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And to their proper operation still,
Self-love, the spring of motion, acts the soul;
Most strength the moving principle requires :
70 Self-love still stronger, as its objects nigh; Reason's at distance, and in prospect
lie : That sees immediate good by present sense ; Reason, the future and the consequence. Thicker than arguments, temptations throng, 75 At best more watchful this, but that more strong. The action of the stronger to suspend Reason still use, to reason still attend. Attention, habit and experience gains ; Each strengthens reason, and self-love restrains. 80
Let subtle schoolmen teach these friends to fight, More studious to divide than to unite; And grace
and virtue, sense and reason split, With all the rash dexterity of wit.
Wits, just like fools, at war about a name, 85
90 Pleasure, or wrong or rightly understood, Our greatest evil, or our greatest good.
III. Modes of self-love the passions we may call : 'Tis real good, or seeming, moves them all : But since not ev'ry good we can divide,
In lazy apathy let stoics boast
105 Parts it may ravage,
Nor After ver. 86. in the MS.
Of good and evil Gods what frighted fools,
Deceiv'd, deceiving, taught
A tedious voyage! where how useless lies
IO I 20
Nor God alone in the still calm we find,
the wind. Fjo Passions, like elements, tho' born to fight, Yet, mix'd and soften'd, in his work unite : These, 'tis enough to temper and employ; But what composes man, can man destroy? Suffice that reason keep to nature's road, 115 Subject, compound them, follow her and God. Love, hope, and joy, fair pleasure's smiling train, Hate, fear, and grief, the family of pain, These mix'd with art, and to due bounds confin'd, Make and maintain the balance of the mind : The lights and shades, whose well accorded strife Gives all the strength and colour of our life. Pleasures are ever in our hands or eyes ; And when, in act, they cease, in prospect, rise : Present to grasp, and future still to find, 125 The whole employ of body and of mind. All spread their charms, but charm not all alike; On diff'rent senses diff'rent objects strike; Hence diff'rent passions more or less inflame, As strong or weak, the
of the frame; 130 And hence one MASTER PASSION in the breast, Like Aaron's serpent, swallows up the rest.
As man, perhaps, the moment of his breath, Receives the lurking principle of death ;
The After ver. 112 in the MS.
The soft reward the virtuous, or invite;
The young disease, that must subdue at length, 135
140 Whatever warms the heart, or fills the head, As the mind opens, and its functions spread, Imagination plies her dang'rous art, And pours it all upon
peccant part. Nature its mother, habit is its nurse ;
145 Wit, spirit, faculties, but make it worse ; Reason itself but gives it edge and pow'r; As heav'n's blest beam turns vinegar more sour.
We, wretched subjects, tho' to lawful sway, In this weak queen, some fav’rite still obey : 150 Ah! if she lend not arms, as well as rules, What can she more than tell us we are fools ? Teach us to mourn our nature, not to mend, A sharp accuser, but a helpless friend ! Or from a judge turn pleader, to persuade 155 The choice we make, or justify it made ; Proud of an easy conquest all along, She but removes weak passions for the strong : So, when small humours gather to a gout, The doctor fancies he has driv’n them out. 160
Yes, nature's road must ever be preferr'd ; Reason is here no guide, but still a guard :
'Tis her's to rectify, not overthrow,
Th'Eternal Art educing good from ill, 175
As fruits, ungrateful to the planter's care, On savage
stocks inserted, learn to bear ; The surest virtues thus from passions shoot, Wild nature's vigour working at the root. What crops of wit and honesty appear
185 From spleen, from obstinacy, hate, or fear! See anger, zeal and fortitude supply; Ev’n avarice, prudence ; sloth, philosophy ; Lụst, through some certain strainers well refin'd, Is gentle love, and charms all womankind; 190