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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,
Rise then, my soul, with hope elate,
Whose peaceful path, and ever-open gate,
Hymn to contentment.
Ambition searches all its sphere
Sees daisies open, rivers ruasi .
Lovely, lasting peace, appear ;
'Twas thus, as under shade I stood,
Oh! by yonder mossy seat,
The sun that walks bis airy way,
The moon that shines with borrow'd light;
Go search among your idle dreams,
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,
And leaves the world to darkness and to me.
And drowsy tinklings lull the distant folds ;
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;
The short and simple annals of the poor.
The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
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.
Or flatt'ry sooth the dull cold ear of death ?
Some heart once pregnant with celestial fire;
Or wake to ecstacy the living lyre.
Rich with the spoils of time, did ne'er unrol ;
And froze the genial current of the soul. Full many a gem, of purest ray serene,
The dark unfathom'd caves of ocean bear :
And waste its sweetness on the desert air.
The little tyrant of his fields withstood;
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.