« PreviousContinue »
VII.-Description of Mal, Queen of the Fairies.
SHE is the fancy's midwife ; and she comes
And in this state she gallops, night by night,
VIII.On the Existence of a Deity.
Would want some other father. Much design
And if a God there is--that God how great!
Conversation and Evening Worship.
When Adam thus to Eve. Fair consort, th’ hour
With first approach of light, we must be risen,
To whom thus Eve, with pertect beauty ador'd:
Thus, at their shady lodge arriv'd, both stood, Both turn'd; and under open sky ador'd The God that made both sky, air, earth and heaven, Which they beheld ; the moon's resplendent globe, And starry pole : Thou also mad'st the niglit, Maker omnipotent, and thou the day Which we, in our appointed work employ'd, Have finish'd; happy in our mutual help And mutual love, the crown of all our bliss, Ordain'd by thee; and this delicious place, For us too large ; where thy abundance wants Partakers, and uncropt, falls to the ground : But thou hast promis'd from us two, a race To fill the earth, who shall with us extol Thy goodness infinite, both when we wake, And when we seek, as now, thy gift of sleep.
X.-Elegy written in a Country Churchyard.
THE curfew tolls the knell of parting day ; The lowing herds wind slightly o'er the led; The ploughman homeward plods his wearý way, And leaves the world to darkness and to me. Now fades the glimm’ring landscape on the sight, And all the air a solemn stillness holds ; Save where the beetle wheels his droning flight, And drowsy tinklings lull the distant folds. Save that from yonder ivy-mantled tower, The moping owł does to the moon complain Of such, as wand'ring near her secret bower, Molest her ancient solitary reign. Beneath these rugged elms, that yew trees shade, Where heaves the turf in many a mouldering heap, Each in his narrow cell forever laid, The rude forefathers of the hamlet sleep. The breezy call of incense breathing morn, The swallow, twittring from the straw built shed, The cock's shrill clarion or the echoing horn, No more shall rouse them from their lowly bed. For them no more the blazing hearth shall burn, Or busy housewife plyher evening care ; No children run to lisp their sire's return, Or climb his knees, the envied kiss to share. Oft did the harvest to their sickle yield ; Their furrow oft the stubborn glebe has broke : How jocund did they drive their team afield ! How bow'd the woods beneath their sturdy stroke! Let:not ambition mock their useful toil, Their homely joys and destiny obscure : Nor grandeur hear, with a disdainful smile, The short and simple annals of the poor. The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power, And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave, Await, alike, the inevitable hour; The paths of glory lead-but to the grave. Nor you, ye proud, impute to these a fault, If mem’ry o'er their tomb no trophies raise, Where through the long drawn aisle and fretted vault, The pealing anthem swells the note of praise. Can story'd urn, or animated bust, Back to its mansion call the fleeting breath? Can honour's voice provoke the silent dust, Or fatt’ry sooth the dull cold ear of death? Perhaps, in this neglected spot is laid Some heart, once pregnant with celestial fire : Hands that the rod of empire might have sway'd, Or wak'd to ecstacy the living lyre :
But knowledge to their eyes her ample page, Rich with the spoils of time did ne'er enroll; Chill penury repress'd their noble rage, And froze the genial current of the soul. Full many a gem, of purest ray serene, The dark, unfathom'd caves of ocean bear ; Full many a flower is born to blush unseen, And waste its sweetness on the desert air, Some village Hampden, that, with dauntless breast, The little tyrant of his fields withstood ; Some mute, inglorious Miļton bere may res Some Cromwell, guiltless of his country's blood. Th' applause of listning senates to command, The threats of pain and ruin to despise, To scatter plenty o'er a smiling land, And read their hist'ry in a nation's eyes, Their lot forbade ; nor circumscrib'd alone, Their growing virtues, but their crimes confin'd; Forbade to wade through slaughter to a throne, And shut the gates of mercy on mankind : The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide, To quench the blushes of ingenuous shame : Or heap the shrine of luxury and pride, Witb incense kindled at the muse's flame. Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife, Their sober wishes never learn'd to strayAlong the cool sequesterd vale of life, They kept the noiseless tenor of their way. Yet e’en these bones from insult to protect, Some frail memorial still erected nigh, With unco&th rhymes and shapeless sculpture deck'd, Implores the passing tribute of a sigh. Their name, their years, spelt by th’unletter'd muse; The place of fame and elegy supply i And many a holy text around she strews, That teach the rustic moralists to die. For who, to dumb forgetfulness a prey, This pleasing, anxious being e'er resign'd, Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day; Nor cast one longing, lingöring look behind? On some fond breast the parting soul relies; Some pious drops the closing eye requires ; E'en from the tomb the voice of nature cries; E'en in our ashes live their wonted sires. For thee, who, mindful of the unhonour'd dead, Dost in these lines their artless tale relate, If chance, by lonely contemplation led, Some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate,