« PreviousContinue »
Till one stern stroke of all my state,
Of all my bliss bereft me;
For God himself had left me.
Ye, too, as life itself beloved,
When all conspired to bliss me,
The foes who most oppress me.
The wreck of all I cherished:
O'er me, when I too perished.
My children sleep in death's cold shade,
And nought can now divide them;
Their wretched sire beside them!
The loss of all who love me;
Though none had wept above me.
All hope on earth for ever fled,
A higher hope remaineth;
I know my Saviour reigneth.
The worm may waste this withering clay,
My soul shall see eternal day,
WRITTEN ON THE AUTHOa'S BIBTH-DA.Y.
This is my Natal Day! to me, the thought
Awakens serious musings, and the sigh
Of softened recollection. Heretofore,
This day has ne'er returned, since manhood shaped
My wayward heart, not finding me the dupe
Of feverish day-dreams, and the very slave
Of hope's delicious phantasies. This day
Has ne'er returned, not finding me possesed
Of her, whose parent-claims to love were lost
In friendship's mightier attributes! O God I
And I am doomed this very day to know
Those dreams, hope's phantasies, and my first friend,
For ever gone!
—It boots not to complain; Therefore will I, with meek and bowed thoughts,
Muse calmly on life's desolated path!
As the way-wanderer, who the onward track
Gazes nnanxious, though the bleak day fade—
Though the wet winds sweep chilly; and the bark
Of shepherd's watch-dog, from the far-off hill,
Die on the gusty blast, if he reflect
That still in scenes remote, a goodly home
Awaits his wearied feet. Yes, so can I
Look on life's waste with the composed smile
Of resignation, (though amid that waste,
For me no floweret blossom,) hoping yet
To enter the abode where tears are wiped
From every eye, where the dear buried friend
Shall recognise her long-bewildered child!
Yet let me, as I travel on, if chance
tVith what my spirit from its scanty store
May spare, in kindliest sort, to entertain
To fill the aching breast! My God, thou knowest
THE PARISH POOR HOUSE.
There is yon house that holds the parish poor,
Here too the sick their final doom receive,
Whose laws indeed for rained age provide,
Say ye oppressed by some fantastic woes,
Such is that room which one rude beam divides, And naked rafters form the sloping sides; Where the vile bands that bind the thatch are seen, And lath and mud are all that lie between; Save one dull pane, that, coarsely patched, gives way To the rude tempest, yet excludes the day: Here, on a matted flock, with dust o'erspread, The drooping wretch reclines his languid head; For him no hand the cordial cup applies, Nor wipes the tear that stagnates in his eyes;