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85. 'Tis pleasant, by the cheerful hearth, to hear Of tempests and the dangers of the deep, And pause at times, and feel that we are safe; Then listen to the perilous tale again, And, with an eager and suspended soul, Woo terror to delight us. But to hear The roaring of the raging elements; To know all human skill, all human strength, Avail not; to look round, and only see The mountain-wave incumbent, with its weight Of bursting waters o'er the reeling bark— O God! this is, indeed, a dreadful thing! And he who hath endur'd the horror, once, Of such an hour, doth never hear the storm Howl round his home, but he remembers it, And thinks upon the suffering mariner. 86. There is a Pow'r Unseen, that rules th' illimitable world, That guides its motions from the brightest star To the least dust of this sin-tainted mould; While man, who madly deems himself the lord Of all, is nought but weakness and dependence. This sacred truth, by sure experience taught, Thou must have learned when wandering all alone, Each bird, each insect, flitting through the sky, Was more sufficient for itself than thou.

87. Reflect that life and death, affecting sounds, Are only varied modes of endless being. Reflect that life, like every other blessing, Derives its value from its use alone; Nor for itself, but for a nobler end, Th' Eternal gave it, and that end is virtue. When inconsistent with a greater good, Reason commands to cast the less away; Thus life, with loss of wealth, is well preserved, And virtue cheaply saved with loss of life.

88. What does not fade? The tower that long had stood
The crash of thunder and the warring winds,
Shook by the slow but sure destroyer time,
Now hangs in doubtful ruins o'er its base;
And flinty pyramids, and walls of brass,
Descend: the Babylonian spires are sunk :
Achaia, Rome, and Egypt, moulder down.
Time shakes the stable tyranny of thrones;
And tottering empires crush by their own weight.
This huge rotundity we tread grows old;
And all those worlds that roll around the sun :
The sun himself shall die; and ancient night
Again involve the desolate abyss:

Till the great FATHER, through the lifeless gloom,
Extend his arm to light another sun,

And bid new planets roll by other laws.

89. Oh, it is excellent to have a giant's strength; But it is tyrannous to use it like a giant.

Could great men thunder

As Jove himself does, Jove would ne'er be quiet;

For every pelting, petty officer,

Would use his heaven for thunder; nothing but thunder.

Merciful heaven!

Thou rather, with thy sharp and sulphurous bolt,
Splitt'st the unwedgeable and gnarled oak

Than the soft myrtle: O, but man, proud man!
Dress'd in a little brief authority,

Most ignorant of what he's most assur'd,

His glassy essence, like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastic tricks before high Heaven,
As make the angels weep; who, with our spleens,
Would all themselves laugh mortal.

90. As on thy mother's knee a new-born child,
Weeping thou sat'st, whilst all around thee smiled;
So live, that, sinking into death's long sleep,
Calm thou mayst smile, whilst all around thee weep.

91. So work the honey bees;
Creatures, that by a rule in nature teach
The art of order to a peopled kingdom.
They have a king, and officers of sorts;
Where some, like magistrates, correct at home;
Others, like merchants, venture trade abroad;
Others, like soldiers, armed in their stings,
Make boot upon the summer's velvet buds;
Which pillage they with merry march bring home
To the tent-royal of their emperor;

Who, busied in his majesty, surveys
The singing masons building roofs of gold;
The civil citizens kneading up the honey;
The poor mechanic porters crowding in
Their heavy burdens at his narrow gate;
The sad-eyed justice, with his surly hum,
Delivering o'er to executioners pale
The lazy yawning drone.

92. I have liv'd long enough; my way of life
Is fall'n into the sere, the yellow leaf:
And that which should accompany old age,
As honour, love, obedience, troops of friends,
I must not look to have; but in their stead,
Curses, not loud, but deep, mouth-honour, breath,
Which the poor heart would fain deny, but dare not.
93. Show me what thou'lt do.

Wilt weep ? Wilt fight? Wilt fast? Wilt tear thyself?
Wilt drink up Eisel? Eat a crocodile ?
I'll do't. Dost thou come here to whine?
To outface me with leaping in her grave?
Be buried quick with her, and so will I.

And if thou prate of mountains, let them throw
Millions of acres on us, till our ground,

Singeing his pate against the burning zone,
Nay, if thou'lt mouth,

Make Ossa like a wart!
I'll rant as well as thou.

94. And is this all? Can reason do no more Than bid me shun the deep, and dread the shore? Sweet moralist! afloat on life's rough sea, The Christian has an art unknown to thee; He holds no parley with unmanly fears, Where duty bids he confidently steers; Faces a thousand dangers at her call, And trusting in his God surmounts them all. 95. She never told her love, But let concealment, like a worm i' the bud, Feed on her damask cheek: she pined in thought; And, with a green and yellow melancholy, She sat like Patience on a monument,

Smiling at grief.

96. Rise with the lark, and with the lark to bed. The breath of night's destructive to the hue Of every flower that blows. Go to the field, And ask the humble daisy why it sleeps, Soon as the sun departs: Why close the eyes Of blossoms infinite, ere the still moon Her oriental veil puts off? Think why, Nor let the sweetest blossom be exposed That nature boasts, to night's unkindly damp. Well may it droop, and all its freshness lose. Compelled to taste the rank and poisonous steam Of midnight theatre, and morning ball. Give to repose the solemn hours she claims ; And from the forehead of the morning, steal The sweet occasion. Oh! there is a charm That morning has that gives the brow of age A smack of youth, and makes the life of youth Breathe perfumes exquisite. Expect it not, Ye who till morn upon a down bed lie, Indulging feverish sleep, or wakeful, dream Of happiness no mortal heart has felt, But in the regions of romance.


97. Oh, how canst thou renounce the boundless store Of charms which nature to her votaries yields? The warbling woodland, the resounding shore, The pomp of groves and garniture of fields; All that the genial ray of morning gilds, And all that echoes to the song of even;

All that the mountain's sheltering bosom shields,

And all the dread magnificence of heaven

Oh, how canst thou renounce, and hope to be forgiven? 98. It wins my admiration

To view the structure of that little work

A bird's nest. Mark it well within, without;

No tool had he that wrought; no knife to cut;
No nail to fix; no bodkin to insert;

No glue to join; his little beak was all;

And yet how nicely finish'd. What nice hand,
With every implement and means of art,
And twenty years' apprenticeship to boot,
Could make me such another?

99. The liquid lake that works below,
Bitumen, sulphur, salt, and iron scum,
Heaves up its boiling tide. The labouring mount
Is torn with agonizing throes. At once,
Forth from its side disparted, blazing pours
A mighty river, burning in prone waves,
That glimmer through the night, to yonder plain.
Divided there, a hundred torrent streams,
Each ploughing up its bed, roll dreadful on
Resistless. Villages, and woods, and rocks,
Fall flat before their sweep. The region round,
Where myrtle-walks and groves of golden fruit
Rose fair; where harvest waved in all its pride;
And where the vineyard spread its purple store,
Maturing into nectar; now despoiled

Of herb, leaf, fruit, and flower, from end to end
Lies buried under fire, a glowing sea!

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