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As when some stately vessel, bound
To bless'd Arabia's diftant ground,
Borne from her courses, haply lights
Where Barca's flow'ry clime invites,
Conceal'd around whose treach'rous land,
Lurks the dire rock, and dang'rous sand;
The pilot warns with fail and oar,
To fun the much suspected shore,
In vain; the tide, too subtly strong,
Still bears the wreftling bark along,
Till, found'ring, she refigns to fate,
And finks, oʻerwhelm’d, with all her freight.
So, baffling ev J bar to fin,
And Heav'n's own pilot, plac'd within,
Along the devious, smooth defcent,
With pow'rs increasing as they went,
The dames, accustom'd to fubdue,
As with a rapid current drew,
And o'er the fatal bounds convey'd
The lost, the long reluctant maid.
Here ftop, ye fair ones, and beware,
Nor send your fond affections there ;
Yet, yet your darling, now deplor'd,
May turn, to you and Heav'n restor'd;
Till then, with weeping Honour wait,
The servant of her better fate,
With Honour, left upon the shore,
Her friend and handmaid now no more ;
Nor, with the guilty world, upbraid
The fortunes of a wretch betray'd,
But o'er her failing cast the veil,
Rememb'ring, you yourselves are frail.
And now, from all-enquiring light,
Faft fled the conscious shades of night;
The damsel, from a short repose,
Confounded at her plight, arose.
As when, with slumb'rous weight oppress’d,
Some wealthy miser finks to rest,
Where felons eye the glitt'ring prey,
And steal his hoard of joys away ;
He, borne where golden Indus streams,
Of pearl, and quarry'd di'mond dreams,
Like Midas, turns the glebe to oar,
And stands all wrapt amidst his store,
But wakens, naked, and despoil'd
Of that, for which his
So far'd the nymph, her treasure flown,
And turn'd, like Niobe, to stone,
Within, without, obscure, and void,
She felt all ravag'd, all deftroy’d.
And, O thou curs’d, insidious coaft!
Are these the blessings thou can't boaft?
These, Virtue! these the joys they find,
Who leave thy heav'n-topt hills behind ?
Shade me, ye pines, ye caverns, hide,
Ye mountains, cover me, me cry'd !
Her trumpet Slander rais'd on high,
And told the tidings to the sky;
Contempt discharg'd a living dart,
A fide-long viper to her heart;
Reproach breath'd poisons o'er her face,
And foil'd, and blafted ev'ry grace ;
Officious Shame, her handmaid new,
Still turn'd the mirror to her view,
While those, in crimes the deepeft dy'd,
Approach'd, to whiten at her fide,
And every lewd, insulting dame,
Upon her folly rose to fame.
What should she do ? Attempt, once more,
To gain the late-deserted fhore;
So trusting, back the mourner flew;
As fast the train of fiends pursue.
Again the farther shore's attain'd,
Again the land of virtue gain'd;
But Echo gathers in the wind,
And shows her instant foes behind.
Amaz'd, with head-long speed the tends,
Where, late, she left an host of friends ;
Alas! those shrinking friends decline,
Nor longer own that form divine,
With fear they mark the following cry,
And from the lonely trembler fly,
Or backward drive her on the coast,
Where peace was wreck'd, and honour loft.
From earth, thus, hoping aid in vain,
To Heav'n, not daring to complain,
No truce by hostile Clamour giv’n,
And from the face of Friendship drir'r,
The nymph sunk prostrate on the ground,
With all her weight of woes around.
Enthron'd within a circling sky,
Upon a mount o'er mountains high,
All radiant fate, as in a shrine,
Virtue, first effluence divine;
Far, far above the scenes of woe,
That shut this cloud wrapt world below;
Superior goddess, effence bright,
Beauty of uncreated light,
Whom should mortality survey,
As doom'd upon a certain day,
The breath of frailty muft expire,
The world dissolve in living fire,
The gems of Heav'n, and solar flame,
Be quench'd by her eternal beam,
And Nature, quick’ning in her eye,
To rise a new-born Phenix, die.
Hence, unreveal'd to mortal view,
A veil around her form she threw,
Which three sad fifters of the shade,
Pain, Care, and Melancholy made.
Thro this, her all-enquiring eye,
Attentive from her station high,
Beheld, abandon’d to despair,
The ruins of her fav’rite fair;
And, with a voice whose awful found
Appal'd the guilty world around,
Bid the tumultuous winds be still ;
To numbers bow'd each liftning hill,
Uncurl'd the surging of the main,
And smooth'd the thorny bed of pain,
The golden harp of Heav'n she ftrung,
And thus the tuneful goddess sung.
Lovely penitent, arise,
Come, and claim thy kindred skies,
Come, thy fifter angels say
Thou hast wept thy stains away.
Let experience now decide
'Twixt the good and evil, try'd,
In the smooth, enchanted ground,
Say, unfold the treasures found.
Structures, rais'd by morning dreams,
Sands, that trip the fitting streams,
Down, that anchors on the air,
Clouds, that paint their changes there.
Seas, that smoothly cimpling lie,
While the storm impends on high,
Showing, in an obvious glass,
Joys, that in poffeffion pass;
Transient, fickle, light, and gay,
Flatt'ring, only to betray;
What, alas, can life contain !
Life! like all its circles- vain.
Will the stork, intending reft,
On the billow build her neft ?
Will the bee demand his store
From the bleak, and bladeless Ahore ?
Man, alone, intent to stray,
Ever turns from Wisdom's way,
Lays up wealth in foreign land,
Sows the sea, and plows the sand.