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INVOCATION TO OBLIVION.

TO ROBERT MERRY, ESQ.
* Better known to the world as the elegant author of the poems published under the name of Della Crusca.

1 OBLIVION! hail, thou peaceful pow'r!
2 Blest offspring thou of life's last hour,
3 Who, bending o'er the bed of woe,
4 (When Fate ordains the welcome blow,
5 Fixing to human griefs a bound,
6 Without the church-yard's hollow mound,)
7 Calm'st with thy poppy-cinctur'd urn,
8 The panting soul long us'd to mourn.
9 Alike thy draft Lethean drowns
10 The pride of kings, the care of clowns.
11 Now Death has chill'd the fever'd mind
12 Of him, the scourge of human-kind,
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13 Who, his insatiate fame to feed,
14 Bade all mankind or weep or bleed.
15 Lo! at thy shrine the victor bows;
16 Thy poppies now entwine his brows:
17 Thais no more with angel charms
18 Awakes his hope, his breast alarms,
19 No longer bids him fondly gaze
20 On eyes that mock the diamond's blaze.
21 Unheeded now o'er Edward's grave
22 Fam'd Cressy's living laurels wave.
23 Unconscious of the foliage proud,
24 The warrior slumbers in his shroud:
25 Yet thou who thus of human pride
26 Stem'st the deep o'erflowing tide,
27 Who o'er ambition's blazon'd tale
28 Indignant throw'st thy sable veil,
29 Dost still in mercy soothe the woe
30 That bids through life the tear to flow,
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31 Whom mis'ry urges to his tomb,
32 Obtain from thee a welcome doom.
33 At ease reclin'd within thy arms,
34 And deaf to faction's loud alarms,
35 See murder'd Mary calmly sleeps,
36 And, blissful change! no longer weeps.
37 Embosom'd in some unknown tomb,
38 Forgetful of his impious doom,
39 Sleeps the sad prince whose hapless fate
40 Through time's long course shall want its mate;
41 E'en Love, that tyrant of the breast,
42 At thy numb touch is hush'd to rest;
43 No longer through the Paraclete,
44 Of Heloise the last retreat,
45 His barbed shafts destructive fly,
46 For Abelard but once could die;
47 Around their sad united grave
48 In vain Love's airy pinions wave;
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49 The vengeful pow'r, profuse of woes,
50 In vain attempts their last repose;
51 For all the bliss thy cup contains
52 Rewards at length thy former pains.
53 Ah! say, Oblivion! deign to say,
54 Can earthly song, can mortal lay,
55 From forth thy sacred well-fount pure
56 For me one blissful draught procure.
57 For Mem'ry oft upholds to view
58 The varied scenes through life we knew,
59 Recalls the blissful hours of yore,
60 And pictures joys that are no more.
61 Do thou those pangs in pity spare,
62 And grant, O grant all Nature's pray'r.
63 But, first and chief, Miranda's woes
64 Deserve from thee a long repose.
65 In pity bid remembrance cease,
66 And her's be dark Oblivion's peace.
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67 Thy real worth they only know,
68 Whose hearts are rich in treasur'd woe.
69 To such more dear thy torpid sway,
70 Than all that meets the blaze of day:
71 Yet still in ev'ry age or clime,
72 In numbers rude, or flowing rhime,
73 From lofty domes that reach the skies,
74 From where the lowly cottage lies:
75 (Though lost, alas! in empty air,)
76 This is the universal pray'r:
77 "Howe'er my future fate be cast,
78 Do thou, Oblivion, veil the past."

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Title (in Source Edition): INVOCATION TO OBLIVION. TO ROBERT MERRY, ESQ.
Themes: fame; death
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Source edition

Poems: by the late George-Monck Berkeley, Esq. ... With a preface by the editor, consisting of some anecdotes of Mr. Monck Berkeley and several of his friends. London: printed by J. Nichols; and sold by Messrs. Leigh and Sotheby; Mr. Edwards; Mr. Cooke, Oxford; Mr. Todd, York; Messrs. Simmons and Co.; Messrs. Flackton, Marrable, and Claris; and Mr. Bristow, Canterbury, 1797, pp. 6-10. viii,DCXXXII,212p.,plate: port.; 4⁰. (ESTC T142950; OTA K111746.000)

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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.

Other works by George Monck Berkeley