To A Moralist
Are the sports of our youth so displeasing?
Is love but the folly you say?
Benumbed with the winter, and freezing,
You scold at the revels of May.
For you once a nymph had her charms,
And Oh! when the waltz you were wreathing,
All Olympus embraced in your arms--
All its nectar in Julia's breathing.
If Jove at that moment had hurled
The earth in some other rotation,
Along with your Julia whirled,
You had felt not the shock of creation.
Learn this--that philosophy beats
Sure time with the pulse,--quick or slow
As the blood from the heyday retreats,--
But it cannot make gods of us--No!
It is well icy reason should thaw
In the warm blood of mirth now and then,
The gods for themselves have a law
Which they never intended for men.
The spirit is bound by the ties
Of its gaoler, the flesh;--if I can
Not reach as an angel the skies,
Let me feel on the earth as a man!