Abbildungen der Seite

"Far from the city I reside,
And a thatch'd cottage all my pride.
True to my heart, I seldom roam,
Because I find my joys at home:
For foreign visits then begin,

When the man feels a void within.

"But though from towns and crowds I fly, No humourist, nor cynic, I.

Amidst sequester'd shades I prize,
The friendships of the good and wise.
Bid Virtue and her sons attend;
Virtue will tell thee, I'm her friend;
Tell thee, I'm faithful, constant, kind,
And meek, and lowly, and resign'd;
Will say, there's no distinction known
Betwixt her household and my own."

Author. "If these the friendships you pursue, Your friends, I fear, are very few.

So little company, you say,

Yet fond of home from day to day!
How do you shun Detraction's rod?
I doubt your neighbours think you odd."
Content. "I commune with myself at night,

And ask my heart, if all be right.
If 'right' replies my faithful breast,

I smile, and close my eyes to rest.”

Author. "You seem regardless of the town: Pray, Sir, how stand you with the gown?"

Content. "The Clergy say they love me well,
Whether they do they best can tell,
They paint me modest, friendly, wise,
And always praise me to the skies;
But if conviction's at the heart,
Why not a correspondent part?
For shall the learned tongue prevail,
If actions preach a different tale?
Who'll seek my door or grace my walls,
When neither dean nor prelate calls?

"With those my friendship most obtain,
Who prize their duty more than gain;
Soft flow the hours whene'er we meet,
And conscious virtue is our treat;
Our harmless breasts no envy know,
And hence we fear no secret foe;
Our walks Ambition ne'er attends,
And hence we ask no powerful friends;
We wish the best to Church and State,
But leave the steerage to the great;
Careless, who rises, or who falls,
And never dream of vacant stalls;
Much less by pride or interest drawn,
Sigh for the mitre and the lawn.

Observe the secrets of my art,
I'll fundamental truths impart:
And if you'll my advice pursue,
I'll quit my hut and dwell with you.

"The Passions are a num'rous crowd, Imperious, positive and loud:

Curb these licentious sons of strife;
Hence chiefly rise the storms of life:
If they grow mutinous, and rave,
They are thy masters, thou their slave.

[ocr errors]

Regard the world with cautious eye, Nor raise your expectation high. See that the balanc'd scales be such, You neither fear nor hope too much. For disappointment's not the thing, 'Tis pride and passion point the sting. Life is a sea, where storms must rise, 'Tis Folly talks of cloudless skies: He who contracts his swelling sail Eludes the fury of the gale.

"Be still, nor anxious thoughts employ, Distrust embitters present joy: On God for all events depend;

You cannot want when God's your friend.
Weigh well your part, and do your best;
Leave to your Maker all the rest.

The hand which form'd thee in the womb,
Guides from the cradle to the tomb..
Can the fond mother slight her boy?
Can she forget her prattling joy?
Say then, shall sov'reign Love desert
The humble and the honest heart?

Heaven may not grant thee all thy mind;
Yet say not thou, that Heaven's unkind.
God is alike both good and wise,
In what he grants and what denies :
Perhaps what Goodness gives to-day,
To-morrow Goodness takes away.

"You say that troubles intervene,
That sorrows darken half the scene.
True-and this consequence you see,
The world was ne'er design'd for thee:
You're like a passenger below,
That stays perhaps a night or so;
But still his native country lies
Beyond the boundaries of the skies.

"Of heaven ask virtue, wisdom, health,
But never let thy prayer be wealth.
If food be thine (though little gold),
And raiment to repel the cold,
Such as may nature's wants suffice,
Not what from pride and folly rise;
If soft the motions of thy soul,

And a calm conscience crowns the whole; Add but a friend to all this store,

You can't, in reason, wish for more:

And if kind Heaven this comfort brings,

'Tis more than Heaven bestows on kings."

• He spake-The airy spectre flies, And straight the sweet illusion dies.

The vision at the early dawn,
Consign'd me to the thoughtful morn;
To all the cares of waking clay.
And inconsistent dreams of day.



OH Happiness! our being's end and aim!

Good, Pleasure, Ease, Content! whate'er thy name;
That something still which prompts the eternal sigh,
For which we bear to live, or dare to die;
Which still so near us, yet beyond us lies,
O'erlook'd, seen double, by the fool and wise;
Plant of celestial seed! if dropt below,
Say, in what mortal soil thou deign'st to grow?
Fair op'ning to some court's propitious shine,
Or deep with diamonds in the flaming mine?
Twin'd with the wreaths Parnassian laurels yield,
Or reap'd in iron harvests of the field?

Where growswhere grows it not? If vain our toil, We ought to blame the culture, not the soil. Fix'd to no spot is Happiness sincere, 'Tis no where to be found, or ev'ry where; 'Tis never to be bought, but always free,

And fled from monarchs, ST. JOHN, dwells with thee. Ask of the learn'd the way: the learn'd are blinds This bids to serve, and that to shun mankind.

« ZurückWeiter »