Sidebilder
PDF

And Ob1. 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!

'/ J' M J|l>

ON A SIMILAR OCCASION,

FOF THE YEAR 1788.

Qucd adist, memento
Comfonere tequus. Cater wfiumimt
Ritufcruntur. Hor.

Improve the present hour, Sat allbesid*
Is a mere feather on 4 torrent's tile.

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

How each would trembling wohthe mournful sheet,
On which the press might stamp him next to die;
And, reading here his sentence, how replete
"With anxious meaning, heavenward turn his eye!

Time then would seem :raore precious than the joy*
In which he spirts away the treasure now;
And prayer more seasonable than the noise
Of drunkards, or the nuisic- 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.

Obserye the dappled foresters, how light
They bound, and airy o'er the sunny glade—
One falls—the rest, wide scattered with affright,
Vanish at once into the darkest shade.

Had we their wisdom, should we, often warned,
Still need repeated warnings,, and at last,
A thousand awful admonitions scorned,
-Die sclf-aocused of life run all to waste?

Sad waste! for which no after thrift atones:
The grave admits no cure for guilt or sin;
Dew-drops may deck the turf that hides the bones>
But tears of godly grief ne'er flow within.

Learn then, ye living! by the mouths be taught
Of all these sepulchres, instructors true,
That,. soon or late, death also is your lot,
And the next opening grave may yawn for you.

ON A SIMILAR OCCASION,

FOR THB YEAR J 789.
—-Vimid.-que ibi demum mrte juievit.

VlRG.

There calm at length he breathed his soul away.

"Oh most delightful hour by man
"Experienced here below,

''The hour that terminates his spar*,
"His folly, and his woe I ,

"Worlds should not bribe me bnck to tread "Again life's dreary waste, v.

"To see again my day o'erspread "With all the gloomy past.

"My home henceforth is in the skies f.

"Earth, seas, and sun adieu 1 "All heaven unfolded to my eyes,

"I have no-sight for you."

So spoke Aspasio, firm possest

Of faith's supporting rod,
Then breathed his soul into its rest,

The bosom of his God.

He was a man, among the few,

Sincere.on virtue's side;
And all his strength from scripture drew.

To hourly use applied.

That rule he prized, by that he feared.

He hated, hoped, and loved;
Nor ever frowned, or sad appeared.

But when his heart had roved.

For he was frail as thou or I,

And evil felt within;
But, when he felt it, heaved a sigh, •

And loathed the thought of sia.

Such lived Aspasio; and at last
Called up from Earth to Heaven,

The gulph of death triumphant passed,
By gales of blessing driven.

His joys be mine, each Reader cries,
When my last hour arrive^:

They shall be yours, my Verse replies.
Such only be your lives,

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

He who sits from day to day,

Where the'prisoned lark is hung,.

Heedless of his loudest lay,

Hardly knows that he has sung.

« ForrigeFortsett »