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For her, inconftant man might cease to range,
And gratitude forbid defire to change.
But left harsh care the lover's peace destroy,
And roughly blight the tender buds of joy,
Let reason teach what paffion fain would hide,
That Hymen's bands by prudence should be ty’d.
Venus in vain the wedded pair would crown,
If angry fortune on their union frown:
Soon will the flatt'ring dream of bliss be o'er,
And cloy'd imagination cheat no more.
Then waking to the sense of lafting pain,
With mutual tears the nuptial couch they stain,
And that fond love, which fhould afford relief,
Does but increase the anguish of their grief;
While both could easier their own forrows bear,
Than the fad knowledge of each other's care.
Yet may you rather feel that virtuous pain,
Than fell your violated charms for gain;
Than wed the wretch whom you defpife, or hate,
For the vain glare of useless wealth or state.
The most abandoned proftitutes are they,
Who not to love, but av'rice fall a prey :
Nor aught avails the specious name of Wife ;
A maid fo wedded, is a Whore for Life.
Ev'n in the happiest choice, where fav'ring heay'n
Has equal love, and eafy fortune giv'n,
Think not, the husband gain'd, that all is done;
The prize of happiness muft ftill be won;
And oft, the careless find it to their cost,
The lover in the husband may be loft;
The graces might alone his heart allure;
They and the virtues meeting must secure.
Let ev'n your prudence wear the pleafing dress
Of care for him, and anxious tenderness.
From kind concern about his weal or woe,
Let each domeftic duty seem to flow;
Endearing every common act of life,
The mistress still fhall charm him in the wife!
And wrinkled age fhall unobferv'd come on,
Before his eye perceives one beauty gone:
Ev'n o'er your cold, and ever-facred urn,
His conftant flame fhall unextinguish'd burn.
'Tis thus, Belinda, I your charms improve,
And form your heart to all the arts of love;
The task were harder to fecure my own
Against the pow'r of those already known;
For well you twist the secret chains that bind
With gentle force the captivated mind,
Skill'd ev'ry foft attraction to employ,
Each flatt'ring hope, and each alluring joy;
I own your genius, and from you receive
The rules of pleasing, which to you I give.
'N Britain's ifle and Arthur's days,
When midnight Fairies daunc'd the maze,
Liv'd Edwin of the green;
Edwin, I wis, a gentle youth,
Endow'd with courage, fenfe, and truth,
Tho' badly fhap'd he been.
His mountain back mote well be faid
To measure height against his head,
And lift itself above;
Yet spite of all that nature did
To make his uncouth form forbid,
This creature dar'd to love.
He felt the charms of Edith's eyes,
Nor wanted hope to gain the prize,
Cou'd ladies look within ;
But one Sir Topaz drefs'd with art,
And, if a shape cou'd win a heart,
He had a fhape to win.
Edwin, if right I read my fong,
With flighted paffion pac'd along
All in the moony light;
'Twas near an old enchanted court, Where sportive fairies made resort To revel out the night.
His heart was drear, his hope was crofs'd,
"Twas late, 'twas far, the path was lost
That reach'd the neighbour-town;
With weary steps he quits the fhades,
Refolv'd, the darkling dome he treads,
And drops his limbs adown.
But fcant he lays him on the floor,
When hollow winds remove the door,
A trembling, rocks the ground:
And, well I ween to count aright,
At once an hundred tapers light
On all the walls around.
Now founding tongues affail his ear,
Now founding feet approachen near,
And now the founds increase:
And from the corner where he lay
He fees a train profufely gay
Come prankling o'er the place.
But (truft me Gentles!) never yet
Was dight a masquing half so neat,
Or half fo rich before:
The country lent the sweet perfumes,
The fea the pearl, the fky the plumes,
The town its filken ftore.
Now whilst he gaz'd, a gallant dreft,
In flaunting robes above the reft,
With awful accent cry'd;
What mortal of a wretched mind,
Whofe fighs infect the balmy wind,
Has here prefum'd to hide ?
At this the fwain, whofe vent'rous foul No fears of magic art controul,
Advanc'd in open fight;
"Nor have I caufe of dreed, he faid,
"Who view by no presumption led "Your revels of the night.
""Twas grief, for fcorn of faithful love, "Which made my steps unweeting rove, "Amid the nightly dew."
'Tis well the gallant cries again,
We fairies never injure men
Who dare to tell us true.