A process, that obtains
Its purpose with so much ado,
At last produces !-tell me true,

And iake me for your pains !


IN TRINITY COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE. None ever shared the social feast, Or as an inmate or a guest, Beneath the celebrated dome, Where once Sir Isaac had his home, Who saw not (and with some delight Perhaps he viewed the novel sight) How numerous, at the tables there, The sparrows beg their daily lare. For there, in every nook and cell, Where such a family may dwell, Sure as the vernal season comes Their nests they weave in hope of crumbs, Which kindly given, may serve with food Convenient their unfeathered brood; And oft as with its summons clear The warning bell salutes their ear, Sagacious listeners to the sound, They flock from all the fields around, To reach the hospitable hall, None more attentive to the call. Arrived, the pensionary band, Hopping and chirping, close at hand, Solicit what they soon receive, The sprinkled, plenteous donative. Thus is a multitude, though large, Supported at a trivial charge ; A single doit would overpay The expenditure of every day, And who can grudge so small a grace To suppliants, natives of the place ?

As in her ancient mistress' lap

The youthful tabby lay,
They gave each other many a tap,

Alike disposed to play.
But strife ensues. Puss waxes warm,

And with protruded claws
Ploughs all the length of Lydia's arm,

Mere wantonness the cause.

At once, resentsul of the deed,

She shakes her to the ground With many a threat, that she shall bleed

With still a deeper wound.
But, Lydia, bid thy fury rest ;

It was a venial stroke :
For she that will with kittens jest,

Should bear a kitten's joke.

Sweet bird, whom the winter constrains-

And seldom another it can
To seek a retreat, while he reigns,

In the well-sheltered dwellings of man, Who never can seem to intrude,

Though in all places equally free, Come ! ost as the season is rude,

Thou art sure to be welcome to me.

At sight of the first feeble ray,

That pierces the clouds of the east, To inveigle thee every day

My windows shall show thee a feast; For, taught by experience I know

Thee mindful of benefit long, And that, thankful for all I bestow,

Thou wilt pay me with many a song.
Then, soon as the swell of the buds

Bespeaks the renewal of spring,
Fly hence, if thou wilt, to the woods,

Or where it shall please thee to sing : And shouldst thou, compelled by a frost,

Come again to my window or door, Doubt not an affectionate host,

Only pay, as thou payedst me before. Thus music must needs be confest

To flow from a fountain above; Else how should it work in the breast

Unchangeable friendship and love? And who on the globe can be found,

Save your generation and ours, That can be delighted by sound,

Or boasts any musical powers?

The shepherd touched his reed ; sweet Philomei

Essayed, and oft essayed to catch the strain,
And treasuring, as on her ear they fell,

The numbers, echoed note for note again.
The peevish youth, who ne'er had found before

A rival of his skill, indignant heard,
And soon (for various was his tuneful store)

In loftier tones defied the simple bird.
She dared the task, and rising, as he rose,

With all the force, that passion gives, inspired,
Returned the sounds awhile, but in the close,

Exhausted fell, and at his feet expired.
Thus strength, not skill, prevailed. O fatal strife,

By thee, poor songstress, playfully begun !
And O sad victory, which cost thy life,

And he may wish that he had never won!


ANCIENT dame, how wile and vast,

To a race like ours appears,
Rounded to an orb at last,

All thy multitude of years!
We, the herd of human kind,

Frailer and of feebler powers;
We, to narrow bounds confined,

Soon exhaust the sum of ours.
Death's delicious banquet, we

Perish even from the womb,
Swister than a shadow fee,

Nourished, but to feed the tomb.
Seeds of merciless disease

Lurk in all that we enjoy;
Some that waste us by degrees,

Some, that suddenly destroy.
And is life o'erleap the bourn,

Common to the sons of men,
What remains, but that we mourn,

Dream, and dote, and drivel then?
Fast as moons can wax and wane,

Sorrow comes; and while we groan,
Pant with anguish and complain,

Talf our years are fled and gone.

If a few, (to few 'tis given,)

Lingering on this earthly stage, Creep and halt with steps uneven,

To the period of an age; Wherefore live they, but to see

Cunning, arrogance, and force, Sights lamented much by thee,

Holding their accustomed course? Oft was seen, in ages past,

All that we with wonder view; Often shall be to the last ;

Earth produces nothing new. Thee we gratulate ; content,

Should propitious Heaven design Life for us, as calmly spent,

Though but half the length of thine.

THE CAUSE WON. Two neighbours furiously dispute ; A field-the subject of the suit. Trivial the spot, yet such the rage With which the combatants engage, 'Twere hard to tell, who covets most The prize -at whatsoever cost. The pleadings swell. Words still suffice; No single word but has its price : No term but yields some fair pretence For novel and increased expense.

Defendant thus becomes a name, Which he, that bore it, may disclaim ; Since both, in one description blended, Are plaintiffs—when the suit is ended.

THE SILK-WORM. The beams of April, ere it goes, A worm, scarce visible, disclose ; All winter long content to dwell The tenant of his native shell. The same prolific season gives The sustenance by which he lives, The mulberry-leaf, a simple store, That serves him—till he needs no more ! For, his dimensions once complete, Thenceforth none ever sees him eat;

Though till his growing time be past, Scarce ever is he seen to fast. That hour arrived, his work begins ; He spins and weaves, and weaves and spins; Till circle upon circle wound Careless around him and around, Conceals him with a veil, though slight, Impervious to the keenest sight. Thus self-enclosed, as in a cask, At length he finishes his task : And, though a worm, when he was lost, Or caterpillar at the most, When next we see him, wings he wears, And in papilio-pomp appears; Becomes oviparous ; supplies With future worms and future flies, The next ensuing year ;—and dies ! Well were it for the world, is all Who creep about this earthly ball, Though shorter-lived than most he be, Were useful in their kind as he.

Not a flower can be found in the fields,

Or the spot that we till for our pleasure,
From the largest to least, but it yields

The bee, never-wearied, a treasure.
Scarce any she quits unexplored,

With a diligence truly exact;
Yet, steal what she may for her hoard,

Leaves evidence none of the fact.
Her lucrative task she pursues,

And pilfers with so much address, That none of their odour they lose,

Nor charm by their beauty the less. Not thus inoffensively preys

The canker-worm, indwelling foe! His voracity not thus allays

The sparrow, the finch, or the crow. The worm, more expensively fed,

The pride of the garden devours; And birds peck the seed from the bed,

Still less to be spared than the flowers.
But she with such delicate skill,

Her pillage so fits for her use,
That the chemist in vain with his still

Would labour the like to produce.

[ocr errors]
« ForrigeFortsett »