Against Life

Communicated by Mrs Flaxman

From Posidippus

What tranquil road unvex’d by strife
Can mortals chose thro’ human life?
Attend the courts, attend the Bar —
There discord reigns, and endless jar;
At home the weary wretches find
Severe disquietude of mind:
To till the fields, gives toil & pain,
Eternal terrors sweep the main,
If rich, we fear to lose our store
Need, & distress, await the poor.
Sad cares, the bands of hymen give
Friendless, forlorn, th’ unmarried live,
Are children born? we anxious groan
Childless, the want of heirs we moan,
Wild, giddy schemes our youth engage,
Weakness, and wants depress old-age.
Would fate then with my wish comply
I’d never live, or quickly die!