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So, from our Maker wandering, we stray,
Like birds, that know not to their nests the way.
In Him we dwelt before our exile here,
And may, returning, find contentment there :
True joy may find, perfection of delight,
Behold his face, and shun eternal night.
Of one alone, 'mid this high revelry,
Of one alone we read, who “ walk'd with God,”
And, while sin travell’d o'er the world abroad,
Whó chose the separate path of piety,
“ God took him," for he did not die !
0! incident of wondrous beauty, trod
On though it may be, like the unprized clod,
By man's coarse foot, yet to the kindling eye
Of childhood most delightful. Never yet,
Amid the musings of that tender age,
Was there before the simple fancy set
One, who could so their marvelling faith engage,
As that same Saint, of whom the whole they get
Is that he went to God, pure deathless
Down rush the torrents from above; the deep
Opens in all its fountains, ceaseless, still
Ceaseless ;-the muddy waters eddying fill
The valleys. High on every mound and steep,
In crowds, men, women, children, cattle, sheep,
Stand shivering with dismay, the horrible
Confusion eyeing; and, from hill to hill,
They shout in agony, or shriek, or weep,
In vain !--the waters gain upon them,-lo!
The ark careering past, their hands they stretch
For help, and now you see some drowning wretch
Pursue the sacred vessel ; but on wo
No pity must they have; so on they go.
Now all is one wide sea without a beach.
SHALL he, whose birth, maturity, and age,
Scarce fill the circle of one summer day,-
Shall the poor gnat, with discontent and rage,
Exclaim that nature hastens to decay,
If but a cloud obstruct the solar ray,
If but a momentary shower descend ?
Or shall frail man Heaven's dread decree gainsay,
Which bade the series of events extend
Wide through unnumber'd worlds, and
One part—one little part,—we dimly scan
Through the dark medium of life's feverish dream;
Yet dare arraign the whole stupendous plan,
If but that little part incongruous seem.
Nor is that part, perhaps, what mortals deem;
Oft from apparent ill our blessings rise.
Oh! then renounce that impious self-esteem,
That aims to trace the secrets of the skies:
For thou art but of dust: be humble and be wise.
At the close of the day, when the hamlet is still,
And mortals the sweets of forgetfulness prove,
When nought but the torrent is heard on the hill,
And nought but the nightingale's song in the grove;
'Twas thus, by the cave of the mountain afar,
While his harp rung symphonious, a hermit began;
No more with himself, or with nature, at war,
He thought as a sage, though he felt as a man.
Ah! why all abandon'd to darkness and wo?
Why, lone Philomela, that languishing fall?
For spring shall return, and a lover bestow,
And sorrow no longer thy bosom inthral.
But, if pity inspire thee, renew the sad lay,
Mourn, sweetest complainer, man calls thee to mourn;
Oh! soothe him, whose pleasures, like thine, pass away;
Full quickly they pass—but they never return.
Now, gliding remote on the verge of the sky,
The moon, half extinguish'd, her crescent displays;
But lately I mark’d, when majestic on high
She shone, and the planets were lost in her blaze.
Roll on, thou fair orb, and with gladness pursue
The path, that conducts thee to splendour again:
But man's faded glory what change shall renew?
Ah fool! to exult in a glory so vain !
'Tis night, and the landscape is lovely no more;
I mourn; but, ye woodlands, I mourn not for
For morn is approaching, your charms to restore,
Perfumed with fresh fragrance, and glittering with dew.
Nor yet for the ravage of winter I mourn:
Kind Nature the embryo blossom will save;
But when shall spring visit the mouldering urn?
O! when shall it dawn on the night of the grave ?
'Twas thus, by the glare of false science betray'd, That leads to bewilder, and dazzles to blind : My thoughts wont to roam, from shade on ward to shade, Destruction before me, and sorrow behind. “Oh! pity, great Father of light," then I cried,
Thy creature, who fain would not wander from thee, Lo, humbled in dust, I relinquish my pride: From doubt, and from darkness, thou only canst free.” And darkness and doubt are now flying away, No longer I roam in conjecture forlorn. So breaks on the traveller, faint and astray, The bright and the balmy effulgence of morn. See truth, love, and mercy in triumph descending, And nature all glowing in Eden's first bloom,
On the cold cheek of death smiles and roses are blending, And beauty immortal awakes from the tomb.
See the lark prunes his active wings,
Rises to heaven, and soars, and sings.
His morning hymns, his mid-day lays,
Are one continued song of praise.
He speaks his Maker, as he can,
And shames the silent tongue of man.
When the declining orb of light
Reminds him of approaching night,
His warbling vespers swell his breast,
And, as he sings, he sinks to rest.
Shall birds instructive lessons teach,
And we be deaf to what they preach?
No, ye dear nestlings of my heart,
Go, act the wiser songster's part.
Spurn your warm couch at early dawn,
And, with your song, begin the morn.
To him your grateful homage pay
Through every period of the day.
To Him your evening songs direct;
His eye shall watch ; His arm protect.
Though darkness reigns, He is with you still,
Then sleep, my babes, and fear no ill.
The rain upon the mountain shed,
The dewdrops o'er the valley spread,
In grateful incense upward rise,
And seek again their native skies.
To man alone shall blessings come,
To glad his heart, and cheer his home ;
And yet to heaven no grateful prayer
Ascend to seek the Giver there?
Yes ! let his lips in praise be found,
Though faint and feeble still the sound,
Until a deeper, louder song,
He learns amid the angelic throng.
COTTAGE PRAYERS. Then, kneeling down to Heaven's Eternal King, The saint, the father, and the husband prays: Hope springs exulting on triumphant wing, That thus they all shall meet in future days: There ever bask in uncreated rays, No more to sigh or shed the bitter tear, Together hymning their Creator's praise, In such society yet still more dear, While circling time moves round in an eternal sphere.
Then homeward all take off their several way,
The youngling cottagers retire to rest :
The parent pair their secret homage pay,
And proffer up to heaven the warm request,
That He, who stills the ravens' clamorous nest,
And decks the lily fair in flowery pride,
Would, in the way his wisdom sees the best,
For them and for their little ones provide ;
But chiefly in their hearts with grace divine preside.
GLORIOUS the hour, when, on the world new-sprung
From his creative hand, its Maker smiled,
Saw all things very good, and rested mild
In holy Sabbath his glad works among ;
The morning stars in joyful chorus sung,
Shouted for joy those blessed beings styled
“ The Sons of God," and man yet undefiled
Was happy, sin not yet his soul had stung.-
But there is still a Sabbath, and not less
But far more glorious,-from the grave when rose