Imágenes de página

Spar'd yet again th'ignobler for his fake.
And now his prowefs prov'd, and his fincere
Incurable obduracy evinc'd,
His rage grew cool; and, pleas'd perhaps t'have

earn d
So cheaply the renown of that attempt,
With looks of some complacence he resum'd
His road, deriding much the blank amaze
Of good Evander, still where he was left
Fixt motionless, and petrified with dread.
So on they far’d; difcourse on other themes
Ensuing, seem'd to obliterate the past,
And tamer far for so much fury shown,
(As is the course of rash and fiery men)
The rude companion smil'd, as if transform'd.
But t'was a tranfient calm. A storm was near,
An unsuspected storm. His hour was come.
The impious challenger of Pow'r divine
Was now to learn, that Heav'n though now to

wrath, Is never with impunity defied. His horse, as he had caught his master's mood, Sporting, and starting into sudden rage, Unbidden, and not now to be contrould, Rush'd to the cliff, and having reach'd it, stood. At once the shock unseated him: he flew Sheer o'er the craggy barrier, and immers'd Deep in the flood; found; when he fought it not;

The death he had deserv'd, and died alone.
So God wrought double justice; made the fool
The victim of his own tremendous choice,
And taught a brute the way to safe revenge.

I would not enter on my list of friends (Though grac'd with polish'd manners and fine

sense, Yet wanting sensibility) the man Who needlessly sets foot upon a worm. An inadvertent fiep may crush the snail That crawls at evening in the public path ; But he that has humanity, forewarn'd, Will tread afide, and let the reptile live. The creeping vermin, loathsome to the fight, And charg'd perhaps with venom, that intrudes, A visitor unwelcome, into scenes Sacred to neatness and repose, th' alcove, The chamber, or refectory, may

die : A necessary act incurs no blame. Not fo, when held within their proper bounds, And guiltless of offence, they range the air, Or take their pastime in the spacious field : There they are privileg'd ; and he that hunts Or harms them there, is guilty of a wrong, Disturbs th' æconomy of nature's realm, Who, when the form’d, design'd, them an abode. The fum is this : If man's convenience, health, Or safety interfere, his rights and claims


Are paramount and must extinguish theirs.
Else they are all the meanest things that are,
As free to live, and to enjoy that life,
As God was free to form them at the first,
Who, in his fov’reign wisdom, made them all.
Ye therefore who love mercy, teach your fons
To love it too. The spring-time of our years
Is soon dishonour'd and defil'd in most
By budding ills, that ask a prudent hand
To check them. But, alas ! none sooner shoots,
If unrestrain'd, into luxuriant growth,.
Than cruelty, most dev’lisir of them all.
Mercy to him that shews it, is the rule
And righteous limitation of its act,
By which Heav'n moves in pard’ning guilty man;
And he that shows none, being ripe in years,
And conscious of the outrage he commits,
Shall seek it, and not find it in his turn.

Distinguish'd much by reason, and still more
By our capacity of grace divine,
From creatures that exist but for our sake,
Which having serv'd us, perish, we are held
Accountable, and God, fome future day,
Will reckon with us roundly for th' abuse
Of what he deems no mean or trivial trust.
Superior as we are, they yet depend
Not more on human help, than we on theirs.
Their strength, or speed, or vigilance were given
In aid of our defects. In some are found


Such teachable and apprehensive parts,
That man's attainments in his own concerns,
Match'd with th' expertness of the brutes in theirs,
Are oft-times vanquish'd and thrown far behind.
Some shew that nice fagacity of smell,
And read with such discernment, in the port
And figure of the man, his secret aim,
That oft we owe our safety to a skill
We could not teach, and must despair to learn.
But learn we might, if not too proud to stoop
To quadrupede instructors, many a good
And useful quality, and virtue too,
Rarely exemplified among ourselves.
Attachment never to be wean'd, or chang?d
By any change of fortune ; proof alike
Against unkindness, absence, and neglect :
Fidelity, that neither bribe nor threat
Can move or warp; and gratitude for fmall
And trivial favours, lasting as the life,
And gliftning even in the dying eye.

Man praises man. Defert in arts or arms
Wins public honour; and ten thousand fit
Patiently present at a sacred song,
Commemoration-mad; content to hear
(Oh wonderful effect of music's pow'r!)
Meffiali's eulogy, for Handel's fake.

But less, methinks, than facrilege might serve; (For was it less, what heathen would have dar'd


To strip Jove's ftatue of his oaken wreath,
And hang it up'in honour of a man?)
Much less might serve, when all that we design
Is but to gratify an itching ear,
And give the day to a musician's praise.
Remember Handel? Who that was not born
Deaf as the dead to harmony, forgets,
Or can, the more than Homer of his age ?
Yes--we remember him; and while we praise
A talent so divine, remember too
That His most holy book from whom it came
Was never meant, was never us'd before,
To buckram out the mem'ry of a man.
But hush !—the mufe perhaps is too fevere,

And with a gravity beyond the fize
And measure of the offence, rebukes a deed
Lef impious than abfurd, and owing more
To want of judgment than to wrong design :
So in the chapel of old Ely House,
When wand'ring Charles, who meant to be the

third, Had fled from William, and the news was fresh, The simple clerk, but loyal, did announce, And eke did.rear right merrily, two staves, Sung to the praise and glory of King George. -Man praises man, and Garrick's mem'ry next, When time hath somewhat meliow'd it, and made The idol of our worship while he livid,

K 5


« AnteriorContinuar »