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Thus, with delight, we linger to survey
The promis'd joys of life's unmeasur'd way;
Thus, from afar, each dim-discover'd scene
More pleasing seems than all the past hath been;
And every form, that Fancy can repair
From dark oblivion, glows divinely there.
What potent spirit guides the raptur'd eye
To pierce the shades of dim futurity ?
Can Wisdom lend, with all her heav'nly pow'r,
The pledge of Joy's anticipated hour?
Ah, no! she darkly sees the fate of man
Her dim horizon bounded to a span ;
Or, if she hold an image to the view,
Tis Nature pictur'd too severely true,
When Murder baril her arm & rampant Ma??
Yokd the red dragons of her iron car?: When peace 3 mercy banishit from the plain, Sprung on the viewteps winds to Heavn again.
With thee, sweet Hope! resides the heav'nly lights
That pours remotest rapture on the sight:
Thine is the charm of life's bewilder'd way,
That calls each slumb’ring passion into play.
Wak'd by thy touch, I see the sister band,
On tiptoe watching, start at thy command,
And fly where'er thy mandate bids them steer,
To Pleasure's path, or Glory's bright career.
Primeval Hope, th’ Aonian Muses say,
When Man and Nature mourn’d their first decay ;
When every form of death, and every woe,
Shot from malignant stars to earth below;
When Murder bared her arm, and rampant War
Yok'd the red dragons of his iron car;
When Peace and Mercy, banish'd from the plain,
Sprung on the viewless winds to Heav'n again;
All, all forsook the friendless guilty mind,
But Hope, the charmer, linger'd still behind.
Thus, while Elijah's burning wheels prepare,
From Carmel's height, to sweep the fields of air,
The prophet's mantle, ere his flight began,
Dropt on the world—a sacred gift to man.
Auspicious Hope! in thy sweet garden grow
Wreaths for each toil, a charm for every woe:
Won by their sweets, in Nature's languid hour,
The way-worn pilgrim seeks thy summer bower;
There, as the wild bee murmurs on the wing,
What peaceful dreams thy handmaid spirits bring !