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IR A V E L L E R;
R or by the lazy Scheld, or wandering Po;
Or onward, where the rude Carinthian boor,
Against the houseless stranger shuts the door;
Or where Campania's plain forsaken lies,
A weary waste expanding to the skies;
Where'er I roam, whatever realms to see,
My heart untravell’a fondly turns to thee:
Still to my brother turns, with ceaseless pain,
And drags at each remove a lengthening chain.
*** In this poem feveral alterations were made, and fome new verses added, as it passed through different oditions.- We have printed it from the ninth, which was the last edition published in the lifetime of the author.
Eternal blessings crown my earliest friend,
And round his dwelling guardian saints attend;
Bleft be that spot, where chearful guests retire
To pause from toil, and trim their ev'ning fire ;
Blelt that abode, where want and pain repair,
And ev'ry stranger finds a ready chair.
Bleft be those feafts with simple plenty crown'd,
Where all the ruddy family around
Laugh at the jeste or pranks that never fail,
Or figh with pity at some mournful tale,
Or press the bashful itranger to his food,
And learn the luxury of doing good.
But me, not deftin’d such delights to share,
My prime of life in wand'ring spent and care :
Impell’d, with steps unceasing, to pursue
Some Aceting good, that mocks me with the view;
That, like the circle bounding earth and skies ;
Allures from far, yet, as I follow, flies;
My fortune leads to traverse realms alone,
And find no spot of all the world my own.
Ev'n now, where Alpine folitudes ascend,
I fit me down a pensive hour to spend ;
And, plac'd on high above the storm's career,
Look downward where an hundred realms appear ;
Lakes, forests, cities, plains extending wide,
The pomp of kings, the shepherd's humble pride.
When thus Creation's charms around combine,
Amidst the store, should thankless pride repine?
Say, should the philofophic miud disdain
That good, which makes each humbler bosom yain?
Let school-taught pride diffemble all it can,
These little things are great to little man ;
And wiser he, whose fympathetic mind
Exults in all the good of all mankind.
Ye glitt'ring towns with wealth and splendor crown'd
Ye fields where summer spreads profufion round.
Ye lakes, whose vessels catch the busy gale,
Ye bending swains, that dress the flow'ry vale,
For me your tributary stores combine ;
Creation's heir, the world, the world is mine.
As some lone miser visiting his store, Bends at his treasure, counts, recounts it o'er; Hoards after boards his rising raptures fill, Yet still he fighs, for hoards are wanting fill : Thus to my breast alternate passions rise, Pleas'd with each good that heav'n to man supplies : Yet oft á figh prevails, and forrow's fall, To see the board of human bliss so small; And oft I wish, amidst the scene, to find Some spot to real happiness consign'd, Where my worn-foul, cach wand'ring hope at reft, May gather bliss to see my fellows bleft.
But where to find that happiest spot below,
Who can direct when all pretend to know?
The shudd'ring tenant of the frigid zone
Boldly proclaims that happiest spot his own,
Extols the treasures of his stormy seas,
And his long night of revelry and ease;
The naked negro, panting at the line,
Boasts of his golden sands and palmy wine,
Basks in the glare, or ftems the tepid wave,
And thanks his Gods for all the good they gave.
Such is the patriot's boait, 'where'er we roam,
His first best country ever is, at home.
And yet, perhaps, if countries we compare
And estimate the bleffings which they share,
Tho' patriots flatter, fill thall wisdom find
An equal portion dealt to all mankind,
As different good, by art or nature given,
To different nations make their bleđings even.
Nature, a mother kind alike to all,
Still grants her bliss at labour's earnest call ;
With food as well the peasant is supply'd
On Idra's cliffs as Arno's shelry fide ;
And though the rocky crested summits frown,
These rocks, by custom, turn to beds of down.
From art more various are the blessings fent ;
Wealth, commerce, honour, liberty, content.
Yet these each other's pow'r so strong conteft,
That either seems destructive of the rest.
Where wealth and freedom reign contentment fails,
And honour finks where commerce long prevails.
Hence ev'ry state to one lov'd blessing prone,
Conforms and models life to that alone.
Each to the fav'rite happiness attends,
And spurns the plan that aims at other ends ;
'Till, carried to excess in each domain,
This fav'rite good begets peculiar pain.
But let us view these truths with closer eyes, And trace them through the prospect as it lies : Here for a while my proper cares resign’d,
Here let me fit in sorrow for mankind,
Like yon neglected shrub at random cast,
That shades the steep, and fighs at ev'ry blast.
Far to the right where Appennine ascends,
Bright as the summer, Italy extends ;
Its uplands Noping deck the mountain's fide,
Woods over woods in
theatric pride; While oft fome temple's mould'ring top between, With venerable grandeur marks the scene.
Could nature's bounty satisfy the breast, The sons of Italy were surely blest. Whatever fruits in different climes were found, That proudly rife, or humbly court the ground; Whatever blooms in torrid tracts appear, Whose bright succession decks the varied year; Whatever sweets salute the northern sky With vernal lives that blossom but to die ;
These here disporting own the kindred soil,
Nor ask luxuriance from the planter's toil ;
While fea-born gales their gelid wings expand
To winnow fragrance round the fmiling land.
But smali the bliss that sense alone beftows, And fenfual bliss is all this nation knows. In florid beauty groves and fields appear, Man seems the only growth that dwindles here. Contrafted faults through all his manners reign, Though poor, luxurious, though submissive, vain, Though grave, yet trifling, zealous, yet untrue, And ev'n in penance planning fins anew, All evils here contaminate the mind, That opulence departed leaves behind ; For wealth was theirs, not far remov'd the date, When commerce proudly flourish'd through the flate; At her command the palace learn’d to rise, Again the long-fall’n column fought the fkies ; The canvass glow'd beyond e'en Nature warm, The pregnant quarry teem'd with human form. Till, more unsteady than the southern gale, Commerce on other shores display'd her fail : While nought remain'd of all that riches
gave, But towns upman'd, and lords without a llave : And late the nation found with fruitless skill Its former strength was but plethoric ill.
Yet ftill the loss of wealth is here supplied
By arts, the splendid wrecks of former pride :
From these the feeble heart and long-fallen mind
An easy compensation seem to find.
Here may be seen, in bloodless pomp array'd,
The pafte-board triumph and the cavalcade;
Processions form’d for piety and love,
A mistress or a saint in ev'ry grove.
By sports like these are all their cares beguild,
The sports of children fatisfy the child ;