Page images
PDF
EPUB

THE

FIRST PSALM.

The man in life wherever plac'd,

Hath happiness in store,
Who walks not in the wicked's way,

Nor learns their guilty lore!
Nor from the seat of scornful pride

Casts forth bis eyes abroad,
But with humility and awe
Still walks before his God.

That man shall flourish like the trees

Which by the streamlets grow; The fruitful top is spread on high,

And firm the root below.

But be whose blossom buds in guilt,

Shall to the ground be cast, And like the rootless stubble, tost

Before the weeping blast.

For why? That God, the good adore,

Hath giv’n them peace and rest, But hath decreed that wicked men

Shall ne'er be truly blest.

THE

FIRST SIX VERSES

OF

THE NINETIETH PSALM.

O THOU, the first, the greatest Friend

Of all the human race!
Whose strong right-hand has ever been

Their stay and dwelling place!
Before the mountains heav'd their heads

Beneath thy forming band,
Before this pond'rous globe itself,

Arose at thy command;
That Pow'r which rais'd and still upholds

This universal frame,
From countless, unbeginning time,

Was ever still the same.

Those mighty periods of years

Which seem to us so vast, Appear no more before thy sight

Than yesterday that's past.

Thou giv'st the word-Thy creature, man,

Is to existence brought;
Again thou sayest, “Ye sons of men,
Return ye into nought!"

Thou layest them, with all their cares,

In everlasting sleep;,
As with a flood Thou tak'st them off

With overwhelming sweep.

They flourish like the morning flow'r,

In beauty's pride array'd;
But long ere night cut down it lies

All wither'd and decay'd.

EPISTLE

то

A YOUNG FRIEND.

I. I LANG hae thought, my youthfu' friend,

A something to have sent you, Tho' it should serve no other end

Than just a kind memento; But how the subject-theme may gang,

Let time and chance determine;
Perhaps it may turn out a sang,
Perhaps turn out a sermon.

II.
Ye'll try the world soon, my lad,

And Andrew dear, believe me,
Ye'll find mankind an unco squad,

And muckle they may grieve ye;

For care and trouble set your thought,

Ev'n when your end's attained;
And a' your views may come to nought,
When ev'ry nerve is strained.

III.
I'll no say, men are villains a';

The real, harden'd wicked,
Wha hae nae check but human law,

Are to a few restricked-
But, och! mankind are unco weak,

An' little to be trusted;
If self the wavering balance shake,
It's rarely right adjusted!

IV.
Yet they wha fa’ in fortune's strife,

Their fate we should na censure,
For still th' important end of life,

They equally may answer;
A man may hae an honest heart,

Tho' poortith hourly stare him;
A man may tak a neebor's part,
Yet hae na cash to spare him.

v.
Ay free, aff han’, your story tell,

When wi' a bosom crony;
But still keep something to yoursel',

Ye'll scarcely tell to ony.
Conceal yoursel' as weel's ye can,

Frae critical dissection;
But keek thro' ev'ry other man,
Wi’ sharpen'd sly inspection.

VI.
The sacred lowe o' weel-placed love,

Luxuriantly indulge it;
But never tempt th' illicit rove,

Tho' naething should divulge it;

I waive the quantum o’ the sin,

The hazard of concealing; But, och! it hardens a' within, And petrifies the feeling!

VII. To catch dame Fortune's golden smile,

Assiduous wait upon her; And gather gear by ev'ry wile

That's justified by honorNot for to hide it in a hedge,

Nor for a train-attendant,
But for the glorious privilege
Of being independent.

VIII.
The fear o' hell's a hangman's whip

To haud the wretch in order-
But wbere ye feel your honor grip,

Let that ay be your border;
It's slightest touches, instant pause-

Debar a' side pretences;
And resolutely keep its laws,
Uncaring consequences.

IX.
The great Creator to revere,

Must sure become the creature;
But still the preaching cant forbear,

And ev'n the rigid feature; Yet ne'er with wits profane to range,

Be complaisance extended; An Atheist's laugh's a poor exchange For Deity offended!

X. When ranting round in pleasure's ring,

Religion may be blinded; Or if she gie a random sing,

It may be little minded;

« PreviousContinue »