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Methinks her patient sons before me stand,
Where the broad ocean leans against the land,
And, sedulous to stop the coming tide,
Lift the tall rampire's artificial pride.
Onward methinks, and diligently slow
The firm connected bulwark seems to grow.
Spreads its long arms amidst the wat'ry roar,
Scoops out an empire, and usurps the ore of:
While the pent ocean rising o'er the pile,
Sees an amphibious world beneath him smile;
The slow canal, the yellow blossom'd vale,
The willow tufted bank, the gliding sail,
``The crowded mart, the cultivated plain,
A new creation rescu'd from his reign.
Thus, while around the wave-subjećted soil Impels the native to repeated toil, Industrious habits in each bosom reign, And industry begets a love of gain. -- ?-o Hence all the good from opulence that springs, With all those ills superfluous treasure brings, Are here display’d. Their much-lov’d wealth im
Convenience, plenty, elegance, and arts;
But view them closer, craft and fraud appear,
Even liberty itself is barter'd here. -
At gold's superior charms all freedom flies,
The needy sell it, and the rich man buys;
A land of tyrants, and a den of slaves,
Here wretches seek dishonorable graves, 31°
And calmly bent, to servitude conform,
Dull as their lakes that slumber in the storm.
Heavens' how unlike their Belgic sires of old 1
Rough, poor, content, ungovernably bold;
War in each breast, and freedom on each brow;
How much unlike the sons of Britain now
Fir’d at the sound my genius spreads her wing, And flies where Britain courts the western spring; Where lawns extend that scorn Arcadian pride, And brighter streams than fam'd Hydaspis glide. 32. There all around the gentlest breezes stray, There gentle music melts on every spray; Creation’s mildest charms are there combin'd. Extremes are only in the master's mind! Stern o'er each bosom reason holds her state, With daring aims irregularly great, Pride in their port, defiance in their eye, I see the lords of human kind pass by, Intent on high designs, a thoughtful band, By forms unfashion'd, fresh from Nature's hand; 32. Fierce in their native hardiness of soul, --True to imagin’d right, above control, While even the peasant boasts these rights to scan, And learns to venerate himself as man.
Thine, Freedom, thine the blessings pićtur'd here, Thine are those charms that dazzle and endear;
Too blest indeed, were such without alloy,
But foster'd even by Freedom ills annoy:
That independence Britons prize too high,
Keeps man from man, and breaks the social tie; 34°
The self-dependent lordlings stand alone,
All claims that bind and sweeten life unknown;
Here by the bonds of nature feebly held,
Minds combat minds, repelling and repell’d.
Ferments arise, imprison’d fačtions roar,
Represt ambition struggles round her shore,
Till over-wrought, the general system feels
Its motions stopt, or phrenzy fire the wheels.
Nor this the worst. As nature's ties decay, As duty, love, and honor fail to sway, _3: Fićtitious bonds, the bonds of wealth and law, Still gather strength, and force unwilling awe. Hence all obedience bows to these alone, And talent sinks, and merit weeps unknown ; Till time may come, when stript of all her charms, The land of scholars, and the nurse of arms; Where noble stems transmit the patriot flame, Where kings have toil'd, and poets wrote for fame; One sink of level avarice shall lie, And scholars, soldiers, kings, unhonor'd die. 34.
Yet think not, thus when Freedom's ills I state, I mean to flatter kings, or court the great; Ye powers of truth that bid my soul aspire,
Far from my bosom drive the low desire;
And thou fair Freedom, taught alike to feel ,
The rabble’s rage, and tyrant's angry steel;
Thou transitory flower, alike undone
By proud contempt, or favor's fostering sun,
Still may thy blooms the changeful clime endure,
I only would repress them to secure : 372
For just experience tells, in every soil,
That those who think must govern those that toil;
And all that Freedom’s highest aims can reach,
Is but to lay proportion'd loads on each.
Hence, should one order disproportion'd grow,
Its double weight must ruin all below.
O then how blind to all that truth requires, Who think it freedom when a part aspires Calm is my soul, nor apt to rise in arms, Except when fast approaching danger warms: 3% But when contending chiefs blockade the throne, Contracting regal power to stretch their own, When I behold a fačtious band agree To call it freedom when themselves are free; Each wanton judge new penal statues draw, Laws grind the poor, and rich men rule the law; The wealth of climes, where savage nations roam, Pillag’d from slaves to purchase slaves at home; Fear, pity, justice, indignation start, Tear off reserve, and bare my swelling heart;. 32. *Till half a patriot, half a coward grown, I fly from petty tyrants to the throne.
Yes, Brother, curse with me that baleful hour,
When first ambition struck at regal power;
And thus polluting honor in its source,
Gave wealth to sway the mind with double force.
Have we not seen, round Britain's peopled shore,
Her useful sons exchang'd for useless ore ?
Seen all her triumphs but destruction haste,
Like flaring tapers brightening as they waste; 422
Seen opulence, her grandeur to maintain,
Lead stern depopulation in her train,
And over fields where scatter'd hamlets rose,
In barren solitary pomp repose
Have we not seen at pleasure's lordly call,
The smiling long-frequented village fall
Beheld the duteous son, the sire decay’d,
The modest matron, and the blushing maid,
Forc’d from their homes, a melancholy train,
To traverse climes beyond the western main; .426
Where wild Oswego spreads her swamps around,
And vast Niagara stuns with thund'ring sound
Ev’n now, perhaps, as there some pilgrim strays
Through tangled forests, and through dangerous ways;
Where beasts with man divided empire claim,
And the brown Indian marks with murderous aim ;
There, while above the giddy tempest flies,
And all around distressful yells arise,
The pensive exile, bending with his woe,
To stop too fearful, and too faint to go, Zze