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With torch inverted Hymen stands;
Wild Horror, pale Dismay.
Sure of their destin'd prey.
Compellid, the falt'ring priest slow-ties
For spotless truth ordain'd.
The sacred rites profan’d.
Go, wedded pair! all blithe and gay
Heir to your wretched fate.
Unheir’d, a mass of barren earth,
Transmits a future race.
Perpetuate man's disgrace ?
Yet Nature will assert her claim :
If injur'd Beauty stray:
Nor curs'd the bridal day.
Welcom'd by thee, chaste Love had shed
Now wrapt in guilt and fear.
To chide thy loitering bier.
Hence all those baleful evils flow,
And blot th' Almighty's plan;
The soul of man to mani,
Blank bastardy with blazon'd crest,
Triumphant Vice proclaim.
From Poverty, thro'shame.
Behold a various motley race !
His mother's crime betrays.
To light the patriot's blaze.
Hence sage Authority despis'd,
In Freedom's injur'd name;
Direćts Ambition's aim.
In barter vile each parent sold,
Will own no other sway ;
Peers vote, and prelates pray..
Not such those lights (which pierc'd the gloona
Pure as the faith they own’d.
Their country sat enthron'd.
The statesman plann'd, the hero fought,
Yet both were well repaid :
Endow'd the wedded maid.
No hireling friends did Britain drain,
Aveng'd the vanquish'd foe:
In victory and woe.
Yet blest the hind whose shelter'd head,
Forgets the slow-worn day;
His suff'rings all repay.
But seel'th' unpeopl'd village falls:
Say, if some tyrant reigns ?
O’er Britains'ravag'd plains ?
Our coast no bold invader dares;
Each cherish'd art improves.
The wand'ring exile roves,
Shall Luxury, diffusive spread,
His cot and homely joys?
Decrepid sires and boys?
Tho' borne on Glory's tow'ring wings, Fame her triumphant paean sings
Far as the billows foam : Yet dearly were our triumphs bought; And hardly paid the victors fought,
Whom Misery waits at home,
But, lo! the nations from afar
With numbers, skill, and toil. Myriads, alas ! would crowd in vain, Whilst laws the marriage-rite restrain,
And lordlings thin the soil.