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- IN grateful wonder lost, long had we viewed
- Each generous act thy patriot-soul pursued;
- Our Little State resounds thy just applause,
- And, pleased, from thee new fame and honor draws:
- In thee those various virtues are combined,
- That form the true pre-eminence of mind.
- What wonder struck us when we did survey
- The lambent lightnings innocently play,
- And down thy rods beheld the dreaded fire
- In a swift flame descend--and then expire;
- While the red thunders, roaring loud around,
- Burst the black clouds, and harmless smite the ground.
- Blest use of art! applied to serve mankind,
- The noble province of the sapient mind!
- For this the soul's best faculties were given,
- To trace great nature's laws from earth to heaven!
- Yet not these themes alone thy thoughts command,
- Each softer Science owns thy fostering hand;
- Aided by thee, Urania's heavenly art,
- With finer raptures charms the feeling heart;
- Th'Harmonica shall join the sacred choir,
- Fresh transports kindle, and new joys inspire--
- Hark! the soft warblings, sounding smooth and clear,
- Strike with celestial ravishment the ear,
- Conveying inward, as they sweetly rool,
- A tide of melting music to the soul;
- And sure if aught of mortal-moving strain,
- Can touch with joy the high angelic train,
- 'Tis this enchanting instrument of thine,
- Which speaks in accents more than half divine!
- Nathaniel Evans
[Editor's Note: Franklin invented an improved water harmonica, an instrument whose notes were comparable with the sounds made by running your moistened finger around the rim of a wine glass.]
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