"Say, can your Mind to Heav'n direct her Flight / In ardent Anhelations?"

— Blackmore, Sir Richard (1654-1729)

Place of Publication
Printed by W. Botham, for James Knapton
"Say, can your Mind to Heav'n direct her Flight / In ardent Anhelations?"
Metaphor in Context
Think how the Pontiff with paternal Care
Pray'd and advis'd you wisely to beware
Of Beauty's Charms, and Pleasure's fatal Snare.
Since you first yielded to Temptation's Force,
And then pursu'd your late voluptuous Course,
Is not a sensual Tincture thro' your Mind
Deeply diffus'd, by which 'tis now inclin'd
Not heav'nly, but terrestrial Bliss, to chuse,
Pursue low Pleasures, and sublime refuse!
While Plays, and Sports, and Banquets, you frequent
On soft Sicilia's Luxury intent,
Can you maintain your Intercourse above
By vig'rous Efforts of celestial Love
And lively Hope? Say, can you now adore
And praise the Pow'r supream, and as before
Taste gen'rous Pleasures and divine Delight?
Say, can your Mind to Heav'n direct her Flight
In ardent Anhelations?
Can she rise
From these low Regions to possess the Skies,
And hold a sacred Correspondence there?
Does she not flag and hang in cloudy Air,
Or sordid cling to this dark Planet's Face,
And clasp Pollution with impure Embrace?
Does not the conscious Pow'r, the Judge within,
With Frowns and awful Menaces begin
To fill you with Remorse and secret Fear?
Can you before th' Almighty's Throne appear,
And his impartial Scrutiny abide,
Or from his searching Eye your Errour hide?
Besides, while you with Pleasure have been charm'd
Unvigilant and of your Guard disarm'd,
Albana not for moral Honour fam'd
Has by her Beauty's Charms your Heart inflam'd:
This secret is no more, Men speak it free,
Nor can you veil what all around you see.
HDIS (Poetry)
Only 1 entry in ESTC (1723).

Richard Blackmore, Alfred. An Epick Poem. In Twelve Books (London: Printed by W. Botham, for James Knapton, 1723). <Link to ECCO><Link to LION>
Flights of Fancy
Date of Entry

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.