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But calm, and bred in ignorance and toil,
Each wish contracting, fits him to the soil.
Cheerful at morn he wakes from short repose,
Breathes the keen air, and carols as he goes ;
With patient angle trolls the finny deep,
Or drives his vent'rous plough-fhare to the steep;
Or seeks the den where snow-tracks mark the way,
And drags the struggling favage into day.
Ar night returning, every labour sped,
He fits him down the monarch of a shed ;
Smiles by his cheerful fire, and round surveys
His children's looks, that brighten at the blaze ;
While his lov'd partner, boastful of her board,
Displays her cleanly platter on the board :
And haply too fome pilgrim thither led,
With many a tale repays the nightly bed.
Thus every good his native wilds impart,
Imprints the patriot paflion on his heart;
And e'en those hills that round mansion rife,
Enhance the bliss his scanty fund supplies.
Dear is that shed to which his foul conforms,
And dear that hill which lifts him to the storms:
And as a child, when scaring founds molest,
Clings close and closer to the mother's breast;
So the loud torrent and the whirlwind's roar,
But bind him to his native mountains more.
Such are the charms to barren states allign'd: Their wants but few, their wishes all confin'd. Yet let them only share the praises due ; If few their wants, their pleasures are but few : For every want that stimulates the breast Becomes a source of pleasure when redrelt. Whence from such lands each pleasing science flies, That first excites de Gre, and then supplies ; Unknown to them, when fensual pleasures cloy, To fill the languid pause with finer joy ; Unknown those pow'rs that raise the foul to flame, Catch every nerve, and vibrate through the frame. Their level life is but a mould'ring fire, Unquench'd by want, unfann'd by strong defire ; Unfit for raptures ; or, if raptures cheer On some high festival of once a year, In wild excels the vulgar breast takes fire, Till buried in debauch the bliss expire.
But not their joys alone thus coarsely flow;
Their morals like their pleatures are but low :
For, as refinement stops, from fire to fon,
Unalter'd, unimprov'd, the manners run ;
And love's and friendship's finely pointed dart
Falls blunted from each indurated heart.
Some fterner virtues o'er the mountain's brealt
May fit like falcons cowering on the nest ;
But all the gentler morals, such as piay
Through life's more cultur'd walks, and charm the way;
These far dispers’d, on timorous pinions fly,
To sport and flutter in a kinder sky,
To kinder skies where gentler manners reign,
I turn--and France displays her bright domain.
Gay, sprightly land of mirth and social ease,
Pleas'd with thyself, whom all the world can please :
How often have I led thy sportive choir,
With tuneless pipe, befide the murm'ring Loire !
Where shading elms along the margin grew,
And, freshen'd from the wave, the zephyr flew;
And haply, though my harsh touch fali’ring still
But mock'd all tune, and marr'd the dancer's skill,
Yet would the village praise my wondrous power,
And dance forgetful of the noon-tide hour !
Alike all ages : dames of ancient days
Have led their children through the mirthful maze:
And the gay grandfire, skill'd in gestic lore,
Has frisk'd beneath the burden of threescore.
So gay a life these thoughtless realms display ;
Thus idly busy rolls their world away.
Theirs are those arts that mind to mind endear;
For honour forms the social temper here.
Honour, that praise which real merit gains,
Or e'en imaginary worth obtains,
Here passes current ; paid from hand to hand,
It shifts in fplendid traffic round the land.
From courts to camps, to cottages, it Itrays,
And all are taught an avarice of praise :
They please, are pleas'd, they give to get elteem,
T'ill, seeming blelt, they grow to what they seem.
But while this softer art their bliss supplies,
It gives their follies also room to rise ;
For praise too dearly lov'd or warmly fought,
Enfeebies all internal strength of thought;
And the weak foul, within itself unbleit,
Leans for all pleasure on another's breast.
Hence oftentation here, with tawdry art,
Pants for the vulgar praise which fools impart :
Here vanity assumes her pert grimace,
And trims her robes of frieze with copper-lace ;
Here beggar pride defrauds her daily cheer,
To boast one fplendid banquet once a year :
The mind itill turns where shifting fashion draws,
Nor weighs the folid worth of self applause.
To men of other minds my fancy Aies,
Embosom'd in the deep where Holland lies.
Methinks her patient fons before me stand,
Where the broad ocean leans against the land :
And, fedulous to stop the coming tide,
Lift the tall rampire's artificial pride.
Onward methinks, and diligently flow,
The firm connected bulwark seems to grow ;
Spreads its long arms amidst the watery roar,
Scoops out an empire, and usurps the shore !
While the pent ocean, rising o'er the pile,
Sees an amphibious world beneath him (mile !
The flow.canal, the yellow-blossom'd vale,
The willow-tufted bank, the gliding fail,
The crowded mart, the cultivated plain,
A new creation rescu'd from his reign.
Thus, while around the wave-subjected foil
Impels the native to repeated toil,
Industrious habits in each bofom reign,
And indųstry begets a love of gain.
Hence all the good from opulence that springs,
With all those ills superfluous treasure brings,
Are here display'd. Their much lov'd wealth imparts
Convenience, plenty, elegance, and arts ;
But, view them closer, craft and fraud appear ;
E'en liberty itself is barter'd here.
At gold's fuperior charms all freedom flies;
The needy sell it, and the rich man buys;
A land of tyrants, and a den of llaves,
Here wretches scek dishonourable graves ;
And, calmly bent, to servitude conform,
Dull as their lakes that flumber in the storm.
O! how unlike their Belgic fires of old ;
Rough, poor, content, ungovernably bold ;
War in each breast, and freedom on each brow!
How much unlike the sons of Britain now!
Fir'd at the found, my Genius spreads her wing,
And flies where Britain courts the western spring;
Where lawns extend that scorn Arcadian pride,
And brighter streams than fam'd Hydalpes glide.
There all around the gentlest breezes stray,
There gentle music melts on every spray;
Creation's mildest charms are there combin'd;
Extremes are only in the master's mind ;
Stern o'er each bofom reason holds her Itate,
With daring aims irregularly great;
Pride in their port, defiance in their eye,
I see the lords of human-kind pass by ;
Intent on high deligns, a thoughtful band :
By forms unfashion'd fresh from nature's hand;
Fierce in their native hardiness of soul,
True to imagin'd right, above control;
While e'en the peasant boasts these rights to scan,
And learns to venerate himself as man.
Thine, freedom, thine the blessings pi&ur'd here,
Thine are those charms, that dazzle and endear;
Too bless’d indeed were such without alloy,
But foster'd e'en by freedom ills annoy.
That independence Britons prize too high,
Keeps man from man, and breaks the social tie;
The self-dependent lordlings Atand alone :
All claims that bind and sweeten life unknown.
Here, by the bonds of nature feebly held,
Minds combat minds, repelling and repellid;
Ferments arise, imprison's factions roar,
Repress'd ambition ftruggles round her shore ;
Till over-wrought, the general system feels
Its motion stop, or phrenzy fires the wheels.
Nor this the worst. As nature's ties decay,
As duty, love, and honour fail to (way,
Fictitious bonds, the bonds of wealth and law,
Still gather arength, and force unwilling awe.
Hence all obedience bows to these alone,
And talents link, and merit weeps unknown ;
Till time may come, when, stripp'd of all her charms,
The land of scholars, and the nurse of arms,
Where noble items transmit the patriot flame,
Where kings have coil'd, and poets wrote for fame,
One fink of level avarice shall lie,
And scholars, foldiers, kings, unhonour'd die.
Yet think not thus, when freedom's ills I state,
I mean to Aatter kings, or court the great.
Ye powers of truth, that bid my foul aspire,
Far from my bosom drive the low desire !
And thou, fair freedom, taught alike to feel
The rabble's rage, and tyrant's angry steel ;
Thou transitory flower, alike undone
By proud contempt, or favour's fostering fun,
Still may thy blooms the changeful clime endure :
I only would repress them, to secure :
For just experience tells, in every soil,
That those who think must govern those who toils
And all that freedom's highest aims can reach,
Is but to lay proportion'd loads on each :
Hence, should one order disproportion'd grow,
Its double weight must ruin all below.
O then, how blind to all that truth requires,
Who think it freedom when a part aspires !
Calm is my soul, nor apt to rise in arms,
Except when fast-approaching danger warms:
But when contending chiefs blockade the throne,
Contracting regal pow'r to stretch their own ;
When I behold a factious band agree
To call it freedom when themfelves are free;
Each wanton judge new penal Itatutes draw,
Laws grind the poor, and rich men rule the law;
The wealth of climes, where lavage nations roam,
Pillag'd from flaves, to purchase Naves at home ;
Fear, pity, justice, indignation, start,
Tear off referve, and bare my swelling heart;
Till half a patriot, half a coward grown,
I fly from petty tyrants, to the throne.
Ah brother ! how difastrous was that hour,
When first ambition struck at regal power ;
And thus, polluting honour in its source,
Gave wealth to sway the mind with double force!
Have we not seen round Britain's peopled shore,
Her useful fons'exchang'd for useless ore ;
Seen all her triumphs but destruction halte,
Like faring tapers, bright'ning as they waste;
Seen opulence, her grandeur to maintain,
Lead lern depopulation in her train;