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THE WINTER NOSEGAY.

What Nature, alas ! has denied

To the delicate growth of our isle, Art has in a measure supplied,

And Winter is deck'd with a smile. See, Mary, what beauties I bring

From the shelter of that sunny shed, Where the flowers have the charms of the spring,

Though abroad they are frozen and dead.

'Tis a bower of Arcadian sweets,

Where Flora is still in her prime, A fortress, to which she retreats

From the cruel assaults of the clime. While Earth wears a mantle of snow,

These pinks are as fresh and as gay As the fairest and sweetest, that blow

On the beautiful bosom of May.

See how they have safely survived

The frowns of a sky so severe; Such Mary's true love, that has lived

Through many a turbulent year. The charms of the late-blowing rose

Seem graced with a livelier hue, And the winter of sorrow best shows

The truth of a friend such as you.

TO THE NIGHTINGALE.

WHICH THE AUTHOR PEARD SING ON NEW YEAR'S DAY,

1792.
Whence is it, that amazed I hear

From yonder wither'd spray,
This foremost morn of all the year,

The melody of May?
And why, since thousands would be proud

Of such a favour shown,
Am I selected from the crowd,

To witness it alone?
Sing'st thou, sweet Philomel, to me,

For that I also long
Have practised in the groves like thee,

Though not like thee in song?
Or sing'st thou rather under force

Of some divine command,
Commission'd to presage a course

Of happier days at hand ?
Thrice welcome then! for many a long

And joyless year have I,
As thou to-day, put forth my song

Beneath a wintry sky.
But thee no wintry skies can harm,

Who only need'st to sing, .
To make e'en January charm,

And every season Spring.

THE POPLAR FIELD.

The poplars are fell’d, farewell to the shade,
And the whispering sound of the cool colonade:
The winds play no longer and sing in the leaves,
Nor Ouse in his bosom their image receives.

Twelve years have elapsed since I last took a view
Of my favourite field, and the bank where they grew;
And now in the grass behold they are laid,
And the tree is my seat, that once lent me a shade.

The blackbird has fled to another retreat,
Where the hazels afford him a screen from the heat,
And the scene where his melody charm'd me before,
Resounds with his sweet-flowing ditty no more.

My fugitive years are all hasting away,
And I must ere long lie as lowly as they,
With a turf on my breast, and a stone at my head,
Ere another such grove shall arise in its stead.

The change both my heart and my fancy employs,
I reflect on the frailty of man, and his joys;
Short-lived as we are, yet our pleasures, we see,
Have a still shorter date, and die sooner than we.

THE SHRUBBERY.
WRITTEN IN A TIME OF AFFLICTION.

Oh, happy shades—to me unbless'd !

Friendly to peace, but not to me! How ill the scene that offers rest,

And heart that cannot rest, agree! This glassy stream, that spreading pine,

Those alders quivering to the breeze, Might soothe a soul less hurt than mine,

And please, if any thing could please. But fix'd unalterable Care

Foregoes not what she feels within,. Shows the same sadness every where,

And slights the season and the scene. For all that pleased in wood or lawn,

While Peace possess'd these silent bowers, Her animating smile withdrawn,

Has lost its beauties and its powers. The saint or moralist should tread

This moss-grown alley musing slow'; They seek like me the secret shade,

But not like me to nourish wo!

Me fruitful scenes and prospects waste

Alike admonish not to roam ; These tell me of enjoyments past, And those of sorrows yet to come.

HUMAN FRAILTY.

Weak and irresolute is man;

The purpose of to-day,
Woven with pains into his plan,

To-morrow rends away.
The bow well bent, and smart the spring,

Vice seems already slain;
But Passion rudely snaps the string,

And it revives again.
Some foe to his upright intent

Finds out his weaker part;
Virtue engages his assent,

But Pleasure wins his heart. "Tis here the folly of the wise

Through all his art we view; And, while his tongue the charge denies,

His conscience owns it true.
Bound on a voyage of awful length

And dangers little known,
A stranger to superior strength,

Man vainly trusts his own.
But oars alone can pe'er prevail,

To reach the distant coast:
The breath of Heaven must swell the sail,

Or all the toil is lost.

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