admires, but rests con- | And hasting to a grave, yet doomed to rise,
And to possess a brighter heaven than yours? With what he views. The landscape has As one who long detained on foreign shores his praise,
Pants to return, and when he sees afar But not its Author. Unconcerned who His country's weather-bleached and batformed
tered rocks The paradise he sees, he finds it such; | From the green wave emerging, darts an eye And such well-pleased to find it, asks no Radiant with joy towards the happy land, more.
So I with animated hopes behold, Not so the mind that has been touched from And many an aching wish, your beamy fires, Heaven,
| That show like beacons in the blue abyss,