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OLIVER GOLDSMITH, an eminent poet, and a mis- uncommon favor. Although this was a gainful cellaneous writer, was born in 1729, according to year to him, yet thoughtless profusion, and a habit one account, at Elphin; according to another, at of gaming, left him at its close considerably in debt Pallas, in the county of Longford, Ireland. From In the two succeeding years he supplied the bookhis father, who was a clergyman, he received a sellers with a "Grecian History," and "A History literary education, and was sent at an early period of the Earth and Animated Nature," the last to Dublin College. Thence he was removed as a chiefly taken from Buffon. He had planned some medical student to the University of Edinburgh, other works, but these were cut off by his untimely where he continued from 1751 to the beginning of death. In March 1774 he was attacked with the 1754. From the slight tincture of science which symptoms of a low fever; and having taken, upon he seems to have acquired, it is probable that he his own judgment, an over-dose of a powerful paid little attention to the studies of the place; and medicine, he sunk under the disease, or the remehis necessity for quitting Edinburgh to avoid paying dy, and died on the tenth day, April 4th. He was a debt, said to have been contracted by a fellow-buried, with little attendance, in the Temple student, augurs but little for his moral character. Church; but a monument has since been raised With these unfavorable beginnings, in the midst of to his memory, with a Latin inscription by Dr. penury, he resolved to indulge his curiosity in a Johnson. visit to the continent of Europe; and after a long ramble, and various fortunes, he found means to get back to England in 1758. For a considerable time he supported himself by his pen, in an obscure situation, when, in 1765, he suddenly blazed out as a poet, in his "Traveller; or, A Prospect of Society." It was at the instigation of Dr. Johnson that he enlarged this piece, and finished it for publication; and that eminent critic liberally and justly said of it, that " there had not been so fine a poem since Pope's time." It was equally well received by the public; and conferred upon Goldsmith a celebrity which introduced him to some of the most distinguished literary characters of the time.
Goldsmith was a man of little correctness either in his conduct or his opinions, and is rather admired for his genius, and beloved for his benevo lence, than solidly esteemed. The best part of his character was a warmth of sensibility, which made him ready to share his purse with the indigent, and in his writings rendered him the constant advocate of the poor and oppressed. The worst feature was a malignant envy and jealousy of successful rivals, which he often displayed in a manner not less ridiculous than offensive. He was one of those who are happier in the use of the pen than the tongue; his conversation being generally confused, and not seldom absurd; so that the wits with whom he kept The poet continued to pursue his career, and, company seem rather to have made him their butt in 1766, was published his novel of "The Vicar of than to have listened to him as an equal. Yet, Wakefield," which was received with deserved ap- perhaps, no writer of his time was possessed of plause, and has ever since borne a distinguished more true humor, or was capable of more poig rank among similar compositions. Some of his nancy in marking the foibles of individuals. This most pleasing and successful works in prose were talent he has displayed in a very amusing manner given to the world about this time; and he paid his in his unfinished poem of " Retaliation," written respects to the Theatre, by a comedy entitled "The as a kind of retort to the jocular attacks made upon Good-Natured Man," acted at Covent-Garden in him in the Literary Club. Under the mask of 1768, which, however, defects of plot, and igno- Epitaphs, he has given masterly sketches of some rance of dramatic effect, rendered not very success- of the principal members, with a mixture of serious ful. His poetical fame reached its summit in 1770, praise and good-humored raillery. It may indeed by the publication of "The Deserted Village," a be said that the latter sometimes verges into tartdelightful piece, which obtained general admiration.ness, which is particularly the case with his delineaThe price offered by the bookseller, amounting to tion of Garrick.
nearly five shillings a couplet, appeared to Gold- On the whole, his literary fame must be considsmith so enormous, hat he at first refused to take ered as rising the highest in the character of a poet, it, but the sale of the poem convinced him that he for it would be difficult, in the compass of English might fairly appropriate to himself that sum out of verse, to find pieces which are read with more the profits. In 1772 he produced another comedy, gratification than his Traveller and his Deserted entitled "She Stoops to Conquer; or, The Mistakes Village. There are, besides, his elegant ballad of of a Night;" and though in character and plot it The Hermit, his stanzas on Woman, and some short made a near approach to farce, yet such were its humorous and miscellaneous pieces, which are comic powers that the audience received it with never without interest.
OR, A PROSPECT OF SOCIETY.
REMOTE, unfriended, melancholy, slow,
Or by the lazy Scheld, or wandering Po;
Or onward, where the rude Carinthian boor
Against the houseless stranger shuts the door;
Or where Campania's plain forsaken lies,
A weary waste expanding to the skies;
Where'er I roam, whatever realms to see,
My heart, untravel'd, fondly turns to thee:
Still to my brother turns with ceaseless pain,
And drags at each remove a length'ning chain.
Eternal blessings crown my earliest friend,
And round his dwelling guardian saints attend;
Blest be that spot, where cheerful guests retire
To pause from toil, and trim their ev'ning fire;
Blest that abode, where want and pain repair,
And ev'ry stranger finds a ready chair;
Blest be those feasts with simple plenty crown'd,
Where all the ruddy family around
Laugh at the jests or pranks that never fail,
Or sigh with pity at some mournful tale;
Or press the bashful stranger to his food,
And learn the luxury of doing good.
But me, not destin'd such delights to share,
My prime of life in wand'ring spent and care;
Impell'd with steps unceasing to pursue
Some fleeting good, that mocks me with the view;
That, like the circle bounding earth and skies,
Allures from far, yet, as I follow, flies;
My fortune leads to traverse realms alone,
And find no spot of all the world my own.
Ev'n now, where Alpine solitudes ascend,
sit me down a pensive hour to spend;
And, plac'd on high above the storm's career,
Look downward where an hundred realms appear;
Lakes, forests, cities, plains extending wide,
The pomp of kings, the shepherd's humbler pride.
When thus creation's charms around combine,
Amidst the store, should thankless pride repine?
Say, should the philosophic mind disdain
That good which makes each humbler bosom vain?
Let school-taught pride dissemble all it can,
These little things are great to little man;
And wiser he, whose sympathetic mind
Exults in all the good of all mankind.
Ye glitt'ring towns, with wealth and splendor
Ye fields, where summer spreads profusion round,
Ye lakes, whose vessels catch the busy gale,
Ye bending swains, that dress the flow'ry vale,
For me your tributary stores combine;
Creation's heir, the world, the world is mine.
As some lone miser, visiting his store,
Bends at his treasure, counts, recounts it o'er,
Hoards after hoards his rising raptures fill,
Yet still he sighs, for hoards are wanting still;
Thus to my breast alternate passions rise,
Pleas'd with each good that Heav'n to man supplies;
Yet oft a sigh prevails, and sorrows fall,
To see the hoard of human bliss so small;
And oft I wish, amidst the scene to find
Some spot to real happiness consign'd,
Where my worn soul, each wand'ring hope at rest, All evils here contaminate the mind,
May gather bliss, to see my fellows blest.
But where to find that happiest spot below, Who can direct, when all pretend to know? The shudd'ring tenant of the frigid zone Boldly proclaims that happiest spot his own;
Extols the treasures of his stormy seas,
And his long nights of revelry and ease:
The naked Negro, panting at the Line,
Boasts of his golden sands, and palmy wine,
Basks in the glare or stems the tepid wave,
And thanks his gods for all the good they gave.
Such is the patriot's boast, where'er we roam,
His first, best country, ever is at home.
And yet, perhaps, if countries we compare,
And estimate the blessings which they share,
Though patriots flatter, still shall wisdom find
An equal portion dealt to all mankind :
As diff'rent good, by Art or Nature giv'n
To diff'rent nations, makes their blessings ev'n.
Nature, a mother kind alike to all,
Still grants her bliss at labor's earnest call;
With food as well the peasant is supplied
On Idra's cliff as Arno's shelvy side;
And though the rocky-crested summits frown,
These rocks, by custom, turn to beds of down.
From art more various are the blessings sent;
Wealth, commerce, honor, liberty, content:
Yet these each other's pow'r so strong contest,
That either seems destructive of the rest.
Where wealth and freedom reign, contentment fails,
And honor sinks where commerce long prevails.
Hence every state, to one lov'd blessing prone,
Conforms and models life to that alone:
Each to the favorite happiness attends,
And spurns the plan that aims at other ends;
Till, carried to excess in each domain,
This fav'rite good begets peculiar pain.
But let us try these truths with closer eyes,
And trace them through the prospect as it lies:
Here for a while, my proper cares resign'd,
Here let me sit in sorrow for mankind;
Like yon neglected shrub, at random cast,
That shades the steep, and sighs at ev'ry blast.
Far to the right, where Apennine ascends,
Bright as the summer, Italy extends:
Its uplands sloping deck the mountain's side,
Woods over woods in gay theatric pride;
While oft some temple's mould'ring tops between
With memorable grandeur mark the scene.
Could Nature's bounty satisfy the breast,
The sons of Italy were surely blest.
Whatever fruits in diff'rent climes are found,
That proudly rise or humbly court the ground;
Whatever blooms in torrid tracts appear,
Whose bright succession decks the varied year;
Whatever sweets salute the northern sky
With vernal lives, that blossom but to die;
These here disporting own the kindred soil,
Nor ask luxuriance from the planter's toil;
While sea-born gales their gelid wings expand
To winnow fragrance round the smiling land.
But small the bliss that sense alone bestows,
And sensual bliss is all the nation knows.
In florid beauty groves and fields appear,
Man seems the only growth that dwindles here.
Contrasted faults through all his manners reign;
Though poor, luxurious; though submissive, vain;
Though grave, yet trifling; zealous, yet untrue;
And ev'n in penance planning sins anew.
That opulence departed leaves behind;
For wealth was theirs; not far remov'd the date,
When commerce proudly flourish'd thro' the state,
At her command the palace learnt to rise,
Again the long-fall'n column sought the skies;
The canvass glow'd, beyond e'en Nature warm,
The pregnant quarry teem'd with human form:
Till, more unsteady than the southern gale,
Commerce on other shores display'd her sail;
While nought remain'd of all that riches gave,
But towns unmann'd, and lords without a slave:
And late the nation found, with fruitless skill,
Its former strength was but plethoric ill.
Yet still the loss of wealth is here supplied
By arts, the splendid wrecks of former pride;
From these the feeble heart and long-fall'n mind
An easy compensation seem to find.
Here may be seen, in bloodless pomp array'd,
The pasteboard triumph and the cavalcade:
Processions form'd for piety and love,
A mistress or a saint in ev'ry grove.
By sports like these are all their cares beguil'd,
The sports of children satisfy the child:
Each nobler aim, represt by long control,
Now sinks at last, or feebly mans the soul;
While low delights, succeeding fast behind,
In happier meanness occupy the mind:
As in those domes, where Cæsars once bore sway,
Defac'd by time, and tott'ring in decay,
There in the ruin, heedless of the dead,
The shelter-seeking peasant builds his shed;
And, wond'ring man could want the larger pile,
Exults, and owns his cottage with a smile.
So the loud torrent, and the whirlwind's roar,
But bind him to his native mountains more.
Such are the charms to barren states assign'd
Their wants but few, their wishes all confin'd:
Yet let them only share the praises due,
If few their wants, their pleasures are but few,
For ev'ry want that stimulates the breast
Becomes a source of pleasure when redrest:
Whence from such lands each pleasing science flies
That first excites desire, and then supplies;
Unknown to them, when sensual pleasures cloy,
To fill the languid pause with finer joy;
Unknown those pow'rs that raise the soul to flame,
Catch ev'ry nerve, and vibrate through the frame.
Their level life is but a mould'ring fire,
Unquench'd by want, unfann'd by strong desire;
Unfit for raptures, or, if raptures cheer
On some high festival of once a year,
In wild excess the vulgar breast takes fire,
Till, buried in debauch, the bliss expire.
But not their joys alone thus coarsely flow;
Their morals, like their pleasures, are but low;
For, as refinement stops, from sire to con
Unalter'd, unimprov'd, the manners run;
And love's and friendship's finely-pointed dart
Falls blunted from each indurated heart.
Some sterner virtues o'er the mountain's breast
May sit, like falcons cow'ring on the nest:
But all the gentler morals, such as play
Thro' life's more cultur'd walks, and charm the way,
These, far dispers'd, on tim'rous pinions fly,
To sport and flutter in a kinder sky.
My soul, turn from them, turn we to survey
Where rougher climes a nobler race display,
Where the bleak Swiss their stormy mansions tread,
And force a churlish soil for scanty bread:
No product here the barren hills afford
But man and steel, the soldier and his sword:
No vernal blooms their torpid rocks array,
But winter ling'ring chills the lap of May:
No zephyr fondly sues the mountain's breast,
But meteors glare, and stormy glooms invest.
To kinder skies, where gentler manners reign,
I turn; and France displays her bright domain:
Gay sprightly land of mirth and social ease,
Pleas'd with thyself, whom all the world can please,
How often have I led thy sportive choir,
With tuneless pipe, beside the murm'ring Loire !
Where shading elms along the margin grew,
And freshen'd from the wave the zephyr flew :
Yet still, e'en here, content can spread a charm,
Redress the clime, and all its rage disarm.
Though poor the peasant's hut, his feasts tho' small, And haply, though my harsh touch, falt'ring still,
He sees his little lot the lot of all;
But mock'd all tune, and marr'd the dancers' skill,
Yet would the village praise my wond'rous pow'r,
And dance, forgetful of the noontide hour.
Alike all ages. Dames of ancient days
Have led their children thro' the mirthful maze;
And the gay grandsire, skill'd in gestic lore,
Has frisk'd beneath the burthen of threescore.
So blest a life these thoughtless realms display,
Thus idly busy rolls their world away:
Theirs are those arts that mind to mind endear,
For honor forms the social temper here:
Honor, that praise which real merit gains,
Or e'en imaginary worth obtains,
Here passes current; paid from hand to hand,
It shifts, in splendid traffic, round the land:
From courts, to camps, to cottages it strays,
And all are taught an avarice of praise;
They please, are pleas'd, they give to get esteem,
Till, seeming blest, they grow to what they seem.
But while this softer art their bliss supplies,
It gives their follies also room to rise;
For praise too dearly lov'd, or warmly sought,
Enfeebles all internal strength of thought;
And the weak soul, within itself unblest,
Leans for all pleasure on another's breast.
Hence ostentation here, with tawdry art,
Pants for the vulgar praise which fools impart;
Here Vanity assumes her pert grimace,
And trims her robes of frieze with copper lace;
Sees no contiguous palace rear its head,
To shame the meanness of his humble shed;
No costly lord the sumptuous banquet deal,
To make him lothe his vegetable meal;
But calm, and bred in ignorance and toil,
Each wish contracting, fits him to the soil.
Cheerful, at morn, he wakes from short repose,
Breathes the keen air, and carols as he goes;
With patient angle trolls the finny deep,
Or drives his vent'rous plowshare to the steep;
Or secks the den where snow-tracks mark the way,
And drags the struggling savage into day.
At night returning, ev'ry labor sped,
He sits him down the monarch of a shed;
Smiles by his cheerful fire, and round surveys
His children's looks, that brighten at the blaze;
While his lov'd partner, boastful of her hoard,
Displays her cleanly platter on the board:
And haply too some pilgrim, thither led,
With many a tale repays the nightly bed.
Thus ev'ry good his native wilds impart
Imprints the patriot passion on his heart;
And e'en those hills, that round his mansion rise,
Enhance the bliss his scanty fund supplies:
Dear is that shed to which his soul conforms,
And dear that hill which lifts him to the storms;
And as a child, when scaring sounds molest,
Clings close and closer to the mother's breast,
Here beggar pride defrauds her daily cheer,
To boast one splendid banquet once a year:
The mind still turns where shifting fashion draws,
Nor weighs the solid worth of self-applause.
To men of other minds my fancy flies,
Embosom'd in the deep where Holland lies.
Methinks her patient sons before me stand,
Where the broad ocean leans against the land,
And, sedulous to stop the coming tide,
Lift the tall rampire's artificial pride.
Onward, methinks, and diligently slow,
The firm connected bulwark seems to grow;
Spreads its long arms amidst the wat'ry roar,
Scoops out an empire, and usurps the shore:
While the pent ocean, rising o'er the pile,
Sees an amphibious world beneath him smile:
The slow canal, the yellow-blossom'd vale,
The willow-tufted bank, the gliding sail,
The crowded mart, the cultivated plain,
A new creation rescu'd from his reign.
Thus, while around the wave-subjected soil
Impels the native to repeated toil,
Industrious habits in each bosom reign,
And industry begets a love of gain.
Hence all the good from opulence that springs,
With all those ills superfluous treasure brings,
Are here display'd. Their much-lov'd wealth
Convenience, plenty, elegance, and arts;
But view them closer, craft and fraud appear,
E'en liberty itself is barter'd here.
At gold's superior charms all freedom flies,
The needy sell it, and the rich man buys;
A land of tyrants, and a den of slaves,
Here wretches seek dishonorable graves,
And, calmly bent, to servitude conform,
Dull as their lakes that slumber in the storm.
Heav'ns! how unlike their Belgic sires of old!
Rough, poor, content, ungovernably bold;
War in each breast, and freedom on each brow;
How much unlike the sons of Britain now!
Ferments arise, imprison'd factions roar,
Represt ambition struggles round her shore;
Till over-wrought, the general system feels
Its motions stop, or frenzy fire the wheels.
Thine are those charms that dazzle and endear;
Too blest indeed were such without alloy;
But foster'd e'en by freedom, ills annoy;
That independence Britons prize too high,
Keeps man from man, and breaks the social tie;
The self-dependent lordlings stand alone,
All claims that bind and sweeten life unknown;
Here, by the bonds of nature feebly held,
Minds combat minds, repelling and repell'd;
Nor this the worst. As nature's ties decay,
As duty, love, and honor, fail to sway,
Fictitious bonds, the bonds of wealth and law,
Still gather strength, and force unwilling awe.
Hence all obedience bows to these alone,
And talent sinks, and merit weeps unknown;
Till time may come, when, stript of all her charms,
The land of scholars, and the nurse of arms,
Where noble stems transmit the patriot flame,
Where kings have toil'd, and poets wrote for fame,
One sink of level avarice shall lie,
And scholars, soldiers, kings, unhonor'd die.
Oh then how blind to all that truth requires,
Who think it freedom when a part aspires.
Calm is my soul, nor apt to rise in arms,
Except when fast-approaching danger warms:
But when contending chiefs blockade the throne,
Contracting regal pow'r to stretch their own;
When I behold a factious band agree
To call it freedom when themselves are free;
Each wanton judge new penal statutes draw,
Laws grind the poor, and rich men rule the law;
The wealth of climes, where savage nations roam
Pillag'd from slaves to purchase slaves at home;
Fear, pity, justice, indignation, start,
Tear off reserve, and bare my swelling heart;
Till, half a patriot, half a coward grown,
I fly from petty tyrants to the throne.
Fir'd at the sound, my genius spreads her wing,
And flies where Britain courts the western spring;
Where lawns extend that scorn Arcadian pride,
And brighter streams than fam'd Hydaspis glide;
'There all around the gentlest breezes stray,
There gentle music melts on every spray;
Creation's mildest charms are there combin'd,
Extremes are only in the master's mind;
Stern o'er each bosom reason holds her state,
With daring aims irregularly great;
Pride in their port, defiance in their eye,
I see the lords of human-kind pass by;
Intent on high designs, a thoughtful band,
By forms unfashion'd, fresh from Nature's hand,
Fierce in their native hardiness of soul,
True to imagin'd right, above control;
While e'en the peasant boasts these rights to scan, Lead stern Depopulation in her train,
And learns to venerate himself as man.
And over fields where scatter'd hamlets rose,
Yes, brother, curse with me that baleful hour,
When first ambition struck at regal pow'r;
And thus, polluting honor in its source,
Gave wealth to sway the mind with double force.
Have we not seen, round Britain's peopled shore,
Her useful sons exchang'd for useless ore?
Seen all her triumphs but destruction haste,
Like flaring tapers bright'ning as they waste?
Seen Opulence, her grandeur to maintain,
Yet think not, thus when freedom's ills I state,
I mean to flatter kings, or court the great:
Ye pow'rs of truth, that bid my soul aspire,
Far from my bosom drive the low desire!
And thou, fair Freedom, taught alike to feel
The rabble's rage, the tyrant's angry steel;
Thou transitory flow'r, alike undone
By proud contempt, or favor's fost'ring sun;
Still may thy blooms the changeful clime endure
I only would repress them to secure ;
For just experience tells, in ev'ry soil,
That those who think must govern those that toil
And all that freedom's highest aims can reach
Is but to lay proportion'd loads on each.
Hence, should one order disproportion'd grow,
Its double weight must ruin all below.
Thine, Freedom, thine the blessings pictur'd In barren solitary pomp repose?
Have we not seen, at Pleasure's lordly call,
The smiling long-frequented village fall?
Beheld the duteous son, the sire decay'd,
The modest matron, and the blushing maid,
Forc'd from their homes, a melancholy train,
To traverse climes beyond the western main,
Where wild Oswego spreads her swamps around.
And Niagara stuns with thund'ring sound?
E'en now, perhaps, as there some pilgrim stray's
Thro' tangled forests, and thro' dangerous ways;
While beasts with man divided empire claim,
And the brown Indian marks with murd'rous aim;
There, while above the giddy tempest flies,
And all around distressful yells arise,
The pensive exile, bending with his woe,
To stop too fearful, and too faint to go,
Casts a long look where England's glories shine,
And bids his bosom sympathize with mine.
Vain, very vain, my weary search to find
That bliss which only centres in the mind.
Why have I stray'd from pleasure and repose,
To seek a good each government bestows?
In ev'ry government, though terrors reign,
Though tyrant kings or tyrant laws restrain,
How small, of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure!
Still to ourselves in every place consign'd,
Our own felicity we make or find:
With secret course, which no loud storms annoy,
Glides the smooth current of domestic joy.
The lifted ax, the agonizing wheel,
Luke's iron crown, and Damien's bed of steel,
To men remote from pow'r but rarely known,
Leave reason, faith, and conscience, all our own.
THE DESERTED VILLAGE.
SWEET Auburn! loveliest village of the plain,
Where health and plenty cheer'd the lab'ring swain,
Where smiling Spring its earliest visit paid,
And parting Summer's ling'ring blooms delay'd:
Dear lovely bow'rs of innocence and ease,
Seats of my youth, when ev'ry sport could please :
How often have I loiter'd o'er thy green,
Where humble happiness endear'd each scene!
How often have I paus'd on ev'ry charm,
The shelter'd cot, the cultivated farm,
The never-failing brook, the busy mill,
The decent church that topt the neighb'ring hill,
The hawthorn bush, with seats beneath the shade,
For talking age and whisp'ring lovers made!
How often have I bless'd the coming day,
When toil remitting lent its turn to play,
And all the village train, from labor free,
Led up their sports beneath the spreading tree:
While many a pastime circled in the shade,
The young contending as the old survey'd ;
And many a gambol frolick'd o'er the ground,
And sleights of art and feats of strength went round;
And still, as each repeated pleasure tir'd,
Succeeding sports the mirthful band inspir'd.
The dancing pair that simply sought renown,
By holding out to tire each other down;
The swain mistrustless of his smutted face,
While secret laughter titter'd round the place;
The bashful virgin's sidelong looks of love,
The matron's glance that would those looks reprove:
These were thy charms, sweet village! sports like
With sweet succession, taught e'en toil to please; These round thy bow'rs their cheerful influence shed, These were thy charms-but all these charms are fled.
Sweet smiling village, loveliest of the lawn, Thy sports are fled, and all thy charms withdrawn; Amidst thy bow'rs the tyrant's hand is seen, And desolation saddens all thy green: One only master grasps the whole domain, And half a tillage stints thy smiling plain:
No more thy glassy brook reflects the day,
But chok'd with sedges works its weary way;
Along thy glades, a solitary guest,
The hollow-sounding bittern guards its nest;
Amidst thy desert walks the lapwing flies,
And tires their echoes with unvaried cries.
Sunk are thy bow'rs in shapeless ruin all,
And the long grass o'ertops the mould'ring wall,
And, trembling, shrinking from the spoiler's hand
Far, far away thy children leave the land.
Ill fares the land, to hast'ning ills a prey,
Where wealth accumulates, and men decay;
Princes and lords may flourish, or may fade;
A breath can make them, as a breath has made:
But a bold peasantry, their country's pride,
When once destroy'd, can never be supplied.
A time there was, ere England's griefs began,
When ev'ry rood of ground maintain'd its man;
For him light labor spread her wholesome store,
Just gave what life requir'd, but gave no more:
His best companions, innocence and health;
And his best riches, ignorance of wealth.
But times are alter'd; trade's unfeeling train
Usurp the land, and dispossess the swain;
Along the lawn, where scatter'd hamlets rose,
Unwieldy wealth and cumbrous pomp repose;
And ev'ry want to luxury allied,
And ev'ry pang that folly pays to pride.
Those gentle hours that plenty bade to bloom,
Those calm desires that ask'd but little room,
Those healthful sports that grac'd the peaceful scene
Liv'd in each look, and brighten'd all the green;
These, far departing, seek a kinder shore,
And rural mirth and manners are no more.
Sweet Auburn! parent of the blissful hour, Thy glades forlorn confess the tyrant's pow'r. Here, as I take my solitary rounds, Amidst thy tangling walks and ruin'd grounds, And, many a year elaps'd, return to view Where once the cottage stood, the hawthorn grew, Remembrance wakes with all her busy train, Swells at my breast, and turns the past to pain.
In all my wand'rings round this world of care,
In all my griefs-and God has giv❜n my share-
I still had hopes my latest hours to crown,
Amidst these humble bow'rs to lay me down;
To husband out life's taper at the close,
And keep the flame from wasting, by repose:
I still had hopes, for pride attends us still,
Amidst the swains to show my book-learn'd skill
Around my fire an ev'ning group to draw,
And tell of all I felt, and all I saw ;
And, as a hare, whom hounds and horns pursue
Pants to the place from whence at first she flew,
I still had hopes, my long vexations past,
Here to return-and die at home at last.
O blest retirement, friend to life's decline, Retreats from care, that never must be mine, How blest is he who crowns, in shades like these, A youth of labor with an age of ease; Who quits a world where strong temptations try And, since 'tis hard to combat, learns to fly! For him no wretches, born to work and weep, Explore the mine, or tempt the dang'rous deep; No surly porter stands, in guilty state, To spurn imploring famine from the gate; But on he moves to meet his latter end, Angels around befriending virtue's friend; Sinks to the grave with unperceiv'd decay, While resignation gently slopes the way;