…from the quills of the dead white poets
Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784)
Where then shall Hope and Fear their objects find?
Must dull Suspense corrupt the stagnant mind?
Must helpless man, in ignorance sedate,
Roll darkling down the torrent of his fate?
Must no dislike alarm, no wishes rise,
No cries attempt the mercies of the skies?
Inquirer, cease, petitions yet remain,
Which heaven may hear, nor deem religion vain.
Still rise for good the supplicating voice,
But leave to heaven the measure and choice;
Safe in his power, whose eyes discern afar
The secret ambush of a specious pray’r;
Implore his aid, in his decisions rest,
Secure, whate’er he gives, he gives the best.
Yet when the sense of sacred presence fires,
And strong devotion to the skies aspires,
Pour forth thy fervours for a healthful mind,
Obedient passions, and a will resign’d;
For love, which scarce collective man can fill;
For patience, sovereign o’er transmuted ill;
For faith, that, panting for a happier seat,
Counts death kind Nature’s signal of retreat:
These goods he grants, who grants the power to gain,
With celestial Wisdom calms the mind,
And makes the happiness she does not find.