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ON HIS TWENTY-THIRD BIRTHDAY.

(Milton.) How soon hath Time, the subtle thief of youth,

Stolen on his wing my three-and-twentieth year !

My hasting days fly on with full career,
But my late spring no bud or blossom showeth.
Perhaps my semblance might deceive the truth

That I to manhood am arrived so near,

And inward ripeness doth much less appear,
That some more timely-happy spirits indueth.
Yet be it less or more, or soon or slow,
It shall be still in strictest measure even
To that same lot, however mean or high,
Toward which Time leads me, and the will of

Heaven;
All is, if I have grace to use it so
As ever in my great Taskmaster's eye.

ON HIS BLINDNESS.-(Milton.) When I consider how my light is spent

Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,

And that one talent which is death to hide, Lodged with me useless. Though my soul more

bent To serve therewith my Maker, and present

My true account, lest He, returning chide :

Doth God exact day-labour, light denied ? I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent That murmur, soon replies: “God doth not need

Either man's work or His own gifts; who best Bear His mild yoke, they serve Him best ; His state Is kingly ; thousands at His bidding speed,

And post o'er land and ocean without rest ; They also serve who only stand and wait.'

Live in Love; 'tis Pleasant Living: 183

LIVE IN LOVE; 'TIS PLEASANT LIVING.

(Edward Capern.)
Be not harsh and unforgiving ;
Live in love,-'tis pleasant living.
If an angry man should meet thee,
And assail thee indiscreetly,
Turn not thou again and rend him,
Lest thou needlessly offend him ;
Show him love hath been thy teacher ;
Kindness is a potent preacher :
Gentleness is e'er forgiving-
Live in love ; 'tis pleasant living.
Why be angry with each other?
Man was made to love his brother;
Kindness is a human duty,
Meekness a celestial beauty.
Words of kindness, spoke in season,
Have a weight with men of reason.
Don't be others' follies blaming,
And their little vices naming;
Charity 's a cure for railing,
Suffer much, is all-prevailing.
Courage, then, and be forgiving-
Live in love; 'tis pleasant living.
Let thy loving be a passion,
Not a complimental fashion.
Love is wisdom, ever proving
True philosophy is loving.
Hast thou known that bitter feeling
'Gendered by our hate's concealing?
Better love, though e'er so blindly;
E'en thy foes will call it kindly.
Words are wind; oh, let them never
Friendship’s golden love-cords sever !

Nor be angry, though another
Scorn to call thee friend or brother :
“ Brother,” say, “ let's be forgiving-
Live in love ; 'tis pleasant living.”

SONNET.-(Wordsworth.)
The world is too much with us; late and soon,

Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;

Little we see in nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This sea, that bares her bosom to the moon;

The winds, that will be howling at all hours,

And are up-gathered now, like sleeping flowers; For this, for everything, we are out of tune ;

It moves us not. Great God! I'd rather be A pagan, suckled in a creed outworn,

, So might I, standing on this pleasant lea, Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn ;

Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea ; Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.

A SUMMER INVOCATION.-(W. C. Bennett.)

O gentle, gentle summer rain,

Let not the silver lily pine,
The drooping lily pine in vain

To feel that dewy touch of thinc,
To drink thy freshness once again,
O gentle, gentle summer rain.
In heat the landscape quivering lies;

The cattle pant beneath the tree;
Through parching air and purple skies,

The earth looks up in vain for thee

For thee, for thee, it looks in vain,
O gentle, gentle summer rain.
Come thou, and brim the meadow streams,

And soften all the hills with mist;
O falling dew, from burning dreams,

By thee shall herb and flower be kissed ;
And earth shall bless thee yet again,
O gentle, gentle summer rain,

-O

LABOUR.-(Lord Houghton.) Heart of the people! Working men !

Marrow and nerve of human powers; Who on your sturdy backs sustain

Through streaming Time this world of ours; Hold by that title,—which proclaims,

That ye are undismayed and strong, Accomplishing whatever aims

May to the sons of earth belong. Yet not on ye alone depend

These offices, or burthens fall;
Labour for some or other end

Is lord and master of us all.
The highborn youth from downy bed

Must meet the morn with horse and hound, While industry for daily bread

Pursues afresh his wonted round. With all his pomp of pleasure, he

Is but your working comrade now, And shouts and winds his horn, as ye

Might whistle by the loom or plough; In vain for him has wealth the use

Of warm repose and careless joy,

When, as ye labour to produce,

He strives, as active to destroy. But who is this with wasted frame,

Sad sin of vigour overwrought? What toil can this new victim claim ?

Pleasure for pleasure's sake besought. How men would mock her flaunting shows,

Her golden promise, if they knew What weary work she is to those

Who have no better work to do. And he who still and silent sits

In closed room or shady rock, And seems to nurse his idle wits

With folded arins or open book :To things now working in that mind,

Your children's children well may owe Blessings that Hope has ne'er defined

Till from his busy thoughts they flow. Thus all must work—with head or hand,

For self or others, good or ill; Life is ordained to bear, like land,

Some fruit, be fallow as it will : Evil has force itself to sow

Where we deny the healthy seed, And all our choice is this,—to grow

Pasture and grain or noisome weed.
Then in content possess your hearts,

Unenvious of each other's lot,-
For those which seem the easiest parts
Have travail which

ye

reckon not: And he is bravest, happiest, best,

Who from the task within his span, Earns for himself his evening rest

And an increase of good for man.

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