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Yet ere he pass'd, with much ado
Enough, he cry'd; I'll drudge no more, “ In turning the dull Stoics o'er: “ Let pedants waste their hours of ease “ To sweat all night at Socrates; “ And feed their boys with notes and rules, “ Those tedious Recipes of Schools “ To cure ambition: I can learn “ With greater ease the great concern “ Of mortals; how we may despise “ All the gay things below the skies.
“ Methinks a mould’ring pyramid Says all that the old
said: “ For me, these shatter'd tombs contain “ More morals than the Vatican. " The dust of heroes cast abroad, “ And kick'd and trampled in the road, “ The relics of a lofty mind, “ That lately wars and crowns design'd, “ Tost for a jest from wind to wind, “ Bid me be humble, and forbear “ Tall monuments of fame to rear,
They are but castles in the air.
“ The tow'ring height and frightful falls,
Thy carcass scatter'd on the shore " Without a name, instructs me more “ Than my whole library before.
“ Lie still, my Plutarch, then, and sleep, “ And my good Seneca may keep ~ Your volumes clos'd for ever too, " I have no further use for you: “ For when I feel my virtue fail, " And my ambitious thoughts prevail; “ I'll take a turn among the tombs, “ And see whereto all glory comes “ There the vile foot of ev'ry slave, “ Insults a Charles or a Gustave:
Beggars with awful ashes sport, " And tread the Cæsars in the dirt."
I AM not concern'd to know
Glittring stones and golden things, Wealth and honours that have wings, Ever flutt'ring to be gone, I could never call my own: Riches that the world bestows, She can take and I can lose; But the treasures that are mine, Lie afar beyond her line: When I view my spacious soul, And survey myself awhole, And enjoy myself alone, I'm a kingdom of my own.
I've a mighty part within
Rich as Eden's happy ground,
There are endless beauties more Earth hath no resemblance for; Nothing like them round the pole, Nothing can describe the soul; 'Tis a region half unknown, That has treasures of its own,
More remote from public view
Yet the silly wandring mind, Loth to be too much confin'd, Roves and takes her daily tours, Coasting round the narrow shores, Narrow shores of flesh and sense, Picking shells and pebbles thence; Or she sits at Fancy's door, Calling shapes and shadows to her, Foreign visits still receiving, And t'herself a stranger living. Never, never would she buy Indian dust or Tyrian dye, Never trade abroad for more, If she saw her native store, If her inward worth were known, She might ever live alone.