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IX.

Tue cheerful supper done, with serious face,

They round the ingle form a circle wide ; The Sire turns o'er, with patriarchal grace,

The big Ha’-Bible, once his father's pride: His bonnet reverently is laid aside,

His lyart haffets wearing thin and bare ; Those strains that once did sweet in Zion glide,

He wales a portion with judicious care; And “ Let us worship God !” he says with solemn air. They chaunt their artless notes in simple guise;

They tune their hearts, by far the noblest aim ; Perhaps Dundee's wild warbling measures rise,

Or plaintive Martyr's, worthy of the name; Or noble Elgin's beats the heaven-ward flame,

The sweetest far of Scotia's holy lays. Compared with these, Italian trills are tame:

The tickled ears no heart-felt raptures raise; No unison have they with our Creator's praise. The priest-like father reads the sacred page,

How Abraham was the friend of God on high ; Or, Moses bade eternal warfare wage

With Amalek's ungracious progeny; Or, how the royal bard did groaning lie

Beneath the stroke of heav'n's avenging ire;
Or, Job's pathetic plaint and wailing cry;

Or, rapt Isaiah's wild, seraphic fire;
Or, other holy seers that tune the sacred lyre.

Perhaps the Christian volume is the theme,

How guiltless blood for guilty man was shed ; How he, who bore in heaven the second name,

Had not on earth whereon to lay his head; How his first followers and servants sped ;

The precepts sage they wrote to many a land; How he, who lone in Patmos banished,

Saw in the Sun a mighty angel stand; And heard great Babylon's doom pronounc'd by Heaven's

command.

Then, kneeling down, to Heaven's eternal King

The saint, the father, and the husband, prays: Hope “ springs exulting on triumphant wings,

That thus they all shall meet in future days, There ever bask in uncreated rays,

No more to sigh, nor shed the bitter tear, Together hymning their Creator's praise,

In such society, yet still more dear, While circling time moves round in an eternal sphere.

Compared with this, how poor religion's pride,

In all the pomp of method and of art, When men display, to congregations wide,

Devotion's every grace except the heart ! The Power, incensed, the pageant will desert,

The pompous train, the sacerdotal stole ; But haply, in some cottage far apart

May hear, well pleased, the language of the soul, And in his book of life the inmates poor enrol.

O thou, the first, the greatest friend

Of all the human race!
Whose strong right hand hast ever been

Their stay and dwelling-place!
Before the mountains heav'd their heads,

Beneath thy forming hand; Before this ponderous Globe itself

Arose at thy command;
That pow'r which raised, and still upholds

This universal frame,
From countless unbeginning time,

Was ever still the same.
Those mighty periods of years

Which seem to us so vast, Appear no more before thy sight

Than yesterday that's past.
Thou giv'st the word: thy creature man,

Is to existence brought;
Again, thou say'st, ye sons of men,

'Return ye into nought !
Thou layest them with all their cares,

In everlasting sleep;
As with a flood thou tak'st them off,

With overwhelming sweep.
They flourish like the morning flower

In beauty's pride array'd ;
But long ere night cut down it lies

All wither'd and decay'd !

XI.

O most delightful hour by man

Experienced here below,
The hour that terminates his span,

His folly and his woe!
Worlds should not bribe me back to tread,

Again life's dreary waste,
To see again my day o'erspread

With all the gloomy past.

My home henceforth is in the skies,

Earth, seas, and sun, adieu ! All heav'n unfolded to my eyes,

I have no sight for you.

So speaks the Christian, firm possess'd

Of Faith's supporting rod,,
Then breathes his soul into it's rest.

The bosom of his God.

Such rest be mine, hear each exclaim,

When my last hour arrives. Then be that rest the settled aim And

purpose

of your lives.

XII.

No longer I follow a sound,
No longer a dream I pursue.
O happiness, not to be found !
Unattainable treasure, adieu !

I have sought thee in splendour and dress,
In the regions of pleasure and taste;
I have sought thee, and seem'd to possess,
But have prov'd thee a vision at last.

A humble ambition and hope,
The voice of true wisdom inspires;
'Tis sufficient, if peace be the scope,
And summit of all our desires.

Peace may be the lot of the mind
That seeks it in meekness and love,
But rapture and bliss are confined
To the glorified spirits above.

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