Page images
PDF
EPUB

Just then, by adverse fate impress'd,
A dream disturb'd poor Bully's rest;

In sleep he seem'd to view
A rat fast clinging to the cage,
And, screaming at the sad presage,

Awoke and found it true.
For, aided both by ear and scent,
Right to his mark the monster went-

Ah, muse! forbear to speak
Minute the horrors that ensued;
His teeth were strong, the cage was wood-

He left poor Bully's beak.
0, had he made that too his prey;
That beak, whence issued many a lay

Of such mellifluous tone,
Might have repaid him well, I wot,
For silencing so sweet a throat,

Fast stuck within his own.
Maria weeps—the Muses mourn-
So when, by Bacchanalians torn,

On Thracian Hebrus' side
The tree-enchanter Orpheus fell,
His head alone remained to tell

The cruelfdeath he died.

THE ROSE.
The rose had been wash'd, just wash'd in a show'r,

Which Mary to Anna conveyed,
The plentiful moisture encumberd the flow'r,

And weigh'd down its beautiful head.
The cup was all filld, and the leaves were all wet,

And it seem'd to a fanciful view, To weep

for the buds it had left with regret, On the flourishing bush where it grew.

I hastily seiz'd it, unfit as it was

For a nosegay, so dripping and drown'd, And swinging it rudely, too rudely, alas !

I snapp'd it, it fell to the ground. “And such” I exclaim'd, “is the pitiless part

Some act by the delicate mind, Regardless of wringing and breaking a heart

Already to sorrow resign’d. “ This elegant rose, had I shaken it less,

Might have bloom'd with its owner awhile; And the tear, that is wip'd with a little address,

May be follow'd, perhaps, by a smile."

THE DOVES.
REAS’NING at ev'ry step he treads,

Man yet mistakes his way,.
While meaner things, whom instinct leads,

Are rarely known to stray.
One silent eve I wander'd late,

And heard the voice of love ;
The turtle thus address'd her mate,

And sooth'd the list'ning dove:
“ Our mutual bond of faith and truth

No time shall disengage,
Those blessings of our early youth

Shall cheer latest age.
While innocence without disguise,

And constancy sincere,
Shall fill the circles of those eyes,

And mine can read them there;
“ Those ills that wait on all below,

Shall ne'er be felt by me,
Or gently felt, and only so,

As being shar'd with thee.

our

~ When lightnings flash among the trees,

Or kites are hov'ring near,
I fear lest thee alone they seize,

And know no other fear.
" "Tis then I feel myself a wife,

And press thy wedded side,
Resolv'd an union form'd for life

Death never shall divide.
But, oh! if fickle and unchaste,

(Forgive a transient thought) Thou could become unkind at last,

And scorn thy present lot.
“No need of lightnings from on high,

Or kites with cruel beak;
Denied th' endearments of thine eye,

This widow'd heart would break."
Thus

sàng. the sweet sequester'd bird, Soft as the passing wind; And I recorded what I heard,

A lesson for mankind.

A FABLE.
A RAYEN, while with glossy breast
Her new-laid eggs she fondly pressid,
And, on her wickerwork high mounted,
Her chickens prematurely counted,
(A fault philosophers might blame
If quite exempted from the same),
Enjoyed at ease the genial day;
'Twas April, as the bumpkins say,
The legislature call'd it May.
But, suddenly a wind as high,
As ever swept a winter sky,
Shook the young leaves about her ears,
And fill'd her with a thousand fears,

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

Lest the rude blast should snap the bough,
And spread her golden hopes below.
But just at eve the blowing weather
And all her fears were hush'd together.
“ And now,” quoth poor unthinking Ralph,
'Tis over and the brood is safe ;"
(For ravens, though as birds of omen
They teach both conj’rers and old women,
To tell us what is to befall,
Can't prophesy themselves at all.)
The morning came, when neighbour Hodgc,
Who long had mark'd her airy lodge
And destin'd all the treasure there
A gift to his expecting fair,
Climb'd like a squirrel to his spray,
And bore the worthless prize away.

MORAL.
'Tis Providence alone secures
In ev'ry change both mine and yours :
Safety consists not in escape
From dangers of a frightful shape :
An earthquake may be bid to spare
The man, that's strangled by a hair.
Fate steals along with silent tread,
Found oft'nest in what least we dread;
Frowns in the storm with angry brow,
But in the sunshine strikes the blow.

A COMPARISON. THE lapse of time and rivers is the same, Both speed their journey with a restless stream ; The silent pace, with which they steal away, No wealth can bribe, no pray’rs persuade to stay ; Alike irrevocable both when past, And a wide ocean swallows both at last.

Though each resemble each in ev'ry part,
A diffʻrence strikes at length the musing heart:
Streams never flow in vain ; where streams abound,
How laughs the land with various plenty crown'd!
But time, that should enrich the nobler mind,
Neglected leaves a weary waste behind.

ANOTHER. ADDRESSED TO A YOUNG LADY. SWEET stream, that winds through yonder glade, Apt emblem of a virtuous maid Silent and chaste she steals along, Far from the world's gay busy throng; With gentle yet prevailing force, Intent upon

her destin'd course; Graceful and useful all she does, Blessing and blest where'er she goes, Pure-bosom’d as that wat’ry glass, And heav'n reflected in her face.

THE POET'S NEW-YEAR'S GIFT.

TO MRS. (NOW LADY) THROCKMORTON.
MARIA! I have ev'ry good

For thee wish'd many a time,
Both sad, and in a cheerful mood,

But never yet in rhyme.
To wish thee fairer is no need,

More prudent, or more sprightly,
Or more ingenious, or more freed

From temper-flaws unsightly.
What favour then not yet possessid,

Can I for thee require,
In wedded love already blest,

To thy whole heart's desire ?

« PreviousContinue »