« PreviousContinue »
Then judge yourself, and prove your man
As circumspectly as you can,
And, having made election,
Beware no negligence of yours,
Such as a friend but ill endures,
Enfeeble his affection.
That secrets are a sacred trust,
That friends should be sincere and just,
That constancy befits them,
Are observations on the case,
That savour much of commonplace,
And all the world admits them.
But 'tis not timber, lead, and stone,
An architect requires alone
To finish a fine building—
The palace were but half complete,
If he could possibly forget
The carving and the gilding.
The man that hails you Tom or Jack,
And proves by thumps upon your back
How he esteems your merit
Is such a friend, that one had need
Be very much his friend indeed
To pardon or to bear it.
As similarity of mind,
Or something not to be defined,
First fixes our attention;
So manners decent and polite,
The same we practised at first sight,
Must save it from declension.
Some act upon this prudent plan,
“Say little, and hear all you can.”
Safe policy, but hateful—
So barren sands imbibe the shower,
But render neither fruit nor flower,
Unpleasant and ungrateful.
The man I trust, if shy to me,
Shall find me as reserved as he,
No subterfuge or pleading
win my confidence again;
I will by no means entertain
A spy on my proceeding.
These samples—for, alas! at last
These are but samples, and a taste
Of evils yet unmention'd—
May prove the task a task indeed,
In which 'tis much if we succeed,
However well intention'd.
Pursue the search, and you will find
Good sense and knowledge of mankind
To be at least expedient,
And, after summing all the rest,
Religion ruling in the breast
A principal ingredient.
The noblest Friendship ever shown
The Saviour's history makes known,
Though some have turn’d and turn’d it;
And, whether being crazed or blind,
Or seeking with a biass'd mind,
Have not, it seems, discern'd it.
O Friendship ! if my soul forego
Thy dear delights while here below,
% mortify and grieve me,
May I myself at last appear
Unworthy, base, and insincere,
Or may my friend deceive me!
ON A MISCHIEVOUS BULL, WHICH THE OWNER OF HIM SOLD AT THE AUTHOR'S INSTANCa
Go—thou art all unfit to share
The pleasures of this place
With such as its old tenants are,
Creatures of gentler race.
The squirrel here his hoard provides,
Aware of wintry storms,
And woodpeckers explore the sides
Of rugged oaks for worms.
The sheep here smooths the knotted thorn
With frictions of her fleece;
And here I wander eve and morn,
Like her, a friend to peace.
Ah!—I could pity thee exiled
From this secure retreat—
I would not lose it to be styled
The happiest of the great.
But thou canst taste no calm delight;
Thy pleasure is to show
Thy magnanimity in fight,
hy prowess—therefore, go—
I care not whether east or north,
So I no more may find thee;
The angry muse thus sings thee forth,
And claps the gate behind thee.
written IN COMMEMORATION OF HIS MAJESTY's HAPPY RECovehy.
IRANSACK'D for a theme of song,
Much ancient chronicle, and long;
I read of bright embattled fields,
Of trophied helmets, spears, and shields,
Of chiefs, whose single arm could boast
Prowess to dissipate a host;
Through tomes of fable and of dream
I sought an eligible theme,
But none I found, or found them shared
Already by some happier bard.
To modern times, with truth to guide
My busy search, I next applied;
Here cities won, and fleets dispersed,
Urged loud a claim to be rehearsed,
Deeds of unperishing renown,
Our fathers' triumphs and our own.
Thus as the bee, from bank to bower,
Assiduous sips at every flower,
But rests on none till that be found
Where most nectareous sweets abound,
So I, from theme to theme display'd
In many a page historic, stray'd,
Siege after siege, fight after fight,
Contemplating with small delight
o: feats of sanguinary hue
ot always glitter in my view),
Till, settling on the current year,
I found the far-sought treasure near,
A theme for poetry divine,
A theme to ennoble even mine,
In memorable eighty-nine.
The spring of eighty-nine shall be
An aera cherish'd long by me,
Which joyful I will oft record,
And thankful at my frugal board;
For then the clouds of eighty-eight,
That threaten’d England's trembling state
With loss of what she least could spare,
Her sovereign's tutelary care,
One breath of heaven, that cried—Restore!
Chased, never to assemble more :
And for the richest crown on earth,
If valued by its wearer's worth,
The symbol of a righteous reign
Sat fast on George's brows again.
Then peace and joy again possess'd
Qur, Queen's long-agitated breast;
Such joy and peace as can be known
By sufferers like herself alone,
ho losing, or supposing lost,
The good on earth they valued most,
For that dear sorrow's sake forego
All hope of happiness below,
Then suddenly regain the prize,
And flash thanksgivings to the skies 1
O Queen of Albion, queen of isles!
Since all o tears were changed to smiles,
The eyes, that never saw thee, shine
With joy not unallied to thine;
Transports not chargeable with art
Illume the land's remotest part,
And strangers to the air of courts,
Both in their toils and at their sports,
The happiness of answer'd prayers,
That thy features, show in theirs.
If they who on thy state attend,
Awe-struck, before thy presence bend,
'Tis but the natural effect
Of grandeur that ensures respect;
But she is something more than queen
Who is beloved where never seen.
HEAR, Lord, the song of praise and prayer
In heaven thy dwelling-place,
From infants made the public care,
And taught to seek thy face.
Thanks for thy word and for thy day,
And grant us, we implore,
Never to waste in sinful play
Thy holy Sabbaths more.
Thanks that we hear—but 0.1 impart
To each desires sincere,
That we may listen with our heart,
And learn as well as hear.
For if vain thoughts the mind engage
Of okler far than we,
What hope, that, at our heedless age,
Our minds should e'er be free? -
Much hope, if thou our spirits take
Under thy gracious sway,
Who canst the wisest wiser make,
And babes as wise as they.
Wisdom and bliss thy word bestows,
A sun that ne'er declines,
And be thy mercies shower'd on those
Who placed us where it shines.
subjoined to The YEARLY BILL OF MORTALITY OF The PARISH or ALL.
SAINTs, NoKTHAMPTON, ANNO DOMINI 1787.
(Composed for John Cox, parish clerk of Northampton.)
Pallidamors acquopulsat pede pauperum tabernas,
Pale death with equal foot strikes wide the door
Of royal halls and hovels of the poor.
WHILE thirteen moons saw smoothly run
The Nen's barge-laden wave,
All these, life's rambling journey done,
Have found their home, the grave.
Was man (frail always) made more frail
Than in foregoing years?
Did famine or did plague prevail,
That so much death appears?
No ; these were vigorous as their sires,
Nor plague nor famine came;
This annual tribute Death requires,
And never waves his claim.
Like crowded forest trees we stand,
And some are mark'd to fall;
The axe will smite at God's command,
And soon shall smite us all.
Green as the bay-tree, ever green,
With its new . On,
The gay, the thoughtless, have I seen,
I pass'd—and they were gone.
Read, ye that run, the awful truth
With which is charge my page;
A worm is in the bud of youth,
And at the root of age.
No present health can health ensure
For yet an hour to come;
No medicine, though it oft can cure,
Can always balk the tomb.
And Ol that, humble as my lot,
And scorn’d as is my strain,
These truths, though known, too much forgot
I may not teach in vain.
So prays your clerk with all his heart,
nd, ere he quits the pen,
Begs you for once to take his part,
And answer all—Amen I