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Ye sable clouds! ye darkest shades of night! For me, to trespass on the brutal rights?
• know his achievements! study his renown! A longer stay witla essences unwrought, Contemplate this amazing universe,
Unfashioned, untormented into man? Dropt from his hand, with miracles replete! Wretchel preferment to this round of pains ! For what? Mid miracles of nobler nanic, Wretched capacity of plirensy, thought! To find one miracle of misery!
Wreiched capacity of dying, life! To find the being, which alone can know, Life,thought, worih, wisdom,all (ol foul revolt!) And praise his works, a blemish on his praise ? Once friends to peace, gone over 10 the foe. Thro' nature's ainple range, in thought to stray Death then has chung'd its nature too; O And start at man, the single niourner there,
death, Breathing high hope! chain'd down to pangs, Come to my bosom, thou best gift of heav'n! and death!
Best friend of wan! since man is man no more. Knowing is suff'ring: and shall virtue shiro Why in this thoruy wilderness so long, The sigh of knowledge ? virtue shares the sigh. Since there's no proinis'd land's ambrosial bow'r? By straining up the sleep of excellent, But why this suinptuous insult o'er our heads? By battles fought, and from temptation won,
Why this illustrious canopy display di? What gains she, but the pang ot seeing worth, Why so magniticenily bog'd despair? Angelic worth, soon, shuffled in the dark At stated periods sure returning, roll, With ev'ry rice, and swept to brutal dust ?- These glorious orbs, that mortals may compute
“ Duty ; Religion ! thesç, our duty.done, Their length of labors, and of pains ; nor lose Imply reward. Religion is niistake: Their misery's full measure-smiles with flor's, Duty? there's none, but to repel the chcat. and fruits promiscuous, everzteeming earth. Ye cheats ! away ; ye daugliters of n.y pride ! That inan inay languish in luxurious scenes, Who feign yourselves the fav’rites of the skies : And in an Eden mourn his with’ring joys? Ye tow'ring hupes! abortive energie! Claim earth and skies man's adiniration, due Thit toss and tumble in my lying breast, For such delights! blest animals! .too wise To scale the skies, and build presumption there, To wonder ; and too happy to coniplain! As I were heir of eternity;
“Qurdoom decreed denuunds a nivurnfulscene; Vain, vajn ambitions! trouble me no more. Why not a dungeon dark for the condemn'd? As bounded as my being, be
wish. Why not the dragon's subterranean den, All is inverted, wisdom is a fool;
For man to howl in why not his abude Sense ! take the rein; blind passion! drire us on; Of the same dismal color with his fate? And, ignorance ! befriend us on our way; A Thebes, a Babylon, at vast expence, Yes ; give the pulse full empire ; live the brute, Of time, toil, treasure, art, for owls and adders, Since, as the brute, we dic: the sum of man, As congruous, as, for man, this losiy dome Of godlike man! to revel, anri to rot. Which prompts proud thought, and kindles high
“ But noton equal terms with other brutes : desire, Their revels a more poignant relish yield, If from her humble chamber in the dust,[Aames, And safer too, they never poisons choose. [meals, While proud thought sweUs, and high desire inInsunct, than reason, makes more wholesome The poor worm calls us for her inmates there; And sends all-marring murinur far away. And round us death's inexorable hand For sensual life they best philosophise ; Draws the dark curtain close; undrawn no more. Thcirs, that serene, the sages sought in vain : “ Undrawn no more? behind the cloud of "l'is man alone expostulates with heaven, Once I heheld a sun; a sun which gilt (death, His, all the pow'r, and all the cause to mourn. . That sable cloud, and turn'd it all to gold: Shall human eyes alone dissolve in tears ? How the grave's alter'd! fathomless as hell! And bleed, in anguish, none but human hearts? Annihilation! how it yawns before me! The wide-stretcht realm of intellectual woe, Next moment I may drop from thought, from Surpassing sensual far, is all our own. The privilege of angels, and of worms, [sense, Inlife so fatally distinguished, why
An ontcast from existence! and this spirit, Cast in one lot, confounded, lumpi, in death? |This all-pervading, this all-conscious soul, “ And why then have we thought? To toil and This particle of energy divine, eat,
(thought. Which travels nature, flies from star to star, Then make our bed in darkness, needs no And visits gods, and emulates their pow'rs, What superfluities are reas'ning souls ! For ever is extinguish'd. Horror! death! Oh give eternity! or thought destroy.- Death of that death I fearless once survey'd, But without thought our curse were half unfelt! When horror universal shall descend, Its llunted edge would spare the throbbing heart; And hcaren's dark concave urn all human race, And therefore 'tis bestow'd. I thank thee, reason, On that enormous, unrefunding tomb, For aiding life's too small calamities,
How just this verse! this monumental sigh! And giving being to the dread of death.
Beneath the lumber of demolish'd worlds, Such are thy bounties! - Was it then too much Of matter, never dignify'd with life,
Here lie proud rationals the sons of heav'n | Where nought substantial, but our misery?
It shines to thee !) there's nothing real in it; And not to be, is lower than unborn.
A dream how dreadful! universal blank
From non-existence struck by wrath divine, Charm riches? why choose begg'ry in the grave. Midst upper, nether, and surrounding night,
Glitt'ring a moincnt, nor that moment sure, Ofer'ry hope a bankrupt! and for ever? Dar’st thou persist? And is there noughton earth His sad, sure, șudden, and eternal tolub. But a long train of transitory forms, Rişing, and breaking, millions in an hour ? $ 229. The World a System of Theology, Bubbles of a fantastic lord, blown up. The skies above proclaim immortal man, In sport, and then in cruelty kiestroy'd ? And man immortal all below resounds. Oh ! for what crime, unmerciful Lorenzo, The world is a systein of theology, Destroys thy scheme the whole of human race? Read by the greatest strangers to the schools, Kind is fell Lucifer compar'd to thee : If honest, learn'd; and sages o'er a plough. Oh! spare this waste of being half divine; What then is unbelief? 'tis an exploit : And vindicate th' æconomny of heav'n. A strenuous enterprise : to gain it, man
Must burst thro' ev'ry bar of common sense, $ 226. The Annihilation of Man, incom- Of common shame, magnanimously wrong;.
patible with the Goodness of God. And what rewards the sturdy combatant? Heav'x is all love; all joy in giving joy ;
His prize, repentance; infamy, his crown. It never had created, but to bless; And shall it then strike off the list of life, $ 230. Virlue the Fruit of Immortality. A being blest, or worthy so to be?
Tre virtues grow on "immortality; Heav'n starts at an annihilating God.
That root destroy'd, they witirer and expire,
A Deity believ'd will nought avail ; $ 227. The Guilty alone wish for Annihilation. Rewards and punishments make God ador'd; Is that, all nature starts at, thy desire ? And hopes and fears give conscience all her Art such a clod to wish thyself all clay? As in the dying parent dies the child, (pow'r, What is that dreadful wishi-the dying groan
Virtue with' imumortality expires. Of nature murder'd by the blackest guilt:
Who tells me he denies his soul iminortal, What deadly poison has thy nature drank? Whate'er his boast, has told me, he's a kuave. To nature undebauch'd no shock so great ; His duty, 'tis to love himself alone, Nature's first wish is endless happiness ; Nor care, tho' mankind perish, if he smiles. (are Annihilation is an after-thought,
And are there such? -Such candidates there A monstrous wish, unborn, till virtue dies. For more than death; for utter loss of being; And oh! what depth of horror lies inclos'd!
Is it in words to paint you? O ye fall’n ! For non-existence no'man ever wishod,
Fall'n from the wings of reason, and of hope ! But first he wish'd the Deity destroy'd.
Erect in stature, prone in appetite!
Patrons of pleasure, posting into pain ! $ 228. No spiritual Substance annihilated.
Boasters of liberty, fast-bound in chains !
More senseless than th' irrationals you scorn! Tuisks't thou om i potence a naked root, Far more undone! () ye most infainous Each blossom fair of Deity destroy'd ? Nothing is dead; nay, nothing sleeps; each soul And are you, too, convinc's, your souls fly off
Of beings, from superior dignity! That ever animated human clay,
In exhalation soft, and die in air, Now wakes; is on the wing: and when the call from the full Mood of evidence against you? Of that loud trump collects us round heav'ns In the course drudgeries, and sinks of sense, Conglob'd we bask in everlasting day. [throne, Your souls have quite worn out the inake of How bright this prospect shines ! how gloomy
By vice new-cast, and creatures of
$ 231. Free-thinking. Of countless millions, born to feel the pang This is free-thinking, unconfin'd to parts, Of being lost. Lorenzo! can it be!
To send the soul, on curious travel bent, This birls us shudder at the thoughts of life. Thro' all the provinces of human thought, Who would by born to such a phantom world, To dart lier Hight thro' the whole sphere of man;
To look on truth unbroken, and entire; And he that would be barr'd capacity
What has destroy'd it?-shall I tell thee, what? Beyond a grain, and lookɛ beyond an hour. When fear'd the future, 'tis no longer wishid,
thine eyes, survey this midnight scene; And when unwish'd, we strive to disbelieve. What are earth's kingdonis to yon boundless orbs Of human souls, one day, the destin'd range?
$ 233. The Gospel. And whit yon boundless orbs to godlike man? Thosenumerousworldsthatthrongihefirmament.
INSTEAD of racking fancy, to refute, And ask inore space in heaven, can roll at large Reform thy manners, and the truth enjoy.
From In man's capacious thought, and still have room
purer manners, to sublimer faith,
Is nature's unavoidable ascent;
An honest deist, where the gospel shines, '.
Matur'd to nobler, in the Christian ends.
When that blest change arrives, e'en cast aside And of that point how small a part enslaves.
This song superfluous; life immortal strikes How small a part of nothing, shall I say?
Conviction, in a flood of light divine. Why not? ---friends, our chief treasure, how A Christian dwells, like Uriel in the sun : they drop ?
Meridian evidence puts doubt to flight; How the world falls to picces round about us,
And ardent hope anticipates the skies. And leaves us in a ruin of our joy!
Read, and revere the sacred page; a page What says this transportation of my friends?
Where triumphs immortality; a page It bids me love the place where now they dwell
, Which not the whole creation could produce ; And scorn this wreiched spot, they leave so poor. In nature's ruins no one letter lost :
Which not the conflagration shall destroy ; Eternity's rast ocean lays before thec; Give thy mind sea-room; keep it wide of earth, "Tis printed in the minds of gods for ever. That rock of souls immortal ; cut thy cord ; Weigh anchor; spread thy sails; call ev'ry wind; $234. The Mystery of a Future State, n.o Eye ihy great Pole-star : make the land of life.
Argument against it.
Srill seems it strange, that thou shouldst live .$ 232. Rational and Inimal Life.
for ever? Two kinds of life has double-natur'd man,
Is it less strange, that thou shouldst live at all? And two of death; the last far more severe.
This is a miracle ; and that no more. Life animal is nurtur'd by the sun ; Thrives on its bounties, triumphs in its beams. Deny thou art, then, doubt if thou shalt be.
Who gave beginning, can exclude an end; Life rational subsists on higher food,
A miracle, with miracles inclos'd, Triumphant in his beains who made the day.
Is man! and starts his faith at what is strange? When we leave that sun, and are left by tliis,
What less than wonders froin the Wonderful? (The face of all who die in stabborn guilt)
What less than miracles from Gud can flow? 'Tis utter darkness; strictly, double death.
Adinit a God, – that mystery supreme ! We sink by no judicial stroke of heav'n,
That cause uncaus'd! all other wonders cease ; Bat nature's course ; as sure as plummets fall. Nothing is marvellous for him to do:
If then that double death should prove thy lot, Deny him—all is mystery besides.
We nothing know, but what is marvellous :
Yet what is marvellous, we can't believe. Not man alone, all rationals heav'n arms
So weak our reason, and so great our God, With an illustrious, but tremendous, pow'r,
What most surprises in the sacred page, To counteract its own most gracious ends :
Or full as strange, or stranger, must be true. And this, of strict necessity, not choice.
Faith is not reason's labor, but repose.
$ 235. Hope. Of being blessil, or wretched, as we please ; Hope, of all passions, most befriends us here: Else idle reason would have nought to do; Joy has her tears; and transport has her death:
Hope, like a cordial, innocent, tho' strong, They still are men; and when is man cecure?
and owoct! What pain to quit the world just inade their owill, 'Tis man's full cup; his paradise below! Their nest so deeply down'd, and built so high?
Too low they build, who build beneath the stars. $ 236. NIGHT VIII. Worluly Pursuits.
$ 238. The Love of Distinction. Os life's gay stage, one inch above the grave, AMBITION! pleasure ! let us talk of these : The proud run up and down in quest
eyes : Dost grasp at greatness ? first know what it is :1 Ilje sensual, in pursuit of soinething worse; Think stihou thy grcatness in distinction lies? The grave of gold; the politic, of pow'r;
Not in the feather, wave it e'er so high, And all, of other butterflies, as vain.
Is glory lodg'd : 'tis lodg'd in the reverse; As eddies draw things frivolous, and light, In that which joins, in that which equals all, How is man's heart by vanity drawn in; The monarch, and his slave-“A deathless soul, On the swift circle of returning toys,
Unbounded prospect, and immortal kin, Whirld, straw-like, round and round, and then a father God, and brothers in the skies!" ingulph'd,
We wisely strip the steed we mean to buy: Where gay delusion darkens to despair ! Judge ve, in their caparisons, of men ?
It nought avails thee, where, but what thou art;
All the distinctions of this little life $ 237. Human Life compared to the Ocoan.
Are quite cutaneous, foreign to the man: [creep, OCEAN! thou dreadful and tumultuous home When thro'death'sstreightsearth's subtileserpents Of dangers, at eternal war with man! Which wriggle into wealth, or climb renown, Death's capital! where inost he dumineers, They leave their party-color'd robe behind, With all his chosen terrors frowning round, All ihat now glitiers, while they rear aloft Tho' lately feasted high at Albion's cost, Their brazen crests, and hiss at us below: Wide op'ning, and loud roaring still for inore ! How mean that snuff of glory fortune lights, Too faithful mirror! how dost thou reflect And death puts out! dost thou demand a test. The melancholy face of human life!
A test at once infallible and short,
§ 239. Pleasure.
Lorenzo cries, “ Be, then, ambition cast; amid a multitude of artless hands,
Ambition's dearer far stands unimpeach'd. Ruin's sure perquisite! her lawful prize! Gay please re! proud ambition is her slave: Some steer aright: but the black blast blows hard, Who can resist her charnis :" — Or, should ? And puffs them wide of hope: with hearts of Lorenzo! proof
What mortal shall resist, where angels yield ? Full against wind, and tide, some win their way; Pleasure's the mistress of etherial pow'rs ; And when strong effort has deserv'd the port, Pleasure's the mistress of the work below: And tugg'd it into view, 'tis won! 'tis lost ! How would all stagnate, but for pleasure's ray ? They strike ; and, while they triumph, they What is the pulse of this so busy world? expire.
The love of pleasure: that, through ts'ry rein, In stress of weather, moßt: some sink outright; Throws motion, warmth; and shuts oui death O'er them and o'er their names the billows close; from life. To-zorrow knows not they were ever born : Tho' various are the tempers of mankind, Others a shiort memorial leave behind ; Pleasure's gay family holds all in chains. Like a flag floating, when the bark's ingulph'd, Some most affect the black ; , and some the fair : It floats a momeni, and is scen no more; Whate'er the motive, pleasure is the mark : One Cæsar lives, a thousand are forgut. For her the black assassin draws his sword; How few beneath auspicious planets born. Forher,dark statesmen trimtheir midnight-lämpa With swelling sails makègood the promis d port, To which no single sacrifice may fall; With all their wishes freighted! Yet even these, The Stoic proud, for pleasure, pleasure scornd; Ereighted with all their wishes, soon complain For her, affliction's daughters grief indulge,
And find, or hope, a luxury in tears : A Deity'ador'd, is joy advanc'd;
Faithbuilds a bridgettoin this world to the next, Patron of pleasure? I thy rival am ; O'er Death's dark gulph, and all its horror hides; Pleasure, the purpose of my gloomy song.
Praise, the sweet exhalation of our joy, Pleasure is noughi but vistue's gayer name - That joy exalts, and makes it sweeter still; I wrong her still, I rate ber worth too low : Pray'r ardent opens heaven, lets down a stream Virtue the root, and pleasure is the Aow'r. Of glory, on the consecrated hour
The love of pleasure is man's eldest-born, Of man, in audience with the Deity. Born in his cradle, living to his tomb: Who worships the great God, that instant joins Wisdom, her younger sister, tho' more grave,
The first in heav'n, and sets his foot on hell. Was meant to minister, and not to mar Imperial pleasure, queen of human hearts. $ 243. Resources of a Dejected blind.
Art thou dejected ? is thy mind o'ercast ? $ 2:0. Rise of Pleasure.
Thy gloom to chase, go, fix some weighty First, pleasure's birth, rise, strength, and
[good; grandeur see,
Chain down some passion; do some gen'rous Brought forth by wisdom, nurs’d by discipline, Teach ignorance to see; or grief 10 smile! By patience taught, by perseverance crown'd,
Correct thy friend; befriend thy greatest foe; She rears her head majestic; round her throne, Or, with warm heart, and confidence divine, Erected in the bosom of the just,
Spring up, and lay strong hold on him who Each virtue listed, from her manly guard :
made thee For what are virtirs? (formidable name!)
Thy gloun is scatter'd, sprightly spirits flow; What, but the fountain, or defence of joy?
The withird is thy'rine, and harp, unstrung. Great legislator! scarce so great as kind!
Dost call the bowl, the viol, and the dance, If men are rational, and love delight,
Loud mirth, mad laughter? wretched comforters, Thy gracious law but flatters human choice : Physicians! more than half of thy disease, In the transgression lies the penalty ;
Laughter, tho' never censur'd yet as sin,
Is bail-immoral. Is it much indulg'd ?
It shows a scorner, or it makes a fool;
And sins, as hurting others, or ourselves. Of pleasure, next, the final cause explore ; The house of laughter makes a house of woe: Its mighty purpose, its important end. What cause for triumph, where such ills abound? Not to turn human brutal, but to build What for dejection, where presides a pow's, Divine on human, pleasure came from heav'n: Who calld us into being to be bless'd ? In aid to reason was the goddess sent, So grieve, as conscious grief may rise to joy; To call up all its strength by such a charm, So joy, as conscious joy to grief may fall: Pleasure first succours virtue ; in return, Mosi true; a wise man never will be sad ; Virtue gives pleasure an eternal rcign. But neither will sonorous, bubbling mirth What, but the pleasure of food, friendship, faith, A shallow stream of happiness betray; Supports life natural, civil, and divinc?
Too happy to be sportive, he's serene. It serves ourselves, our species, and our God; Retire, and read thy bible; to be gay. : Glide then for ever, pleasure's sacred stream! Their truths alsound of sov'reign aid to peace : Through Eden as Euphrates ran, it
runs, Ah! do not prize them less, because inspird ; And fosters ev'ry growth of happy life ; If not inspir'd, that pregnant page had stood, Makes a new Eden where it Aows.
Timie's treasure ! and the wonder of the wise!
But these, thou think'st are gloomy paths to $ 242. Virtue and Piety. .
joy. “ Is virtue, then, and piety the same?".
True joy in sunshine ne'er was found at first : No:- piety is more; 'tis virtue's source;
They first, themselvesoffend, who greatly please, Mother of ev'ry worth, as that of joy,
And travel only gives nis sound repose. With piety begins all good on earth;
Heaven sells all pleasure; effort is the price; Conscience, her first law broken, wounded lies; The joys of.conquest are the joys of man; Enfeebled, lifeless, impotent to good,
And glory the victorious laurels spreads. A feign'd affection bounds her utmost power,
O'er pleasure's pure, perpetual, placid stream, Some we can't love, but for the Almighty's sake; A foe to God was ne'er true friend to man. $ 244. A Man of Pleasure is a Man of Pains: On piety, humanity is built ;
There is a time, when toil must be preferr'd; And, on humanity much happiness
Or joy, by mistiin'd fondness is undonë. And yet still more on piety itself,
A man of pleasure is a man of pains. A Déity believ'd, is joy begun;
Thou wilt not take the trouble to be bless'd.