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William Stanley Braithwaite, ed. The Book of Georgian Verse. 1909.

The World’s Treasures

Edward Moore (1712–1757)

STRUCTURES, raised by morning dreams,

Sands, that trip the flitting streams,

Down, that anchors on the air,

Clouds, that paint their changes there.

Seas, that smoothly dimpling lie,

While the storm impends from high,

Showing, in an obvious glass,

Joys, that in possession pass.

Transient, fickle, light and gay,

Flatt’ring only to betray;

What, alas, can life contain!

Life, like all its circles—vain!

Will the stork, intending rest,

On the billow build her nest?

Will the bee demand her store

From the bleak and bladeless shore?

Man alone, intent to stray,

Ever turns from wisdom’s way;

Lays up wealth in foreign land,

Sows the sea, and ploughs the sand.