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That natural night, once drest with orient beams, Gibbons and Radcliffe do but rarely guess ;
To-day they 've good, to-morrow, no success. A miscellaneous composition, made
Ev'n Garth and Maurus ' sometimes shall prevail, Of night and day, of sunshine and of shade. When Gibson, learned Hannes, and Tyson, fail. Through an uncertain medium now we look, And, more than once, we're seen, that blundering And find that falsehood, which for truth we took:
Sloane, So rays projected from the eastern skies,
Missing the gout, by chance has hit the stone; Show the false day before the Sun can rise. The patient does the lucky errour find:
That little knowledge now which man obtains, A cure he works, thongh not the cure design'd. From outward objects, and from sense he gains : Custom, the world 's great idol, we adore; He, like a wretched slave, must plod and sweat; And knowing this, we seek to know no more. By day must toil, hy night that tvil repeat; What education did at first receive, And yet, at last, what little fruit he gains ! Our ripen'd age confirms us to believe. A beggar's harvest, glean'd with mighty pains ! The careful nurse, and priest, are all we need,
The passions, still predominant, will rule To learn opinions, and our country's creed : Ungovern'd, rude, not bred in Reason's school ;
The parent's precepts early are instill’d, Our understanding they with darkness fill,
And spoil the man, while they instruct the child. Cause strong corruptions, and pervert the will. To what hard fate is human kind betray'd, On these the soul, as on some flowing tide, When thus implicit faith, a virtue made; Must sit, and on the raging billows ride,
When education more than truth prevails, Hurried away; for how can be withstood
And nought is current but wbat custom seals ? Th’impetuous torrent of the boiling blood ? Thus, from the time we first began to know, Begone, false hopes, for all our learning 's vain; We live and learn, but not the wiser grow. Can we be free where these the rule maintain ? We seldom use our liberty aright, These are the tools of knowledge which we use; Nor judge of things by universal light: The spirits heated, will strange things produce. Our prepossessions and affections bind Tell me, whoe'er the passions could control, The soul in chains, and lord it o'er the mind; Or from the body disengage the soul :
And if self-interest be but in the case, Till this is done, our best pursuits are vain, Our unexamin'd principles may pass ! To conquer truth, and unmix'd knowledge gain: Good Heavens! that man should thus himself deThrough all the bulky volumes of the dead, [bred, ceive, And through those books that modern times have To learn on credit, and on trust beliere! With pain we travel, as through moorish ground, Better the mind no notions had retain'd, Where scarce one useful plant is ever found; But still a fair, unwritten blank remain'd: O'er-run with errours, which so thick appear, For now, who truth from falsehood would discern, Our search proves vain, no spark of truth is there. Must first disrobe the mind, and all unlearn.
What's all the noisy jargon of the schools, Errouirs, contracted in unmindful youth, But idle nonsense of laborious fools,
When once remov'd, will sinooth the way to truth: Wijo fetter Reason with perplexing rules? To dispossess the child, the mortal lives; What in Aquina's bulky works are found,
But Death approaches ere the man arrives. Does not erilighten Reason, but confound :
Those who would learning's glorious kingdom finde Who travels Scotus' swelling tomes, shall find The dear-bought purchase of the trading mind, A cloud of darkness rising on the mind;
From many dangers must themselves acquit, In controverted points can Reason sway,
And more than Scylla and Charybdis meet. When passion, or conceit, still hurries us away! Oh! what an ocean must be voyag'd o'er, Thus his new notions Sherlock would instil, To gain a prospect of the shining shore ! And clear the greatest mysteries at will;
Resisting rocks oppose th' inquiring soul, But, by unlucky wit, perplex'd them more, And adverse waves retard it as they roll. And made them darker than they were before. Does not that foolish deference we pay South soon oppos’d him, out of Christian zeal; To men that liv'd long since, our passage stay? Showing how well he could dispute and rail. What odd, preposterous paths at first we tread, How shall we e'er discover which is right,
And learn to walk by stumbling on the dead! When both so eagerly maintain the fight?
First we a blessing from the grave implore, Each does the other's arguments deride ;
Worship old urns, and monuments adore! Each has the church and scripture on his side. The reverend sage, with vast esteem, we prize: The sharp, ill-natur'd combat 's but a jest; He liv'd long since, and must be wondrous wise! Both may be wrong ; one, perhaps, errs the least. Thus are we debtors to the famous dead, How shall we know which articles are true,
For all those errours which their fancies bred: The old ones of the church, or Burnet's new? Errours indeed! for real knowledge stay'd In paths uncertain and unsafe he treads,
With those first times, not further was convey'd:. Who blindly follows other fertile heads:
While light opinions are much lower brought, What sure, what certain mark have we to know, For on the waves of ignorance they float: The right or wrong, 'twixt Burgess, Wake, and Howe? But solid truth scarce ever gains the shore,
Should unturn’d Nature crave the medic art, So soon it sinks, and ne'er emerges more. What health can that contentious tribe impart Suppose those many dreadful dangers past; Every physician writes a different bill,
Will knowledge dawn, and bless the mind, at last? And gives no other reason but his will.
Ah, no, 't is now environ'd from our eyes,
Sir Richard Blackmore
Truth, like a single point, escapes the sight, He said. I mus'd ; and thus return'd:
• What ensigns, courteous stranger, tell, But what resembles truth is soon descry'd,
Shall the brooding day reveal ?”
" Already, stupid with their crimes,
And reveld in luxuriant peace;
And bacchanals led on their swift advancing doom."
And dare t' assuage the angry skies;
And from the cross, alas ! he does neglected sigb;
So long the gore through poison'd veins has flow'd,
That scarcely ranker is a fury's blood;
Yet specious artifice, and fair disguise,
The monster's shape, and curst design, belies:
A fiend's black venom, in an angel's mien, A PINDARIC ODE, ON CHRIST'S SECOND APPEARANCE, TO He quafis, and scatters, the contagious spleen: JUDGE THE WORLD.
Straight, when he finishes his lawless reign,
Nature shall paint the shining scene, Adieu, ye toyish reeds, that once could please Quick as the lightning which inspires the train. My softer lips, and lull my cares to ease : Begone; I 'll waste no more vain hou. s with you: Forward Confusion shall provoke the fray, And, smiling Sylvia too, adien.
And Nature from her ancient order stray; A brighter power invokes my Muse,
Black tempests, gathering from the seas around, And loftier thoughts and raptures does infuse.
In horrid ranges shall advance ; See, beckoning from yon cloud, he stands, And, as they march, in thickest sables drown'd, And promises assistance with his hands :
The rival thunder from the clouds shall sound, I feel the heavy-rolling God,
And lightnings join the fearful dance: Incumbent, revel in his frail abode.
The blustering armies o'er the skies shall spread, How my breast heaves, and pulses beat!
And universal terrour shed; I sink, I sink, beneath the furious heat :
Lond issuing peals, and rising sheets of smoke, The weighty bliss o'erwhelms my breast,
Th’ encumber'd region of the air shall choke; And overflowing joys profusely waste.
The noisy main shall lash the suffering shore, Some nobler
bard, O sacred Power, inspire, And from the rocks the breaking billows roar! Or soul more large, th' elapses to receive :
Black thunder bursts, blue lightning burns, And, brighter yet, to catch the fire,
And melting worlds to heaps of ashes turns ! And each gay following charm from death to save! The forests shall beneath the tempest bend, - In vain the suit-the God infames my breast; And rugged winds the nodding cedars rend.
I rave, with ecstasies opprest :
Reverse all Nature's web shall run,
And spotless Misrule all around, The leading deity I have in view;
Order, its flying foe, confound ; Nor mortal knows, as yet, what wonders will ensue. Whilst backward all the threads' shall haste to be.
unspun. We pass'd through regions of unsullied light; Triumphant Chaos, with bis oblique wand,
I gaz'd, and sicken'd at the blissful sight; (The wand with which, ere time begun, A shuddering paleness seiz'd my look:
His wandering slaves he did command, At last the pest few off, and thus I spoke : And made them scamper right, and in rude ranges " Say, Sacred Gaide, shall this bright clime
run) Survive the fatal test of time,
The hostile Harmony shall chase; Or perish, with our mortal globe below,
And as the nymph resigns her place, When yon Sun no longer shines ?”
And, panting, to the neighbouring refuge flies, Straight I finish'd-veiling low :
The formless ruffian slaughters with his eyes, The visionary power rejoins :
And, following, storms the perching dame's retreat, K'T is not for you to ask, nor mine to say,
Adding the terrour of his threat; The piceties of that tremendous day.
The globe shall faintly tremble round, Know, when o'er-jaded Time his round has run, And backward jolt, distorted with the wound. And finish'd are the radiant journeys of the Sun, The great decisive morn shall rise,
Swath'd in substantial shrowds of night, And Heaven's bright Judge appear in opening skies ! The sickening Sun shall from the world retire, Eternal grace and justice he'll bestow
Stripp'd of his dazzling robes of fire ; (light! On all the trembling world below.”
Which, dangling once shed round a lavish flood of No frail eclipse, but all essential shade,
His wings the wind, rough storms the chariot bear, Not yielding to primeval gloom,
And nimble harbingers before him fiy, Whilst Day was yet an embryo in the womb; And with officious rudeness brush the air; Nor gliminering in its source, with silver streamers Halt as he halts, then doubling in their flight, play'd,
In horrid sport with one another vie, A jetty mixture of the darkness spread
And leave behind quick-winding tracts of light; O'er inurmuring Egypt's head;
Then urging, to their ranks they close, [pose. And that which angels drew
And shivering, lest they start, a sailing caravan comO’er Nature's face, when Jesus died; Which sleeping ghosts for this mistook,
The Mighty Judge rides in tempestuous state, And, rising, off their hanging funerals shook, Whilst mighty guards his orders wait: And fleeting pass'd expos'd their bloodless breast to His waving vestments shine view,
Bright as the Sun, which lately did its beam resign, Yet find it not so dark, and to their dormitories And burnish'd wreaths of light shall make his form glide.
Strong beams of majesty around his temples play, Now bolder fires appear,
And the transcendent gaiety of his face allay: And o'er the palpable obscurement sport,
His Father's reverend characters he'll wear, Glaring and gay as falling Lucifer, [court, And both o'erwhelm with light, and overawe with Yet mark'd with fate, as when he fled th' ethereal
fear. And plung'd into the opening gulf of night;
Myriads of angels shall be there, A sabre of immortal flame I bore,
And I, perhaps, close the tremendous rear; And, with this arm, his flourishing plume I tore, Angels, the first and fairest sons of Day, (gay. And straight the fiend retreated from the fight. Clad with eternal youth, and as their vestments Mean time the lambient prodigies on high
Nor for magnificence alone, Take gamesome measures in the sky;
To brighten and enlarge the pageant scene, Joy'd with his future feast, the thunder roars Shall we encircle his more dazzling throue, In chorus to th' enormous harmony;
And swell the lustre of his pompous train; And holloos to his offspring from sulphureous stores:
The nimble ministers of bliss or woe Applauding how they tilt, and how they fly,
We shall attend, and save, or deal the blow, And their each nimble turn, and radiant embassy. As he admits to joy, or bids to pain. The Moon turns paler at the sight,
The welcome news And all the blazing orbs deny their light; Through every angel's breast fresh rapture shall The lightning with its livid tail
diffuse. A train of glittering terrours draws behind,
The day is come, Which o'er the trembling world prevail; When Satan with his powers shall sink to endless Wing'd and blown on by storms of wind,
doom. They show the hideous leaps, on either hand,
No more shall we his hostile troops pursue Of Night, that spreads her ebon curtains round, From cloud to cloud, nor the long fight renew.
And there erects her royal stand, In seven-folů winding jet her conscious temples Then Raphael, big with life, the trump shall sound, bound.
From falling spheres the joyful music shall rebound,
And seas and shores shall catch and propagate it The stars, next starting from their spheres,
round: In giddy revolutions leap and bound;
Louder he 'll blow, and it shall speak more shrill, Whilst this with doubtful fury glares,
Than when, from Sinai's hill, And meditate new wars,
In thunder, through the horrid reddening smoke, And wheels in sportive gyres around,
Th’ Almighty spoke; Its neighbour shall advance to fight;
We 'll shont around with martial joy, And while each offers to enlarge its right,
And thrice the vaulted skies shall rend, and thrice The general ruin shall increase,
our shouts reply. And banish all the votaries of peace.
Then first th’ Archangel's voice, aloud, No more the stars, with paler beams,
Shall cheerfully salute the day and throng, Shall tremble o'er the midnight streams,
And hallelujah fill the crowd ; But travel downward to behold
And I, perhaps, shall close the song. What mimics them so twinkling there: ,And, like Narcissus, as they gain'd more near, From its long sleep all human race shall rise, For the lov'd image straight expire,
And see the morn and Judge advancing in the skies: And agonize in warm desire,
To their old teuements the souls return, Or slake their lust, as in the stream they roll. Whilst down the steep of Heaven as swift the Judge
descends! Whilst the world burns, and all the orbs below These look illustrious bright, no more to mourn: In their viperous ruins glow,
Whilst, see, distracted looks yon stalking shades They sink, and unsupported leave the skies,
attend. Which fall abrupt, and tell their torment in the The saints no more shall conflict on the deep, noise.
Nor rugged waves insult the labouring ship; Then see th’ Almighty Judge, sedate and bright, But from the wreck in triumph they arise, Cloth'd in imperial robes of light !
And borne to bliss shall tread empyreal skies.