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He sigh'd, and, with a pensive air,
Saw Metis wise, and Folly fair;
And, secret, in his breast divine,
Conceiv'd a glorious great design.
He paus'd and thus each Hour that waits
To guard high Heaven's resplendent gates,
Bespoke, and, with a gracious mien,
Shook his ambrosial curls serene.
"Proclaim a solemn banquet-call
The Gods to our etherial hall,
Where I'll promulgate a decree
To bind both heav'n, and earth, and me;
Where Love and Metis both shall own,
Justice and mercy found my throne."
At once the swift-wing'd couriers rise,
And sound a banquet through the skies;
The Gods the thunderer's call attend,
And, pleas'd, the etherial hall ascend;
As Jove, they heard, would now decide,
Which lady should be Cupid's bride;
If Love would suit with Wisdom best,
Or happier live in Folly blest.
Each, fond to hear the sentence past,
To settle heaven and earth at last,
Put on their gayest robe and face,
The banquet and the God to grace.
The grand repasts of pompous kings,
Compar'd to this, are sordid things.
Sat all the Deities elate,
They ate and drank in golden plate.
Wine cheers their hearts, yet, calm and cool,
Each mus'd how Jove the cause would rule;
And, when they took the cloth away,
Watch'd the great business of the day.
Straight Jove all Heav'n in silence hush'd,
His will pronouncing, laugh'd and blush'd;
And placing Folly at his side,
Decrees her Cupid's fittest bride;
He shews his reasons (but too long
They would protract the faithful song),
Then toasts her health: the nectar'd bowl
He gives her to enlarge her soul:
She drank so deep, an air divine
O'er all her features seem'd to shine.
"That draught'," says Jove, (and, pleas'd, he smil'd,
Midst all his thunders, sweet and mild)
"Has rais'd thee, fair Moria, high
As the bright daughters of the sky;
1 Apuleius represents Jupiter (in his 6th book) making Psyche immortal in this manner, by making her drink out of the bowl which he reached to her.
Thou'rt now immortal grown, and fit
Great Love's embraces to admit:
Together calm the frantic earth,
Allay men's woes, augment their mirth;
Sweeten their cares, and let them see,
If they're unbless'd, 'tis not from me."
He joins their hands for endless ages,
And bids them scorn censorious sages.
"Let none," said Jove, "while thus they're tied,
Sweet Folly and fond Love divide.
Accurs'd be his atrocious crime,
Who parts you through the rounds of time;
And let fair Pleasure always be
Belov'd by men, by gods, and me.
Yet, prudent Metis, don't despair,
For thou art mine, by Styx I swear1,
My chosen wife, whose counsels still
Shall rule my heart and guide my will,
And with eternal charms control
The fond affections of my soul."
i The goddess Metis, or Wisdom, in Hesiod's Theogonia, is set down as one of the wives whom Jupiter married. Vide Nat. Com. 1. 2. p. 90. cap. 2.
Was born in 1685, and died in the very minute of the earthquake of 1750, of the shock of which, though speechless, he appeared to be sensible. His life was active, benevolent, and useful: he was the general friend of unfortunate genius, and his schemes for public utility were frustrated only by the narrowness of his circumstances. Though his manners were unassuming, his personal dignity was such, that he made Pope fairly ashamed of the attempt to insult him, and obliged the satirist to apologise to him with a mean equivocation.
VERSES WRITTEN BY THE AUTHOR WHEN ALONE IN AN INN AT SOUTHAMPTON.
TWENTY lost years have stol'n their hours away,
Since in this inn, ev'n in this room, I lay:
How chang'd! what then was rapture, fire, and air,
Seems now sad silence all and blank despair!
Is it that youth paints every view too bright,
And, life advancing, fancy fades her light?
Ah, no!-nor yet is day so far declin'd,
Nor can time's creeping coldness reach the mind.
'Tis that I miss th' inspirer of that youth;
Her, whose soft smile was love, whose soul was truth.
Her, from whose pain I never wish'd relief,
And for whose pleasure I could smile at grief.
Prospects that, view'd with her, inspir'd before,
Now seen without her can delight no more.
Death snatch'd my joys, by cutting off her share,
But left her griefs to multiply my care.
Pensive and cold this room in each chang'd part
I view, and, shock'd, from ev'ry object start:
There hung the watch, that beating hours from day,
Told its sweet owner's lessening life away.
There her dear diamond taught the sash my name;
'Tis gone! frail image of love, life, and fame.
That glass, she dress'd at, keeps her form no more
Not one dear footstep tunes th' unconscious floor.
There sat she-yet those chairs no sense retain,
And busy recollection smarts in vain.
That ere we learn to live, we live no more.
Sullen and dim, what faded scenes are here!
I wonder, and retract a starting tear,
Gaze in attentive doubt-with anguish swell,
And o'er and o'er on each weigh'd object dwell.
Then to the window rush, gay views invite,
And tempt idea to permit delight.
But unimpressive, all in sorrow drown'd,
One void forgetful desert glooms around.
Oh life!-deceitful lure of lost desires!
How short thy period, yet how fierce thy fires!
Scarce can a passion start (we change so fast),
Ere new lights strike us, and the old are past.
Schemes following schemes, so long life's taste ex-