Translation by Dr Brande 1802
Wish you my Friend to live at ease,
Avoid at times the open seas;
Yet while you dread the tempest’s roar
Steer not too near the craggy shore.
The Man who loves the golden mean,
May boast a cottage neat and clean;
But shuns, aware of fortune’s sport,
The envied splendour of a court.
The forests tall feel most the power
Of storms: Loud falls the lofty tower:
The cloud-cap’t mountain’s summit high,
Shall suffer most when lightnings fly.
Hope ne’er forsakes the steady mind,
When fortune frowns; and when she’s kind,
He doubts her smiles: The seasons bring,
Now winter drear, now genial spring.
If present Ills disturb thy peace,
With patience bear what soon may cease!
His bow unbent, Apollo’s lyre,
The muse shall rouse, the song inspire.
In adverse times be bold, be strong,
And when you smoothly glide along,
Inspect the too propitious gale,
And wisely reef the spreading sail.