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And echoing praises, such as fiends might earn, Hovered thy spirit o'er thy sorrowing son, And Folly pays, resounds at your return. Wretched e'en then, life's journey just begun? A calm succeeds—but Plenty, with her train Perhaps thou gavest me, though unfelt, a kiss; Of heart-felt joys, succeeds not soon again, Perhaps a tear, if souls can weep in blissAnd years of pining indigence must show Ah, that maternal smile! it answers-Yes. What scourges are the gods that rule below. I heard the bell tolled on thy burial day,
Yet man, laborious man, by slow degrees, I saw the hearse that bore thee slow away, (Such is his thirst of opulence and ease) And, turning from my nursery window, drew Plies all the sinews of industrious toil,
A long, long sigh, and wept a last adieu! Gleans up the refuse of the general spoil, But was it such ?-It was.—Where thou art gone, Rebuilds the towers, that smoked upon the plain, Adieus and farewells are a sound unknown. And the sun gilds the shining spires again. May I but meet thee on that peaceful shore,
Increasing commerce and reviving art The parting word shall pass my lips no more! Renew the quarrel on the conqueror's part; Thy maidens, grieved themselves at my concern, And the sad lesson must be learned once more, Oft gave me promise of thy quick return. That wealth within is ruin at the door.
What ardently I wished, I long believed, What are ye, monarchs, laureled heroes, say, And disappointed still, was still deceived. But Ætnas of the suffering world ye sway? By expectation every day beguiled, Sweet Nature, stripped of her embroidered robe, Dupe of to-morrow even from a child. Deplores the wasted regions of her globe; Thus many a sad to-morrow came and went, And stands a witness at Truth's awful bar, Till, all my stock of infant sorrow spent, To prove you there destroyers as ye are. I learned at last submission to my lot,
O place me in some Heaven-protected isle, But, though I less deplored thee, ne'er forgot. Where Peace, and Equity, and Freedom smile; Where once we dwelt our name is heard no more, Where no volcano pours his fiery flood,
Children not thine have trod my nursery floor; No crested warrior dips his plume in blood; And where the gardener Robin, day by day, Where Power secures what industry has won; Drew me to school along the public way, Where to succeed is not to be undone;
Delighted with my bauble coach, and wrapped A land, that distant tyrants hate in vain, In scarlet mantle warm, and velvet cap, In Britain's isle, beneath a George's reign! 'Tis now become a history little known,
That once we called the pastoral house our own. Short-lived possession! but the record fair
That memory keeps of all thy kindness there, ON THE RECEIPT OF MY MOTHER'S PICTURE
Still outlives many a storm, that has effaced
A thousand other themes less deeply traced.
Thy nightly visits to my chamber made,
That thou might'st know me safe and warmly
Thy constant flow of love, that knew no fall, (Blest be the art that can immortalize,
Ne'er roughened by those cataracts and breaks The art that baffles Time's tyrannic claim
That humour interposed too often makes; To quench it) here shine on me still the same.
All this still legible in memory's page, Faithful remembrancer of one so dear,
And still to be so to my latest age, O welcome guest, though unexpected here!
Adds joy to duty, makes me glad to day Who bidd'st me honour with an artless song,
Such honours to thee as my numbers may; Affectionate, a mother lost so long.
Perhaps a frail memorial, but sincere, I will obey, not willingly alone,
Not scorned in Heaven though little noticed here. But gladly, as the precept were ber own;
Could Time, his flight reversed, restore the hours, And, while that face renews my filial grief, When, playing with thy vesture's tissued flowers, Fancy shall weave a charm for my relief, The violet, the pink, and jessamine, Shall steep me in Elysian reverie,
I pricked them into paper with a pin, A momentary dream, that thou art she. (And thou wast happier than myself the while,
My Mother! when I learned that thou wast dead, Wouldst softly speak, and stroke my heall and Say, wast thou conscious of the tears I shed? smile)
No wonder friendship does the same, That jewel of the purest flame,
Or rather constellation.
No knave but boldly will pretend,
A real and a sound one;
And dream that he had found one.
Candid, and generous, and just,
An error soon corrected-
Is most to be suspected ?
Could those few pleasant days again appear,
Thou, as a gallant bark from Albion's coast
shore, "Where tempests never beat nor billows roar," And thy loved consort on the dangerous tide Of life long since has anchored by thy side. But me, scarce hoping to attain that rest, Always from port withheld, always distressedMe howling blasts drive devious, tempest tossed, Sails ripped, seams opening wide, and compass
lost, And day by day some current's thwarting force Sets me more distant from a prosperous course. Yet the thought, that thou art safe, and he That thought is joy, arrive what may to me. My boast is not, that I deduce my birth From loins enthroned, and rulers of the earth; But higher far my proud pretensions riseThe son of parents past into the skies. And now, farewell — Time unrevoked has run His wonted course, yet what I wished is done. By Contemplation's help, not sought in vain, I seem t' have lived my childhood o'er again; To have renewed the joys that once were inine, Without the sin of violating thine; And, while the wings of fancy still are free, And I can view this mimic show of thee, Time has but half succeeded in his theftThyself removed, thy power to sooth me left.
But here again, a danger lies, Lest, having misapplied our eyes,
And taken trash for treasure, We should unwarily conclude Friendship a false ideal good,
A mere Utopian pleasure.
An acquisition rather rare
Nor is it wise complaining,
We sought without attaining.
No friendship will abide the test, That stands on sordid interest,
Or mean self-love erected; Nor such as may awhile subsist, Between the sot and sensualist,
For vicious ends connected.
Who seeks a friend should come disposed T'exhibit in full bloom disclosed
The graces and the beauties That from the character he seeks; For 'tis a union, that bespeaks
Mutual attention is implied, And equal truth on either side,
And constantly supported; 'Tis senseless arrogance t'accuse Another of sinister views,
Our own as much distorted,
FRIENDSHIP. What virtue, or what mental grace, But men unqualified and base
Will boast it their possession ? Profusion apes their noble part Of liberality of heart,
And dullness of discretion, If every polished gem we find, Illuminating heart or mind:
Provoke to imitation:
But will sincerity suffice?
And must be made the basis;
All shining in their places.
A fretful temper will divide
By ceaseless sharp corrosion;
At one immense explosion.
The secret just committed,
And by themselves outwitted.
If envy chance to creep in;
But not a friend worth keeping.
On good that seems approaching; And, if success his steps attend, Discerns a rival in a friend,
And hates him for encroaching.
Are sadly prone to quarrel,
And pluck each other's laurel.
With friendship’s finest feeling,
By way of balm for healing.
The trumpet of contention;
And rush into dissension.
The sparks of disputation,
The thought of conflagration.
Their humour yet so various
Their love is so precarious.
The great and small but rarely meet
Plebeians must surrender
Obscurity with splendour. Some are so placid and serene (As Irish bogs are always green)
They sleep secure from waking, And are indeed a bog, that bears Your unparticipated cares
Unmoved and without quaking.
Without an effervescence,
A friendly coalescence.
But friends that chance to differ
No combatants are stiffer.
No cutting and contriving--
With still less hope of thriving. Sometimes the fault is all our own, Some blemish in due time made known
By trespass or omission;
And even from suspicion.
And, having made election, Beware no negligence of yours, Such as a friend but ill endures,
Enfeeble his affection.
With such as its old tenants are,
Creatures of gentler race.
The squirrel here his hoard provides,
Aware of wintry storms,
Of rugged oaks for worms.
With frictions of her fleece;
Like her, a friend to peace.
From this secure retreat-
The happiest of the great.
Thy pleasure is to show
Thy prowess—therefore go
The man that hails you Tom or Jack,
How he esteems your merit,
To pardon or to bear it,
First fixes our attention;
Must save it from declension.
Safe policy, but hateful-
Unpleasant and ungrateful.
No subterfuge or pleading
Of evils yet unmentioned-
To be at least expedient,
A principal ingredient.
Though some have turned and turned it;
Have not, it seems, discerned it.
To mortify and grieve me,
Or may my friend deceive me!
I care not whether east or north,
So I no more may find thee; The angry muse thus sings thee forth,
And claps the gate behind thee.
ANNUS MEMORABILIS, 1789. Written in Commemoration of his Majesty's happy Recovery.
I RANSACKED, for a theme of song,
To modern times, with Truth to guide
Thus, as the bee, from bank to bower,
ON A MISCHIEVOUS BULL,
The pleasures of this place
Thanks that we hear,--but O impart
To each desires sincere,
And learn as well as hear.
For if vain thoughts the minds engage
Of older far than we, What hope, that, at our heedless age,
Our minds should e'er be free?
Much hope, if thou our spirits take
Under thy gracious sway,
And babes as wise as they. Wisdom and bliss thy word bestows,
A sun that ne'er declines, And be thy mercies showered on those
Who placed us where it shines.
A theme for poetry divine,
The spring of eighty-nine shall be
Then peace and joy again possessed
O Queen of Albion, queen of isles!
If they who on thy state attend,
Subjoined to the Yearly Bill of Mortality of the Parish of A]}
Saints, Northampton,' Anno Domini, 1787.
The Nen's barge-laden wave,
Have found their home, the grave.
Was man (frail always) made more frail
Than in foregoing years ?
That so much death appears?
No; these were vigorous as their sires,
Nor plague nor famine came; This annual tribute Death requires,
And never waives his claim.
Like crowded forest-trees we stand,
And some are marked to fall; The axe will smite at God's command,
And soon shall smite us all.