They sought and found undying fame: They toiled not for reward nor thanks: Their cheeks are hot with honest shame For you, the modern mountebanks!

Who preach of Justice--plead with tears That Love and Mercy should abound - While marking with complacent ears The moaning of some tortured hound:

Who prate of Wisdom--nay, forbear, Lest Wisdom turn on you in wrath, Trampling, with heel that will not spare, The vermin that beset her path!

Go, throng each other's drawing-rooms, Ye idols of a petty clique: Strut your brief hour in borrowed plumes, And make your penny-trumpets squeak.

Deck your dull talk with pilfered shreds Of learning from a nobler time, And oil each other's little heads With mutual Flattery's golden slime:

And when the topmost height ye gain, And stand in Glory's ether clear, And grasp the prize of all your pain - So many hundred pounds a year -

Then let Fame's banner be unfurled! Sing Paeans for a victory won! Ye tapers, that would light the world, And cast a shadow on the Sun -

Who still shall pour His rays sublime, One crystal flood, from East to West, When YE have burned your little time And feebly flickered into rest!

Children's Books
Classic Literature Library

All Pages of This Book
Children's Picture Books