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They give their best—0 tenfold shame
On us their fallen progeny,
Who will not wake or fast with Thee !
FIRST SUNDAY AFTER EPIPHANY.
They shall spring up as among the grass, as willows by the water
Isaiah xliv. 4.
LESSONS sweet of spring returning,
Welcome to the thoughtful heart ! May I call ye sense or learning,
Instinct pure, or heav'n-taught art ?
Soft as Memnon's harp at morning,
To the inward ear devout,
Your transporting chords ring out.
Malachi i. 8.
Every leaf in every nook,
Needs no show of mountain hoary,
Winding shore or deepening glen, Where the landscape in its glory
Teaches truth to wandering men: Give true hearts but earth and sky, And some flowers to bloom and die, Homely scenes and simple views Lowly thoughts may best infuse.
See the soft green willow springing
Where the waters gently pass, Every way her free arms flinging
O'er the moist and reedy grass. Long ere winter blasts are fled, See her tipp'd with vernal red, And her kindly flower display'd Ere her leaf can cast a shade.
Though the rudest hand assail her,
Patiently she droops awhile,
But when showers and breezes hail her,
Wears again her willing smile.
Where the thickest boughs are twining
Of the greenest darkest tree,
may hear, but none may see.
SECOND SUNDAY AFTER
Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine, and when men have well drunk then that which is worse : but thou hast kept the good wine until now. St. John ii. 10.
THE heart of childhood is all mirth:
We frolic to and fro
Were no such thing as woe.
But if indeed with reckless faith
We trust the flattering voice,
Indulge thee and rejoice ;"
Too surely, every setting day,
Some lost delight we mourn,
The flowers all die along our way,
Till we, too, die forlorn.
Such is the world's gay garish feast,
In her first charming bowl Infusing all that fires the breast,
And cheats th' unstable soul.
And still, as loud the revel swells,
The fever'd pulse beats higher, Till the sear'd taste from foulest wells
Is fain to slake its fire.
Unlike the feast of heavenly love
Spread at the Saviour's word
Meet for his bridal board.
Why should we fear, youth's draught of joy,
If pure, would sparkle less? Why should the cup the sooner cloy,
Which God hath deign’d to bless ?
For, is it Hope, that thrills so keen
Along each bounding vein,