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AIREST, this vifion is thy due,
I form'd th' instructive plan for you.
Slight not the rules of thoughtful age,
Your welfare actuates every page;
But ponder well my facred theme,
And tremble, while you read my dream.
Thofe aweful words, " "Till death do part,"
May well alarm the youthful heart:
No after-thought when once a wife ;
The die is caft, and cast for life;
Yet thousands venture ev'ry day,
As fome base paffion leads the way.
Pert Silvia talks of wedlock-fcenes,
Tho' hardly enter'd on her teens ;
Smiles on her whining spark, and hears
The fugar'd speech with raptur'd ears ;.
Impatient of a parent's rule,
She leaves her fire and weds a fool;
Want enters at the guardless door,
And Love is fled, to come no more.
Some few there are of fordid mould,
Who barter youth and bloom for gold;
Careless with what, or whom they mate,
Their ruling paffion's all for state.
But Hymen, gen'rous, juft, and kind,
Abhors the mercenary mind:
Such rebels groan beneath his rod,
For Hymen's a vindictive God :
Be joyless ev'ry night, he said,
And barren be their nuptial bed.
Attend, my fair, to wifdom's voice,,
A better fate shall crown thy choice.
A married life, to speak the best,
Is all a lottery confest:
Yet if my fair one will be wife,
I will infure my girl a prize;
Tho' not a prize to match thy worth,,
Perhaps thy equal's not on earth.
"Tis an important point to know,
There's no perfection here below.
Man's an odd compound, after all,
And ever has been fince the fall.
Say, that he loves you from his foul,
Still man is proud, nor brooks controul..
And tho' a flave in love's foft fchool,,
In wedlock claims his right to rule.
The beft, in fhort, has faults about him,
If few those faults, you must not flout him.
With fome, indeed, you can't difpenfe,
As want of temper, and of fenfe.
For when the fun deserts the skies,
And the dull winter evenings rife,
Then for a husband's focial pow'r,
To form the calm, converfive hour ;
The treafures of thy breaft explore,
From that rich mine to draw the ore ;:
Fondly each gen'rous thought refine;
And give thy native gold to shine ;
Shew thee, as really thou art,
Tho' fair, yet fairer ftill at heart.
Say, when life's purple bloffoms fade,
As foon they muft, thou charming maid ;.
When in thy cheeks the roses die,
And fickness clouds that brilliant eye ;
Say, when or age or pains invade,.
And thofe dear limbs fhall call for aid ;.
If thou art fetter'd to a fool,
Shall not his tranfient paffion cool?
And when thy health and beauty end,.
Shall thy weak mate persist a friend ?
But to a man of sense, my dear,
Ev'n then thou lovely shalt appear ;·
He'll share the griefs that wound thy heart,
And weeping claim the larger part ;-
Tho' age impairs that beauteous face,.
He'll prize the pearl beyond its cafe..
In wedlock when the fexes meet,
Friendship is only then complete.
"Bleft ftate! where fouls each other draw,
"Where love is liberty and law!"
The choiceft bleffing found below,
That man can wish, or heaven bestow!
Trust me, these raptures are divine,
For lovely Chloe once was mine!
Nor fear the varnish of my ftile,
Tho' poet, I'm eftrang'd to guile..
Ah me! my faithful lips impart
The genuine language of my heart!
When bardǝ extol their patrons high,
Perhaps 'tis gold extorts the lye;
Perhaps the poor reward of bread-
But who burns incenfe to the dead!
He, whom a fond affection draws,
Careless of cenfure, or applaufe;
Whofe foul is upright and fincere,
With nought to wish, and nought to fear.
Now to my vifionary scheme,
Attend, and profit by my dream.
Amidft the flumbers of the night
A ftately temple 'rofe to fight;
And ancient as the human race,
If Nature's purposes you trace.
This fane, by all the wife rever'd,
To Wedlock's pow'rful God was rear'd..
Hard by I faw a graceful fage,
His locks were frofted o'er by age;
His garb was plain, his mind ferene,
And wisdom dignify'd his mien.
With curious fearch his name I fought,
And found 'twas Hymen's fav'rite-Thought.
Apace the giddy crowds advance,
And a lewd fatyr led the dance;
I griev'd to see whole thousands run,
For oh! what thousands are undone !
The fage, when these mad troops he spy'd,
In pity flew to join their fide ;
The difconcerted pairs began
To rail against him to a man ;
Vow'd they were strangers to his name,
Nor knew from whence the dotard came.
But mark the fequel-for this truth
Highly concerns impetuous youth:
Long ere the honey moon cou'd wane,
Perdition feiz'd on ev'ry twain;
At ev'ry house, and all day long,
Repentance ply'd her fcorpion thong;
Difguft was there with frowning mien,
And ev'ry wayward child of spleen.
Hymen approach'd his aweful fane,
Attended by a numʼrous train :
Love with each foft and nameless grace,
Was firft in favour and in place :
Then came the God with folemn gait,
Whofe ev'ry word was big with fate;