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And this one maxim is a standing rule:
Men are not what they seem.
Be honest poverty thy boasted wealth;
So shall thy friendships be sincere, tho' few
So shall thy sleep be sound, thy waking cheerful.
Britain, the queen of isles, our fair possession
Secur'd by nature, laughs at foreign force;
Her ships her bulwark, and the sea her dike,
Sees plenty in her lap, and braves the world.
Comfort--'tis for ease and quiet;
It sleeps upon the down of sweet content,
In the sound bed of industry and health.
Consider how the desperate fight;
Despair strikes wild,--but often fatal too--
And in the mad encounter wins success.
Fear on guilt attends, and deeds of darkness;
The virtuous breast ne'er knows it.
Frank sincerity, though no invited guest, is free to all, and brings his welcome with him.
Hark! the death-denouncing trumpet sounds
The fatal charge, and shouts proclaim the onset;
Destruction rushes dreadful to the field,
And bathes itself in blood; havoc let loose
Now undistinguish'd rages all around,
While ruin, seated on her dreary throne,
Sees the plain strewed with subjects truly hers,
Breathless and cold.
He that acts unjustly
Is the worst rebel to himself; and though now
Ambition's trumpet and the drum of power
May drown the sound, yet conscience will one day
Speak loudly to him.
How the time
Loiters in expectation! Then the mind
Drags the dead burden of a hundred years
In one short moment's space. The nimble heart
Beats with impatient throbs,--sick of delay,
And pants to be at ease.
I have too deeply read mankind to be amused with friendship; it is a name invented merely to betray credulity; it is intercourse of interest, not of souls.
Let falsehood be a stranger to thy lips;
Shame on the policy that first began
To tamper with the heart to hide its thoughts!
And doubly shame on that inglorious tongue,
That sold its honesty and told a lie.
O breath of public praise,
Short liv'd and vain! oft gain'd without desert,
As often lost, unmerited; composed
But of extremes: Thou first beginn'st with love
Enthusiastic, madness of affection; then
(Bounding o'er moderation and o'er reason)
Thou turn'st to hate, as causeless and as fierce.
O credulity, thou hast as many ears as fame has tongues, open to every sound of truth as of falsehood.
O cursed ambition, thou devouring bird,
How dost thou from the field of honesty
Pick every grain of profit or delight,
And mock the reaper's toil!
O Eloquence! thou violated fair, how thou art wooed and won to either bed of right or wrong!
Servile inclinations, and gross love,
The guilty bent of vicious appetite;
At first a sin, a horror ev'n in bliss,
Deprave the senses and lay waste the man;
Passions irregular, and next a loathing,
Quickly succeed to dash the wild.
The greatest glory of a free-born people,
Is to transmit that freedom to their children.
The guilty mind debases the great image that it wears, and levels us with brutes.
Who shall tax successful villany, or call the rising traitor to account?