Robert Blair (1699 – 4 February 1746) was a Scottish poet.
The Grave (1743)
- The Grave, dread thing!
Men shiver when thou 'rt named: Nature, appall'd,
Shakes off her wonted firmness.
- The Schoolboy, with his satchel in his hand,
Whistling aloud to bear his courage up.
- Part I, line 58. Compare: "Whistling to keep myself from being afraid", John Dryden, Amphitryon Act iii, scene 1.
- Friendship! mysterious cement of the soul!
Sweetener of life! and solder of society!
- Of joys departed,
Not to return, how painful the remembrance!
- But if there be an hereafter,
And that there is, conscience, uninfluenc'd
And suffer'd to speak out, tells every man,
Then must it be an awful thing to die;
More horrid yet to die by one's own hand.
- Our time is fixed, and all our days are number'd;
How long, how short, we know not:—this we know,
Duty requires we calmly wait the summons,
Nor dare to stir till Heaven shall give permission.
- The cup goes round:
And who so artful as to put it by!
'T is long since Death had the majority.
- The good he scorn'd
Stalk'd off reluctant, like an ill-used ghost,
Not to return; or if it did, in visits
Like those of angels, short and far between.
- Part II, line 586. Compare: "Like angels’ visits, short and bright", John Norris, The Parting.
- The common damn'd shun their society.
- Referring to suicides in Hell. Attributed to Lamb, but not found in his works.