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Life in the unproductive shades of death,
prone; the pale inhabitants come forth, 125
Such evil sin hath wrought; and such a flame Kindled in heaven, that it burns down to earth, And in the furious inquest that it makes
135 On God's behalf, lays waste his fairest works. The very elements, though each be meant The minister of man, to serve his wants, Conspire against him. With his breath, he draws A plague into his blood, and cannot use
1.10 Life’s necessary means, but he must die. Storms rise to o'erwhelm him: or if stormy winds Rise not, the waters of the deep shall rise, And needing none assistance of the storm, Shall roll themselves ashore, and reach him there. 145 The earth shall shake him out of all his holds, Or make his house his grave: nor so content, Shall counterfeit the motions of the flood, And drown him in her dry and dusty gulfs. What then,—were they the wicked above all,
150 And we the righteous, whose fast anchor'd isle Moved not, while theirs was rock'd like a light skiff, The sport of every wave ? No: none are clear, And none than we more guilty. But where all Stand chargeable with guilt, and to the shafts 155
Of wrath obnoxious, God may chuse his mark,
Happy the man who sees a God employed
170 Then God might be surprised, and unforeseen Contingence might alarm him, and disturb The smooth and equal course of his affairs. This truth, philosophy, though eagle-eyed In Nature's tendencies, oft overlooks, And having found his instrument, forgets Or disregards, or more presumptuous still, Denies the power that wields it. God proclaims His hot displeasure against foolish men That live an atheist life; involves the heaven In tempests, quits his grasp upon the winds And gives them all their fury; bids a plague Kindle a fiery boil upon the skin, And putrify the breath of blooming health. He calls for famine, and the meagre
fiend Blows mildew from between his shrivel'd lips, And taints the golden ear. He springs his mines,
And desolates a nation at a blast.
200 Than a capacious reservoir of means Form’d for his use, and ready at his will ? Go", dress thine eyes with eye-salve, ask of him Or ask of whomsoever he has taught, And learn, though late, the genuine cause of all.
205 England, with all thy faults, I love thee still, My country! and while yet a nook is left Where English minds and manners may be found, Shall be constrain’d to love thee. Though thy clime Be fickle, and thy year, most part, deformed 210 With dripping rains, or wither'd by a frost, I would not yet exchange thy sullen skies And fields without a flower, for warmer France With all her vines ; nor for Ausonia's groves Of golden fruitage and her myrtle bowers. 215 To shake thy senate, and from heights sublime 11 Go, teach eternal wisdom how to rule, Then drop into thyself and be a fool.
Pope. Essuy on Man, ii. 29.
Of patriot eloquence to flash down fire
looks Reflect dishonour on the land I love. How, in the name of soldiership and sense, 225 Should England prosper, when such things, as smooth And tender as a girl, all essenced o'er With odours, and as profligate as sweet, Who sell their laurel for a myrtle wreath, And love when they should fight; when such as these Presume to lay their hand upon the ark
231 Of her magnificent and aweful cause ? Time was when it was praise and boast enough In
every clime, and travel where we might, That we were born her children ; praise enough 235 To fill the ambition of a private man, That Chatham's language was his mother tongue, And Wolfe's a great name compatriot with his own. Farewell those honours, and farewell with them The hope of such hereafter. They have fallen 240 Each in his field of glory: one in arms, And one in council. Wolfe upon the lap Of smiling victory that moment won, And Chatham, heart-sick of his country's shame.
12 Cowper wrote from his own recollection here. In one of his letters he says, “ Nothing could express my rapture when Wolfe made the conquest of Quebec.”
They made us many soldiers. Chatham still
Now hoist the sail, and let the streamers float
beard Braved and defied, and in our own sea proved
13 Who do for yold what Christians do for grace, With open arms their enemies embrace.
Young. Satire vii.