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156 THE GOLDFINCHES, OR THE FAITHFUL FRIEND.
And Dick felt some desires,
A pass between his wires.
But Tom was still confin'd ;
To leave his friend behind.
For, settling on his grated roof,
That he desired no more;
A pris'ner as before.
Oh! ye, who never knew the joys
Fandango, ball and rout!
To liberty without.
OR, THE MORALIZER CORRECTED.
A HERMIT (or, if 'chance you hold That title now too trite and old) A man, once young, who liv'd retir'd As Hermit could have well desir'd, His hours of study clos'd at last, And finish'd his concise repast, Stoppled his cruse, replac'd his book Within its customary nook, And, staff in hand, set forth to share The sober cordial of sweet air, Like Isaac with a mind applied To serious thought at evening-tide. Autumnal rains had made it chill, And from the trees that fring'd the hill, Shades slanting at the close of day Chilld more his else-delightful way. Distant a little mile he spied A western bank's still sunny side, And right towards the favour'd place Proceeding with his nimblest pace, In hope to bask a little yet, Just reach'd it when the sun was set.
Your Hermit, young and jovial Sirs ! Learns something from whate'er occursAnd · Hence,' he said, 'my mind computes · The real worth of man's pursuits. • His object chosen, wealth or fame, • Or other sublunary game, · Imagination to his view • Presents it deck'd with every hue * That can seduce him not to spare . His powers of best exertion there, * But youth, health, vigour to expend * On so desirable an end. • Ere long approach life's evening shades, * The glow that fancy gave it fades ; * And, earn’d too late, it wants the grace, " Which first engag'd him in the chace.'
One, seeming an angelic guide,
• But, whether all the time it cost
Trifles pursu'd, whate'er the event, • Must cause him shame or discontent; • A vicious object still is worse, cu
Successful there he wins a curse; • But he, whom, e'en in life's last stage, • Endeavours laudable engage,
• Is paid, at least in peace of mind,
And sense of having well design'd; * And, if, ere he attáin his end, • His sun precipitate descend, • A brighter prize than that he meant Shall recompense his mere intent. No virtuous wish can bear a date • Either too early or too late.'
An Oyster, cast upon the shore;
"Ah, hapless wretch ! condemn’d to dwell • For ever in my native shell; * Ordain'd to move when others please,
Not for my own content and ease ; . . • But toss'd and buffeted about,
Now in the water, and now out ; - "Twere better to be born a stone, Of ruder shape and feeling none,. .
· Than with a tenderness like mine,
• When,' cry the botanists, and stare,
• You shapeless nothing in a dish, • You that are but almost a fish,
I scorn your coarse insinuation, • And have most plentiful occasion • To wish myself the rock I view,
Or such another dolt as you : * For many a grave and learned clerk, • And many a gay unletter'd spark, · With curious touch examines me, • If I can fret as well as he ; . And, when I bend, retire and shrink,
Says—Well, 'tis more than one would think! • Thus life is spent (oh, fie upon 't) • In being touch'd, and crying-Don't!'
A Poet, in his evening walk, O’erheard, and check'd this idle talk. * And your fine sense,' he said, ' and your's, • Whatever evil it endures,