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Alas! the hospitable hall,
Where youth and friendship play'd,
Wide to the winds a ruin'd wall
Projects a death-like shade!
The charm is vanish'd from the vales;
No voice with virgin-whisper hails
A stranger to his native bowers:
No more Arcadian mountains bloom,
Nor Enna valleys breathe perfume,
The fancied Eden fades with all its flowers!
Companions of the youthful scene,
Endear'd from earliest days!
With whom I sported on the green,
Or rov'd the woodland maze !
Long-exil'd from your native clime,
Or by the thunder-stroke of Time
Snatch'd to the shadows of despair;
I hear your voices in the wind,
Your forms in every walk I find,
I stretch my arins: ye vanish into air!
My steps, when innocent and young,
These fairy paths pursued ;
And, wandering o'er the wild, I sung
My fancies to the wood.
I mourn'd the linnet-lover's fate,
Or turtle from her murder'd mate,
Condemn'd the widow'd hours to wail;
Or while the mournful vision rose,
I sought to weep for imag'd woes,
Nor real life believ'd a tragic tale!
Alas! misfortune's cloud unkind
May Summer soon o'ercast;
And cruel Fate's untimely wind
All human beauty blast!
The wrath of Nature smites our bowers,
And promis'd fruits, and cheris'd flowers,
The hopes of life in embryo sweeps;
Pale o'er the ruins of his prime,
And desolate before his time,
In silence sad the mourner walks and weeps!
Relentless power! whose fated stroke
O'er wretched man prevails!
Ha! loves eternal chain is broke,
And friendship's covenant fails!
Upbraiding forms! a moment's ease-
O memory! how shall I appease
The bleeding shade, the unlaid ghost?
What charm can bind the gushing eye ?
What voice console th' incessant sigh,
And everlasting longings for the lost?
Yet not unwelcome waves the wood,
That hides me in its gloom,
While lost in melancholy mood
I muse upon the tomb.
Their chequer'd leaves the branches shed,
Whirling in eddies o'er my head,
They sadly sigh, that Winter's near:
The warning voice I hear behind,
That shakes the wood without a wind,
And solemn sounds the death-bell of the year.
Nor will I court Lethean streams
The sorrowing sense to steep;
Nor drink oblivion of the themes
On which I love to weep.
Belated oft by fabled rill,
While nightly o'er the hallow'd hill
Aerial music seems to mourn;
I'll listen Autumn's closing strain;
Then woo the walks of youth again,
And pour my sorrows o'er th' untimely urn!
TO WILLIAM PULTENEY, ESQ.
REMOTE from liberty and truth,
By fortune's crime my early youth
Drank error's poison'd springs.
Taught by dark creeds and mystic law,
Wrapt up in reverential awe,
I bow'd to priests and kings.
Soon reason dawn'd-with troubled sight
I caught the glimpse of painful light,
Afflicted and afraid,
Too weak it shone to mark my way,
Enough to tempt my feet to stray
Along the dubious shade.
Restless I roam'd, when from afar
Lo Hooker shines! the friendly star
Sent forth a steady ray.
Thus cheer'd, and eager to pursue,
I mount, till, glorious to my view,
Locke spreads the realms of day.
Now warm'd with noble Sidney's page,
I pant with all the patriot's rage;
Now wrapt in Plato's dream,
With More and Harrington around
I tread fair Freedom's magic ground,
And trace the flattering scheme.
But soon the beauteous vision flies,
And hideous spectres now arise,
Corruption's direful train:
The partial judge perverting laws,
The priest forsaking virtue's cause,
And senates slaves to gain.
Vainly the pious artist's toil
Would rear to Heaven a mortal pile,
On some immortal plan;
Within a sure though varying date,
Confined, alas! is every state
Of empire and of man.
What though the good, the brave, the wise,
With adverse force undaunted rise,
To break th' eternal doom!
Though Cato lived, though Tully spoke,
Though Brutus dealt the godlike stroke,
Yet perish'd fated Rome.
To swell some future tyrant's pride,
Good Fleury pours the golden tide
On Gallia's smiling shores;
Once more her fields shall thirst in vain,
For wholesome streams of honest gain,
While rapine wastes her stores.
Yet glorious is the great design,
And such, O Pulteney, such is thine,
To prop a nation's frame.
If crush'd beneath the sacred weight,
The ruins of a falling state
Shall tell the patriot's name.
WHAT CONSTITUTES A STATE.
WHAT constitutes a state?
Not high rais'd battlement or labour'd mound,
Thick wall or moated gate;
Not cities proud, with spires and turrets crown'd;
Not bays and broad-arm'd ports,
Where, laughing at the storm, rich navies ride,
Not starr'd and spangled courts,
Where low-brow'd Baseness wafts perfume toPride.
NO:-Men, high-minded men,
With powers as far above dull brutes endued
In forest, brake, or den,
As beasts excel cold rocks and brambles rude;
Men, who their duties know,
But know their rights, and knowing, dare maintain,
Prevent the long-aim'd blow,
And crush the tyrant while they rend the chain:
These constitute a state,
And sovereign Law, that state's collected will,
O'er thrones and globes elate
Sits empress, crowning good, repressing ill;