1 FArewell aspiring thoughts, no more
2 My soul shall leave the peaceful shore,
3 To sail Ambition's main;
4 Fallacious as the harlot's kiss,
5 You promise me uncertain bliss,
6 And give me certain pain.
7 A beauteous prospect first you shew,
8 Which ere survey'd you paint anew,
9 And paint it wond'rous pleasant:
10 This in a third is quickly lost:
11 Thus future good we covet most,
12 But ne'er enjoy the present.
13 Deluded on from scene to scene,
14 We never end, but still begin,
15 By flatt'ring Hope betray'd;
16 I'm weary of the painful chace,
17 Let others run this endless race
18 To catch a flying shade.
19 Let others boast their useless wealth;
20 Have I not honesty and health?
21 Which riches cannot give:
22 Let others to preferment soar,
23 And, changing liberty for pow'r,
24 In golden shackles live.
25 'Tis time, at length, I should be wise,
26 'Tis time to seek substantial joys;
27 Joys out of Fortune's pow'r:
28 Wealth, honours, dignities, and fame,
29 Are toys the blind capricious dame
30 Takes from us ev'ry hour.
31 Come, conscious Virtue, fill my breast,
32 And bring Content, thy daughter, dress'd
33 In ever-smiling charms:
34 Let sacred Friendship too attend;
35 A friendship worthy of my friend,
36 Such as my LAELIUS warms.
37 With these I'll in my bosom make
38 A bulwark Fortune cannot shake,
39 Tho' all her storms arise;
40 Look down and pity gilded slaves,
41 Despise Ambition's giddy knaves,
42 And wish the Fools were wise.
About this text
Title (in Source Edition): CONTENTMENT.
Author: Stephen Duck
Themes: contentment; ambition
Genres: ballad metre; ode
References: DMI 23341
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The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the ECCO-TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 3.0.