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Some say he learn'd them from an Owl;
By list’ning where he taught a school.
'Tis strange to tell, this subtle creature,
Tho' nothing musical by nature,
Had learn’d so well to play his part,
With nonsense couch'd in terms of art,
As to be own'd by all, at last,
Director of the public taste.
Then puff’d with insolence and pride,
And sure of numbers on his side,
Each song he freely criticis'd;
What he approv'd not was despis’d: to
But one false step in evil hour
For ever stripp'd him of his pow'r.
Once, when the Birds assemblid sat,
All list’ning to his formal chat;
By instinct nice he chanc'd to find
A cloud approaching in the wind,
And Ravens hardly can refrain
From croaking when they think of rain;
His wonted song he sung: the blunder
Amaz'd and scar’d them worse than thunder;
For no one thought so harsh a note
Could ever sound from any throat:
They all, at first, with mute surprise
Each on his neighbour turn'd his eyes: .
But scorn succeeding soon took place,
And might be read in ev'ry face.
All this the Raven saw with pain,
And strove his credit to regain: Da
Quoth he, The solo which ye heard *19 . In public should not have appear’d;'
The trifling of an idle hour, ! - $452.5.11 • To please my mistress once when spur: 12 • My voice, that's somewhat roughlandsstrong, * Might chance the melody to wrong, • But, tried by rules, you'll find the grounds . Most perfect and harmonious sounds.' 11" He reason'd thus; but, to his trouble, H. At ev'ry word the laugh grew double, I At last, oʻercome with shame and spite, il Away he flew far out of sight. Stor!
THE BREEZE AND THE TEMPEST.
That nation boasts a happy fate
Whose prince is good, as well as great, ;
Calm peace at home with plenty reigns,
The law its proper course obtains;; : ,,
Abroad the public is respected,
And all its int'restsvare protected: :
But, when his igenius, weak or strong, "
Is by ambition pointed wrong,
When private greatness has possess'd
In place of public good his breast,
'Tis certain, and I'll prove it true,
That ev'ry mischief must-ensue.
On some pretence a war is made,
The citizen must change his trade;
His steers the husbandman unyokes,
The shepherd too must quit:his flocks, ,
His harmless life and honest gain,
To rob, to murder, and be slain :
The fields, once fruitful, yield no more
Their yearly produce as before :
Each useful plant neglected dies,
While idle weeds licentious rise
Unnumber'd, to usurp the land
Where yellow harvests us'd to stand.
Lean famine sogn-in-course-succeeds;
Diseases follow as she leads :
No infant bands at: close of day
In ev'ry village sport and play:
The streets are throng'd with orphans dying
For want of bread, and widows erying:
Fierce rapine walks abroad-unchain'd,
By civil order noti restrain'd: tra
Without regard to right and wrong,
The weak are injur'd by the strong ; in ļ.
The hungry mouth but rarely tastes
The fattning food which riot wastes;
All ties of conscience lose their force,
E’en sacred oaths grow words of course...
By what strange cause are kings inclin'd
To heap such mischiefs on mankind ? A
What pow'rful arguments control
The better dictates of the soul ?
The love of glory and a name
Loud sounded by the trump of fame : *
Nor shall they miss their end, unless O y
Their guilty projects want success.
Let one possess'd of sov'reign-sway
Invade and murder and betray,
Let war and rapiñe fierce he hursd
Thro' half the nations of the world; i
And prove successful in a course
Of bad designs and actions worse,
At once a demi-god he grows,
And incens'd both in verse and prose,
Becomes the idol of mankind;
Tho' to what's good he's weak and blind;
Approv'd, applauded, and respected,
While better rulers are neglected.
Where Shotts's airy tops dividei
Fair Lothian from the vale of Clyde,
A Tempest from the east and north
Fraught with the vapours of the Forth,
In passing to the Irish seàs,
Once chanc'd to meet the western Breeze : 1
The Tempest hail'd him with a roar,
• Make haste, and clear the way before ; • No paltry-Zephyr must pretend
tintT * To stand before me, or contend:
* Begone, or, in a whirlwind tost,
• Your weak existence will be lost.'
The Tempest thus:-The Breeze replied, * If both our merits should be tried, • Impartial Justice would decree * That you should yield the way to me.'
At this the Tempest ravid and storm'd, Grew black and ten times more deformid: • What qualities, quoth he,' of thiné, • Vain flatt’ring wind, can equal mine? • Breath'd from some river, lake, or bog, . • Your rise at first is in a fog; • And creeping slowly o'er the meads * Scarce stir the willows or the reeds; • While those that feel you hardly know * The certain point from which you flow. * From earth's deep womb, the child of fire, • Fierce, active, vig'rous, like my sire, • I rush to light; the mountains quake • With dread, and all their forests shake : • The globe itself, convuls'd and torn, * Feels pangs unusual when I'm born: * Now free in air with sov’reign sway, * I rule, and all the clouds obey: * From east to west my pow'r extends, • Where day begins and where it ends : * And from Boötes, downwards far, • Athwart the track of ev'ry star. • Thro' me the polar deep disdains • To sleep in winter's frosty chains ;