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False eloquence, big empty sound,
Like showers, that rush upon the ground,
Little beneath the surface goes,
All streams along and muddy flows.
This sinks, and swells the buried grain,
And fructifies like southern rain.
His art, well hid in mild discourse,
Exerts persuasion's winning force,
And nervates so the good design,
That king Agrippa's case is mine,
Well-natur’d, happy shade, forgive !
Like you I think, but cannot live.
Thy scheme requires the world's contempt,
That, from dependence life exempt; .
And constitution fram’d so strong,
This world's worst climate cannot wrong.
Not such my lot, not Fortune's brat,
I live by pulling off the hat;
Compell’d by station every hour
To bow to images of power ;
And, in life’s busy scenes immers’d,
See better things, and do the worst.
Eloquent Want, whose reasons sway,
And make ten thousand truths give way,
While I your scheme with pleasure trace,
Draws near, and stares me in the face.
Consider well your state, she cries,
Like others kneel, that you may rise ;
Hold doctrines, by no scruples vex'd,
To which preferment is annex’d,
Nor madly prove, where all depends,
Idolatry upon your friends.
See, how you like my rueful face,
Such you must wear, if out of place.
Crack'd is your brain to turn recluse
Without one farthing out at use.
They, who have lands, and safe bank-stock;
With faith so founded on a rock,
May give a rich invention eafe,
And construe scripture how they please.
The honour'd prophet, that of old
Usd heav'n's high counsels to unfold,
Did, more than courier angels, greet
The crows, that brought him bread and meat.
A P & E M,
In Imitation of MILTON.
Has quoniam cæli nondum dignamur honore,
Quas dedimus certè terras habitare finamus.
N OW had th’archangel trumpet, rais’d sublime
Above the walls of heav'n, begun to sound; All æther took the blaft, and hell beneath Shook with celestial noise; th' almighty hoft Hot with pursuit, and reeking with the blood Of guilty cherubs smeard in sulphurous dust, Pause at the known command of sounding gold. At first they close the wide Tartarian gates, Th’impenetrable folds on brazen hinge Roll creaking horrible; the din beneath M 4
O’ercomes the roar of fames, and deafens hell.
Then through the solid gloom with nimble wing
They cut their shining traces up to light;
Return’d upon the edge of heavenly day,
Where thinnest beams play round the vast obscure,
And with eternal gleam drive back the night.
They find the troops less stubborn, less involv'd
In crime and ruin, barr’d the realms of peace,
Yet uncondemn’d to baleful seats of woe,
Doubtful and suppliant; all the plumes of light
Moult from their shuddering wings, and sickly fear
Shades every face with horror; conscious guilt
Rolls in the livid eye-ball, and each breast
Shakes with the dread of future doom unknown.
'Tis here the wide circumference of heaven
Opens in two vast gates, that inward turn
Voluminous, on jafper columns hung
By geometry divine: they ever glow
With living sculptures, that arise by turns
T'imboss the shining leaves, by turns they set
To give succeeding argument their place;
In holy hieroglyphics on they move,
The gaze of journeying angels, as they pass
Oft looking back, and held in deep surprize.
Here stood the troops distinct; the cherub guard
Unbarr'd the splendid gates, and in they roll
Harmonious; for a vocal fpirit fits
Within each hinge, and, as they onward drive,
In just divisions breaks the numerous jarr
With symphony melodious, such as spheres
Involv'd in tenfold wreaths are said to found. ·
Out flows a blaze of glory; for on high
Tow'ring advanc'd the moving throne of God,
Vast and majestic; on each radiant side
The pointed rays Nope glittering; at the foot
Glides a full tide of day, that onward pours,
In liquid torrents through the black abyss,
Sparkling among reluctant shapes which thence
Retire confus’d; as when Vesuvio shakes
With inward torments, and disgorges flames,
O’er the vast mountain's ridge the burning waves
Drive their refulgent curls, and on they roll
Sweeping the glowing flames down to the sea ;
Th’affrighted sea leaps back with hideous roar
To give the fire its course; thus Chaos wild
Hissing recoils to let in foods of light.
· Above the throne, th’ ideas heavenly bright Of paft, of present, and of coming time