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Essay on Man: Final Piece

Essay on Man, Epistle II

Alexander Pope, 16881744
All Pieces of Essay on man are from the ebulliantly pensive mind of said Alexander Pope.
∞ ‘Tis not to write in said verse…what flows from the mind oft floats in the inverse.
Once one is able and gives to this chance…what possibility flows, what seems at fair chance. ∞
  
VI. Virtuous and vicious every man must be, Few in th’ extreme, but all in the degree, The rogue and fool by fits is fair and wise; And even the best, by fits, what they despise. ’Tis but by parts we follow good or ill; For, vice or virtue, self directs it still; Each individual seeks a several goal; But Heaven’s great view is one, and that the whole. That counter-works each folly and caprice; That disappoints th’ effect of every vice; That, happy frailties to all ranks applied, Shame to the virgin, to the matron pride, Fear to the statesman, rashness to the chief, To kings presumption, and to crowds belief: That, virtue’s ends from vanity can raise, Which seeks no interest, no reward but praise; And build on wants, and on defects of mind, The joy, the peace, the glory of mankind. Heaven forming each on other to depend, A master, or a servant, or a friend, Bids each on other for assistance call, Till one man’s weakness grows the strength of all. Wants, frailties, passions, closer still ally The common interest, or endear the tie. To these we owe true friendship, love sincere, Each home-felt joy that life inherits here; Yet from the same we learn, in its decline, Those joys, those loves, those interests to resign; Taught half by reason, half by mere decay, To welcome death, and calmly pass away. Whate’er the passion, knowledge, fame, or pelf, Not one will change his neighbour with himself. The learned is happy nature to explore, The fool is happy that he knows no more; The rich is happy in the plenty given, The poor contents him with the care of Heaven. See the blind beggar dance, the cripple sing, The sot a hero, lunatic a king; The starving chemist in his golden views Supremely blest, the poet in his muse. See some strange comfort every state attend, And pride bestowed on all, a common friend; See some fit passion every age supply, Hope travels through, nor quits us when we die. Behold the child, by Nature’s kindly law, Pleased with a rattle, tickled with a straw: Some livelier plaything gives his youth delight, A little louder, but as empty quite: Scarves, garters, gold, amuse his riper stage, And beads and prayer-books are the toys of age: Pleased with this bauble still, as that before; Till tired he sleeps, and life’s poor play is o’er. Meanwhile opinion gilds with varying rays Those painted clouds that beautify our days; Each want of happiness by hope supplied, And each vacuity of sense by pride: These build as fast as knowledge can destroy; In folly’s cup still laughs the bubble, joy; One prospect lost, another still we gain; And not a vanity is given in vain; Even mean self-love becomes, by force divine, The scale to measure others’ wants by thine. See! and confess, one comfort still must rise, ’Tis this, though man’s a fool, yet God is wise. - A. Pope All Rights Reserved © mmartel∞
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"If he's honest, he'll steal; if he's human, he'll murder; if he's faithful, he'll deceive. Being at a loss to resolve these questions, I am resolved to leave them without any resolution." I have so much to say to you that I am afraid I shall tell you nothing."

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