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Some village-Hampden, that with dauntless breast
The little tyrant of his fields withstood; Some mute inglorious Milton here may rest,
Some Cromwell guiltless of his country's blood. Th' applause of list'ning senates to command,
The threats of pain and ruin to despise, To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land,
And read their hist'ry in a nation's eyes, Their lot forbad: nor circumscrib'd alone
Their growing virtues, but their crimes confin'd; Forbad to wade through slaughter to a throne,
And shut the gates of mercy on mankind. The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide,
To quench the blushes of ingenuous shame, Or heap the shrine of luxury and pride
With incense kindled at the Muse's flame.
Far from the madding crowds ignoble strite,
Their sober wishes never learnt to stray; Along the cool sequester'd vale of life
They kept the noiseless tenor of their way. Yet e'en these bones from insult to protect,
Some frail inemorial still crected nigh, [deck'l, With unconth rhymes and shapeless sculpture
Implores the passing tribute of a sigh.
Their names, their years, spelt by th’unletter'd
That teach the rustie moralist to die.
For who to dumb forgetfulness a prey,
This pleasing anxious being e'er resign'd, Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day,
Nor cast one longing ling'ring look behind?
On some fond breast the parting soul relies,
Some pious drops the closing eye requires, Ev'n from the tomb the voice of nature cries,
Ev'n in our ashes live their wonted fires.
For thee, who mindful of th' unhonour'd dead,
Dost in these lines their artless tale relate; If chance, by lonely contemplation led,
Some kindred spirit shall enquire thy fate,
Haply, some hoary-headed swain may say, - Oft have we seen him at the
of dawn, “ Brushing with hasty steps the dews away,
“ To meet the sun upon the upland lawn.
" There, at the foot of yonder nodding beech,
“ That wreathes its old fantastic roots so high, “ His listless length at noon-tide would he stretch,
“ And pore upon the brook that babbles by.
“ Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn,
" Mutt'ring his wayward fancies, he would rove; " Now drooping, woeful wan, like one forlorn,
" Orcrazd with care, or cross'd in hopeless love.
" One morn I miss'd him on th' accustom'd hill,
Along the hcath, and near his fav’rite tree; " Another came; nor yet beside the rill,
“ Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was lie.'
" The next, with dirges due in sad array, “ Slow thro' the church-yard path we saw him
“ borne. Approach and read (for thou canst read) the lay,
Gravid on the stone beneath yon aged thorn.”
THE EPITAPH. " HERE rests his head upon the lap of earth,
A youth to fortune and to fame unknown; " Fair science frown'd not on his humble birth,
“ And melancholy mark'd him for her own. Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere,
“ Heav'n did a recompence as largely send: " He gave to mis’ry all he had, a tear, " He gain’d from heav'n ('twas all he wish’d) " a friend.
• No farther seek his merits to disclose,
“ Or draw his frailties from their dread abode, “ (There they alike in trembling hope repose)
“ The bosom of his Father and his God."
THE EARL OF WARIVICK,
ON THE DEATH OF MR. ADDISON.
IF, dumb too long, the drooping Muse hath staid,
Can I forget the dismal night, that gave My soul's best part for ever to the grave?
How silent did his old companions tread,
To strew fresh laurels, let the task be mine, A frequent pilgrim at thy sacred shrine; Mine with true sighs thy absence to bemoan, And grave with faithful epitaphs thy stone. If e'er from me thy lov'd memorial part, May shame amict this alienated heart! Of thee forgetful if I form a song, My lyre be broken, and untun'd my tongue, My grief be doubled, from thy image free, And mirth a torment unchastis'd by thee.
Oft let me range the gloomy aisles alone, (Sad luxury! to vulgar minds unknown) Along the walls where speaking marbles show What worthies form'd the hallow'd mould below: