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Pleasures of fenfe we leave for boys;
Be fhining duft the mifer's food;
Let fancy feed on fame and noise,
Souls muft purfue diviner joys,
And feize th' immortal good.




ORGIVE me, Mitio, that there fhould be any mortfying lines in the following poems infcribed to you, fo foon after your entrance into that state which was defigned for the compleateft happiness on earth: But you will quickly difcover, that the Mufe in the first poem only reprefents the fhades and dark colours that melancholy throws upon love, and the focial life. In the fecond, perhaps the indulges her own bright ideas a little. Yet if the accounts are but well balanced at laft, and things fet in a due light, I hope there is no ground for cenfure. Here you will find an attempt made to talk of one of the most important concerns of human nature in verfe, and that with a folemnity becoming the argument. I have banished grimace and ridicule, that perfons of the moft ferious character may read without offence. What was written feveral years ago to yourself is now permitted to entertain the world; but you may affume it to yourself as a private entertainment still, while you lie concealed behind a feigned






LIFE's a long tragedy: This globe the stage,
Well fix'd and well adorn'd with strong machines,
Gay fields, and skies, and feas: The actors many :
The plot immenfe: A flight of dæmons fit

On every failing cloud with fatal purpose;
And fhoots across the scenes ten thousand arrows
Perpetual and unseen, headed with pain,
With forrow, infamy, disease, and death.

The pointed plagues fly filent through the air,
Nor twangs the bow, yet fure and deep the wound.

Dianthe acts her little part alone,

Nor wishes an affociate. Lo fhe glides

Single through all the storm, and more fecure; Lefs are her dangers, and her breast receives The fewest darts. "But, O my lov'd Marilla, "My fifter, once my friend, (Dianthe cries) "How much art thou expos'd! Thy growing foul "Doubled in wedlock, multiply'd in children, "Stands but the broader mark for all the mischiefs "That rove promifcuous o'er the mortal stage: "Children, thofe dear young limbs, thofe tendereft pieces Of your own flesh, thofe little other felves, "How they dilate the heart to wide dimensions, "And foften every fibre to improve

"The mother's fad capacity of pain!

"I mourn Fidelio too; though heaven has chofe

A fa

"A favourite mate for him, of all her fex
"The pride and flower: How bleft the lovely pair,.
Beyond expreffion, if well mingled loves

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"And woes well mingled could improve our bliss! "Amidst the rugged cares of life behold "The father and the hufband; flattering names, "That spread his title, and enlarge his share "Of common wretchedness. He fondly hopes "To multiply his joys, but every hour "Renews the difappointment and the fmart. "There not a wound afflicts the meanest joint: "Of his fair partner, or her infant-train, "(Sweet babes!) but pierces to his inmoft foul. Strange is thy power, O Love! what numerous veins,. "And arteries, and arms, and hands, and eyes, "Are link'd and faften'd to a lover's heart,

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Sy ftrong but fecret ftrings! With vain attempt "We put the Stoic on, in vain we try

"To break the ties of nature and of blood;

"Thofe hidden threads maintain the dear communion their thrilling motions

Inviolably firm

"Reciprocal give endlefs fympathy

"In all the bitters and the fweets of life.
"Thrice happy man, if pleasure only knew.
"Thefe avenues of love to reach our fouls,
"And pain had never found them!"

Thus fang the tuneful maid, fearful to try
The bold experiment. Oft Daphnis came,
And oft Narciffus, rivals of her heart,



Luring her eyes with trifles dipt in gold,
And the
gay filken bondage. Firm fhe ftood,
And bold repuls'd the bright temptation ftill,
Nor put the chains on; dangerous to try,
And hard to be diffolv'd. Yet rising tears
Sate on her eye-lids, while her numbers flow'd
Harmonious forrow; and the pitying drops
Stole down her cheeks, to mourn the hapless state
Of mortal love. Love, thou beft blessing sent
To foften life, and make our iron cares
Eafy: But thy own cares of fofter kind

Give sharper wounds: They lodge too near the heart,
Beat, like the pulse, perpetual, and create
A ftrange uneasy fenfe, a tempting pain.

Say, my companion Mitio, fpeak fincere, (For thou art learned now) what anxious thoughts, What kind perplexities tumultuous rise,

If but the absence of a day divide

Thee from thy fair beloved! Vainly fmiles
The chearful fun, and night with radiant eyes
Twinkles in vain: The region of thy foul
Is darkness, till thy better star appear.
Tell me, what toil, what torment to sustain
The rolling burden of the tedious hours?
The tedious hours are ages. Fancy roves
Reftlefs in fond inquiry, nor believes
Chariffa fafe: Chariffa, in whole life
Thy life confifts, and in her comfort thine.
Fear and furmife put on a thousand form:s


Of dear difquietude, and round thine ears
Whisper ten thousand dangers, endless woes,
Till thy frame fhudders at her fancy'd death;
Then dies my Mitio, and his blood creeps cold
Through every vein. Speak, does the ftranger Mufe
Caft happy gueffes at the unknown passion,
Or has the fabled all? Inform me, friend,
Are half thy joys fincere? Thy hopes fulfill'd
Or fruftrate? Here commit thy fecret griefs.
To faithful ears, and be they bury'd here
In friendship and oblivion; left they spoil
Thy new-born pleasures with diftafteful gall.
Nor let thine eye too greedily drink in

The frightful profpect, when untimely death
Shall make wild inroads on a parent's heart,
And his dear offspring to the cruel grave
Are dragg'd in fad fucceffion, while his foul
Is torn away piece-meal: Thus dies the wretch
A various death, and frequent, ere he quit
The theatre, and make his Exit final.

But if his deareft half, his faithful mate
Survive, and in the fweeteft faddeft airs

Of love and grief, approach with trembling hand
To close his fwimming eyes, what double pangs,
What racks, what twinges rend his heart-strings off
From the fair bofom of that fellow-dove

He leaves behind to mourn? What jealous cares
Hang on his parting foul, to think his love
Expos'd to wild oppreffion, and the herd


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