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OSSIAN'S HYMN TO THE SUN.
O thou whose beams the sea-girt earth array,
King of the sky, and father of the day !
O sun! what fountain, hid from human eyes,
Supplies thy circle round the radiant skies,,
For ever burning and for ever bright,
With heaven's pure fire and everlasting light?
What awful beauty in thy face appears!
Immortal youth beyond the power of years
When gloomy darkness to thy reign resigns,
And from the gates of morn thy glory shines,
The conscious stars are put to sudden flight,
And all the planets hide their heads in night ;
The Queen of heaven forsakes the etherial plain,
To sink inglorious in the western main;
The clouds refulgent deck thy golden throne,
High in the heavens, immortal and alone!
Who can abide the brightness of thy face,
Or who attend thee in thy rapid race ?
The mountain oaks, like their own leaves, decay;
Themselves, the mountains, wear with age away;
The boundless main that rolls from land to land,
Lessens at times and leaves a waste of sand ;
The silver moon, refulgent lamp of night,
Is lost in heaven, and emptied of her light;
But thou for ever shalt endure the same,
Thy light eternal, and unspent thy flame !
When tempests with their train impend on high,
Darken the day, and load the labouring sky;
When heaven's wide convex glows with lightnings dire,
All ether flaming, and all earth on fire ;
When loud and long the deep-mouthed thunder rolls,
And peals on peals redoubled rend the poles
If from the opening clouds thy form appears,
Her wonted charm the face of nature wears ;
Thy beauteous orb restores departed day,
Looks from the sky and laughs the storm away.
Oh! thou who dry’st the mourner's tear,
How dark this world would be,
If, when deceived and wounded here,
We could not fly to thee !
The friends who in our sunshine live,
When winter comes, are flown;
And he who has but tears to give,
Must weep those tears alone:
But thou wilt heal that broken heart,
Which, like the plants that throw
Their fragrance from the wounded part,
Breathes sweetness out of woe.
When joy no longer soothes or cheers,
And even the hope that threw
A moment's sparkle o'er our tears,
Is dimned and vanished too !
Oh who would bear life's stormy doom,
Did not thy wing of love
Come brightly wafting through the gloom,
One peace-branch from above?
Then sorrow, touched by thee, grows bright
With more that rapture's ray;
As darkness shows us worlds of light
We never saw by day.
FORGET ME NOT.
I culled each floweret for my fair,
The wild thyme and the heather bell, And round them twined a tendril rare ;
She said the posy pleased her well. But of the flowers that deck the field,
Or the garden of the cot, Though others richer perfumes yield,
The sweetest is, “ Forget me not.'
We roamed the mead, we climbed the hill,
We rambled o'er the breckan brae, The trees that crowned the mossy rill,
They screened us from the glare of day. She said she loved the sylvan bower,
Was charmed with every rural sport;
And when arrived the parting hour,
Her last words were, · Forget me not.'
THE OLD CUMBERLAND BEGGAR.
I saw an aged beggar in my walk,
And he was seated by the high-way side,
On a low structure of rude masonry
Built at the foot of a huge hill, that they
Who lead their horses down the steep rough road
May thence remount at ease. The aged man
Had placed his staff across the broad smooth stone
That overlays the pile, and from a bag
All white with flour, the dole of village dames,
He drew his scraps and fragments, one by one,
And scanned them with a fixed and serious look
Of idle computation. In the sun,
Upon the second step of that small pile,
Surrounded by those wild unpeopled hills,
He sate, and eat his food in solitude ;
And ever, scattered from his palsied hand,
That still attempting to prevent the waste,
Was baffled still, the crumbs in little showers
Fell on the ground, and the small mountain birds,
Not venturing yet to peck their destined meal,
Approached within the length of half his staff.