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But duly shall my raptured song,

And gladly shall my eyes,
Still bless this day's return, as long

As thou shalt see it rise.

Not unworthy to be compared even with these verses are Mary Lundie Duncan's stanzas to her betrothed, with a gift of a “ hair brooch:”

Thou need'st not talisman or gem

To turn thy heart to me,
While Nature wears her diadem

Of star, and hill, and tree.
All with a whisper sweet and low

Breathe of the happy past;
It lives in sunset's golden glow,

Nor dies in night's chill blast.
A rose-bud from the bowers of spring,

A lily of the vale,
Better than gold or costly thing,

Can tell affection's tale.

Yet roses fade and lilies die ;

Thou canst not stay their doom,
Or read of love that will not fly

In their departed bloom.
But this memorial, not so bright,

Is not so frail as they ;
It will not shrink from frosts by night,

Or droop 'neath summer's ray.
Should Heavenly Wisdom ever tear

Thy loved one from thy side,
This little lock of shining hair

Shall near thee still abide.

Should He with years of pleasure bless

Thy long, thy faithful truth,
Thou still wilt smile upon the tress

Bright with the dreams of youth.
Then guard the pledge upon thy breast,

The treasure in thy heart;

may we meet where love is bless'd,

And loved ones cannot part ! These lines by an old English poet, P. Fletcher, would grace a birthday gift :That Sacred Hand, which to this year hath brought

you, Perfect your years, and with your years, His

graces ; And when His will unto His will has wrought you, Conduct your

soul unto those happy places Where you may dwell with pleasures ever new, And blessings thicker than the morning dew.

There is force and grace in Cowper's verses to Maria, afterwards Lady Throckmorton, written in 1788

Maria! I have every good

For thee wished many a time,
Both sad and in a cheerful mood,

But never yet in rhyme.
To wish thee fairer is no need,

More prudent, or more sprightly,
Or more ingenious, or more freed

From temper-flaws unsightly.
None here is happy but in part;

Full bliss is bliss divine;
There dwells some wish in every heart,

And doubtless one in thine.

That wish, on some fair future day,

Which fate shall brightly gild,
('Tis blameless, be it what it may,)

I wish it all fulfilled.

The author of “ 'The Castilian” expresses (though not very lucidly) a birthday thought, which is striking yet peculiar :

I wish thee joy on thy birthday!

I could not, most wayward beauty;

This was deemed a duty,
But I thought far other way.
Chilling words, and looks still colder,

Most unjustly fall on me;

How should that day joyful be,
When it told that thou wert older ?

Oh! how truly would I bless

That same day which I deplore,

If, instead of one year more,
It could give thee one day less !

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And so we pass on to the second stage of life:Look nature through, 'tis revolution allAll change, no death; day follows night, and night The dying day; stars rise and set, and set and rise. Earth takes the example. See, the Summer gay, With her green chaplet and ambrosial fowers, Droops into pallid Autumn. Horrid with frost and turbulent with storm, Blows Autumn and his golden fruits away, Then melts into the Spring-soft Spring, with

breath Favonian, from warm chambers of the south,

Winter grey,

Recalls the first. All, to reflourish, fades;
As in a wheel, all sinks to re-ascend ;
Emblems of man, who passes, not expires.



An evening cloud in brief suspense,

Was hither driven and thither;
It came I know not whence,

It went I know not whither;
I watched it changing in the wind,

Size, semblance, shape, and hue,
Fading and lessening, till behind

It left no speck in heaven's deep blue.
Amidst the marshallid host of night
Shone a new star supremely bright;
With marvelling eye, well pleased to err,

I haild the prodigy ;-anon
It fell ;-it fell like Lucifer,

A flash, a blaze, a train, 'twas gone!
And then I sought in vain its place
Throughout the infinite of space.
Dew-drops, at day-spring, deck'd a line
Of gossamer so frail, so fine,
A fly's wing shook it; round and clear,

As if by fairy fingers strung,
Like orient pearls, at Beauty's ear,

In trembling brilliancy they hung
Upon a rosy brier, whose bloom
Shed nectar round them, and perfume.
Ere long, exhaled in limpid air,

Some mingled with the breath of morn,
Some slid down singly, here and there,

Like tears, by their own weight o'erborne :


At length the film itself collapsed, and where

The pageant glitter'd, lo! a naked thorn. What are the living? Hark! a sound

From grave and cradle crying, By earth and ocean echoed round,

“ The living are the dying!”

From infancy to utmost age,
What is man’s line of pilgrimage :
The pathway to Death's portal;

The moment we begin to be,

We enter on the agonyThe dead are the immortal ; They live not on expiring breath, They only are exempt from death. Cloud-atoms, sparkles of a falling star, Dew-drops, or films of gossamer, we are: What can the state beyond us be? Life?-Death?—Ah! no—a greater mystery; What thought hath not conceived, ear heard,

eye seen; Perfect existence from a point begun; Part of what God's eternity hath been;

Whole immortality belongs to none But Him, the First, the Last, the Only One!


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