Abbildungen der Seite

Than tug with sweating toil the flavish oar

Of unredeem'd affliction, and sustain The fev'rous rage of fierce diseases fore

Unnumber'd, that in fympathetick chain

Hang ever thro' the thick circumfluous air,

All from the drizzly verge of yonder ftar-girt fphere.

Thick in the many-beaten road of life,

A thousand maladies are posted round, With wretched man to wage eternal ftrife

Unfeen, like ambush'd Indians, till they wound. There the fwoln Hydrop ftands, the wat'ry Rheum, The Northern Scurvy, Blotch with lep'rous scale ; And moping ever in the cloifter'd gloom

Of learned Sloth, the bookish Asthma pale :
And the fhunn'd Hag unfightly, that ordain'd
On Europe's fons to wreak the faithless sword
Of Cortez, with the blood of millions stain'd,

O'er dog-ey'd luft the tort'ring fcourge abhor'd
Shakes threat'ning; fince the while fhe wing'd her flight
From Amazon's broad wave, and Andes' fnow-clad height.

Where the wan daughter of the yellow year,

The chatt'ring Ague chill, the writhing Stone, And he of ghaftly feature, on whose ear

Unheeded croaks the death-bird's warning moan,
Marafmus; knotty Gout; and the dead life

Of nerveless Palfy; there, on purpose fell
Dark brooding, whets his interdicted knife,
Grim Suicide, the damned fiend of hell.
There, too, is the ftunn'd Apoplexy pight *,
The bloated child of gorg'd Intemperance foul;
Self-wafting Melancholy, black as night

Louring, and foaming fierce with hideous howl

[blocks in formation]

The dog Hydrophoby, and near allied

Scar'd Madnefs, with her moon-ftruck eye-balls ftaring wide.

There, ftretch'd one huge, beneath the rocky mine *,
With boiling fulphur fraught, and fmouldering fires;
He, the dread delegate of Wrath Divine,

E'er while that food o'er Taio's hundred spires
Vindictive; thrice he, wav'd th' earth-fhaking wand,
Powerful as that the fon of Amram bore,

And thrice he rais'd, and thrice he check'd his hand.

He ftruck, the rocking ground with thund'rous roar Yawn'd! Here from street to ftreet hurries, and there

Now runs, now ftops, then 'fhrieks and fcours amain,
Staring Distraction: many a palace fair,

With millions finks ingulph'd, and pillar'd fane;
Old Ocean's farthest waves confess the shock;
E'en Albion trembled, confcious, on his ftedfaft rock.
XV. ..

The meagre Famine there; and, drunk with blood,
Stern War; and the loath'd monfter, whom of yore
The flimy Naïad of the Memphian flood

Engend'ring, to the bright-hair'd Phoebus bore,
Foul Peftilence, that on the wide-stretch'd wings

Of Commerce speeds from Cairo's fwarthy bay
His weftering flight, and thro' the fick air flings
Spotted Contagion; at his heels Dismay
And Defolation urge their fire-wheel❜d yoke

Terrible; as long of old, when from the height
Of Paran came unwrath'd the Mightiest, shook

Earth's firm fix'd base tottering; thro' the black night Glanc'd the flash'd lightnings; heaven's rent roof abroad Thunder'd; and univerfal nature felt it's God.

Alluding to the earthquake at Lisbon.

XVI. Who


Who on that scene of terror, on that hour
Of rouzed indignation, fhall withstand
Th' Almighty, when he meditates to shower
The bursting vengeance o'er a guilty land!
Canft thou, fecure in Reason's vaunted pride,
Tongue-doughty mifcreant, who but now didst gore
With more than Hebrew rage th' innocent fide
Of agonizing mercy, bleeding fore;

Canft thou confront, with ftedfaft eye unaw'd,

The fworded judgment ftalking far and near? Well may'ft thou tremble, when an injur'd God

Disclaims thee-guilt is ever quick of fearLoud whirlwinds howl in Zephyr's fofteft breath; And every glancing meteor glares imagin'd death. XVII.

The good alone are fearlefs, they alone

Firm and collected in their virtue, brave
The wreck of worlds, and look unfhrinking down
On the dread yawnings of the rav'nous grave:
Thrice happy! who the blameless road along
Of honeft praise hath reach'd the vale of death;
Around him, like miniftrant cherubs, throng
His better actions; to the parting breath
Singing their bleffed requiems; he the while
Gently repofing on fome friendly breast,
Breathes out his benizons; then with a smile

Of foft complacence, lays him down to reft,
Calm as the flumbering infant: from the goal
Free and unbounded flies the difembody'd foul,


Whether fome delegated charge below,

Some much-lov'd friend it's hovering care may claim,
Whether it heaven-ward foars, again to know
That long-forgotten country whence it came;


Conjecture ever, the misfeatur'd child
Of letter'd arrogance, delights to run
Thro' Speculation's puzzling mazes wild,
And all to end at last where it begun.
Fain would we trace, with Reafon's erring clue,
The darkfome paths of destiny aright:
In vain; the task were easier to pursue

The trackless wheelings of the swallow's flight,
From mortal ken himself th' Almighty shrouds,
Pavilion'd in thick night and circumambient clouds.









T once to raise our reverence and delight,
To elevate the mind, and please the fight,
in virtue at th' attentive eye,


And waft the foul on wings of extasy ;

For this the painter's art with nature vies,
And bids the vifionary faint arife ;

Who views the facred forms in thought afpires,
Catches pure zeal, and, as he gazes, fires ;
Feels the fame ardour to his breast convey'd, "
Is what he fees, and emulates the fhade.

Thy ftrokes, great Artift, fo fublime appear,
They check our pleasure with an awful fear;
While, thro' the mortal line, the God you trace,
Author himself, and Heir of Jeffe's race;
In raptures we admire thy bold defign,
And, as the fubject, own the hand divine.

While thro' thy work the rifing day fhall ftream;
So long shall last thy honour, praife, and name.


And may thy labours to the Muse impart
Some emanation from her fifter art,

To animate the verfe, and bid it shine

In colours easy, bright, and strong, as thine.
Supine on earth an awful figure lies,

While fofteft flumbers seem to feal his eyes;
The hoary fire Heaven's guardian care demands,
And at his feet the watchful angel ftands.
The form auguft and large, the mien divine,
Betray the founder of Meffiah's line *.

Lo! from his loins the promis'd ftem afcends,
And high to Heaven it's facred boughs extends :
Each limb productive of some hero fprings,
And blooms luxuriant with a race of kings.
Th'eternal plant wide spreads it's arms around,
And with the mighty Branch the mystick top is crown'd.
And lo! the glories of th' illuftrious line,
At their first dawn with ripen'd splendours shine,
In David all exprefs'd; the good, the great,
The king, the hero, and the man compleat.
Serene he fits, and fweeps the golden lyre,.
And blends the prophet's with the poet's fire.
See! with what art he strikes the vocal strings,
The God, his theme, infpiring what he fings!
Hark! or our ears delude us; from his tongue
Sweet flows, or feems to flow, fome heavenly fong.
O! could thine art arreft the fleeting found,
And paint the voice in magick numbers bound;
Could the warm fun, as erft when Memnon play'd,
Wake with his rifing beam the vocal shade :

Then might he draw th' attentive angels down,
Bending to hear the lay, fo fweet, fo like their own.
On either fide the monarch's offspring fhine,
And fome adorn, and fome difgrace, their line..

* Jeffe.


« ZurückWeiter »