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As duteous to the place of prayer
Within the convent's lonely walls, The holy sisters still repair,
What time the rosy morning calls:
So fair, each morn, so full of grace,
Within their little garden reared, The flower of Phabus turned her face
To meet the Power she loved and feared.
And where, along the rising sky,
Her God in brighter glory burned, Still there her fond observant eye,
And there her golden breast she turned.
When calling from their weary height
On western waves his beams to rest, Still there she sought the parting sight,
And there she turned her golden breast.
But soon as night's invidious shade
Afar his lovely looks had borne, With folded leaves and drooping head,
Full sore she grieved, as one forlorn.
Such duty in a flower displayed
The holy sisters smiled to see, Forgave the Pagan rites it paid,
And loved its fond idolatry.
But painful still, though meant for kind,
The praise that falls on Envy's ear! O'er the dim window's arch intwined,
The canker'd ivy chanced to hear.
And “ See,” she cried, “ that specious flower,
“ Whose flattering bosom courts the sun, “ The pageant of a gilded hour,
“The convent's simple hearts hath won!
“ Obsequious meanness! ever prone
“ To watch the patron's turning eye; “ No will, no motion of its own!
“ 'Tis this they love, for this they sigh:
“Go, splendid sycophant! no more
“Display thy soft seductive arts! “ The flattering clime of courts explore,
“Nor spoil the convent's simple hearts.
“To me their praise more justly due,
“Of longer bloom, and happier grace! “Whom changing months unaltered view,
- And find them in my fond enivrace.
“How well,” the modest flower replied,
,5 Can Envy's wrested eye elude • The obvious bounds that still divide
« Foul FLATTERY from fair GRATITUDE.
“My duteous praise each hour I pay,
« For few the hours that I must live; “ And give to liim my little day,
“Whose grace another day may give.