THE billows swell, the winds are high,
Clouds overcast my wintry sky;

Out of the depths to thee I call,

My fears are great, my strength is small

O Lord, the pilot's part perform,

And guide and guard me through the storm;
Defend me from each threatening ill,
Control the waves, say, "Peace be still."

Amidst the roaring of the sea,

My soul still hangs her hope on thee;
Thy constant love, thy faithful care,
Is all that saves me from despair.

Dangers of every shape and name
Attend the followers of the Lamb,
Who leave the world's deceitful shore,
And leave it to return no more.

Though tempest-tossed and half a wreck,
My Saviour through the floods I seek;
Let neither winds nor stormy main
Force back my shattered bark again.


O LORD, my best desire fulfil,

And help me to resign

Life, health, and comfort, to thy will,
And make thy pleasure mine.

Why should I shrink at thy command,
Whose love forbids my fears?

Or tremble at the gracious hand
That wipes away my tears?

No, let me rather freely yield
What most I prize to Thee;
Who never hast a good withheld,
Or wilt withhold from me.

Thy favour all my journey through
Thou art engaged to grant ;
What else I want, or think I do,
'Tis better still to want.

Wisdom and mercy guide my way,
Shall I resist them both ?


poor blind creature of a day,

And crushed before the moth!

But ah! my inward spirit cries,
Still bind me to thy sway;

Else the next cloud that veils my skies,

Drives all these thoughts away.


Subjoined to the Yearly Bill of Mortality of the Parish of All-Saints, Northampton.* Anno Domini, 1787.

Pallida Mors æquo pulsat pede pauperum tabernas,

Regumque turres.


Pale Death with equal foot strikes wide the door

Of royal halls, and hovels of the poor.

WHILE thirteen moons saw smoothly run
The Nen's barge-laden wave,

All these, life's rambling journey done,
Have found their home, the grave.

Was man (frail always) made more frail
Than in foregoing years?
Did famine or did plague prevail,
That so much death appears ?

No; these were vigorous as their sires,
Nor plague nor famine came :
This annual tribute Death requires,
And never waives his claim.

Like crowded forest-trees we stand,
And some are marked to fall;
The axe will smite at God's command,
And soon shall smite us all.

* Composed for John Cox, parish clerk of Northampton.

Green as the bay tree, ever green,
With its new foliage on,

The gay, the thoughtless, have I seen,
I passed-and they were gone.

Read, ye that run,

the awful truth,

With which I charge my page; A worm is in the bud of youth, And at the root of age.

No present health can health ensure
For yet an hour to cɔme;
No medicine, though it oft can cure,
Can always balk the tomb.

And O! that, humble as my lot,
And scorned as is my strain,

These truths, though known, too much forgot,
I may not teach in vain.

So prays your clerk with all his heart,

And, ere he quits the pen,

Begs you for once to take his part,

And answer all-Amen!



Quod adest, memento

Componere æquus. Cætera fluminis

Ritu feruntur.


Improve the present hour, for all beside
Is a mere feather on a torrent's tide.


COULD I, from Heaven inspired, as sure presage
To whom the rising year shall prove his last,
As I can number in my punctual page,
And item down the victims of the past;

How each would trembling wait the mournful sheet, On which the press might stamp him next to die : And, reading here his sentence, how replete

With anxious meaning, heaven-ward turn his eye!

Time then would seem more precious than the joys
In which he sports away the treasure now;
And prayer more seasonable than the noise
Of drunkards, or the music-drawing bow.

Then doubtless many a trifler, on the brink

Of this world's hazardous and headlong shore, Forced to a pause, would feel it good to think, Told that his setting sun must rise no more.

Ah self-deceived! Could I prophetic say
Who next is fated, and who next to fall,
The rest might then seem privileged to play ;

But, naming none, the Voice now speaks to ALL.

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