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Loud was the Hymenean song ;
The violated dame * walk d smilingly along,
And in the midst of the most sacred dance,
As if enamour'd of his sight,
Often the cast a kind admiring glance
On the bold struggler for delight;
Who afterwards appear’d so moderate and cool,
As if for public good alone he so desir’d to rule.
But, oh! that this were all which we can urge
Against a Roman of so great a foul!
And that fair truth permitted us to purge
His fact, of what appears so foul !
Friendship, that sacred and sublimest thing!
The noblest quality, and chicfcs good,
(In this dull age scarce understood) Inspires us with unusual warmth her injur'd rites to fing.“
Aflift, ye angels! whose immortal bliss,
Though more refin'd, chiefly consists in this.
How plainly your bright thoughts to one another thine !
Oh! how ye all agree in harmony divine !
The race of mutual love with equal zeal ye run,
A course, as far from any end, as when at first begun.
Ye faw, and smild upon this matchless pair,
Who still betwixt them did so many virtues share,
Some which belong to peace, and some to strife,
Thole of a calm, and of an active life,
That all the excellence of human-kind Concurr'd to make of both but one united mind,
Which Friendship did so fast and closely bind, Not the least cement could appear by which their souls
were join'd. That tye which holds our mortal frame, Which poor unknowing we a foul and body name,
Seems not a composition more divine,
Or more abftrufe, than all that does in friendship shine.
From mighty Cæsar and his boundless grace,
Though Brutus, once at least, his life receiv'd;
Such obligations, though so high believ'd,
Are yet but flight in such a case,
Where friendship fo poflefles all the place,
There is no room for gratitude; since he,
Who so obliges, is more pleas’d than his fav’d friend
Just in the midst of all this noble heat,
While their great hearts did both so kindly beat,
That it amaz'd the lookers-on, And fore’d them to suspect a father and a son * (Though here ev’n Nature's self still seem'd to be out
done) From such a friendship unprovok'd to fall
Is horrid, yet I wish that fact were all Which does with too much cause Ungrateful Brutus call.
* Cæfar was suspected to have begotten Brutus.
In coolest blood he laid a long design
Against his best and dearest friend;
Did ev’n his foes in zeal exceed,
To spirit others up to work so black a deed;
Himself the centre where they all did join.
Cæsar, mean time, fearless, and fond of him,
Was as industrious all the while
To give such ample marks of fond esteem,
As made the graves Romans smile
To see with how much ease love can the wife beguile..
He, whom thus Brutus doom'd to bleed,
Did, setting his own race aside,
Nothing less for him provide,
Than in the world's great empire to succeed :
Which we are bound in justice to allow,
Is all-sufficient proof to show,
That Brutus did not strike for his own fake :
And if, alas ! he fail'd, 'twas only by mistake..
I WELD, I yield, and can no longer
stay My eager thoughts, that force themselves away, Sure none inspir'd (whose heat transports them ftill Above their reason, and beyond their will) Can firm against the strong impulse remain; Censure itself were not so sharp a pain. Let vulgar minds submit to vulgar sway; What Ignorance shall think, or Malice say, To me are trifes; if the knowing few, Who can see faults, but
fee beauties too, Applaud that genius which themselves partake, And spare the Poet for the Muse's sake.
The Mufe, who raises mc from humble ground,
To view the vast and various world around :
How fast I mount! in what a wondrous way,
I grow transported to this large survey !
I value earth no more, and far below
Methinks I see the busy pigmies go.
My soul entranc’d is in a rapture brought
Above the common tracks of vulgar thought :
With fancy wing’d, I feel the purer air,
And with contempt look down on human care.
Airy Ambition, ever soaring high,
Stands first expos'd to my censorious eye.
Behold some toiling up a Nippery hill,
Where, though arriv'd, they must be toiling ftill:
Some, with unsteady feet, just fallen to ground,
Others at top, whose heads are turning round.
To this high sphere it happens still that some,
The most unfit, are forwardest to come ;
these are princes forc'd to chuse,
Or seek out such as would perhaps refuse.
Favour too great is safely plac'd on none,
And soon becomes a dragon or a drone;
Either remiss and negligent of all,
Or else imperious and tyrannical.
The Muse inspires me now to look again,
And see a meaner fort of fordid men
Doating on little heaps of yellow dust;
For that despising honour, ease, and lust.
Let other bards, expressing how it shines,
Describe with envy what the miser finds ;
Only as heaps of dirt it seems to me,
Where we such despicable vermin see,
Who creep through filth a thousand crooked ways,
Insensible of infamy or praise :
Loaded with guilt, they still pursue their course,
Not ev'n restrain'd by love or friendship’s force.
Not to enlarge on such an obvious thought,
Behold their folly, which transcends their fault!
Alas! their cares and cautions only tend
To gain the means, and then to lose the end.