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The' eclipse, that intercepts truth's heav'nly beam,
Grace makes the slave a freeman. 'Tis a change, That turns to ridicule the turgid speech And stately tone of moralists, who boast, As if, like him of fabulous renown, They had indeed ability to smooth The shag of savage nature, and were each An Orpheus, and omnipotent in song: But transformation of apostate man From fool to wise, from earthly to divine, Is work for Him that made him. He alone, And he by means in philosophic eyes Trivial and worthy of disdain, achieves The wonder; humanizing what is brute In the lost kind, extracting from the lips
asps their venom, overpow'ring strength By weakness, and hostility by love.
Patriots have toil'd, and in their country's cause Bled nobly; and their deeds, as they deserve, Receive proud recompense. We give in charge Their names to the sweet lyre. The' historic muse, Proud of the treasure, marches with it down To latest times; and Sculpture, in her turn, Gives bond in stone and ever-during brass To guard them, and to immortalize her trust : But fairer wreaths are due, though never paid, To those, who, posted at the shrine of Truth, Have fall’n in her defence. A patriot's blood,
Well spent in such a strife, may earn indeed,
He is the freeman, whom the truth makes free, And all are slaves beside. There's not a chain, That hellish foes, confed’rate for his harm, Can wind around him, but he casts it off, With as much ease as Samson his green withes. He looks abroad into the varied field Of nature, and though poor perhaps, compar'd With those whose mansions glitter in his sight, Calls the delightful scenery all his own. His are the mountains, and the valleys his, And the resplendent rivers. His to' enjoy With a propriety that none can feel, But who, with filial confidence inspir’d, Can lift to Heav'n an unpresumptuous eye, And smiling say—“My Father made them all!"
# See Hume.
Are they not his by a peculiar right,
Acquaint thyself with God, if thou would'st taste His works. Admitted once to his embrace,
Thou shalt perceive that thou wast blind before : Thine
eye shall be instructed ; and thine heart Made pure shall relish, with divine delight Till then unfelt, what hands divine have wrought. Brutes graze the mountain-top, with faces prone, And eyes intent upon the scanty herb It yields them; or, recumbent on its brow, Ruminate heedless of the scene outspread Beneath, beyond, and stretching far away From inland regions to the distant main. Man views it, and admires; but rests content With what he views. The landscape has his praise, But not its author. Unconcern'd who form’d The Paradise he sees, he finds it such, And, such well-pleas’d to find it, asks no more. Not so the mind, that has been touch'd from Heav'n, And in the school of sacred wisdom taught, To read his wonders, in whose thought the World, Fair as it is, existed ere it was. Not for its own sake merely, but for his Much more, who fashion’d it, he gives it praise ; Praise that from Earth resulting, as it ought, To Earth's acknowledg'd sov'reign, finds at once Its only just proprietor in Him. The soul that sees him or receives sublim'd New faculties, or learns at least to' employ More worthily the pow’rs she own'd before, Discerns in all things what, with stupid gaze Of ignorance, till then she overlook’d, A ray of heav'nly light, gilding all forms Terrestrial in the vast and the minute; The unambiguous footsteps of the God, Who gives its lustre to an insect's wing, And wheels his throne upon the rolling worlds.
Much conversant with Heav'n, she often holds With those fair ministers of light to man, That fill the skies nightly with silent pomp, [they Sweet conference. Inquires what strains were With which Heav'n rang, when ev'ry star, in haste To gratulate the new-created Earth, Sent forth a voice, and all the sons of God Shouted for joy."Tell me, ye shining hosts, “That navigate a sea that knows no storms, “ Beneath a vault unsullied with a cloud, “If from your elevation, whence ye view * Distinctly scenes invisible to man, “ And systems, of whose birth no tidings yet “ Have reach'd this nether world, ye spy a race “Favour'd as ours; transgressors from the womb, “And hasting to a grave yet doom'd to rise, “And to possess a brighter Heav'n than yours? “As one, who, long detain'd on foreign shores, “Pants to return, and when he sees afar “ His country's weather-bleach'd and batter'd rocks “ From the green wave emerging, darts an eye “ Radiant with joy towards the happy land ; “So I with animated hopes behold, “And many an aching wish, your beamy fires, “ That shows like beacons in the blue abyss, “Ordain’d to guide the' embodied spirit home “From toilsome life to never-ending rest. “ Love kindles as I gaze. I feel desires, ". That give assurance of their own success, “And that, infus'd from Heav'n, must thither tend."
So reads her nature, whom the lamp of truth Illuminates. Thy lamp, mysterious Word! Which whoso sees no longer wanders lost,