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“However, you still keep your eyes; And sure, to see one's loves and friends, For legs and arms would make amends.” 95
“Perhaps," says Dobson'“so it might; But latterly I've lost my sight.”
“ This is a shocking story, 'faith; Yet there's some confort still,” says Death: “Each strives your sadness to amuse : 100 I warrant you hear all the news.”
“There's none,” cries he; "and if there were, I'm grown so deaf, I could not hear."
“Nay then,” the spectre stern rejoin'd, “These are unjustifiable yearnings: 105
If you are Lame, and Deaf, and Blind,
110 Yields to his fate. So ends my tale.
LAMENT OF MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS
ON THE APPROACH OF SPRING.
On every blooming tree,
Out o'er the grassy lea:
And glads the azure skies;
That fast in durance lies.
Now lav'rocks wake the merry morn,
Aloft on dewy wing;
Makes woodland echoes ring;
Sings drowsy day to rest:
Wi' care nor thrall opprest.
Now blooms the lily by the bank,
The primrose down the brae;
And milk-white is the slae;
May rove their sweets amang; But I, the Queen of a' Scotland, Maun lie in prison strang.
I was the Queen o’ bonnie France,
Where happy I hae been;
As blithe lay down at e'en:
And mony a traitor there;
Aud never-ending care.
But as for thee, thou false woman,
My sister and my fae,
That through thy soul shall gae:
My son ! my son! may kinder stars
Upon thy fortune shine;
That ne'er wad blink on mine! would look
Or turn their hearts to thee :
Remember him for me.
O! soon, to me, may summer-suns
Nae mair light up the morn! no more 50
Wave o'er the yellow corn!
Let winter round me rave;
A life so sacred, such serene repose,
His hopes no more a certain prospect boast,
To clear this doubt, to know the world by sight,
25 And fix'd the scallop in his hat before ; Then with the rising sun a journey went, Sedate to think, and watching each event.
The morn was wasted in the pathless grass, And long and lonesome was the wild to pass ; 30 But when the southern sun had warm’d the day, A youth came posting o'er a crossing way; His raiment decent, his complexion fair, And soft in graceful ringlets waved his hair. Then near approaching, “Father, hail !” he cried ; 35 And, “Hail, my son!” the reverend Sire replied: Words follow'd words, from question answer flow'd, And talk of various kind deceived the road, Till with each other pleased, and loath to part, While in their age they differ, join in heart: Thus stands an aged elm in ivy bound, Thus youthful ivy clasps an elm around.
Now sunk the sun; the closing hour of day Came onward, mantled o’er with sober grey; Nature in silence bade the world repose; When near the road a stately palace rose : There by the moon through ranks of trees they pass, Whose verdure crown'd their sloping sides of grass. It chanced the noble master of the dome Still made his house the wandering stranger's home:50 Yet still the kindness, from a thirst of praise, Proved the vain flourish of expensive ease. The pair arrive : the liveried servants wait; Their lord receives them at the pompous gate. The table groans with costly piles of food, And all is more than hospitably good. Then, led to rest, the day's long toil they drown, Deep sunk in sleep, and silk, and heaps of down.
At length 't is morn, and at the dawn of day, Along the wide canals the zephyrs play: 60 Fresh o'er the gay parterres the breezes creep, And shake the neighbouring wood to banish sleep. Up rise the guests, obedient to the call; An early banquet deck'd the splendid hall; Rich luscious wine a golden goblet graced, 65 Which the kind master forced the guests to taste. Then, pleased and thankful, from the porch they go; And, but the landlord, none had cause for woe: His cup was vanishd; for in secret guise The younger guest purloin'd the glittering prize. 70
As one who spies a serpent in his way, Glistening and basking in the sunny ray, Disorder'd stops to shun the danger near, Then walks with faintness on, and looks with fear;