So far'd the nymph, her treasure flown,
And turn'd, like Niobe, to stone ;
Within, without, obscure and void,
She felt all ravag'd, and destroy'd.
And, O ! thou curs'd insidious coast.
Are these the blessings thou canst boast ?
These, virtue ! these the joys they find.
Who leave thy heav'n-topt hills behind !
Shade me, ye pines, ye caverns hide,
Ye mountains cover me ! she cry'd.
Her trumpet Slander rais'd on high,
And told the tidings to the sky ;
:r2 A FABLE,
Contempt discharg'd a living dart,
A side-long viper to her heart ;
Reproach breath'd poisons o'er her face,
And soil'd, and bla^.ted ev'ry gi-ace ;
Officious Shame, her handmaid new,.
Still tum'd the mirror to her view ; ^
While those in crimes the deepest dy'd^
Approach'd to whiten at her side.
And ev'ry lewd insulting dame
Upon her folly rose to fame.
What should she do ; attempt once more
To gain the late-deserted shore ?
So trusting, back the mourner flew,
As fast the train of fiends pursue.
Again the farther shore attained,
Again the land of virtue gain'd ;
But echo gathers in the wind,
Anjl shows her instant foes behind.
Amaz'd ! with headlong speed she tends
Where late she left an host of friends ;
Alas \ those shrinking friends decline,
Nor longer own that form divine ;
With fear they mark the following cry.
And from the lonely trembler fly ;
Or backward drive her on the coast.
Where peace was wreck'd, and honour lost.
From earth thus hoping aid in vain \
To heav'n, not daring to complain ;
No truce, by hostile clamour giv'n,
And from the face of friendship driv'n ;
The nymph sunk prostrate on the ground
With all the weight of woes around.
Enthron'd within a circling sky,
Upon a mount, o'er mountains high,
All radiant sate, as in a shrine.
Virtue, first effluence divine ;
Far, far above the scenes of woe.
That shut this eloud- wrapt world below .:
BY E. MOORE. 273
Superior goddess ! essence bright !
Beauty of uncreated light,
Whom should mortality survey,
As doom'd upon a certain day ;
The breath of frailty must expire,
The world dissolve in living fire ;
The gems of heav'n, and solar flame,
Be quench'd by her eternal beam,
And nature, quick'ning in her eye.
To raise a new-born phoenix, die.
Hence, unreveal'd to mortal view,
A veil around her form she threw.
Which three sad sisters of the shade.
Pain, Care, and Melancholy, made.
Thro' this her all-inquiring eye,
Attentive from her station high.
Beheld, abandon'd to despair.
The ruins of her fav'rite fair ;
And with a voice, whose awful sound,
Appaird the guilty world around.
Bid the tumultuous winds be still ;
To numbers bow'd each listening hill ;
Uncurl'd the surging of the main,
And smoothed the thorny bed of pain ;
The golden harp of heaven she strung,
And thus the tuneful goddess sung :
Lovely penitent, arise,
Come, and claim thy kindred skies ;
Come, thy sister angels say,
Thou hast wept thy stains away.
Let experience now decide,
'Twixt the good and evil, try'd,
In the smooth enchanted ground.
Say, unfold the treasures found-
Structures rais'd by mourning dreams,
Sands that trip the flitting streams,
Down that anchors on the air.
Clouds that paint their changes there.
2'T4 A FABLE, &C.
Transient, fickle, light, and gay,
Flatt'ring, only to betray ;
What, alas ! can life contain ?
Life, like all its cir- les, vain.
Will the stork, intending rest,
On the billow build her nest ?
Will the bee demand his store
From the bleak and bladeless shore ?
Man alone, intent to stray,
Ev^er turns from wisdom's way ;
Lays up wealth in foreign land,
Sows the sea, and plows the sand.
Soon this elemental mass.
Soon the encumb'ring world shall pass ;
Form be wrapt in wasting fire,
Time be spent, and life expire.
Then, ye boasted works of men,
Where is your asylum then ?
Sons of pleasure, sons of care.
Tell me, mortals, tell me where ?
Pass the world, and what's behind ?
Virtue's gold, by fire refin'd ;
From, an universe deprav'd.
From the wreck of nature sav'd.
Little native of the skies,
Lovely penitent, arise,
Calm thy bosom, clear thy brow,
Virtue is thy sister now.
What, tho' hostile earth despise,
Heav'n beholds with gentler eyes ;
Heav'n thy friendless steps shall guide,
Chear thy hours, and guard thy side.
Come, with virtue at thy side,
Come, be ev'ry bar defy'd,
'Till we gain our native shore.
Sister, come, and turn no more.
( 275 )
THE JOY OF GRIEF.
SWEET the hour of tribulation,
When the heart can freely sigh ;
And the tear of resignation
Twinkles in the mournful eye.
Have you felt a kind emotion
Tremble through your troubl'd breast ;
Soft as evening o'er the ocean
When she charms the waves to rest ?
Have you lost a friend, or brother ?
Heard a father's parting breath ?
Gaz'd upon a lifeless mother,
'Till she seem'd to wake from death ?
Have you seen your spouse expiring,
In your arms, before your view ?
Watch'd the lovely soul retiring.
From the eyes that broke on you ?
Did not grief then grow romantic
Raving on -remembered bliss ?
Did you not with fervour frantic
Kiss the lips that felt no kiss ?
Horror then your heart congealing,
Chill'd you with intense despair,
Can you recollect the feeling ?
No ! there was no feeling there ?
From that gloomy trance of sorrow,
When you woke to pangs unknown^
How unwelcome was the morrow.
For it rose on you alone /
Sunk in self-consuming anguish,
Can the poor heart always ache ?
No, the tortured nerve will languish,
Or the strings of life must break.
O'er the yielding brow of sadness.
One faint smile of comfort stole ;
276 THE JOY OF GRIEF.
One soft pang of tender gladness
Exquisitely thrill'd your soul.
While the wounds of woe are healing,
While the heart is all resign'd,
'Tis the solemn feast of feeling
'Tis the sabbath of the mind.
Pensive memory then retraces
Scenes of bliss forever fled,
Lives in former times and places,
Holds communion with the dead.
And when night's prophetic slumbers
Rend the veil to mental eyes,
From their tombs the sainted numbers
Your lost companions rise.
You have seen a friend, a brother,
Heard a dear dead father speak,
Prov'd the fondness of a mother.
Felt her tearo upon your cheek.
Dreams of love your grief beguiling.
You have clasp 'd a consort's charms,
And recei\'ed your infant smiling,
From his mother's sacred arms.
Trembling, pale and agonizing,
While you mourn'dthe vision gone,
Bright the morning star arising, 4^
Open'd heaven, from whence it shone. ^^
Thither all your wishes bending
Rose in extacy sublime, ^
Thither all your hopes ascending
Triumph'd over death and time.
Thus alFiict'd, bruised and broken.
Have you known such sweet relief ?
Yes, my friend ! and by this token.
You have knovvn the "joys of grief."