The Premium Complete Collection of George Crabbe - George Crabbe - ebook

George Crabbe was an English poet, surgeon, and clergyman. He is best known for his early use of the realistic narrative form and his descriptions of middle and working-class life and people. Collection of 9 Works of George Crabbe________________________________________Inebriety and the CandidateMiscellaneous PoemsPoems, Volume 2Poems, Volume ITalesThe BoroughThe LibraryThe Parish RegisterThe Village and The Newspaper

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The Premium Complete Collection of George Crabbe

Detailed Biography of George Crabbe

Inebriety and the Candidate

Miscellaneous Poems

Poems, Volume 2

Poems, Volume I


The Borough

The Library

The Parish Register

The Village and The Newspaper


George Crabbe, (born December 24, 1754, Aldeburgh, Suffolk, England—died February 3, 1832, Trowbridge, Wiltshire), English writer of poems and verse tales memorable for their realistic details of everyday life.

Crabbe grew up in the then-impoverished seacoast village of Aldeburgh, where his father was collector of salt duties, and he was apprenticed to a surgeon at 14. Hating his mean surroundings and unsuccessful occupation, he abandoned both in 1780 and went to London. In 1781 he wrote a desperate letter of appeal to Edmund Burke, who read Crabbe’s writings and persuaded James Dodsley to publish one of his didactic, descriptive poems, The Library (1781). Burke also used his influence to have Crabbe accepted for ordination, and in 1782 he became chaplain to the duke of Rutland at Belvoir Castle.

In 1783 Crabbe demonstrated his full powers as a poet with The Village. Written in part as a protest against Oliver Goldsmith’s The Deserted Village (1770), which Crabbe thought too sentimental and idyllic, the poem was his attempt to portray realistically the misery and degradation of rural poverty. Crabbe made good use in The Village of his detailed observation of life in the bleak countryside from which he himself came. The Village was popular but was followed by an unworthy successor, The Newspaper (1785), and after that Crabbe published no poetry for the next 22 years. He did continue to write, contributing to John Nichols’s The History and Antiquities of the County of Leicester (1795–1815) and other works of local history; he also wrote a treatise on botany and three novels, all of which he later burned.

Crabbe married in 1783. His wife, Sarah, gave birth to seven children as they moved through a succession of parishes; five died in infancy, and Sarah was affected by mental illness from the late 1790s until her death in 1813. In 1807 Crabbe began to publish poetry again. He reprinted his poems, together with a new work, The Parish Register, a poem of more than 2,000 lines in which he made use of a register of births, deaths, and marriages to create a compassionate depiction of the life of a rural community. Other works followed, including The Borough (1810), another long poem; Tales in Verse (1812); and Tales of the Hall (1819).

Crabbe is often called the last of the Augustan poets because he followed John Dryden, Alexander Pope, and Samuel Johnson in using the heroic couplet, which he came to handle with great skill. Like the Romantics, who esteemed his work, he was a rebel against the realms of genteel fancy that poets of his day were forced to inhabit, and he pleaded for the poet’s right to describe the commonplace realities and miseries of human life. Another Aldeburgh resident, Benjamin Britten, based his opera Peter Grimes (1945) on one of Crabbe’s grim verse tales in The Borough.

Inebriety and The Candidate by George Crabbe Contents:    Inebriety    The Candidate       An Introductory Address       To the Reader       To the Authors of the Monthly Review “INEBRIETY” {1} The mighty spirit, and its power, which stains The bloodless cheek, and vivifies the brains, I sing. Say, ye, its fiery vot’ries true, The jovial curate, and the shrill-tongued shrew; Ye, in the floods of limpid poison nurst, Where bowl the second charms like bowl the first; Say how, and why, the sparkling ill is shed, The heart which hardens, and which rules the head.    When winter stern his gloomy front uprears, A sable void the barren earth appears; The meads no more their former verdure boast, Fast bound their streams, and all their beauty lost; The herds, the flocks, in icy garments mourn, And wildly murmur for the spring’s return; From snow-topp’d hills the whirlwinds keenly blow, Howl through the woods, and pierce the vales below; Through the sharp air a flaky torrent flies, Mocks the slow sight, and hides the gloomy skies; The fleecy clouds their chilly bosoms bare, And shed their substance on the floating air; The floating air their downy substance glides Through springing waters, and prevents their tides; Seizes the rolling waves, and, as a god, Charms their swift race, and stops the refluent flood; The opening valves, which fill the venal road, Then scarcely urge along the sanguine flood; The labouring pulse a slower motion rules, The tendons stiffen, and the spirit cools; Each asks the aid of Nature’s sister, Art, To cheer the senses, and to warm the heart.    The gentle fair on nervous tea relies, Whilst gay good-nature sparkles in her eyes; An inoffensive scandal fluttering round, Too rough to tickle, and too light to wound; Champagne the courtier drinks, the spleen to chase, The colonel burgundy, and port his grace; Turtle and ’rrac the city rulers charm, Ale and content the labouring peasants warm: O’er the dull embers, happy Colin sits, Colin, the prince of joke, and rural wits; Whilst the wind whistles through the hollow panes, He drinks, nor of the rude assault complains; And tells the tale, from sire to son retold, Of spirits vanishing near hidden gold; Of moon-clad imps that tremble by the dew, Who skim the air, or glide o’er waters blue: The throng invisible that, doubtless, float By mouldering tombs, and o’er the stagnant meat: Fays dimly glancing on the russet plain, And all the dreadful nothing of the green. Peace be to such, the happiest and the best, Who with the forms of fancy urge their jest; Who wage no war with an avenger’s rod, Nor in the pride of reason curse their God.    When in the vaulted arch Lucina gleams, And gaily dances o’er the azure streams; On silent ether when a trembling sound Reverberates, and wildly floats around, Breaking through trackless space upon the ear, Conclude the Bacchanalian rustic near: O’er hills and vales the jovial savage reels, Fire in his head and frenzy at his heels; From paths direct the bending hero swerves, And shapes his way in ill-proportioned curves. Now safe arrived, his sleeping rib he calls, And madly thunders on the muddy walls; The well-known sounds an equal fury move, For rage meets rage, as love enkindles love: In vain the waken’d infant’s accents shrill, The humble regions of the cottage fill; In vain the cricket chirps the mansion through, ’Tis war, and blood, and battle must ensue. As when, on humble stage, him Satan hight Defies the brazen hero to the fight: From twanging strokes what dire misfortunes rise, What fate to maple arms and glassen eyes! Here lies a leg of elm, and there a stroke From ashen neck has whirl’d a head of oak. So drops from either power, with vengeance big, A remnant night-cap and an old cut wig; Titles unmusical retorted round, On either ear with leaden vengeance sound; Till equal valour, equal wounds create, And drowsy peace concludes the fell debate; Sleep in her woollen mantle wraps the pair, And sheds her poppies on the ambient air; Intoxication flies, as fury fled, On rooky pinions quits the aching head; Returning reason cools the fiery blood, And drives from memory’s seat the rosy god. Yet still he holds o’er some his maddening rule. Still sways his sceptre, and still knows his fool; Witness the livid lip, and fiery front, With many a smarting trophy placed upon’t; The hollow eye, which plays in misty springs, And the hoarse voice, which rough and broken rings; These are his triumphs, and o’er these he reigns, The blinking deity of reeling brains.    See Inebriety! her wand she waves, And lo! her pale, and lo! her purple slaves! Sots in embroidery, and sots in crape, Of every order, station, rank, and shape: The king, who nods upon his rattle throne; The staggering peer, to midnight revel prone; The slow-tongued bishop, and the deacon sly, The humble pensioner, and gownsman dry; The proud, the mean, the selfish, and the great, Swell the dull throng, and stagger into state.    Lo! proud Flaminius at the splendid board, The easy chaplain of an atheist lord, Quaffs the bright juice, with all the gust of sense, And clouds his brain in torpid elegance; In china vases, see! the sparkling ill, From gay decanters view the rosy rill; The neat-carved pipes in silver settle laid, The screw by mathematic cunning made: Oh, happy priest! whose God, like Egypt’s, lies At once the deity and sacrifice. But is Flaminius then the man alone To whom the joys of swimming brains are known? Lo! the poor toper whose untutor’d sense, Sees bliss in ale, and can with wine dispense; Whose head proud fancy never taught to steer Beyond the muddy ecstasies of beer; But simple nature can her longing quench, Behind the settle’s curve, or humbler bench: Some kitchen fire diffusing warmth around, The semi-globe by hieroglyphics crown’d; Where canvas purse displays the brass enroll’d, Nor waiters rave, nor landlords thirst for gold; Ale and content his fancy’s bounds confine. He asks no limpid punch, no rosy wine; But sees, admitted to an equal share, Each faithful swain the heady potion bear: Go, wiser thou! and in thy scale of taste, Weigh gout and gravel against ale and rest; Call vulgar palates what thou judgest so; Say beer is heavy, windy, cold, and slow; Laugh at poor sots with insolent pretence, Yet cry, when tortured, where is Providence?    In various forms the madd’ning spirit moves, This drinks and fights, another drinks and loves. A bastard zeal, of different kinds it shows, And now with rage, and now religion glows: The frantic soul bright reason’s path defies, Now creeps on earth, now triumphs in the skies; Swims in the seas of error, and explores, Through midnight mists, the fluctuating shores; From wave to wave in rocky channel glides, And sinks in woe, or on presumption slides; In pride exalted, or by shame deprest, An angel-devil, or a human-beast.    Some rage in all the strength of folly mad; Some love stupidity, in silence clad, Are never quarrelsome, are never gay, But sleep, and groan, and drink the night away; Old Torpio nods, and as the laugh goes round, Grunts through the nasal duct, and joins the sound. Then sleeps again, and, as the liquors pass, Wakes at the friendly jog, and takes his glass: Alike to him who stands, or reels, or moves, The elbow chair, good wine, and sleep he loves, Nor cares of state disturb his easy head, By grosser fumes and calmer follies fed; Nor thoughts of when, or where, or how to come, The canvass general, or the general doom; Extremes ne’er reach’d one passion of his soul, A villain tame, and an unmettled fool; To half his vices he has but pretence, For they usurp the place of common sense; To half his little merits has no claim, For very indolence has raised his name; Happy in this, that, under Satan’s sway, His passions tremble, but will not obey.    The vicar at the table’s front presides, Whose presence a monastic life derides; The reverend wig, in sideway order placed, The reverend band, by rubric stains disgraced, The leering eye, in wayward circles roll’d, Mark him the pastor of a joyial fold, Whose various texts excite a loud applause, Favouring the bottle, and the good old cause. See! the dull smile which fearfully appears, When gross indecency her front uprears, The joy conceal’d, the fiercer burns within, As masks afford the keenest gust to sin; Imagination helps the reverend sire, And spreads the sails of sub-divine desire; But when the gay immoral joke goes round, When shame and all her blushing train are drown’d, Rather than hear his God blasphemed, he takes The last loved glass, and then the board forsakes. Not that religion prompts the sober thought, But slavish custom has the practice taught; Besides, this zealous son of warm devotion Has a true Levite bias for promotion. Vicars must with discretion go astray, Whilst bishops may be damn’d the nearest way; So puny robbers individuals kill, When hector-heroes murder as they will.    Good honest Curio elbows the divine, And strives a social sinner how to shine; The dull quaint tale is his, the lengthen’d tale, That Wilton farmers give you with their ale, How midnight ghosts o’er vaults terrific pass, Dance o’er the grave, and slide along the grass; Or how pale Cicely within the wood Call’d Satan forth, and bargain’d with her blood. These, honest Curio, are thine, and these Are the dull treasures of a brain at peace; No wit intoxicates thy gentle skull, Of heavy, native, unwrought folly full: Bowl upon bowl in vain exert their force, The breathing spirit takes a downward course, Or mainly soaring upwards to the head, Meets an impenetrable fence of lead.    Hast thou, oh reader! searched o’er gentle Gay, Where various animals their powers display? In one strange group a chattering race are hurl’d, Led by the monkey who had seen the world. Like him Fabricio steals from guardian’s side, Swims not in pleasure’s stream, but sips the tide: He hates the bottle, yet but thinks it right To boast next day the honours of the night; None like your coward can describe a fight. See him as down the sparkling potion goes, Labour to grin away the horrid dose; In joy-feigned gaze his misty eyeballs float, Th’ uncivil spirit gurgling at his throat; So looks dim Titan through a wintry scene, And faintly cheers the woe-foreboding swain.    Timon, long practised in the school of art, Has lost each finer feeling of the heart; Triumphs o’er shame, and, with delusive wiles, Laughs at the idiot he himself beguiles: So matrons, past the awe of censure’s tongue, Deride the blushes of the fair and young. Few with more fire on every subject spoke, But chief he loved the gay immoral joke; The words most sacred, stole from holy writ, He gave a newer form, and called them wit. Vice never had a more sincere ally, So bold no sinner, yet no saint so sly; Learn’d, but not wise, and without virtue brave, A gay, deluding, philosophic knave. When Bacchus’ joys his airy fancy fire, They stir a new, but still a false desire; And to the comfort of each untaught fool, Horace in English vindicates the bowl. “The man,” says Timon, “who is drunk is blest, No fears disturb, no cares destroy his rest; In thoughtless joy he reels away his life, Nor dreads that worst of ills, a noisy wife.” “Oh! place me, Jove, where none but women come, And thunders worse than thine afflict the room, Where one eternal nothing flutters round, And senseless titt’ring sense of mirth confound; Or lead me bound to garret, Babel-high, Where frantic poet rolls his crazy eye, Tiring the ear with oft-repeated chimes, And smiling at the never-ending rhymes: E’en here, or there, I’ll be as blest as Jove, Give me tobacco, and the wine I love.” Applause from hands the dying accents break, Of stagg’ring sots who vainly try to speak; From Milo, him who hangs upon each word, And in loud praises splits the tortured board, Collects each sentence, ere it’s better known, And makes the mutilated joke his own. At weekly club to flourish, where he rules, The glorious president of grosser fools.    But cease, my Muse! of those or these enough, The fools who listen, and the knaves who scoff; The jest profane, that mocks th’ offended God, Defies his power, and sets at nought his rod; The empty laugh, discretion’s vainest foe, From fool to fool re-echoed to and fro; The sly indecency, that slowly springs From barren wit, and halts on trembling wings: Enough of these, and all the charms of wine, Be sober joys and social evenings mine; Where peace and reason, unsoil’d mirth, improve The powers of friendship and the joys of love; Where thought meets thought ere words its form array, And all is sacred, elegant, and gay: Such pleasure leaves no sorrow on the mind, Too great to fall, to sicken too refined; Too soft for noise, and too sublime for art, The social solace of the feeling heart, For sloth too rapid, and for wit too high, ’Tis virtue’s pleasure, and can never die! “THE CANDIDATE” {2} A POETICAL EPISTLE TO THE AUTHORS OF THE MONTHLY REVIEW. AN INTRODUCTORY ADDRESS OF THE AUTHOR TO HIS POEMS. Multa quidem nobis facimus mala saepe poetae, (Ut vineta egomet caedam mea) cum tibi librum Sollicito damus, aut fesso, &c.                             HORACE, Epistle 1. Ye idler things, that soothed my hours of care, Where would ye wander, triflers, tell me where? As maids neglected, do ye fondly dote, On the tair type, or the embroider’d coat; Detest my modest shelf, and long to fly Where princely Popes and mighty Miltons lie? Taught but to sing, and that in simple style, Of Lycia’s lip, and Musidora’s smile; - Go then! and taste a yet unfelt distress, The fear that guards the captivating press; Whose maddening region should ye once explore, No refuge yields my tongueless mansion more. But thus ye’ll grieve, Ambition’s plumage stript, “Ah, would to Heaven, we’d died in manuscript!” Your unsoil’d page each yawning wit shall flee, - For few will read, and none admire like me. - Its place, where spiders silent bards enrobe, Squeezed betwixt Cibber’s Odes and Blackmore’s Job; Where froth and mud, that varnish and deform, Feed the lean critic and the fattening worm; Then sent disgraced - the unpaid printer’s bane - To mad Moorfields, or sober Chancery Lane, On dirty stalls I see your hopes expire, Vex’d by the grin of your unheeded sire, Who half reluctant has his care resign’d, Like a teased parent, and is rashly kind.    Yet rush not all, but let some scout go forth, View the strange land, and tell us of its worth; And should he there barbarian usage meet, The patriot scrap shall warn us to retreat.    And thou, the first of thy eccentric race, A forward imp, go, search the dangerous place, Where Fame’s eternal blossoms tempt each bard, Though dragon-wits there keep eternal guard; Hope not unhurt the golden spoil to seize, The Muses yield, as the Hesperides; Who bribes the guardian, all his labour’s done, For every maid is willing to be won.    Before the lords of verse a suppliant stand, And beg our passage through the fairy land: Beg more - to search for sweets each blooming field, And crop the blossoms woods and valleys yield, To snatch the tints that beam on Fancy’s bow; And feel the fires on Genius’ wings that glow; Praise without meanness, without flattery stoop, Soothe without fear, and without trembling, hope. TO THE READER. The following Poem being itself of an introductory nature, its author supposes it can require but little preface. It is published with a view of obtaining the opinion of the candid and judicious reader on the merits of the writer as a poet; very few, he apprehends, being in such cases sufficiently impartial to decide for themselves. It is addressed to the Authors of the Monthy Review, as to critics of acknowledged merit; an acquaintance  with whose labours has afforded the writer of this Epistle a reason for directing it to them in particular, and, he presumes, will yield to others a just and sufficient plea for the preference. Familiar with disappointment, he shall not be much surprised to find he has mistaken his talent. However, if not egregiously the dupe of his vanity, he promises to his readers some entertainment, and is assured that however little in the ensuing Poem is worthy of applause, there is yet less that merits contempt. TO THE AUTHORS OF THE MONTHLY REVIEW. The pious pilot, whom the gods provide, Through the rough seas the shatter’d bark to guide, Trusts not alone his knowledge of the deep, Its rocks that threaten, and its sands that sleep; But whilst with nicest skill he steers his way, The guardian Tritons hear their favourite pray. Hence borne his vows to Neptune’s coral dome, The god relents, and shuts each gulfy tomb.    Thus as on fatal floods to fame I steer, I dread the storm that ever rattles here, Nor think enough, that long my yielding soul Has felt the Muse’s soft but strong control, Nor think enough, that manly strength and ease, Such as have pleased a friend, will strangers please; But, suppliant, to the critic’s throne I bow, Here burn my incense, and here pay my vow; That censure hush’d, may every blast give o’er, And the lash’d coxcomb hiss contempt no more. And ye, whom authors dread or dare in vain, Affecting modest hopes, or poor disdain, Receive a bard, who neither mad nor mean, Despises each extreme, and sails between; Who fears; but has, amid his fears confess’d, The conscious virtue of a Muse oppress’d; A muse in changing times and stations nursed, By nature honour’d, and by fortune cursed.    No servile strain of abject hope she brings, Nor soars presumptuous, with unwearied wings, But, pruned for flight - the future all her care - Would know her strength, and, if not strong, forbear.    The supple slave to regal pomp bows down, Prostrate to power, and cringing to a crown; The bolder villain spurns a decent awe, Tramples on rule, and breaks through every law; But he whose soul on honest truth relies, Nor meanly flatters power, nor madly flies. Thus timid authors bear an abject mind, And plead for mercy they but seldom find. Some, as the desperate, to the halter run, Boldly deride the fate they cannot shun; But such there are, whose minds, not taught to stoop, Yet hope for fame, and dare avow their hope, Who neither brave the judges of their cause, Nor beg in soothing strains a brief applause. And such I’d be; - and ere my fate is past, Ere clear’d with honour, or with culprits cast, Humbly at Learning’s bar I’ll state my case, And welcome then distinction or disgrace!    When in the man the flights of fancy reign, Rule in the heart or revel in the brain, As busy Thought her wild creation apes, And hangs delighted o’er her varying shapes, It asks a judgment, weighty and discreet, To know where wisdom prompts, and where conceit. Alike their draughts to every scribbler’s mind (Blind to their faults as to their danger blind); - We write enraptured, and we write in haste, Dream idle dreams, and call them things of taste, Improvement trace in every paltry line, And see, transported, every dull design; Are seldom cautious, all advice detest, And ever think our own opinions best; Nor shows my Muse a muse-like spirit here, Who bids me pause, before I persevere.    But she - who shrinks while meditating flight In the wide way, whose bounds delude her sight, Yet tired in her own mazes still to roam, And cull poor banquets for the soul at home, Would, ere she ventures, ponder on the way, Lest dangers yet unthought of, flight betray; Lest her Icarian wing, by wits unplumed, Be robb’d of all the honours she assumed; And Dulness swell, - a black and dismal sea, Gaping her grave; while censures madden me.    Such was his fate, who flew too near the sun, Shot far beyond his strength, and was undone; Such is his fate, who creeping at the shore The billow sweeps him, and he’s found no more. Oh! for some god, to bear my fortunes fair Midway betwixt presumption and despair!    “Has then some friendly critic’s former blow Taught thee a prudence authors seldom know?”    Not so! their anger and their love untried, A woe-taught prudence deigns to tend my side: Life’s hopes ill-sped, the Muse’s hopes grow poor, And though they flatter, yet they charm no more; Experience points where lurking dangers lay, And as I run, throws caution in my way.    There was a night, when wintry winds did rage, Hard by a ruin’d pile, I meet a sage; Resembling him the time-struck place appear’d, Hollow its voice, and moss its spreading beard; Whose fate-lopp’d brow, the bat’s and beetle’s dome, Shook, as the hunted owl flew hooting home. His breast was bronzed by many an eastern blast, And fourscore winters seem’d he to have past; His thread-bare coat the supple osier bound, And with slow feet he press’d the sodden ground, Where, as he heard the wild-wing’d Eurus blow, He shook, from locks as white, December’s snow; Inured to storm, his soul ne’er bid it cease, But lock’d within him meditated peace.    Father, I said - for silver hairs inspire, And oft I call the bending peasant Sire - Tell me, as here beneath this ivy bower, That works fantastic round its trembling tower, We hear Heaven’s guilt-alarming thunders roar, Tell me the pains and pleasures of the poor; For Hope, just spent, requires a sad adieu, And Fear acquaints me I shall live with you.    There was a time when, by Delusion led, A scene of sacred bliss around me spread, On Hope’s, as Pisgah’s lofty top, I stood, And saw my Canaan there, my promised good; A thousand scenes of joy the clime bestow’d, And wine and oil through vision’s valleys flow’d; As Moses his, I call’d my prospect bless’d, And gazed upon the good I ne’er possess’d: On this side Jordan doom’d by fate to stand, Whilst happier Joshuas win the promised land. “Son,” said the Sage - “be this thy care suppress’d; The state the gods shall chose thee is the best: Rich if thou art, they ask thy praises more, And would thy patience when they make thee poor; But other thoughts within thy bosom reign, And other subjects vex thy busy brain, Poetic wreaths thy vainer dreams excite, And thy sad stars have destined thee to write. Then since that task the ruthless fates decree, Take a few precepts from the gods and me!    “Be not too eager in the arduous chase; Who pants for triumph seldom wins the race: Venture not all, but wisely hoard thy worth, And let thy labours one by one go forth: Some happier scrap capricious wits may find On a fair day, and be profusely kind; Which, buried in the rubbish of a throng, Had pleased as little as a new-year’s song, Or lover’s verse, that cloy’d with nauseous sweet, Or birth-day ode, that ran on ill-pair’d feet. Merit not always - Fortune feeds the bard, And as the whim inclines bestows reward: None without wit, nor with it numbers gain; To please is hard, but none shall please in vain: As a coy mistress is the humour’d town, Loth every lover with success to crown; He who would win must every effort try, Sail in the mode, and to the fashion fly; Must gay or grave to every humour dress, And watch the lucky Moment of Success; That caught, no more his eager hopes are crost; But vain are Wit and Love, when that is lost.”    Thus said the god; for now a god he grew His white locks changing to a golden hue, And from his shoulders hung a mantle azure-blue. His softening eyes the winning charm disclosed Of dove-like Delia when her doubts reposed; Mira’s alone a softer lustre bear, When woe beguiles them of an angel’s tear; Beauteous and young the smiling phantom stood, Then sought on airy wing his blest abode.    Ah! truth, distasteful in poetic theme, Why is the Muse compell’d to own her dream? Whilst forward wits had sworn to every line, I only wish to make its moral mine.    Say then, O ye who tell how authors speed, May Hope indulge her flight, and I succeed? Say, shall my name, to future song prefixed, Be with the meanest of the tuneful mix’d? Shall my soft strains the modest maid engage, My graver numbers move the silver “d sage, My tender themes delight the lover’s heart, And comfort to the poor my solemn songs impart?    For Oh! thou Hope’s, thou Thought’s eternal King, Who gav’st them power to charm, and me to sing - Chief to thy praise my willing numbers soar, And in my happier transports I adore; Mercy! thy softest attribute proclaim, Thyself in abstract, thy more lovely name; That flings o’er all my grief a cheering ray, As the full moon-beam gilds the watery way. And then too, Love, my soul’s resistless lord, Shall many a gentle, generous strain afford, To all the soil of sooty passion blind, Pure as embracing angels and as kind; Our Mira’s name in future times shall shine, And - though the harshest - Shepherds envy mine.    Then let me (pleasing task!) however hard, Join, as of old, the prophet and the bard; If not, ah! shield me from the dire disgrace, That haunts our wild and visionary race; Let me not draw my lengthen’d lines along, And tire in untamed infamy of song, Lest, in some dismal Dunciad’s future page, I stand the CIBBER of this tuneless age; Lest, in another POPE th’ indulgent skies Should give inspired by all their deities, My luckless name, in his immortal strain, Should, blasted, brand me as a second Cain; Doom’d in that song to live against my will, Whom all must scorn, and yet whom none could kill.    The youth, resisted by the maiden’s art, Persists, and time subdues her kindling heart; To strong entreaty yields the widow’s vow, As mighty walls to bold beseigers bow; Repeated prayers draw bounty from the sky, And heaven is won by importunity; Ours, a projecting tribe, pursue in vain, In tedious trials, an uncertain gain; Madly plunge on through every hope’s defeat, And with our ruin only find the cheat.    “And why then seek that luckless doom to share?” Who, I? - To shun it is my only care.    I grant it true, that others better tell Of mighty WOLFE, who conquer’d as he fell; Of heroes born, their threaten’d realms to save, Whom Fame anoints, and Envy tends whose grave; Of crimson’d fields, where Fate, in dire array, Gives to the breathless the short-breathing clay; Ours, a young train, by humbler fountains dream, Nor taste presumptuous the Pierian stream; When Rodney’s triumph comes on eagle-wing, We hail the victor whom we fear to sing; Nor tell we how each hostile chief goes on, The luckless Lee, or wary Washington; How Spanish bombast blusters - they were beat, And French politeness dulcifies - defeat. My modest Muse forbears to speak of kings, Lest fainting stanzas blast the name she sings; For who - the tenant of the beechen shade, Dares the big thought in regal breasts pervade? Or search his soul, whom each too-favouring god Gives to delight in plunder, pomp, and blood? No; let me free from Cupid’s frolic round, Rejoice, or more rejoice by Cupid bound; Of laughing girls in smiling couplets tell, And paint the dark-brow’d grove, where wood-nymphs dwell; Who bid invading youths their vengeance feel, And pierce the votive hearts they mean to heal. Such were the themes I knew in school-day ease, When first the moral magic learn’d to please, Ere Judgment told how transports warm’d the breast, Transported Fancy there her stores imprest; The soul in varied raptures learn’d to fly, Felt all their force, and never question’d why; No idle doubts could then her peace molest, She found delight, and left to heaven the rest; Soft joys in Evening’s placid shades were born; And where sweet fragrance wing’d the balmy morn, When the wild thought roved vision’s circuit o’er, And caught the raptures, caught, alas! no more: No care did then a dull attention ask, For study pleased, and that was every task; No guilty dreams stalk’d that heaven-favour’d round, Heaven-guarded, too, no Envy entrance found; Nor numerous wants, that vex advancing age, Nor Flattery’s silver tale, nor Sorrow’s sage; Frugal Affliction kept each growing dart, To o’erwhelm in future days the bleeding heart. No sceptic art veil’d Pride in Truth’s disguise, But prayer unsoil’d of doubt besieged the skies; Ambition, avarice, care, to man retired, Nor came desires more quick than joys desired.    A summer morn there was, and passing fair, Still was the breeze, and health perfumed the air; The glowing east in crimson’d splendour shone, What time the eye just marks the pallid moon, Vi’let-wing’d Zephyr fann’d each opening flower, And brush’d from fragrant cups the limpid shower; A distant huntsman fill’d his cheerful horn, The vivid dew hung trembling on the thorn, And mists, like creeping rocks, arose to meet the morn. Huge giant shadows spread along the plain, Or shot from towering rocks o’er half the main, There to the slumbering bark the gentle tide Stole soft, and faintly beat against its side; Such is that sound, which fond designs convey, When, true to love, the damsel speeds away; The sails unshaken, hung aloft unfurl’d, And simpering nigh, the languid current curl’d; A crumbling ruin, once a city’s pride, The well-pleased eye through withering oaks descried, Where Sadness, gazing on time’s ravage, hung, And Silence to Destruction’s trophy clung - Save that as morning songsters swell’d their lays, Awaken’d Echo humm’d repeated praise: The lark on quavering pinion woo’d the day, Less towering linnets fill’d the vocal spray, And song-invited pilgrims rose to pray. Here at a pine-press’d hill’s embroider’d base I stood, and hail’d the Genius of the place.    Then was it doom’d by fate, my idle heart, Soften’d by Nature, gave access to Art; The Muse approach’d, her syren-song I heard, Her magic felt, and all her charms revered: E’er since she rules in absolute control, And Mira only dearer to my soul. Ah! tell me not these empty joys to fly, If they deceive, I would deluded die; To the fond themes my heart so early wed, So soon in life to blooming visions led, So prone to run the vague uncertain course, ’Tis more than death to think of a divorce.    What wills the poet of the favouring gods, Led to their shrine, and blest in their abodes? What when he fills the glass, and to each youth Names his loved maid, and glories in his truth? Not India’s spoils, the splended nabob’s pride, Not the full trade of Hermes’ own Cheapside, Nor gold itself, nor all the Ganges laves, Or shrouds, well shrouded in his sacred waves; Nor gorgeous vessels deck’d in trim array, Which the more noble Thames bears far away; Let those whose nod makes sooty subjects flee? Hack with blunt steel the savory callipee; Let those whose ill-used wealth their country fly, Virtue-scorn’d wines from hostile France to buy; Favour’d by Fate, let such in joy appear, Their smuggled cargoes landed thrice a year; Disdaining these, for simpler food I’ll look, And crop my beverage at the mantled brook.    O Virtue! brighter than the noon-tide ray, My humble prayers with sacred joys repay! Health to my limbs may the kind gods impart, And thy fair form delight my yielding heart! Grant me to shun each vile inglorious road, To see thy way, and trace each moral good: If more - let Wisdom’s sons my page peruse, And decent credit deck my modest Muse.    Nor deem it pride that prophesies my song Shall please the sons of taste, and please them long. Say ye! to whom my Muse submissive brings Her first-fruit offering, and on trembling wings, May she not hope in future days to soar, Where fancy’s sons have led the way before? Where genius strives in each ambrosial bower To snatch with agile hand the opening flower? To cull what sweets adorn the mountain’s brow, What humbler blossoms crown the vales below? To blend with these the stores by art refined, And give the moral Flora to the mind?    Far other scenes my timid hour admits, Relentless critics and avenging wits; E’en coxcombs take a licence from their pen, And to each “Let him perish,” cry Amen! And thus, with wits or fools my heart shall cry, For if they please not, let the trifles die: Die, and be lost in dark oblivion’s shore, And never rise to vex their author more.    I would not dream o’er some soft liquid line, Amid a thousand blunders form’d to shine; Yet rather this, than that dull scribbler be, From every fault and every beauty free, Curst with tame thoughts and mediocrity. Some have I found so thick beset with spots, ’Twas hard to trace their beauties through their blots; And these, as tapers round a sick man’s room Or passing chimes, but warn’d me of the tomb!    O! if you blast, at once consume my bays, And damn me not with mutilated praise. With candour judge; and, a young bard in view, Allow for that, and judge with kindness too; Faults he must own, though hard for him to find, Not to some happier merits quite so blind; These if mistaken Fancy only sees, Or Hope, that takes Deformity for these: If Dunce, the crowd-befitting title falls His lot, and Dulness her new subject calls, To the poor bard alone your censures give - Let his fame die, but let his honour live; Laugh if you must - be candid as you can, And when you lash the Poet, spare the Man.

MISCELLANEOUS POEMS Contents    Sir Eustace Grey    The Hall of Justice    Woman    The Birth of Flattery    Reflections “SIR EUSTACE GREY”. Scene: - A MADHOUSE. Persons: - VISITOR, PHYSICIAN, AND PATIENT. “Veris miscens falsa.”                SENECA.       -------------------             VISITOR. I’ll know no more; - the heart is torn By views of woe we cannot heal; Long shall I see these things forlorn, And oft again their griefs shall feel, As each upon the mind shall steal; That wan projector’s mystic style, That lumpish idiot leering by, That peevish idler’s ceaseless wile, And that poor maiden’s half-form’d smile, While struggling for the full-drawn sigh! - I’ll know no more.             PHYSICIAN. Yes, turn again; Then speed to happier scenes thy way, When thou hast view’d, what yet remain, The ruins of Sir Eustace Grey, The sport of madness, misery’s prey: But he will no historian need, His cares, his crimes, will he display, And show (as one from frenzy freed) The proud lost mind, the rash-done deed. That cell to him is Greyling Hall: - Approach; he’ll bid thee welcome there; Will sometimes for his servant call, And sometimes point the vacant chair: He can, with free and easy air, Appear attentive and polite; Can veil his woes in manners fair, And pity with respect excite.             PATIENT. Who comes? - Approach! - ’tis kindly done: - My learn’d physician, and a friend, Their pleasures quit, to visit one Who cannot to their ease attend, Nor joys bestow, nor comforts lend, As when I lived so blest, so well, And dreamt not I must soon contend With those malignant powers of hell.             PHYSICIAN. “Less warmth, Sir Eustace, or we go.”             PATIENT. See! I am calm as infant love, A very child, but one of woe, Whom you should pity, not reprove: - But men at ease, who never strove With passions wild, will calmly show How soon we may their ills remove, And masters of their madness grow. Some twenty years, I think, are gone, - (Time flies I know not how, away,) The sun upon no happier shone, Nor prouder man, than Eustace Grey. Ask where you would, and all would say, The man admired and praised of all, By rich and poor, by grave and gay, Was the young lord of Greyling Hall. Yes! I had youth and rosy health; Was nobly form’d, as man might be; For sickness, then, of all my wealth, I never gave a single fee: The ladies fair, the maidens free, Were all accustom’d then to say, Who would a handsome figure see Should look upon Sir Eustace Grey. He had a frank and pleasant look, A cheerful eye and accent bland; His very speech and manner spoke The generous heart, the open hand; About him all was gay or grand, He had the praise of great and small; He bought, improved, projected, plann’d, And reign’d a prince at Greyling Hall. My lady! - she was all we love; All praise (to speak her worth) is faint; Her manners show’d the yielding dove, Her morals, the seraphic saint: She never breath’d nor look’d complaint; No equal upon earth had she - Now, what is this fair thing I paint? Alas! as all that live shall be. There was, beside, a gallant youth, And him my bosom’s friend I had; - Oh! I was rich in very truth, It made me proud - it made me mad! - Yes, I was lost - but there was cause! - Where stood my tale? - I cannot find - But I had all mankind’s applause, And all the smiles of womankind. There were two cherub-things beside, A gracious girl, a glorious boy; Yet more to swell my full-blown pride, To varnish higher my fading joy, Pleasures were ours without alloy, Nay, Paradise, - till my frail Eve Our bliss was tempted to destroy - Deceived and fated to deceive. But I deserved; - for all that time, When I was loved, admired, caress’d,. There was within, each secret crime, Unfelt, uncancell’d, unconfess’d: I never then my God address’d, In grateful praise or humble prayer; And if His Word was not my jest - (Dread thought!) it never was my care. I doubted: - fool I was to doubt! If that all-piercing eye could see, - If He who looks all worlds throughout, Would so minute and careful be As to perceive and punish me: - With man I would be great and high, But with my God so lost, that He, In His large view should pass me by. Thus blest with children, friend, and wife, Blest far beyond the vulgar lot; Of all that gladdens human life, Where was the good that I had not? But my vile heart had sinful spot, And Heaven beheld its deep’ning stain; Eternal justice I forgot, And mercy sought not to obtain. Come near, - I’ll softly speak the rest! - Alas! ’tis known to all the crowd, Her guilty love was all confess’d; And his, who so much truth avow’d, My faithless friend’s. - In pleasure proud I sat, when these cursed tidings came; Their guilt, their flight was told aloud, And Envy smiled to hear my shame! I call’d on Vengeance; at the word She came: - Can I the deed forget? I held the sword - the accursed sword The blood of his false heart made wet; And that fair victim paid her debt, She pined, she died, she loath’d to live; - I saw her dying - see her yet: Fair fallen thing! my rage forgive! Those cherubs still, my life to bless, Were left; could I my fears remove, Sad fears that check’d each fond caress, And poison’d all parental love? Yet that with jealous feelings strove, And would at last have won my will, Had I not, wretch! been doom’d to prove Th’ extremes of mortal good and ill. In youth! health! joy! in beauty’s pride! They droop’d - as flowers when blighted bow; The dire infection came: - they died, And I was cursed - as I am now; - Nay, frown not, angry friend, - allow That I was deeply, sorely tried; Hear then, and you must wonder how I could such storms and strifes abide. Storms! - not that clouds embattled make, When they afflict this earthly globe; But such as with their terrors shake Man’s breast, and to the bottom probe; They make the hypocrite disrobe, They try us all, if false or true; For this one Devil had power on Job; And I was long the slave of two.             PHYSICIAN. Peace, peace, my friend; these subjects fly; Collect thy thoughts - go calmly on. -             PATIENT. And shall I then the fact deny? I was - thou know’st - I was begone, Like him who fill’d the eastern throne, To whom the Watcher cried aloud; That royal wretch of Babylon, Who was so guilty and so proud. Like him, with haughty, stubborn mind, I, in my state, my comforts sought; Delight and praise I hoped to find, In what I builded, planted! bought! Oh! arrogance! by misery taught - Soon came a voice! I felt it come; “Full be his cup, with evil fraught, Demons his guides, and death his doom!” Then was I cast from out my state; Two fiends of darkness led my way; They waked me early, watch’d me late, My dread by night, my plague by day! Oh! I was made their sport, their play, Through many a stormy troubled year; And how they used their passive prey Is sad to tell: - but you shall hear. And first before they sent me forth. Through this unpitying world to run, They robb’d Sir Eustace of his worth, Lands, manors, lordships, every one; So was that gracious man undone, Was spurn’d as vile, was scorn’d as poor, Whom every former friend would shun, And menials drove from every door. Then rose ill-favour’d Ones, whom none But my unhappy eyes could view, Led me, with wild emotion, on, And, with resistless terror, drew. Through lands we fled, o’er seas we flew, And halted on a boundless plain; Where nothing fed, nor breathed, nor grew, But silence ruled the still domain. Upon that boundless plain, below, The setting sun’s last rays were shed, And gave a mild and sober glow, Where all were still, asleep, or dead; Vast ruins in the midst were spread, Pillars and pediments sublime, Where the gray mass had form’d a bed, And clothed the crumbling spoils of time. There was I fix’d, I know not how, Condemn’d for untold years to stay: Yet years were not; - one dreadful Now Endured no change of night or day; The same mild evening’s sleeping ray Shone softly solemn and serene, And all that time I gazed away, The setting sun’s sad rays were seen. At length a moment’s sleep stole on, - Again came my commission’d foes; Again through sea and land we’re gone, No peace, no respite, no repose; Above the dark broad sea we rose, We ran through bleak and frozen land; I had no strength their strength t’oppose, An infant in a giant’s hand. They placed me where those streamers play, Those nimble beams of brilliant light; It would the stoutest heart dismay, To see, to feel, that dreadful sight: So swift, so pure, so cold, so bright, They pierced my frame with icy wound; And all that half-year’s polar night, Those dancing streamers wrapp’d me round. Slowly that darkness pass’d away, When down upon the earth I fell, - Some hurried sleep was mine by day; But soon as toll’d the evening bell, They forced me on, where ever dwell Far-distant men, in cities fair, Cities of whom no travellers tell, Nor feet but mine were wanderers there. Their watchmen stare, and stand aghast, As on we hurry through the dark; The watch-light blinks as we go past, The watch-dog shrinks and fears to bark; The watch-tower’s bell sounds shrill; and, hark The free wind blows - we’ve left the town - A wild sepulchral ground I mark, And on a tombstone place me down. What monuments of mighty dead! What tombs of various kinds are found! And stones erect their shadows shed On humble graves, with wickers bound, Some risen fresh, above the ground, Some level with the native clay: What sleeping millions wait the sound, “Arise, ye dead, and come away!” Alas! they stay not for that call; Spare me this woe! ye demons, spare! They come! the shrouded shadows all, - ’Tis more than mortal brain can bear; Rustling they rise, they sternly glare At man upheld by vital breath; Who, led by wicked fiends, should dare To join the shadowy troops of death! Yes, I have felt all man can feel, Till he shall pay his nature’s debt; Ills that no hope has strength to heal, No mind the comfort to forget: Whatever cares the heart can fret, The spirits wear, the temper gall, Woe, want, dread, anguish, all beset My sinful soul! - together all! Those fiends upon a shaking fen Fix’d me, in dark tempestuous night; There never trod the foot of men, There flock’d the fowl in wint’ry flight; There danced the moor’s deceitful light Above the pool where sedges grow; And when the morning-sun shone bright, It shone upon a field of snow. They hung me on a bow so small, The rook could build her nest no higher; They fix’d me on the trembling ball That crowns the steeple’s quiv’ring spire; They set me where the seas retire, But drown with their returning tide; And made me flee the mountain’s fire, When rolling from its burning side. I’ve hung upon the ridgy steep Of cliffs, and held the rambling brier; I’ve plunged below the billowy deep, Where air was sent me to respire; I’ve been where hungry wolves retire; And (to complete my woes) I’ve ran Where Bedlam’s crazy crew conspire Against the life of reasoning man. I’ve furl’d in storms the flapping sail, By hanging from the topmast-head; I’ve served the vilest slaves in jail, And pick’d the dunghill’s spoil for bread; I’ve made the badger’s hole my bed: I’ve wander’d with a gipsy crew; I’ve dreaded all the guilty dread, And done what they would fear to do. On sand, where ebbs and flows the flood, Midway they placed and bade me die; Propp’d on my staff, I stoutly stood When the swift waves came rolling by; And high they rose, and still more high, Till my lips drank the bitter brine; I sobb’d convulsed, then cast mine eye, And saw the tide’s re-flowing sign. And then, my dreams were such as nought Could yield but my unhappy case; I’ve been of thousand devils caught, And thrust into that horrid place Where reign dismay, despair, disgrace; Furies with iron fangs were there, To torture that accursed race Doom’d to dismay, disgrace, despair. Harmless I was; yet hunted down For treasons, to my soul unfit; I’ve been pursued through many a town, For crimes that petty knaves commit; I’ve been adjudged t’have lost my wit, Because I preached so loud and well; And thrown into the dungeon’s pit, For trampling on the pit of hell. Such were the evils, man of sin, That I was fated to sustain; And add to all, without - within, A soul defiled with every stain That man’s reflecting mind can pain; That pride, wrong, rage, despair, can make; In fact, they’d nearly touch’d my brain, And reason on her throne would shake. But pity will the vilest seek, If punish’d guilt will not repine, - I heard a heavenly teacher speak, And felt the SUN OF MERCY shine: I hailed the light! the birth divine! And then was seal’d among the few; Those angry fiends beheld the sign, And from me in an instant flew. Come hear how thus the charmers cry To wandering sheep, the strays of sin, While some the wicket-gate pass by, And some will knock and enter in: Full joyful ’tis a soul to win, For he that winneth souls is wise; Now hark! the holy strains begin, And thus the sainted preacher cries: - {1} “Pilgrim, burthen’d with thy sin, Come the way to Zion’s gate, There, till Mercy let thee in, Knock and weep and watch and wait. Knock! - He knows the sinner’s cry! Weep! - He loves the mourner’s tears: Watch! - for saving grace is nigh: Wait, - till heavenly light appears. “Hark! it is the Bridegroom’s voice: Welcome, pilgrim, to thy rest; Now within the gate rejoice, Safe and seal’d and bought and blest! Safe - from all the lures of vice, Seal’d - by signs the chosen know, Bought - by love and life the price, Blest - the mighty debt to owe. “Holy Pilgrim! what for thee In a world like this remain? From thy guarded breast shall flee Fear and shame, and doubt and pain. Fear - the hope of Heaven shall fly, Shame - from glory’s view retire, Doubt - in certain rapture die, Pain - in endless bliss expire.” But though my day of grace was come, Yet still my days of grief I find; The former clouds’ collected gloom Still sadden the reflecting mind; The soul, to evil things consign’d, Will of their evil some retain; The man will seem to earth inclined, And will not look erect again. Thus, though elect, I feel it hard To lose what I possess’d before, To be from all my wealth debarr’d, - The brave Sir Eustace is no more: But old I wax, and passing poor, Stern, rugged men my conduct view; They chide my wish, they bar my door, ’Tis hard - I weep - you see I do. - Must you, my friends, no longer stay? Thus quickly all my pleasures end; But I’ll remember when I pray, My kind physician and his friend; And those sad hours, you deign to spend With me, I shall requite them all; Sir Eustace for his friends shall send, And thank their love at Greyling Hall.             VISITOR. The poor Sir Eustace! - Yet his hope Leads him to think of joys again; And when his earthly visions droop, His views of heavenly kind remain: But whence that meek and humbled strain, That spirit wounded, lost, resign’d? Would not so proud a soul disdain The madness of the poorest mind?             PHYSICIAN. No! for the more he swell’d with pride, The more he felt misfortune’s blow; Disgrace and grief he could not hide, And poverty had laid him low: Thus shame and sorrow working slow, At length this humble spirit gave; Madness on these began to grow, And bound him to his fiends a slave. Though the wild thoughts had touch’d his brain, Then was he free: - So, forth he ran; To soothe or threat, alike were vain: He spake of fiends; look’d wild and wan; Year after year, the hurried man Obey’d those fiends from place to place; Till his religious change began To form a frenzied child of grace. For, as the fury lost its strength, The mind reposed; by slow degrees Came lingering hope, and brought at length, To the tormented spirit, ease: This slave of sin, whom fiends could seize, Felt or believed their power had end: - “’Tis faith,” he cried, “my bosom frees, And now my SAVIOUR is my friend.” But ah! though time can yield relief, And soften woes it cannot cure; Would we not suffer pain and grief, To have our reason sound and sure? Then let us keep our bosoms pure, Our fancy’s favourite flights suppress; Prepare the body to endure, And bend the mind to meet distress; And then HIS guardian care implore, Whom demons dread and men adore. “THE HALL OF JUSTICE”, IN TWO PARTS. PART I. Confiteor facere hoc annos; sed et altera causa est, Anxietas animi, continuusque dolor.                                                OVID.              ------------------- MAGISTRATE, VAGRANT, CONSTABLE, &c.             VAGRANT. Take, take away thy barbarous hand, And let me to thy Master speak; Remit awhile the harsh command, And hear me, or my heart will break.             MAGISTRATE. Fond wretch! and what canst thou relate, But deeds of sorrow, shame, and sin? Thy crime is proved, thou know’st thy fate; But come, thy tale! - begin, begin! -             VAGRANT. My crime! - This sick’ning child to feed. I seized the food, your witness saw; I knew your laws forbade the deed, But yielded to a stronger law. Know’st thou, to Nature’s great command All human laws are frail and weak? Nay! frown not - stay his eager hand, And hear me, or my heart will break. In this, th’ adopted babe I hold With anxious fondness to my breast, My heart’s sole comfort I behold, More dear than life, when life was blest; I saw her pining, fainting, cold, I begg’d - but vain was my request. I saw the tempting food, and seized - My infant-sufferer found relief; And in the pilfer’d treasure pleased, Smiled on my guilt, and hush’d my grief. But I have griefs of other kind, Troubles and sorrows more severe; Give me to ease my tortured mind, Lend to my woes a patient ear; And let me - if I may not find A friend to help - find one to hear. Yet nameless let me plead - my name Would only wake the cry of scorn; A child of sin, conceived in shame, Brought forth in woe, to misery born. My mother dead, my father lost, I wander’d with a vagrant crew; A common care, a common cost; Their sorrows and their sins I knew; With them, by want on error forced, Like them, I base and guilty grew. Few are my years, not so my crimes; The age which these sad looks declare, Is Sorrow’s work, it is not Time’s, And I am old in shame and care. Taught to believe the world a place Where every stranger was a foe, Train’d in the arts that mark our race, To what new people could I go? Could I a better life embrace, Or live as virtue dictates?  No! - So through the land I wandering went, And little found of grief or joy; But lost my bosom’s sweet content When first I loved the Gipsy-Boy. A sturdy youth he was and tall, His looks would all his soul declare; His piercing eyes were deep and small, And strongly curl’d his raven-hair. Yes, AARON had each manly charm, All in the May of youthful pride, He scarcely fear’d his father’s arm, And every other arm defied. - Oft, when they grew in anger warm, (Whom will not love and power divide?) I rose, their wrathful souls to calm, Not yet in sinful combat tried. His father was our party’s chief, And dark and dreadful was his look; His presence fill’d my heart with grief, Although to me he kindly spoke. With Aaron I delighted went, His favour was my bliss and pride; In growing hope our days we spent, Love’s growing charms in either spied; It saw them all which Nature lent, It lent them all which she denied. Could I the father’s kindness prize, Or grateful looks on him bestow, Whom I beheld in wrath arise, When Aaron sunk beneath his blow? He drove him down with wicked hand, It was a dreadful sight to see; Then vex’d him, till he left the land, And told his cruel love to me; The clan were all at his command, Whatever his command might be. The night was dark, the lanes were deep, And one by one they took their way; He bade me lay me down and sleep, I only wept and wish’d for day. Accursed be the love he bore, Accursed was the force he used, So let him of his God implore For mercy, and be so refused! You frown again, - to show my wrong Can I in gentle language speak? My woes are deep, my words are strong, - And hear me, or my heart will break.             MAGISTRATE. I hear thy words, I feel thy pain; Forbear awhile to speak thy woes; Receive our aid, and then again The story of thy life disclose. For, though seduced and led astray, Thou’st travell’d far and wander’d long; Thy God hath seen thee all the way, And all the turns that led thee wrong. PART  II. Quondam ridentes oculi, nunc fonte perenni Deplorant poenas nocte dieque suas.                                 CORNEILLE.             ---------------             MAGISTRATE. Come, now again thy woes impart, Tell all thy sorrows, all thy sin; We cannot heal the throbbing heart Till we discern the wounds within. Compunction weeps our guilt away, The sinner’s safety is his pain; Such pangs for our offences pay, And these severer griefs are gain.             VAGRANT. The son came back - he found us wed, Then dreadful was the oath he swore; His way through Blackburn Forest led, - His father we beheld no more. Of all our daring clan not one Would on the doubtful subject dwell; For all esteem’d the injured son, And fear’d the tale which he could tell. But I had mightier cause for fear, For slow and mournful round my bed I saw a dreadful form appear, - It came when I and Aaron wed. Yes! we were wed, I know my crime, - We slept beneath the elmin tree; But I was grieving all the time, And Aaron frown’d my tears to see. For he not yet had felt the pain That rankles in a wounded breast; He waked to sin, then slept again, Forsook his God, yet took his rest. But I was forced to feign delight, And joy in mirth and music sought, - And mem’ry now recalls the night, With such surprise and horror fraught, That reason felt a moment’s flight, And left a mind to madness wrought. When waking, on my heaving breast I felt a hand as cold as death: A sudden fear my voice suppress’d, A chilling terror stopp’d my breath. I seem’d - no words can utter how! For there my father-husband stood, And thus he said: - “Will God allow, The great Avenger just and Good, A wife to break her marriage vow? A son to shed his father’s blood?” I trembled at the dismal sounds, But vainly strove a word to say; So, pointing to his bleeding wounds, The threat’ning spectre stalk’d away. I brought a lovely daughter forth, His father’s child, in Aaron’s bed; He took her from me in his wrath, “Where is my child?” - “Thy child is dead.” ’Twas false - we wander’d far and wide, Through town and country, field and fen, Till Aaron, fighting, fell and died, And I became a wife again. I then was young: - my husband sold My fancied charms for wicked price;