55. Pleasure

I. How vain a thought is bliss below!
'Tis all an airy dream!
How empty are the joys that flow
On pleasure's smiling stream!

II. Now gayly-painted bubbles rise
With varied colours bright;
They break, the short amusement flies—
Can this be call'd delight?

III. Transparent now, and all serene
The gentle current flows:
While fancy draws the flatt'ring scene,
How fair the landskip shows!

IV. But soon its transient charms decay,
When ruffling tempests blow;
The soft delusions fleet away,
And pleasure ends in woe.

V. Why do I here expect repose?
Or seek for bliss in vain?
Since every pleasure earth bestows,
Is but dissembled pain.

VI. O let my nobler wishes soar
Beyond these seats of night;
In heav'n substantial bliss explore,
And permanent delight!

VII. There pleasure flows forever clear;
And rising to the view
Such dazling scenes of joy appear,
As fancy never drew.

VIII. No fleeting landskip cheats the gaze,
Nor airy form beguiles;
But everlasting bliss displays
Her undissembled smiles.

IX. Adieu to all below the skies,
Celestial guardian come!
On thy kind wing my soul would rise
To her eternal home.

Text Information
First Line: How vain a thought is bliss below!
Title: Pleasure
Language: English
Publication Date: 1760
Tune Information
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