Archive for April 3rd, 2013

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Epitaph, Intended for Himself by James Beattie

Escap’d the gloom of mortal life, a soul
Here leaves its mouldering tenement of clay,
Safe, where no cares their whelming billows roll,
No doubts bewilder, and no hopes betray.

Like thee, I once have stemm’d the sea of life;
Like thee, have languish’d after empty joys;
Like thee, have labour’d in the stormy strife;
Been griev’d for trifles, and amus’d with toys.

Yet, for awhile, ‘gainst Passion’s threatful blast
Let steady Reason urge the struggling oar;
Shot through the dreary gloom, the morn at last
Gives to thy longing eye the blissful shore.

Forget my frailties, thou art also frail;
Forgive my lapses, for thyself may’st fall;
Nor read, unmov’d, my artless tender tale,
I was a friend, O man! to thee, to all.

From: Beattie, James, The Poetic Works of James Beattie with Memoir of the Author by Rev Alexander Dyce, 1854, Little Brown and Company: New York, p. 155.

Date: 1760

By: James Beattie (1735-1803)