Зображення сторінки

Sav'd from his home, where ev'ry day brings forth
Some mischief fatal to his future worth,
Find him a better in a distant spot,
Within some pious pastor's humble cot,
Where vile example (your’s I chiefly mean,
The most seducing and the oft'neft seen)
May never more be stamp'd upon his breast,
Not yet perhaps incurably impress’d.
Where early rest makes early rising sure,
Disease or comes not, or finds easy cure,
Prevented much by diet neat and plain,
Or if it enter, soon starv'd out again :
Where all th' attention of his faithful hoft,
Discreetly limited to two at most,
May raise such fruits as shall reward his care,
And not at last evaporate in air :
Where, stillness aiding study, and his mind
Serene, and to his duties much inclin'd,
Nor occupied in day-dreams, as at home,
Of pleasures past or follies yet to come,

His virtuous toil


terminate at last In fettled habit and decided taste.

But whom do I advise ? the fashion-led,
Th’incorrigibly wrong, the deaf, the dead,
Whom care and cool deliberation fuit
Not better much than spectacles a brute,
Who, if their sons fome Night tuition share,
Deem it of no great moment whose, or where;
Too proud t'adopt the thoughts of one unknown,
And much too gay t' have any of their own.
But courage, man! methought the muse replied,
Mankind are various, and the world is wide :
The ostrich, fillieft of the feather'd kind,
And form'd of God without a parent's mind,
Commits her eggs, incautious, to the dust,
Forgetful that the foot may crush the trust;
And, while on public nurs’ries they rely,
Not knowing, and too oft not caring, why,
Irrational in what they thus prefer,
No few, that would seem wise, resemble her.

[ocr errors]


But all are not alike. Thy warning voice
May here and there prevent erroneous choice;
And some perhaps, who, busy as they are,
Yet make their progeny their dearest care,
(Whose hearts will ache, once told what ills


reach Their offspring, left upon

so wild a beach) Will need no stress of argument t’inforce Th'expedience of a less advent’rous course ; The rest will night thy counsel, or condemn But they have human feelings—turn to them.

[ocr errors]

To you

then, tenants of life's middle state, Securely plac'd between the small and

Whose character, yet undebauch’d, retains
Two thirds of all the virtue that remains,
Who, wise yourselves, desire your fons should learn
Your wisdom and your ways-to you

I turn.
Look round you on a world perversely blind-
See what contempt is fall’n on human kind


See wealth abus'd, and dignities misplac’d,
Great titles, offices, and trusts disgrac'd,
Long lines of ancestry, renown'd of old,
Their noble qualities all quench'd and cold;
See Bedlam's closetted and hand-cuff'd charge
Surpass’d in frenzy by the mad at large;
See great commanders making war à trade,
Great lawyers, lawyers without study made
Churchmen, in whose esteem their blest employ
Is odious, and their wages all their joy,
Who, far enough from furnishing their shelves
With gospel lore, turn infidels themselves ;
See womanhood despis’d, and manhood sham’d
With infamy too nauseous to be nam’d,
Fops at all corners, lady-like in mien,
Civeted fellows, smelt ere they are seen,
Else coarse and rude in manners, and their tongue
On fire with curses and with nonsense hung,
Now flush'd with drunk’ness, now with whoredom pale,
Their breath a sample of last night's regale ;


See volunteers in all the vileft arts,
Men well endow'd, of honourable parts,
Design'd by natúre wise, but felf-made fools ;
All these, and more like these, were bred at schools.
And if it chance, as sometimes chance it will,
That though school-bred, the boy be virtuous still,
Such rare exceptions shining in the dark,
Prove, rather than impeach, the just remark;
As here and there a twinkling star descried
Serves but to show how black is all beside.

Now look on him whofe very voice in tone
Just echoes thine, whose features are thine own,
And stroke his polish'd cheek of purest red,
And lay thine hand upon his flaxen head,
And say, My boy, th' unwelcome hour is come,
When thou, transplanted from thy genial home,
Must find a colder soil and bleaker air,
And trust for safety to a stranger's care ;
What character, what turn thou wilt assume
From constant converse with I know not whom;

Vol. II.



« НазадПродовжити »