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If, bending o'er the brink,
Within thy wave fair flowers I spy,
Reflecting the gay bank, which fly
Our grasp, then will I think,
O Hope! thy glass still cheats our sight
With flowers so faithless and so bright.
Or if some alder tall
I mark, that shades thee on the steep,
Beneath whose root thy waters creep,
And silent urge its fall;
O Greatness! I will weep for thee,
For thou must fall like that fair tree.
Thus will I musing lie,
Till the bright sun withdraws his beam,
Till in thy wave the moonlight gleam
And glittering stars I spy,
Then rise and woo the birds that steep
Their song in tears, to soothe my sleep.
Long in the secret grove,
Where thus the breath of morn I taste,
Where thus the evening hour I waste,
O Thames, long winding rove,
To mark the soft and smooth delights
Of rural days and rural nights.
Then gently take thy way,'
And as thy silver waters glide
Where stately cities crown thy side,
Or courts their pride display,
Mark if a man more bless'd than me
Thy banks amid these bright scenes see.
WRITTEN AFTER A PERUSAL OF
THE EIGHTH SERMON OF BARROW.
As meadows parch’d, brown groves, and wither
ing flowers Imbibe the sparkling dew and genial showers; As chill dark air inhales the morning beam; As thirsty harts enjoy the gelid stream; Thus tó man’s grateful soul from heaven descend, The mercies of his Father, Lord, and Friend !
THERE is a wisdom man may learn at home,
In his own breast, even in the privacy
Of solitude and self-communion :
Instructions, which the workings of his heart
Midst daily scenes, or in the silent hour,
When musing on his bed, will better teach
Than schools or books or learned seminaries,
Of ancient or of modern fame! No need
That such a one should traverse half the globe
To know what's call'd the world ; with curious eye
To mark its customs, manners, toils, pursuits,
Its frauds, conventions, broils, and jealousies;
Its selfishness and pride, which have no bounds,
That, worse than famine, pestilence, or sword,
Desolate earth, and of this garden of God
Make a bare waste and barren wilderness!
He not resembles those base traffickers
Who compass sea and land, in journeys oft,
And oft in perils, for no righteous cause,
Not for the love of God or man, but love
Of filthy lucre: His are nobler aims-
The means of his improvement lie at hand
Within a nearer circle, and he reads
The map of life, and understands it well,
With half the pains that others take to prove
How little they have learn'd, or of themselves,
Or of their brethren of mankind. He ne'er
Wander'd to distant climes to borrow thence
Opinions, fashions, dress; nor visited
The courts of princes, saw their levees, sat
With great ones in their halls of state, nor went
On foreign embassy, with pomp and train
And numerous retinue, to form the leagues
Of peace or war. More studious he to know
Himself; to scan the nature, character,
And motives of his actions, to weigh well
Their consequences, and sum up the amount.
He has a world within, where most he lives,
Nor yet by narrow limits circumscribed,
The world of reason, knowledge, the wide range
Of intellect, the empire of the mind !
And, midst the calm of cool collected thought,
He meditates the noblest purposes,
Such as may benefit the public weal,
And closer knit the ties of social man
In blessed concord and sweet sympathy!
Nor boasts he greater state than he who sways
His passions well; who curbs his headstrong will,
And, with an absolute rule, over himself
Reigns undisputed lord! Sublime he sits
With sceptred Reason on her star-girt throne,
And looking down, with calm composure, hears
The hubbub and the din, the busy stir
And turmoil of the world, and smiles serene.
He is a landmark to the present age;
And to the generations yet to come
He leaves a monument of his own worth,
That shall outlive the pompous sepulchres
Where kings enshrine their dust. Nor chance,
Nor lapse of time, nor mortal circumstance
Shall waver his fix'd resolution,
Nor tempt his feet to deviate from the path
Of rectitude ; while in his daily course
He presses forward towards the glorious prize
Of immortality; advancing still
In knowledge, virtue, and the love of God.
REV. J, WHITEHOUSE.
ON VISITING A SCENE IN ARGYLESHIRE.
At the silence of twilight's contemplative hour,
I have mused in a sorrowful mood On the wind shaken weeds that embosom the bower
Where the home of my forefathers stood. All ruin'd and wild is their roofless abode,
And lonely the dark raven's sheltering tree, And travel'd by few is the grass-cover'd road, Where the hunter of deer and the warrior trode,
To his hills that encircle the sea.
Yet wandering I found, on my ruinous walk,
By the dial-stone aged and green,
One Rose of the wilderness left on its stalk,
To mark where a garden had been:
Like a brotherless hermit, the last of its race,
All wild in the silence of nature, it drew
From each wandering sunbeam a lonely embrace;
For the nightweed and thorn overshadow'd the
place Where the flower of my forefathers grew.
Sweet Bud of the wilderness ! emblem of all
That survives in this desolate heart! The fabric of bliss to its centre may fall !
But Patience shall never departThough the wilds of enchantment, all vernal and
bright, In the days of delusion by fancy combined With the vanishing phantoms of love and delight, Abandon my soul like a dream of the night,
And leave but a desert behind.
Be hush'd, my dark spirit! for Wisdom condemns
When the faint and the feeble deplore;
Be strong as the rock of the ocean that stems
A thousand wild waves on the shore-
Through the perils of Chance and the scowl of
Disdain May thy front be unalter'd, thy courage elate! Ah, even the name I have worship’d in vain Shall awake not the sigh of remembrance again!
To bear is to conquer our fate!