Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

EVENING REFLECTIONS

No cares nor passions here the bosom rend,' '

Here wasting pain and earthly troubles cease! Here hopeless love and cruel hatred end,

And the world's weary trav'ler rests in peace.

Approach, vain child of fortune, pow'r, and fame!

Here learn a lesson from each speaking bust; View on each lufty tomb the envied name

Of worldly greatness, levelled in the dust.

[ocr errors]

How high each pers'nage once, how honour'd read;

How low, how little now, look down and sec; Hence learn to know thyself; for 'tis decreed, ·

That thou as little and as low shalt be... .

Full many' a hapless victim yet unborn,

O death all conq'ring! at thy feet must fall,'. Before the dawning of that glorious morn,..

When thou shalt yield, and God be all in all, .

Then from the silent grave and op'ning tomb ; i.

Shấll each reviving tenant lift his" head.' And this time-honour'd abbey's crouded womb

Resign its treasures of illustrious dead, sind:

[ocr errors]

E'en now, methinks, by faith's pervading eye

I see his banner in the clouds display'd,
And the world's Saviour, from his throne on high,
Descend in purest robes of light array'd.

Creat day of gladness to the good and just,

When they shall taste the wonders of his love, And rising joyful from their beds of dust,

Ascend triumphant to the realms above.

Then shall the finish'd bust, the sculptur'd stone

And all the labour of the artist's hand, Dissolve; and virtue's solid base alone

Amidst the gen'ral wreck of matter stand.

Yca, should creation founder in the storm, i.

And whelming perish in this awful doom, Yet shall celestial virtue's angel form .

Survive, and flourish in immortal bloom. ..

Then shall the good resolve, the gen'rous deed,

And noble conflict in religion's cause,
Fe well rewarded: ('tis by Heav'n decreed,)

And surely meet at judgment God's applause.

O be it then our wisdom to secure

Those glorious crowns that shine for ever bright: Crowns that adorn the faithful and the pure,

In the blest mansions of eternal light.

DE A TH.

FRIEND to the wretch whom every friend forsakes,
I woo thee, Death! In fancy's fairy paths
Let the gay songster rove, and gently trill ,
The strain of empty joy, Life and its joys.
I leave to those that prize them. At this hour,
This solemn hour, when silence rules the world,
And wearied nature makes a gen’ral pause ;
| Wrapt in night's sable robe, through cloysters drear

And charnels pale, tenanted by a throng
Of meagre phantoms shooting cross my path
With silent glance, I seek the shadowy vale
Of Death. Deep in a murky cave's recess,
Lav'd by oblivion's listless stream, and fenc'd
By shelving rocks, and intermingled horrors
Of yew and cypress shade, from all intrusion
Of busy noontide beam, the Monarch sits
In unsubstantial majesty enthron'd.
At his right hand, nearest himself in place
And frightfulness of form, his parent Sin
With fatal industry and crnel care
Busies herself in pointing all his stings,
And tipping every shaft with venom drawn
From her infernal store: around himn rang'd
In terrible array, and mixture strange

i B6 i

[graphic]

of uncouthold Age, bext him

Of uncouth shapes, stand his dread Ministers.
Foremost Old Age, his natural ally
And firmest friend; next him Diseases thick,
A moiley train; Fever, with cheek of fire;.
Consumption wan; Palsy, half warm with life,
And half a clay clod lump; joint-tort'ring Gout,
And ever-gnawing Rheum; Convulsion wild;
Swoln Dropsy; panting Asthma; Apoplex
Full-gorg'd. There too the Pestilence that walks
In darkness, and the Sickness that destroys
At broad noon-day.' These and a thousand more,
Horrid to tell, attentive wait; and, when
Ey Heav'n's command Death waves his ebon Wand,
Sudden rush forth to execute his purpose,
And scaiter desolation o'er the earth.

Ill-fated Man, for whom such various forms
Of mis'ry wait, and mark their future prey!.
Ah! why all-righteous Father, didst thou make
This creature, Man? why wake th' unconcious Just
To life and wretchedness? O better far
Still had he slept in uncreated night,
If this the lot of being! was it for this
Thy breath divine kindled within his breast
The vital flame? For this was thy fair image
Stampt on his soul in godlike lineaments?..
For this dominion giv'n him absolute
O'er all thy works, only that he might reign
Supreme in woe? From the blest source of Good
Could Pain and Death proceed? Could such foul ills
y'all from fair Mercy's hands? Far be the thought,

The im picus thought! God never made a creature - Det what was good. He made a living Soul; .

Fresh wom his Maker's hone work of Man

The wretched Mortal was the work of Man. Forth from his Maker's hands he sprung to life, Fresh with immortal bloom; no pain he knew, No fear of change, no check to his desires, Save one command. That one command which stood 'Twixt him and Death, the test of his obedience, Urg'd on by wanton curiosity, He broke. There in one moment was undone The fairest of God's works. The same rash hand, That pluck'd in evil hour the fatal fruit, .. Unbarr'd the gates of Hell, and let loose Sin And Death, and all the family of Pain. To prey upon Mankind. Young Nature saw ... The monstrous crew, and shook thro' all her fraine. Then fled her new-born lustre, therf began 1 Heaven's cheerful face to low'r then vapours.choak'de; The troubled air, and form'd a veil of clouds To hide the willing Sun. The earth convuls'd With painful throes threw forth a bristly crop Of thorns and briars; and Insect, Bird, and Beast, Phat wont before with admiration fond To gaze at Man, and fearless crowd around him, Now fed before his face, shunning in haste. The infection of his misery. He alone Who justly might, th' offended Lord of Man, Turn'd not away his face; he, full of pity, Forsook not in this uttermost distress His best lov'd work. That comfort still remain'd. (I hat best, that greatest comfort in affliction) The countenance of God, and thro' the gloom Shot forih some kindl yngleams, to cheer and' warm' .' Th' offender's sinking soul. 'Hope sent from Heav'n

« AnteriorContinuar »