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This is th' imperfect draught; but short as far
As the true height and bignefs of a ftar
Exceeds the measures of th' aftronomer.
She shines above, we know; but in what place,
How near the throne, and heaven's imperial face,
By our weak optics is but vainly guest;
Distance and altitude conceal the reft.
Though all these rare endowments of the mind
Were in a narrow space of life confin'd,
The figure was with full perfection crown'd;
Though not fo large an orb, as truly round.
As when in glory, through the public place,
The fpoils of conquer'd nations were to pass,
And but one day for triumph was allow'd,
The conful was constrain'd his pomp to crowd;
And fo the swift proceffion hurry'd on,
That all, though not diftinctly, might be shown:
So in the ftraiten'd bounds of life confin'd,
She gave but glimpfes of her glorious mind:
And multitudes of virtues pafs'd along;
Each preffing foremoft in the mighty throng,
Ambitious to be seen, and then make room
For greater multitudes that were to come.
Yet unemploy'd no minute flipt away;
Moments were precious in fo short a stay.
The hafte of heaven to have her was fo great,
That fome were fingle acts, though each compleat;
But every act food ready to repeat..
Her fellow-faints with bufy care will look For her bleft name in fate's eternal book;
And, pleas'd to be outdone, with joy will fee
Numberlefs virtues, endless charity:
But more will wonder at so short an age,
To find a blank beyond the thirtieth page:
And with a pious fear begin to doubt
The piece imperfect, and the rest torn out.
But 'twas her Saviour's time; and, could there be
A copy near th' original, 'twas fhe.
As precious gums are not for lafting fire,
They but perfume the temple, and expire:
So was the foon exhal'd, and vanish'd hence;
A fhort sweet odor, of a vast expence.
She vanish'd, we can scarcely fay fhe dy'd;
For but a Now did heaven and earth divide:
She pafs'd ferenely with a fingle breath;
This moment perfect health, the next was death:
One figh did her eternal bliss affure;
So little penance needs, when fouls are almost pure.
As gentle dreams our waking thoughts purfue;
Or, one dream pass'd, we slide into a new ;
So close they follow, fuch wild order keep,
We think ourselves awake, and are asleep:
So foftly death fucceeded life in her:
She did but dream of heaven, and she was there.
No pains she fuffer'd, nor expir'd with noise;
Her foul was whisper'd out with God's ftill voice;
As an old friend is beckon'd to a feast,
And treated like a long-familiar guest.
He took her as he found, but found her so,
As one in hourly readiness to go:
Ev'n on that day, in all her trim prepar'd;
As early notice she from heaven had heard,
And fome defcending courier from above
Had given her timely warning to remove;
Or counsel'd her to dress the nuptial room,
For on that night the bridegroom was to come.
He kept his hour, and found her where she lay
Cloath'd all in white, the livery of the day:
Scarce had the finn'd in thought, or word, or aft;
Unless omiffions were to pass for fact:
That hardly death a confequence could draw,
To make her liable to nature's law.
And, that the dy'd, we only have to show
The mortal part of her she left below:
The reft, fo smooth, fo fuddenly she went,
Look'd like tranflation through the firmament,
Or like the fiery car on the third errand sent.
O happy foul! if thou canft view from high,
Where thou art all intelligence, all eye,
If, looking up to God, or down to us,
Thou find'st, that any way be pervious,
Survey the ruins of thy houfe, and fee
Thy widow'd and thy orphan family:
Look on thy tender pledges left behind;
And, if thou canst a vacant minute find
From heavenly joys, that interval afford
To thy fad children, and thy mourning lord..
See how they grieve, mistaking in their love,
And shed a beam of comfort from above;
Give them, as much as mortal eyes can bear,
A tranfient view of thy full glories there;
That they with moderate forrow may sustain
And mollify their loffes in thy gain.
Or elfe divide the grief; for fuch thou wert,
That should not all relations bear a part,
It were enough to break a fingle heart.
Let this fuffice: nor thou, great saint, refuse
This humble tribute of no vulgar Muse:
Who, not by cares, or wants, or age depreft,
Stems a wild deluge with a dauntless breast;
And dares to fing thy praises in a clime
Where vice triumphs, and virtue is a crime;
Where ev'n to draw the picture of thy mind,
Is fatire on the moft of human kind:
Take it, while yet 'tis praife; before my rage,
Unfafely juft, break loofe on this bad age;
So bad, that thou thyself hadst no defence
From vice, but barely by departing hence..
Be what and where thou art: to wish thy place,
Were, in the beft, prefumption more than grace.
Thy relicks (fuch thy works of mercy are)
Have, in this poem, been my holy care.
As earth thy body keeps, thy foul the sky,
So fhall this verse preserve thy memory;
For thou shalt make it live, because it fings of thee.
A PASTORAL ELEGY.
WAS on a joylefs and a gloomy morn,
Wet was the grafs, and hung with pearls the
When Damon, who defign'd to pass the day
With hounds and horns, and chace the flying prey,
Rofe early from his bed; but foon he found
The welkin pitch'd with fullen clouds around,
An eaftern wind, and dew upon the ground.
Thus while he ftood, and fighing did furvey
The fields, and curft th' ill omens of the day,
He faw Menalcas come with heavy pace;
Wet were his eyes, and chearless was his face:
his hands, diftracted with his care,
And fent his voice before him from afar.
Return, he cry'd, return, unhappy fwain,
The fpungy clouds are fill'd with gathering rain:
The promise of the day not only cross'd,
But ev❜n the spring, the spring itself, is lost.
Amyntas-oh!-he could not fpeak the reft,
Nor needed, for prefaging Damon guefs'd.
Equal with heaven young Damon lov'd the boy,
The boaft of nature, both his parents' joy.
His graceful form revolving in his mind;
great a genius, and a foul so kind,
Gave fad affurance that his fears were true;
Too well the envy of the gods he knew: