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Poem by Thomas Tickell

The Tomb of Addison

CAN I forget the dismal night that gave
My souls best part forever to the grave?
How silent did his old companions tread,
By midnight lamps, the mansions of the dead,
Through breathing statues, then unheeded things,
Through rows of warriors and through walks of kings!
What awe did the slow solemn knell inspire,
The pealing organ and the pausing choir,
The duties by the lawn-robed prelate paid,
And the last words that dust to dust conveyed!	
While speechless oer thy closing grave we bend,
Accept these tears, thou dear departed friend!
O, gone forever! take this long adieu,
And sleep in peace next thy loved Montague.

*        *        *        *        *

  Oft let me range the gloomy aisles alone,
Sad luxury! to vulgar minds unknown;
Along the walls where speaking marbles show
What worthies form the hallowed mould below:
Proud names! who once the reins of empire held,
In arms who triumphed, or in arts excelled;
Chiefs graced with scars and prodigal of blood,
Stern patriots, who for sacred freedom stood,
Just men, by whom impartial laws were given,
And saints, who taught and led the way to heaven.
Neer to these chambers, where the mighty rest,	
Since their foundation came a nobler guest,
Nor eer was to the bowers of bliss conveyed
A fairer spirit or more welcome shade.

Thomas Tickell

Thomas Tickell's other poems:
  1. To a Lady before Marriage
  2. To the Earl of Warwick, on the Death of Mr. Addison
  3. On the Prospect of Peace
  4. To Mr. Addison on His Opera of Rosamond
  5. On Queen Caroline's Rebuilding of the Lodgings of the Black Prince

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