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ON A SIMILAR OCCASION,
FOR THE TEAR 1792.
qui fiotuit rerum cognoscere causas, Atque metus omnes et inexorabile fatum Subjecit fiedibus, strefiitumque Acheronda ovari!
Happy the mortal, who has traced effects
Thankless for favours from on high,
Man thinks he fades too soon;
Would he improve the boon.
But he, not wise enough to scan
His best concerns aright,
To ages, if he might.
To ages in a world of pain,
To ages, where he goes
And hopeless of repose.
Strange fondness of the human heart,
Enamoured of its harm!
And still has power to charm. Whence has the world her magic power?
Why deem we death a foe? Recoil from weary life's best hour,
And covet longer woe?
The cause is Conscience—Conscience oft
Her tale of guilt renews:
And dread of death ensues.
.Then anxious to be longer spared
All evils then seem light, compared
'Tis judgment shakes him; there's the fear,
He has incurred a long arrear,
Pay !—follow Christ, and all is paid;
His death your peace insures;
And calm descend to yours.
ON A SIMILAR OCCASION.
FOR THE YEAR 1793.
Df sacris autem h&c sit una sententia, ut conser•ventur. Cic. De Leg.
But let as all concur in this one sentiment, that things sacred be inviolate.
He lives who lives to God alone,
And all are dead beside;
Whence life can be supplied.
To live to God is to requite
His love as best we may:
His promises our stay.
But life, within a narrow ring
Of giddy joys comprized,
But rather death disguised.
Can life in them deserve the name,
Who only live to prove
An endless life above?
Old Tiney, surliest of his kind,
And to domestic bounds confined,
Though duly from my hand he took
His pittance every night, He did it with a jealous look,
And, when he could, would bite.
His diet was of wheaten bread
Thistles, or lettuces instead,
On twigs of hawthorn he regaled,
On pippin's russet peel,
Sliced carrot pleased him well.
A Turkey carpet was his lawn,
Whereon he loved to bound, To skip and gambol like a fawn,
And swing his rump around.
For then he lost his fear,
Or when a storm drew near.
Eight years and five round-rolling moons He thus saw steal away,
Dozing out all his idle noons,
I kept him for his humour sake,
For he would oft beguile
And force me to a smile.
But now beneath his walnut shade
He finds his long last home,
Till gentler Puss shall come.
From which no care can save,
Must soon partake his grave.
TO JOHN JOHNSON,
On his presenting me with an antique
Kinsman beloved, and as a son by me,
I reverence feel for him, and love for thee.
Joy too, and grief; much joy, that there should be Wise men, and leara'd, who grudge not to reward,