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NIGHT THE FIRST.

ON

Life, Death, and Immortality.

HUMBLY INSCRIBED

To the RIGHT HONOURABLE

ARTHUR ONSLOW, Esq;

SPEAKER of the House of COMMONS.

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IR'D Nature's sweet Reftorer, balmy Sleep!
He, like the World, his ready Visit pays
Where Fortune smiles; the Wretched he for.

fakes :

Swift on his downy Pinion flies from Woc, And lights on Lids unsully'd with a Tear.

From short (as usual) and disturb'd Repose, I wake: How happy they, who wake no more ! Yet that were vain, if Dreams infest the Grave. I wake, emerging from a Sea of Dreams Tumultuous ; where my wreck'd, desponding Thought From Wave to Wave of fansy'd Misery, At random drove, her Helm of Reason loft. Tho' now restor', 'tis only Change of Pain, (A bitter Change !) feverer for severe. The Day too short for my Distress! and Night, Even in the Zenith of her dark Domain, Is Sunfhine, to the Colour of my Fate.

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Night,

Night, fable Goddess ! from her Ebon Throne,
In rayless Majesty, now stretches forth
Her leaden Sceptre o'er a sumb'ring World.
Silence, how dead! and Darkness, how profound !
Nor Eye, nor lift'ning Ear an Object finds ;
Creation sleeps. "Tis, as the gen’ral Pulse
Of Life stood still, and Nature made a Pause;
An aweful Paufe ! prophetic of her End.
And let her Prophecy be foon fulfill'd ;
Fate ! drop the Curtain ; I can lose no more.

Silence, and Darkness! solemn Sisters ! Twins From antient Night, who nurse the tender Thought To Reason, and on Reason build Resolve, (That Column of true Majesty in Man) Aslift me : I will thank you in the Grave; The Grave, your Kingdom : Tbere this Frame shall fall A Victim sacred to your dreary Shrine. But what are ye? THOU, who didit put to Flight Primæval Silence, when the Morning-Stars, Exulting, Mouted o'er the rising Ball; O T'HOU! whose Word from folid Darkness struck That Spark, the Sun ; strike Wisdom from my Soul ; My Soul, which flies to thee, her Trust, her Treasure, As Misers to their Gold, while others reft.

Thro' this Opaque of Nature, and of Soul,
This double Night, transmit one pitying Ray,
To lighten, and to chear. O lead my Mind,
(A Mind that fain would wander from its Woe)
Lead it thro' various Scenes of Life, and Death;
And from each Scene, the noblest Truths inspire.
Nor less inspire my Conduct, than my Song ;
Teach

my

best Reason, Reason; my best Will Teach Reciitude ; and fix my firm Resolve Wisdom to wed, and pay her long Arrear : Nor let the Phial of thy Vengeance, pour'd On this devoted Head, be pour'd in vain.

The

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