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Ev'n love itself, if rising by degrees Beyond the bounds of this imperfect state,

Whose fleeting joys so soon must end,
It does not to its sovereign good ascend.

Rise then, my soul, with hope elate,
And seek those regions of serene delight,

Whose peaceful path, and ever-open gate,
No feet but those of harden'd guilt shall miss ;
There, death himself thy Lucy shall restore ;
There yield up all his pow'r, ne'er to divide you more.'

LORD LYTTELTON

CHAPTER V.

PROMISCUOUS PIECES.

SECTION 1.

Hymn to contentment.
LOVELY. lasting peace of mind!
Sweet delight of human kind!
Heav'nly born, and bred on high,
To crown the fav'rites of the sky,
With more of happiness below, i
Than victors in a triumph know!
Whitber, oh whither art thou fled,
To lay thy meek contented head ?
What happy region dost thou please
To make the seat of calm and ease ?

Ambition searches all its sphere
Of pomp and state, to meet thee there ;
Increasing avarice would find
Thy presence in its gold inshrin'd :
The bold advent'rer ploughs his way
Through rocks, amidst the foaming sea,
To gain thy love ; and then perceives
Thou wast not in the rocks and waves.
The silent heart which grief assails,
Treads soft and lonesome o'er the vales,

Sees daisies open, rivers ruasi .
And seeks (as I have vainly done)
Amusing thought; but learns to know
That solitude's the nurse of wo.
No real happiness is found..
In trailing purple o'er the ground;
Or in a soul exalted high,
To range the circuit of the sky,
Converse with stars above, and know
All nature in its forms below :
The rest it seeks, in seeking dies ;
And doubts at last for knowledge rise.

Lovely, lasting peace, appear ;
This world itself, if thou art here,
Is once again with Eden blest,
And man contains it in his breast.

'Twas thus, as under shade I stood,
F sung my wishes to the wood,
And, lost in thought, no more perceiv'd
The branches whisper as they wav'd :
It seem'd as all the quiet place
Confess'd the presence of the grace ;
When thus she spoke :-“Go rule thy will
Bid thy wild passions all be still ;
Know God, and bring thy heart to know
The joys which from religion flow;
Then ev'ry grace shall prove its guest,
And I'll be there to crown the rest."

Oh! by yonder mossy seat,
In my hours of sweet retreat,
Might I thus my soul employ,
With sense of gratitude and joy,
Rais'd as ancient prophets were,
In heav'nly vision, praise, and pray'r;
Pleasing all men, hurting none,
Pleas'd and blest with God alone ;
Then while the gardens take my sight,
With all the colours of delight;
While silver waters glide along,
To please my ear, and court my song ;
I'll lift my voice and tune my string,
And thee, Great Source of Nature, sing.

The sun that walks bis airy way,
To light the world, and give the day ;

i

The moon that shines with borrow'd light;
The stars that gild the gloomy night ;
The seas that roll unnumbered waves;
The wood that spreads its shady leaves ;
The field whose ears conceal the grain,
The yellow treasure of the plain :
All of these, and all I see,
Should be sung, and sung by me :
They speak their Maker as they can,
But want and ask the tongue of man.

Go search among your idle dreams,
Your busy or your vain extremes ;
And find a life of equal bliss,
Or own the next begun in this._ PARNELL.

SECTION II.

An elegy written in a country church-yard.

The curfew tolls the knell of parting day,

The lowing herd winds slowly o'er the lea,
The ploughman homeward plods his weary way,

And leaves the world to darkness and to me.
Now fades the glimm ring landscape on the sight,
· And all the air a solemn stillness holds,
Save where the beetle wheels his drony flight,

And drowsy tinklings lull the distant folds ;
Save that, from yonder ivy-mantled tow'r,

The moping ow) does to the moon complain Of such, as wand'ring near her secret bow'r,

Molest her ancient solitary reign. Beneath those rugged elms, that yew-tree's shade,

Where heaves the turf in many a mould'ring heap, Each in his narrow cell fo' ever laid,

The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep. The breezy call of incense-breathing morn,

The swallow twitt'ring from the straw-built shed, The cock's shrill clarion, or the echoing horn,

No more shall rouse them from their lowly bed. For them no more the blazing hearth shall burn,

Or busy housewife ply her evening care : Nor children run to lisp their sire's return,

Or climb his knees the envied kiss to share.)

Oft did the harvest to their sickle yield;

Their furrow oft the stubborn glebe has broke ; How jocund did they drive their teams afield !

How bow'd the woods beneath their sturdy stroke ! Let not ambition mock their useful toil,

Their homely joys, and destiny obscure;
Nor grandeur bear with a disdainful smile --

The short and simple annals of the poor.
The boast of heraldry, che pomp of pow'r,
· And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave,
Await, alike, th' inevitable hour;

The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
Nor you, ye proud, impute to these the fault,

If mem'ry o’er their tomb no trophies raise, Where thro' the long-drawn aisle and fretted vault,

The pealing anthem swells the pote of praise.
Can storied urn, or animated bust,
| Back to its mansion call the fleeting breath?
Can honour's voice provoke the silent dust,

Or flatt'ry sooth the dull cold ear of death ?
Perhaps in this neglected spot is laid

Some heart once pregnant with celestial fire;
Hands, that the rod of empire might have sway'd,

Or wake to ecstacy the living lyre.
But knowledge to their eyes her ample page,

Rich with the spoils of time, did ne'er unrol ;
Chill penury repress'd their noble rage,

And froze the genial current of the soul. Full many a gem, of purest ray serene,

The dark unfathom'd caves of ocean bear :
Full many a flow'r is born to blush unseen, .

And waste its sweetness on the desert air.
Some village Hampden, that with dauntless breast

The little tyrant of his fields withstood;
Some mute inglorious Milton liere may rest;

Some Cromwell guiltless of his country's blood. Th' applause of list ning senates to command,

The threats of pain and ruin to despise, To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land,

And read their hist'ry in a nation's eyes, Their lot forbade : nor circumscrib'd alone

Their growing virtues ; but their crimes confin'd, Forbade to wade through slaughter to a throne,

And shut the gates of mercy on mankind;

The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide, ..

To quench the blushes of ingenuous shame, Or heap the shrine of luxury and pride

With incense kindled at the muse's flame. Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife,

Their sober wishes never learn'd to stray; Along the cool sequester'd vale of life

They kept the noiseless tenour of their way. Yet'e'en these bones from insult to protect,

Some frail memorial still erected nigh, With uncouth rhymes and shapeless sculpture deck'd,

Implores the passing tribute of a sigh. Their name, their years, spelt by th' unletter'd muse,

The place of fame and elegy supply :, And many a holy text around she strews,

That teach the rustic moralist to die ; For who, to dumb forgetfulness a prey,

This pleasing, anxious being ere resign'd, Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day,

Nor cast one longing, ling'ring look behind ? On some fond breast the parting soul relies,

Some pious drops the closing eye requires : E'en from the tomb the voice of nature cries,

E'en in our ashes live their wonted fires. For thee, who, mindful of th' unhonour'd dead,

Dost in these lines their artless tale relate ; If, chance, by lonely contemplation led,

Some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate, Haply some hoary-headed swain may say,

i Oft have we seen him at the peep of dawn, Brushing, with hasty steps, the dews away,

To meet the sun upon the upland lawn. There at the foot of yonder nodding beech,

That wreathes its old fantastic roots so high, His listless length at noon-tide would he stretch,

And pore upon the brook that bubbles by. Hard by yon wood, now smiling, as in scorn,

Mutt'ring his wayward fancies, he would rove; Now drooping, woful, wan, like one forlorn,

Or craz'd with care, or cross'd in hopeless love, One morn I missd him on the accustom'd hill,

Along the heath, and near his fav’rite tree : Another came ; nor yet beside the rill,

Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was he.

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