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Lest the rude blast should snap the bough,
And spread her golden hopes below.
But just at eve the blowing weather,
And all her fears were hush'd together :
And now, quoth poor unthinking Ralph,
'Tis over, and the brood is safe;
(For ravens, though as birds of omen
They teach both conj’rers and old women,
To tell us what is to befall,
Can't prophesy themselves at all.)
The morning came, when neighbour Hodge,
Who long had mark'd her airy lodge,
And destin'd all the treasure there
A gift to his expecting fair,
Climb'd like a squirrel to his dray,
And bore the worthless prize away.
"Tis Providence alone secures
In ev'ry change both mine and yours :
Safety consists not in escape
From dangers of a frightful shape;
An earthquake may be bid to spare
The man, that's strangled by a hair.
Fate steals along with silent tread,
Found oft'nest in what least we dread,
Frowns in the storm with angry brow,
But in the sunshine strikes the blow.
The lapse of time and rivers is the same,
Both speed their journey with a restless stream;
The silent pace, with which they steal away,
No wealth can bribe, no pray’rs persuade to stay ;
Alike irrevocable both when past,
And a wide ocean swallows both at last.
Though each resemble each in ev'ry part,
A diff'rence strikes at length the musing heart;
Streams never flow in vain; where streams abound,
How laughs the land with various plenty crown'd!
But time, that should enrich the nobler mind,
Neglected leaves a dreary waste behind.
ADDRESSED TO A YOUNG LADY.
Sweet stream, that winds through yonder glade,
Apt emblem of a virtuous maid-
Silent and chaste she steals along,
Far from the world's gay busy throng;
With gentle yet prevailing force,
Intent upon her destin'd course;
Graceful and useful all she does,
Blessing and blest where'er she goes,
Pure-bosom'd as that wat'ry glass,
And Heav'n reflected in her face.
THE POET'S NEW-YEAR'S-GIFT.
TO MRS. (NOW LADY) THROCKMORTON.
Maria! I have ev'ry good
For thee wish'd many a time, Both sad, and in a cheerful mood, · But never yet in rhime.
To wish thee fairer is no need,
More prudent, or more sprightly,
Or more ingenious, or more freed
From temper-flaws unsightly.
What favour then not yet possess'd
Can I for thee require,
In wedded love already blest,
To thy whole heart's desire?
None here is happy but in part;
Full bliss is bliss divine:
There dwells some wish in ev'ry heart,
And doubtless one in thine.
That wish on some fair future day,
Which Fate shall brightly gild, ('Tis blameless be it what it may)
I wish it all fulfill'd.
ON AN INKGLASS ALMOST DRIED IN THE SUN.
PATRON of all those luckless brains,
That, to the wrong side leaning,
Indite much metre with much pains,
And little or no meaning.
Ah why, since oceans, rivers, streams,
That water all the nations,
Pay tribute to thy glorious beams,
In constant exhalations,
Why, stooping from the noon of day,
Too covetous of drink,
Apollo, hast thou stol'n away
A poet's drop of ink?