From Possibility's dim chaos sprung,
High o'er its gloom the Aërostatic Power
Arose! - Exulting Nations hail'd the hour,
Magnific boast of Science! - Loud they sung
Her victory o'er the element, that hung,
Pressing to earth the Beings, who now soar
Aerial heights; - but Wisdom bids explore
This vaunted skill; - if, tides of air among,
We know to steer our bark. - Here Science finds
Her buoyant hopes burst, like the bubble vain,
Type of this art; - guilty, if still she blinds
The sense of Fear; persists thy flame to fan,
Sky-vaulting Pride, that to the aweless winds
Throws, for an idle Show, the LIFE OF MAN!
1: This Sonnet was written when the Balloon enthusiasm was at its height.