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How askingly it's footsteps hither bend ?
It seems to say, “And have I then one Friend ?"
Innocent Foal! thou poor despis’d Forlorn!
I hail thee Brother-spite of the fool's scorn!
And fain would take thee with me, in the Dell
Of Peace and mild Equality to dwell,
Where Toil shall call the charmer Health his Bride,
And Laughter tickle Plenty's ribless side!
How thou wouldst toss thy heels in gamesome play,
And frisk about as Lamb or Kitten gay!
Yea! and more musically sweet to me
Thy dissonant harsh Bray of Joy would be,
Than warbled Melodies that sooth to rest
The aching of pale Fashion's vacant breast !
Tell me, on what holy ground
May Domestic Peace be found ?
Halcyon Daughter of the skies,
Far on fearful wings she flies,
From the pomp of sceptred State,
From the Rebel's noisy hate.
In a cottag'd vale She dwells
List’ning to the Sabbath bells !
Still around her steps are seen
Spotless Honour's meeker mien,
Love, the sire of pleasing fears,
Sorrow smiling through her tears,
And conscious of the past employ
Memory, bosom-spring of joy.
When Youth his fairy reign began
Fre Sorrow had proclaimed me man;
While Peace the present hour beguild,
And all the lovely Prospect smild:
Then, Mary! ’mid my lightsome glee
I heav'd the painless Sigh for thee.
And when, along the waves of woe,
My harass'd Heart was doom'd to know
The frantic Burst of Outrage keen,
And the slow Pang that gnaws unseen ;
Then shipwreck'd on Life's stormy sea
I heav'd an anguish'd Sigh for thee !
But soon Reflection's power imprest
A stiller sadness on my breast;
And sickly Hope with waning eye
Was well content to droop and die :
I yielded to the stern decree,
Yet heav'd a languid Sigh for thee!
And tho' in distant climes to roam,
A wanderer from my native home,
I fain would sooth the sense of Care
And lull to sleep the Joys, that were !
Thy Image may not banish'd be--
Still, Mary! still I sigh for thee.
Ere Sin could blight or Sorrow fade,
Death came with friendly care;
The opening bud to Heaven convey'd
And bade it blossom there.
Richer than Miser o'er his countless hoards,
Nobler than King's, or king-polluted Lords,
Here dwelt the Man of Ross! O Trav'ller, hear !
Departed Merit claims a reverent tear.
Beneath this roof if thy cheer'd moments pass,
Fill to the good man's name one grateful glass :
To higher zest shall Mem'ry wake thy soul,
And Virtue mingle in th’ennobled bowl.
Friend to the Friendless, to the sick man health,
With Generous joy he view'd his modest wealth ;
He hears the window's heaven-breath'd prayer of praise,
He marks the shelter'd orphan's tearful gaze,
Or where the sorrow-shrivel’d captive lay.
Pours the bright blaze of Freedom's noon-tide ray.
But if, like me, thro’ life's distressful scene
Lonely and sad thy pilgrimage hath been ;
And if, thy breast with heart-sick anguish fraught,
Thou journeyest onward tempest-toss'd in thought;
Here cheat thy cares! in generous visions melt,
And dream of Goodness, thou hast never felt !
TO A BEAUTIFUL SPRING IN A VILLAGE.
Once more, sweet Stream! with slow foot wand'ring
I bless thy milky waters cold and clear.
Escap'd the flashing of the noontide hours,
With one fresh garland of Pierian flowers
(Ere from thy zephyr-haunted brink I turn)
My languid hand shall wreath thy mossy urn.
For not thro' pathless grove with murmer rude
Thou soothest the sad wood-nymph, Solitude:
Nor thine unseen in cavern depths to well,
The Hermit-Fountain of some dripping cell !
Pride of the Vale! thy useful streams supply
The scatter'd cots and peaceful hamlet nigh.
The elfin tribe around thy friendly banks
With infant uproar and soul-soothing pranks,
Releas'd from school, their little hearts at rest,
Launch paper navies on thy waveless breast.
The rustic here at eve with pensive look
Whistling lorn ditties leans upon his crook,
Or starting pauses with hope-mingled dread
To list the much-lov'd maid's accustom'd tread :
She, vainly mindful of her dame's command,
Loiter's, the long-fill'd pitcher in her hand.
Unboasted Stream! thy fount with pebbled falls
The faded form of past delight recalls,
What time the morning sun of Hope arose,
And all was joy; save when another's woes
A transient gloom upon my soul imprest,
Like passing clouds impictur'd on thy breast.
Life's current then ran sparkling to the noon
Or silv'ry stole beneath the pensive Moon.
Ah! now it works rude brakes and thorns among,
Or, o'er the rough rock bursts and foams along!
WHO DIED OF A PRENZY PEVER, INDUCED BY
EDMUND! thy grave with aching eye I scan,
And inly groan for Heaven's poor outcast-Man!
'Tis tempest all or gloom : in early youth,
If gifted with the Ithuriel lance of Truth
We force to start amid her feign'd caress,
Vice, siren-hag! in native ugliness,
A brother's fate will haply rouse the tear,
And on we go in heaviness and fear!
But if our fond hearts call to Pleasure's hower
Some pigmy Folly in a careless hour,
The faithless guest shall stamp th' enchanted ground,
And mingled forms of Mis’ry rise around :
Heart-fretting Fear, with pallid look aghast,
That courts the future woe to hide the past;
Remorse, the poison’d arrow in his side ;
And loud lewd Mirth, to Anguish close allied :
Till Frenzy, fierce-eyed child of moping pain,
Darts her hot lightning flash athwart the brain.
Rest, injur'd shade! Shall Slander squatting near,
Spit her cold venom in a dead man's ear?
'Twas thine to feel the sympathetic glow
In Merit's joy, and Poverty's meek woe;