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"Ανθρωπος, ικανή πρόφασις εις το δυστυχείν.

MENANDER.

YE distant spires, ye antique towers,

That crown the wat'ry glade,
Where grateful Science still adores

Her Henry's holy shade ;
And ye, that from the stately brow
Of Windsor's heights th' expanse below

Of grove, of lawn, of mead survey,
Whose turf, whose shade, whose flowers among
Wanders the hoary Thames along

His silver-winding way :
Ah, happy hills ! ah, pleasing shade

Ah, fields beloved in vain !
Where once my careless childhood stray'd,

A stranger yet to pain !

I feel the gales that from ye blow
A momentary bliss bestow,

As waving fresh their gladsome wing, My weary soul they seem to soothe, And, redolent of joy and youth,

To breathe a second spring.

Say, father Thames, for thou hast seen

Full many a sprightly race
Disporting on thy margent green,

The paths of pleasure trace ;
Who foremost now delight to cleave,
With pliant arm, thy glassy wave ?

The captive linnet which enthral ?
What idle progeny succeed
To chase the rolling circle's speed,

Or urge the flying ball ?

While some on earnest business bent

Their murm’ring labours ply 'Gainst graver hours that bring constraint

To sweeten liberty :
Some bold adventurers disdain
The limits of their little reign,

And unknown regions dare descry :

Still as they run they look behind,
They hear a voice in every wind,

And snatch a fearful joy.

Gay hope is theirs by fancy fed,

Less pleasing when possest ; The tear forgot as soon as shed,

The sunshine of the breast : Theirs buxom health, of rosy hue, Wild wit, invention ever new,

And lively cheer, of vigour born ; The thoughtless day, the easy night, The spirits pure, the slumbers light,

That fly th' approach of morn.

Alas ! regardless of their doom

The little victims play ;
No sense have they of ills to come,

Nor care beyond to-day :
Yet see, how all around 'em wait
The ministers of human fate,

And black Misfortune's baleful train ! Ah, show them where in ambush stand, To seize their prey, the murth'rous band !

Ah, tell them, they are men !

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