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In the sad midnight, while thy heart still bled,
Peasants bring forth in safety.—Can it be,
Of sackcloth was thy wedding garment made;
How strange is the course that a Christian must steer?
How perplexed is the path he must tread? The hope of his happiness rises from fear,
And his life he receives from the dead.
His fairest pretensions must wholly be waved,
And his best resolutions be crost;
Till he finds himself utterly lost.
When all this is done, and his heart is assured
Of the total remission of sins; When his pardon is signed, and his peace is procured',
From that moment his conflict begins.
I pity bashful men, who feel the pain
And bear the marks upon a blushing face Of needless shame, and self-imposed disgrace. Our sensibilities are so acute, The fear of being silent makes us mute. We sometimes think we could a speech produce Much to the purpose, if our tongues were loose; But being tried, it dies upon the lip, Faint as a chicken's note that has the pip: Our wasted oil unprofitably burns, Like hidden lamps in old sepulchral urns. Few Frenchmen of this evil have complained; It seems as if we Britons were ordained, By way of wholesome curb upon our pride, To fear each other, fearing none beside. The cause perhaps inquiry may descry, Self-searching with an introverted eye, Concealed within an unsuspected part, The vainest corner of our own vain heart: For ever aiming at the world's esteem, Our self-importance ruins its own scheme; In other eyes our talents rarely shown, Become at length so splendid in our own, We dare not risk them into public view, Lest they miscarry of what seems their due.
OH! THINK NOT MY SPIRITS, &c.
Oh! think not my spirits are always as light,
And as free from a pang, as they seem to you now, Nor expect that the heart-beaming smile of to-night
Will return with to-morrow to brighten ray brow; No, life is a waste of wearisome hours,
Which seldom the rose of enjoyment adorns; And the heart that is soonest awake to the flowers
Is always the first to be touched by the thorns! But send round the bowl, and be happy awhile;
May we never meet worse in our pilgrimage here Than the tear that enjoyment can gild with a smile,
And the smile that compassion can turn to a tear!
The thread of our life would be dark, heaven knows,
If it were not with friendship and love intertwined, And I care not how soon I may sink to repose,
When these blessings shall cease to be dear to my mind: But they who have loved the fondest, the purest,
Too often have wept o'er the dream they believed; And the heart that has slumbered in friendship securest,
Is happy indeed if 'twas never deceived.
But send round the bowl—while a relic of truth
That the sunshine of love may illumine our youth,
O heard ye yon pibrach sound sad in the gale,
Glenara came first with the mourners and shroud;
In silence they reached, over mountain and moor,
'And tell me, I charge you I ye clan of my spouse, Why fold ye your mantles, why cloud ye your brows?'