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To one, in all the pride of thoughtless May,
Of health improvident, and nature gay;
Untutor❜d yet in wisdom's facred school,
And in the one great needful thing--a fool.
To say that beauty's frail will seem more odd,
Than doubt of providence, or doubt a God:
Your cares devoted only to employ
The golden hours, to deck a fparkling toy;
To fpin the thread, to spread the guileful art,
To catch the idle, giddy, flutt'ring heart:
In affectation every charm express,
And torture every feature into dress.
The fop, the coxcomb, buzzing round you fly,
Live, if you fmile, and if you frown, they die.
On air-blown bubbles flattery's altar raise,
Diffufing round the fmoak of empty praise,
Defpoil all nature's works of every grace,
To shape your person, and adorn your face.
Not all the blooming colours of the field,
Sufficient ftrength of epithet can yield;
Your white and red how delicate to fhow
The lily and the rose not only blow,
Earth's bowels rent, GOLCOND, and VISAPOUR
Lend their affistance to th' imperfect flower.
Your eye-the diamond's brightest water fhows;
Your lips-the ruby's crimfon blufh difclofe;
Your veins the fapphire's comely blue deride,
Within the garnet rolls a scarlet tide.
* Two places in the Mogul's dominions famous for jewels.
Old father ocean too must give his share,
And yield his gems to compliment the fair:
Upon your cheek the ruddy corals dwell;
Of orient pearl your mouth a little cell.
Nor these enough. -to dignify the lie,
Sun, moon, and ftars, th' hyperbole supply:
Sun, moon, and ftars, lofe their diminish'd light,
In their meridian dim, to make you bright:
Some planet falls each beauty to refine,
And in your locks whole conftellations fhine.
Thus deckt in all the glory of the skies,
A goddefs, or an angel's form you rife.
Such is the froth that fpumy flattery throws,
And fuch the founding nothing from her flows:
How frail! how light !-yet frailer, lighter fhe,
That by fuch emptiness deceiv'd can be.
My ferious numbers truths fevere explain,
Beauty to the most perfect point, is vain.
SYLVIA, awhile your mighty cares fufpend, And from the toilet's anxious work defcend; The noify fcenes of idlenefs difown, And dare one fingle hour to be alone; Your wither'd monitor emphatic tells, On what a weak unfteady base it dwells; Or if you'll have the doctrine more explain'd, Behold yon cloud with circling colours stain’d. In what a graceful lofty arch it bends! From hill to hill the varying dye extends; But when a few diftilling drops are o'er, The gay deluding phantom is no more.
See how the froth-blown bubbles mount on high,
Reflecting all creation as they fly;
Breathe foft, ye zephyrs! as the globe revolves,
The zephyrs fofteft breath its frame diffolves.
Nor this, nor that, more exquifitely weak,
Than the carnation of a beauteous cheek ;
Alike conftructed, and alike enjoy'd,
The wonder of a minute-
then destroy'd. Flattery, avaunt!-O SYLVIA, cease thy care, To gild a gaudy phantom made of air; Nor to the changes of a painted cloud More adoration pay, than to your God. Let not the bufy moments drive away In bufy nothing through the posted day; Your manners change, your giddy thoughts redress, And break that houfhold god-the looking-glafs. Come like the penitent with off'rings meet, And lay your follies at your Saviour's feet; Studious of thought, collect the mental ray, Turn inward on yourself, and learn to pray. The understanding form, the judgment clear, Lift up the eye to heaven- behold--and fear. And in retired filence try to find
Wisdom, the facred council of the mind:
From ftrong reflection then you'll quickly know,
Beauty's the vaineft vanity below.
OR, THE VANITY OF HUMAN GREATNESS.
OW folemn is the pile!-how ftill the fcenes!-
What serious dread!-what awful filence reigns!
The lift'ning ear receives no other found,
But echoes whisp'ring thro' the vaulted round.
No other objects ftrike the wond'ring eyes,
But venerable columns that arise,
And on their capitals uprear aloof
The pond'rous arches of yon diftant roof.
Or where the PARIAN ftone, and figur'd brafs,
A group of melancholy forms express;
In mimic art, the weeping marble breathes,
And twisted pillars fwell with mournful wreaths:
In pomp of fad magnificence, to spread
Their monumental honors o'er the dead.
Such, and fo folitary the retreat
Of royal splendor, and the stately great;
Here all the heads that wore the Gallic crown,
From DAGOBERT to mighty LEWIS down;
Within the leaden arms of death are prest,
And all their cares and conquefts laid to reft:
One common fate with other mortals fcan,
For he who liv'd a monarch dies a man.
The church where the kings of France are buried.
No courtier here, no fycophant attends,
The practis'd knee no cringing flatterer bends;
No armed guards in glitt'ring order wait,
No fhining equipages croud the gate!
The robe, the crown, the fceptre; laid afide,
With all the pageant toys of regal pride;
Who rous'd the fons of war to deeds of arms,
And shook the trembling nations with alarms;
Whose rapid conquefts o'er the rivers flew,
And whose ambition with his conquefts grew;
Is now confin'd within the lonesome cave,
A fhroud his mantle, and his realm a grave;
Without one flave his orders to perform,
And no attendant but the crawling worm.
What tho' from Italy or Egypt's womb,
* De Lorme, tUBY, or PONTIUS raise the tomb;
The sculptor's nicest touch can only show,
A child of duft, a mortal lies below.
Ye fons of pomp! fay, does it much avail,
To rot enshrin'd in gold, or common deal?
If porphiry, and jafper load the dead?
Or moffy turf lie lighter on the head?
When to the grave the lifeless corpse descends,
The curtain drops, and all diftinction ends:
Nor will the duft of GALLIA's royal line,
With majefty diftinguifh'd, brighter shine,
Than what the wretched LAZAR's putrid wound,
Corrupted crumbles in its parent ground,
Three famous sculptors.