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And in their service wage perpetual war
With conscience and with thee. Luit in their
And mischief in their hands, the roam the earth
To prey upon each other ; stubborn, fierce, .
High-minded, foaming out their own disgrace. ;
Thy prophets speak of such; and, noting down
The features of the last degen’rate times,
Exhibit ev'ry lineament of these.
Come then, and added to thy many crowns ...
Receive yet one, as radiant as the rest, E!
Due to thy last and most effe&ual work, , . .
Thy word fulfill'd, the conquest of a world... ;
He is the happy man, whose.life ev'n now Shows somewhat of that happier life to come ; . Who, doom'd to an obscure but tranquil state, Is pleas'd with it, and, were he free to chuse, ) Would make his fate his choice; whom peace,
the fruit. Of virtue, and whom virtue, fruit of faith, Prepare for happiness; bespeak him one " . Content indeed to fojourn while he must Below the skies, but having there his honie. The world o'erlooks him in her busy search Of objects more illustrious in her view ; . And; occupy'd as earnestly as she, . .
Though more sublimely, he o'erlooks the world.
She scorns his pleasures, for she knows them not ;
He seeks not hers, for he has prov'd them vain.
He cannot kim the ground like summer birds
Pursuing gilded flies, and such he deems -
Her honors, her emoluments, her joys.
Therefore in contemplation is his bliss,
Whose pow'r is such, that whom the lifts from
earth . . .
She makes familiar with a heav'n unseen,
And shows him glories yet to be reveald.
Not slothful he, though seeming unemploy'd,
And censur'd oft as useless. Stillest streams
Oft water faireft meadows, and the bird
That Autters least, is longest on the wing.
Ask hiin, indeed, what trophies he has rais’d,
Or what atchievements of immortal fame
He purposes, and he shall answer--none.
His warfare is within. There unfatigu'd
His fervent spirit labours. There he fights,
And there obtains fresh triumphs o'er himself,
And never with’ring wreaths, compar'd with
The laurels that a Cæsar reaps are weeds.
Perhaps the self-approving haughty world,
That as the sweeps him with her whistling filks
Scarce deigns to notice him, or if the fee Deems him a cypher in the works of God, Receives advantage from his noiseless hours Of which she little dreams. Perhaps she owes Her sunshine and her rain, her blooming spring And plenteous harvest, to the pray'r he makes, When, Isaac like, the solitary saint Walks forth to meditate at even-tide, And think on her, who thinks not for herself. Forgive him then, thou bustler in concerns. Of little worth, and idler in the best, If, author of no mischief and some good, He seek his proper happiness by means That may advance, but cannot hinder thine. Nor though he tread the secret path of life, Engage no notice, and enjoy much ease, Account him an incumbrance on the state, Receiving benefits, and rend'ring none, His sphere though humble, if that humble sphere Shine with his fair example, and though small His influence, if that influence all be spent In soothing sorrow and in quenching strife, In aiding helpless indigence, in works From which at least a grateful few derive Some taste of comfort in a world of woe, Then let the supercilious great confess
He serves his country;' recompenses well. is
The state beneath the shadow of whofe vine .
He fits secure, and in the scale of life :
Holds no ignoble, though a slighted place.
The man whose virtues are more felt than feen,
Must drop indeed the hope of public praise ;
But he may boast what few that win it can,
That if his country stand not by his skill,
At least his follies have not wrought her fall,
Polite refinement offers him in vain
Her golden tube, through which a sensual world
Draws gross impurity, and likes it well,
The neat conveyance hiding all th’offence.
Not that he peevishly reje&s a mode
Because that world adopts it. If it bear
The stamp and clear impression of good sense, "
And be not costly more than of true worth,
He puts it on, and for decorum fake
Can wear it e’en as gracefully as she.
She judges of refinement by the eye,
Hle by the test of conscience, and a heart
Not foon deceiv’d; aware that what is base
No polish can make sterling, and that vice, ...
Though well perfum'd and elegantly dress’d,
Like an unburied carcafe trick'd with flow'rs,
I bit a garnish'd nuisance, fitter far
For cleanly riddance than for fair attire.** ::15
So life glides smoothly and by ftealth away, " 17.
More golden than that age of fabled gold
Renown'd in ancient song; nót'vex'd with care!
Or strain'd with guilt, beneficent, approv'
Of God and nian, and peaceful in its end.
So glide my life away! and so at last,
My share of duties decently fulfillid,
May some disease, not tardy to perform
Its destin’d office, yet with gentle stroke,
Dismiss me weary to a safe retreat
Beneath the turf that I have often trod.
It shall not grieve me, then, that once, when callid
To dress a Sofa with the Aow'rs of verse,
I play'd awhile, obedient to the fair,
With that light talk; but soon, to please her more
Whom flow'ss alone I knew would little please,
Let fall the unfinish'd wreath, and rov'd for fruit ;
Rov'd far, and gather’d much : some harsh, 'tis
Pick'd from the thorns and briars of reproof,
But wholesome, well-digested; grateful fome
To palates that can taste immortal truth,
Infipid else, and sure to be despis’d.
But all is in his hand whose praise I seek..
In vain the poet fings, and the world hears,