« AnteriorContinuar »
Wit kindled by the sulph'rous breath of Vice,
Like the blue lightning, while it shines destroys;
But Genius, fir'd by Truth's eternal ray, 491
Burns clear and constant, like the source of day :
Like this its beam prolific and refin'd,
Feeds, warms, inspirits, and exalts the mind;
Mildly dispels each wintry passion's gloom, 495
all the virtues into bloom.
This praise, immortal Pope! to thee be giv'n;
Thy genius was indeed a gift from heav'n.
Hail, Bard unequall'd! in whose deathless line
Reason and wit with strength collected shine; 500
Where matchless wit but wins the second praise
Lost, nobly lost, in truth's superior blaze.
Did freindship e'er mislead thy wand'ring muse?
That friendship sure may plead the great excuse ;
That sacred friendship which inspir'd thy song, 505
Fair in defect, and amiably wrong.
Error like this ev'n truth can scarce reprove;
'Tis almost virtue when it flows from love.
Ye deathless names! ye sons of endless praise ! By virtue crown'd with never fading bays !
510 Say, shall an artless Muse, if you inspire, Light her pale lamp at your immortal fire ? Or if, O Warburton! inspir'd by you, The daring Muse a nobler path pursue,
By you inspir'd, on trembling pinions soar, 515
The sacred founts of social bliss explore;
In her bold numbers chain the tyrant's rage,
And bid her country's glory fire her page:
If such her fate, do thou, fair Truth! descend,
And watchful guard her in an honest end : 520
Kindly severe, instruct her equal line
To court no friend, nor own a foe, but thine.
But if her giddy eye should vainly quit
Thy sacred paths, to run the maze of wit,
If her apostate heart should e'er incline
To offer incense at Corruption's shrine;
Urge, urge thy pow'r, the black attempt confound,
And dash the smoking censer to the ground.
Thus aw'd to fear, instructed bards may see
That guilt is doom'd to sink in infamy.
Written in the year 1708.
DESCEND, ye Nine! descend and sing,
The breathing instruments inspire;
Wake into voice each silent string,
And sweep the sounding lyre!
In a sadly-pleasing strain
Let the warbling lute complain ;
Let the loud trumpet sound
Till the roofs all around
The shrill echoes rebound;
While in more lengthen'd notes and slow
The deep, majestic, solemn organs blow.
Hark! the numbers soft and clear
Gently steal upon the ear;
Now louder, and yet louder rise,
And fill with spreading sounds the skies.
Exulting in triumph now swell the bold notes,
In broken air trembling the wild music floats;
Till by degrees, remote and small,
The strains decay,
And melt away
In a dying, dying fall.
By Music minds an equal temper know,
Nor swell too high nor sink too low.
If in the breast tumultuous joys arise,
Music her soft assuasive voice applies ;
Or when the soul is press'd ith cares,
Exalts her in enliv'ning airs.
Warriors she fires with animated sounds,
Pours balm into the bleeding lover's wounds;
Melancholy lifts her head,
Morpheus rouses from his bed,
Sloth unfolds her arms and wakes,
List’ning Envy drops her snakes;
Intestine war no more our passions wage,
And giddy factions bear away their rage.
But when our country's cause provokes to arms,
How martial music ev'ry bosom warms!
So when the first bold vessel dar'd the seas,
High on the stern the Thracian rais'd bis strain,
While Argo saw her kindred trees
Descend from Pelion to the main :
Transported demigods stood round,
And men grew heroes at the sound,
Inflam'd with Glory's charms:
Each chief his sev’nfold shield display'd,
And half unsheath'd the shining blade ;
And seas, and rocks, and skies, rebound,
To arms, to arms, to arms !
But when thro' all th' infernal bounds,
Which flaming Phlegethon surrounds,
Love, strong as Death, the Poet led
To the pale nations of the dead,
What sounds were heard,
What scenes appear'd,
O'er all the dreary coasts!
Fires that glow,
Shrieks of woe,
And cries of tortur'd ghosts!