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By heaven's own influence bless'd, inform’d, in
spired, On human reasonings darken’d and forlorn, On minds, like mine, by endless mazes tired,
Oh look ye down in pity or in scorn? Eternal Being; thou that midst the blaze
Of seraph hosts—what sudden tremors chill ? Oh! lift not up, my soul, thy venturous gaze,
Down-sink into thyself—be mute-be still.
Beside this russet heath, this forest drear, That strews with yellow leaves the moistened plain ;
[here Here, where the green path winds, ah Wisdom !
Did once my darling lyre to thee complain. Soft was the midnight air that soothed my frame;
In thought severe had pass’d the studious day; Cold paused the spirits, and the etherial flame
In dim and languid musings died away. Calm, silent all—I seem'd with step forlorn
Singly to wander on a desert world; I started when the bird first hail'd the morn, That wide had now his reddening clouds un
furl'd. Returning seasons since have pass’d away ;
Oft has the spring with violets deck’ the vale, The bee oft humm'd along the summer day,
And the lake darken'd in the wintry gale.
In youth's bright morn how boldly on the mind
Rise the wild forms of thought in colours new ; 'Tis time, and time alone, whose skill refined
The picture slowly gives to nature true. Thee, Wisdom, could I chide, thy gifts decry!
Turn from thy bliss by restless ardour fired! How like these idle leaves that withered lie,
Seem now the fancies that my soul inspired ! Who smile at fortune and who conquer pain? Whose is the world in fame's bright vision
shown ? Who wake the’unconscious mind, the barren plain, And wield great nature's strength from reason's
If thy bless’d votaries mourn, oh, where shall end
Man's wayward sorrows, and his wishes blind; If from thy sacred paths his steps he bend,
What rest,what refuge shall his wanderings find? Not like the sage my daring mind I wing
Aloft to bear the ensigns of thy power; Yet, Wisdom, come, and all thy pleasures bring
To bless the silence of my lonely hour. Come, to my chasten'd mind thy realms reveal
(The glimmering path, the thorny maze I leave), Calm realms, where life a modest bliss may steal,
Nor reason toil in vain nor hope deceive. Scare thou the finer dreams that idly please ;
Oh let not studious pride its strength abuse, Nor lofty indolence in selfish ease,
In passive thought, the golden moments lose.
When roams the mind to worlds in darkness closed,
When sinks the humbled heart, and sighs to
Tell thou of manly faith on God reposed,
And Hope shall picture what thou canst not see.
THE FATE OF SENSIBILITY.
Fatis contraria fata rependens.
O THOU, of Nature's mental works the pride!
Made of a finer dust, with nicer art! In whose etherial thrilling frame reside
The lively fancy and the feeling heart! Doubtful or to lament or hail thy doom,
The Muse, prophetic, marks thy bosom's glow: She sees the Fates surround the mystic loom;
They weave thee transports keen and pungent
Anxious, she hovers o'er the web the while,
Reads, as it grows, thy figured story there : Now she explains the texture with a smile,
And now the woof interprets with a tear. Thine is the eye, in earth and air and sea,
All, or sublime or fair, that finds and feels ! All Nature's glories, all her charms to thee
(Conceal'd from others) partial Heaven reveals! For thee the dawn's fine rose-suffusion glows;
For thee the purple cloud of evening shines; Flushing, for thee, the vernal blossom blows;
Yellowing, for thee, the sickly year declines.
'Tis thine to draw refined and rich delight
Or from the shaggy wild or cultured plain; Heaven's smiling beams or shoots of angry light;
The' expansive peace or tumult of the main, Thine are the sprightly scenes of laughing day;
Thine awful midnight's solemn starry hour; Thine the fresh dome on glossy pillars gay ;
And thine the ivy-vested mouldering tower.
To please thine ear soft notes the linnet pours ;
And, with grand peal, the deep toned thunder
The streamlet nurmurs, and the torrent roars ;
The zephyr whispers, and the tempest howls.
From each or lofty or mellifluous sound,
Each fair or awful form that strikes the sight, In Art's wide sphere or Nature's ample round,
'Tis thine to draw refined and rich delight.
Thine is the eye that with sweet fury rolls
O’er the bright page where heroes shine again! Where the great energies of virtuous souls
Repeat their glorious scorn of Death and Pain!
By Vice's side when Virtue's form is shown;
When bold she struggles with a heat divine; Or on her victor looks superior down;
Thine is the page! the glowing leaf is thine !
Nor thy bold joys can Nature's self confine:
At Fancy's fiat, lo! new worlds appear! Fine airy sounds, light airy forms are thine ;
Sacred from vulgar eye and vulgar ear.
Each shade of bliss thou own'st—to thee belongs
The sweet depression of the pensive hour; Soft sighs that please more than or festive songs,
Triumph's loud shout, or riot's wild uproar. Bless'd is thy commerce with a kindred mind!
All social charms to' enrich the hour unite! Friendship’s pure effluence, feast of taste refined,
The force of reason, and the play of wit! Shouldst thou, thy fund of softer soul to prove,
Find Beauty's seal impress’d on Virtue's shrine; And should the brilliant eye that lights thy love
On thy young hopes let fall a ray benign;
Then shalt thou throw around the earth thine eye,
Nor aught that wakes thy faintest envy see ; But, pitying all beneath this ample sky,
Deem the wide world of bliss compress'd in thee!
Fair, in thy field of life, these joys appear:
Ah! that unmix'd the lovely harvest grew! But Nature, when she sow'd rich transports there,
Forth from her hands the seeds of anguish threw. Lo! in her cave grim Want awaits her prey!
Her frolic prey that now no evil heeds : Sportful in gay Profusion's flowery way, And thoughtless whither each rash footstep