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princely cradle. All the winged orders their natures (not grief), put back their hovered round, watching when the new-born bright intelligences, and reduce their ethereal should open its yet closed eyes ; which, when minds, schooling them to degrees and slower it did, first one, and then the other—with a processes, so to adapt their lessons to the solicitude and apprehension, yet not such as, gradual illumination (as must needs be) of stained with fear, dim the expanding eyelids the half-earth-born ; and what intuitive no. of mortal infants, but as if to explore its path tices they could not repel (by reason that in those its unhereditary palaces—what an their nature is, toknow all things at once) the inextinguishable titter that time spared not half-heavenly novice, by the better part of its celestial visages! Nor wanted there to my nature, aspired to receive into its underseeming—0, the inexplicable simpleness of standing ; so that Humility and Aspiration dreains !-bowls of that cheering nectar, went on even-paced in the instruction of the
glorious Amphibium. which mortals caudle call below.
But, by reason that Mature Humanity is Nor were wanting faces of female minis- too gross to breathe the air of that super-subtrants,-stricken in years, as it might seem, tile region, its portion was, and is, to be a --so dexterous were those heavenly attend-child for ever. ants to counterfeit.kindly similitudes of earth,
And because the human part of it might to greet with terrestrial child-rites the young not press into the heart and inwards of the present, which earth had made to heaven. palace of its adoption, those full-natured
Then were celestial harpings heard, not in angels tended it by turns in the purlieus of the full symphony, as those by which the spheres palace, where were shady groves and rivulets, are tutored; but, as loudest instruments on like this green earth from which it came ; so earth speak oftentimes, muffled ; so to accom- Love, with Voluntary Humility, waited upon modate their sound the better to the weak the entertainment of the new-adopted. ears of the imperfect-born. And, with the And myriads of years rolled round (in noise of those subdued soundings, the Angelet dreams Time is nothing), and still it kept, sprang forth, fluttering its rudiments of and is to keep, perpetual childhood, and is pinions—but forth with flagged and was re- the Tutelar Genius of Childhood upon earth, covered into the arms of those full-winged and still goes lame and lovely. angels. And a wonder it was to see how, as By the banks of the river Pison is seen, years went round in heaven-a year in lone sitting by the grave of the terrestrial dreams is as a day—continually its white Adah, whom the angel Nadir lovel, a Child; shoulders put forth buds of wings, but want- but not the same which I saw in heaven. ing the perfect angelic nutriment, anon was A mournful hue overcasts its lineaments ; shorn of its aspiring, and fell fluttering—still nevertheless, a correspondency is between caught by angel hands, for ever to put forth the child by the grave, and that celestial shoots, and to fall fluttering, because its birth orphan, whom I saw above : and the dininess was not of the unmixed vigour of heaven. of the grief upon the heavenly, is a shadow
And a name was given to the Babe Angel, or emblem of that which stains the beauty. and it was to be called Ge-Urania, because its of the terrestrial. And this correspondency production was of earth and heaven.
is not to be understood but by dreams. And it could not taste of death, by reason
And in the archives of heaven I had grace of its adoption into immortal palaces : but it to read, how that once the angel Nadir, was to know weakness, and reliance, and the being exiled from his place for mortal passhadow of human imbecility ; and it went sion, upspringing on the wings of parental with a lame gait; but in its goings it ex- love (such power had parental love for a ceeded all mortal children in grace and swift- moment to suspend the else-irrevocable law)
Then pity first sprang up in angelic appeared for a brief instant in his station, bosoms; and yearnings (like the human) and, depositing a wondrous Birth, straighttouched them at the sight of the immortal way disappeared, and the palaces knew him lame one.
And this charge was the self-same And with pain did then first those In- Babe, who goeth lame and lovely—but Adah tuitive Essences, with pain and strife to sleepeth by the river Pison.
CONFESSIONS OF A DRUNKARD.
DEHORTATIONS from the use of strong I have known one in that state, when he liquors have been the favourite topic of sober has tried to abstain but for one evening, declaimers in all ages, and have been received though the poisonous potion had long ceased with abundance of applause by water-drink- to bring back its first enchantments, though ing critics. But with the patient himself, he was sure it would rather deepen his the man that is to be cured, unfortunately gloom than brighten it,-in the violence of their sound has seldom prevailed. Yet the the struggle, and the necessity he has felt of evil is acknowledged, the remedy simple. getting rid of the present sensation at any Abstain. No force can oblige a man to raise rate, I have known him to scream out, to the glass to his head against his will. 'Tis cry aloud, for the anguish and pain of the as easy as not to steal, not to tell lies. strife within him.
Alas! the hand to pilfer, and the tongue Why should I hesitate to declare, that the to bear false witness, have no constitutional man of whom I speak is myself? I have no tendency. These are actions ip different to puling apology to make to mankind. I see them. At the first instance of the reformed them all in one way or another deviating will, they can be brought off without a from the pure reason. It is to my own namurmur. The itching finger is but a figure ture alone I am accountable for the woe that in speech, and the tongue of the liar can with I have brought upon it. the same natural delight give forth useful I believe that there are constitutions, truths with which it has been accustomed to robust heads and iron insides, whom scarce scatter their pernicious contraries. But any excessus can hurt; whom brandy(I have when a man has commenced sot
seen them drink it like wine), at all events O pause, thou sturdy moralist, thou person whom wine, taken in ever so plentiful a of stout nerves and a strong head, whose measure, can do no worse injury to than just liver is happily untouched, and ere thy gorge to muddle their faculties, perhaps never very riseth at the name which I have written, first pellucid. On them this discourse is wasted. learn what the thing is ; how much of com- They would but laugh at a weak brother, passion, how much of human allowance, thou who, trying his strength with them, and mayest virtuously mingle with thy disappro- coming off foiled from the contest, would bation. Trample not on the ruins of a man. fain persuade them that such agonistic exerExact not, under so terrible a penalty as cises are dangerous. It is to a very different infamy, a resuscitation from a state of death description of persons I speak. It is to the almost as real as that from which Lazarus weak, the nervous ; to those who feel the rose not but by a miracle.
want of some artificial aid to raise their Begin a reformation, and custom will make spirits in society to what is no more than the it easy. But what if the beginning be dread-ordinary pitch of all around them without it. ful, the first steps not like climbing a moun- This is the secret of our drinking. Such tain but going through fire? what if the must fly the convivial board in the first inwhole system must undergo a change violent stance, if they do not mean to sell themselves as that which we conceive of the mutation of for term of life. form in some insects? what if a process Twelve years ago I had completed my sixcomparable to flaying alive be to be gone and-twentieth year. I had lived from the through ? is the weakness that sinks under period of leaving school to that time pretty such struggles to be confounded with the much in solitude. My companions were pertinacity which clings to other vices, which chiefly books, or at most one or two living have induced no constitutional necessity, no ones of my own book-loving and sober stamp. engagement of the whole victim, body and soul? I rose early, went to bed betimes, and the
faculties which God had given me, I have length opened my eyes to the supposed reason to think, did not rust in me unused. qualities of my first friends. No trace of
About that time I fell in with some com- them is left but in the vices which they inpanions of a different order. They were troduced, and the habits they infixed. In men of boisterous spirits, sitters up a-nights, them my friends survive still, and exercise disputants, drunken; yet seemed to have ample retribution for any supposed infidelity something noble about them. We dealt that I may have been guilty of towards about the wit, or what passes for it after them. midnight, jovially. Of the quality called My next more immediate companions were fancy I certainly possessed a larger share and are persons of such intrinsic and felt than my companions. Encouraged by their worth, that though accidentally their acapplause, I set up for a professed joker! I, quaintance has proved pernicious to me, I who of all men am least fitted for such an do not know that if the thing were to do occupation, having, in addition to the greatest over again, I should have the courage tro difficulty which I experience at all times of eschew the mischief at the price of forfeiting finding words to express my meaning, a na- the benefit. I came to them reeking from tural nervous impediment in my speech ! the steams of my late over-heated notions of
Reader, if you are gifted with nerves like companionship; and the slightest fuel which mine, aspire to any character but that of a they unconsciously afforded, was sufficient to wit. When you find a tickling relish upon feed my old fires into a propensity. your tongue disposing you to that sort of They were no drinkers, but, one from proconversation, especially if you find a preter- fessional habits, and another from a custom natural flow of ideas setting in upon you at derived from his father, smoked tobacco. the sight of a bottle and fresh glasses, avoid The devil could not have devised a more giving way to it as you would fly your subtle trap to re-take a backsliding penitent. greatest destruction. If you cannot crush The transition, from gulping down draughts the power of fancy, or that within you which of liquid fire to puffing out innocuous blasts you mistake for such, divert it, give it some of dry smoke, was so like cheating him. But other play. Write an essay, pen a character he is too hard for us when we hope to comor description,—but not as I do now, with mute. He beats us at barter; and when we tears trickling down your cheeks.
think to set off a new failing against an old To be an object of compassion to friends, infirmity, 'tis odds but he puts the trick of derision to foes; to be suspected by upon us of two for one. That (comparatively) strangers, stared at by fools ; to be esteemed white devil of tobacco brought with him in dull when you cannot be witty, to be ap- the end seven worse than himself. plauded for witty when you know that you It were impertinent to carry the reader have been dull; to be called upon for the through all the processes by which, from extemporaneous exercise of that faculty smoking at first with malt liquor, I took my which no premeditation can give; to be degrees through thin wines, through stronger spurred on to efforts which end in contempt; wine and water, through small punch, to to be set on to provoke mirth which procures those juggling compositions, which, under the procurer hatred; to give pleasure and the name of mixed liquors, slur a great deal be paid with squinting malice ; to swallow of brandy or other poison under less and less draughts of life-destroying wine which are water continually, until they come next to to be distilled into airy breath to tickle vain none, and so to none at all. But it is hateful auditors; to mortgage miserable morrows to disclose the secrets of my Tartarus. for nights of madness; to waste whole seas I should repel my readers, from a mere of time upon those who pay it back in little incapacity of believing me, were I to tell inconsiderable drops of grudging applause,-them what tobacco has been to me, the are the wages of buffoonery and death. drudging service which I have paid, the
Time, which has a sure stroke at dissolving slavery which I have vowed to it. How, all connexions which have no solider fasten- when I have resolved to quit it, a feeling as ing than this liquid cement, more kind to of ingratitude has started up; how it has put me than my own taste or penetration, at on personal claims and made the demanda
of a friend upon me. How the reading of me. But out of the black depths, could I be it casually in a book, as where Adams takes heard, I would cry out to all those who have his whiff in the chimney-corner of some but set a foot in the perilous flood. Could inn in Joseph Andrews, or Piscator in the the youth, to whom the flavour of his first Complete Angler breaks his fast upon a wine is delicious as the opening scenes of morning pipe in that delicate room Piscator- life or the entering upon some newly disibus Sacrum, has in a moment broken down covered paradise, look into my desolation, the resistance of weeks. How a pipe was and be made to understand what a dreary ever in my midnight path before me, till the thing it is when a man shall feel himself vision forced me to realise it, --- how then going down a precipice with open eyes its ascending vapours curled, its fragrance and a passive will,—to see his destruction lulled, and the thousand delicious minister- and have no power to stop it, and yet to feel ings conversant about it, employing every it all the way emanating from himself; to faculty, extracted the sense of pain. How perceive all goodness emptied out of him, from illuminating it came to darken, from a and yet not to be able to forget a time when quick solace it turned to a negative relief, it was otherwise ; to bear about the piteous thence to a restlessness and dissatisfaction, spectacle of his own self ruins :—could he thence to a positive nisery. How, even now, see my fevered eye, feverish with last night's when the whole secret stands confessed in drinking, and feverishly looking for this all its dreadful truth before me, I feel myself night's repetition of the folly ; could he feel linked to it beyond the power of revocation. the body of the death out of which I cry Bone of my bone-
hourly with feebler and feebler outcry to be Persons not accustomed to examine the delivered,—it were enough to make him dash motives of their actions, to reckon up the the sparkling beverage to the earth in all countless nails that rivet the chains of habit, the pride of its mantling temptation ; to or perhaps being bound by none so obdurate make him clasp his teeth, as those I have confessed to, may recoil from this as from an overcharged picture. But what short of such a bondage is it, which in spite of protesting friends, a weeping wife, Yea, but (methinks I hear somebody and a reprobating world, chains down many object) if sobriety be that fine thing you a poor fellow, of no original indisposition to would have us to understand, if the comforts goodness, to his pipe and his pot ?
of a cool brain are to be preferred to that I have seen a print after Correggio, in state of heated excitement which you describe which three female figures are ministering and deplore, what hinders in your instance to a man who sits fast bound at the root of that you do not return to those habits from a tree. Sensuality is soothing him, Evil which you would induce others never to Habit is nailing him to a branch, and Repug- swerve ? if the blessing be worth preserving, nance at the same instant of time is applying is it not worth recovering ? a snake to his side. In his face is feeble Recovering !-0 if a wish could transport delight, the recollection of past rather than me back to those days of youth, when a perception of present pleasures, languid draught from the next clear spring could enjoyment of evil with utter imbecility to slake any heats which summer suns and good, a Sybaritic effeminacy, a submission to youthful exercise had power to stir up in the bondage, the springs of the will gone down blood, how gladly would I return to thee, like a broken clock, the sin and the suffering pure element, the drink of children, and of co-instantaneous, or the latter forerunning child-like holy hermit! In my dreams I can the former, remorse preceding action-all sometimes fancy thy cool refreshment purling this represented in one point of time. When over my burning tongue. But my waking I saw this, I admired the wonderful skill of stomach rejects it. That which refreshes the painter. But when I went away, I wept, innocence only makes me sick and faint. because I thought of my own condition. But is there no middle way betwixt total
Of that there is no hope that it should abstinence and the excess which kills you ? ever change. The waters have gone over -For your sake, reader, and that you may
and not undo 'em
never attain to my experience, with pain a song to welcome the new-born day. Now, I must utter the dreadful truth, that there the first feeling which besets me, after is none, none that I can find. In my stage stretching out the hours of recumbence to of habit (I speak not of habits less confirmed their last possible extent, is a forecast of the --for some of them I believe the advice to wearisome day that lies before me, with a be most prudential) in the stage which I have secret wish that I could have lain on still, reached, to stop short of that measure which or never awaked. is sufficient to draw on torpor and sleep, the Life itself, my waking life, has much of benumbing apoplectic sleep of the drunkard, the confusion, the trouble, and obscure peris to have taken none at all. The pain of plexity, of an ill dream. In the day time the self-denial is all one. And what that is, I stumble upon dark mountains. I had rather the reader should believe on Business, which, though never very parmy credit, than know from his own trial. ticularly adapted to my nature, yet as someHe will come to know it, whenever he shall thing of necessity to be gone through, and arrive in that state, in which, paradoxical as therefore best undertaken with cheerfulness, it may appear, reason shall only visit him I used to enter upon with some degree of through intoxication : for it is a fearful truth, alacrity, now wearies, affrights, perplexes that the intellectual faculties by repeated me. I fancy all sorts of discouragements, acts of intemperance may be driven from and am ready to give up an occupation which their orderly sphere of action, their clear gives me bread, from a harassing conceit of daylight ministeries, until they shall be incapacity. The slightest commission given brought at last to depend, for the faint me by a friend, or any small duty which manifestation of their departing energies, I have to perform for myself, as giving orders upon the returning periods of the fatal to a tradesman, &c. haunts me as a labour madness to which they owe their devasta- impossible to be got through. So much the tion. The drinking man is never less himself springs of action are broken. than during his sober intervals. Evil is so The same cowardice attends me in all my far his good.*
intercourse with mankind. I dare not proBehold me then, in the robust period of mise that a friend's honour, or his cause, life, reduced to imbecility and decay. Hear would be safe in my keeping, if I were put me count my gains, and the profits which to the expense of any manly resolution in I have derived from the midnight cup. defending it. So much the springs of moral
Twelve years ago, I was possessed of a action are deadened within me. healthy frame of mind and body. I was My favourite occupations in times past never strong, but I think my constitution now cease to entertain. I can do nothing (for a weak one) was as happily exenupt readily. Application for ever so short a time from the tendency to any malady as it was kills me. This poor abstract of my condition possible to be. I scarce knew what it was was penned at long intervals, with scarcely to ail anything. Now, except when I am any attempt at connexion of thought, which losing myself in a sea of drink, I am never is now difficult to me. free from those uneasy sensations in lead The noble passages which formerly de and stomach, which are so much worse to lighted me in history or poetic fiction, now bear than any definite pains or aches. only draw a few weak tears, allied to dotage i
At that time I was seldom in bed after My broken and dispirited nature seems to six in the morning, summer and winter. sink before anything great and admirable. I awoke refreshed, and seldom without some I perpetually catch myself in tears, for any merry thoughts in my head, or some piece of cause, or none. It is inexpressible how much
this infirmity adds to a sense of shame, and * When poor M-painted his last picture, with a a general feeling of deterioration. pencil in one trembling hand, and a glass of brandy and
These are some of the instances, concerning water in the other, his fingers owed the comparative steadiness with which they were enabled to go through which I can say with truth, that it was not their task in an imperfect manner, to a temporary firm, always so with me. ness derived from a repetition of practices, the general
Shall I lift up the veil of my weakness terribly.
any further ?-or is this disclosure sufficient?
effect of which had shaken both them and him 80