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The worst speak something good. If all want
God takes a text, and preacheth patience.
He that gets patience, and the blessing which
Preachers conclude with, hath not lost his pains; He that, by being at church, escapes the ditch Which he might fall in by companions, gains ;
He that loves God's abode, and to combine
With saints on earth, shall one day with them
TRIUMPHAL arch, that fill'st the sky
When storms prepare to part,
I ask not proud philosophy
To teach me what thou art.
Still seem, as to my childhood's sight,
A midway station giv'n
For happy spirits to alight
Betwixt the earth and heav'n.
Can all that optics teach, unfold
Thy form to please me so,
As when I dreamt of gems and gold
Hid in thy radiant bow?
When science from creation's face
Enchantment's veil withdraws, What lovely visions yield their place
To cold material laws !
And yet, fair bow, no fabling dreams,
But words of the Most High,
Have told why first thy robe of beams
Was woven in the sky.
When o'er the green undelug'd earth
Heav'n's cov'nant thou didst shine, How came the world's grey fathers forth
To watch thy sacred sign!
And when its yellow lustre smild
O’er mountains yet untrod, Each mother held aloft her child
To bless the bow of God.
Methinks thy jubilee to keep,
The first-made anthem rang On earth deliver'd from the deep,
And the first poet sang.
Nor ever shall the Muse's eye
Unraptur'd greet thy beam : Theme of primeval prophecy,
Be still the prophet's theme !
The earth to thee her incense yields,
The lark thy welcome sings,
Where, glittering in the freshen'd fields,
The snowy mushroom springs.
How glorious is thy girdle cast
On mountain, tow'r, and town,
Or mirror'd in the ocean vast,
A thousand fathoms down!
As fresh in yon horizon dark,
As young thy beauties seem,
As when the eagle from the ark
First sported in thy beam.
For, faithful to its sacred page,
Heav'n still rebuilds thy span,
Nor lets the type grow pale with age
That first spoke peace to man.
Hath not old custom made this life more sweet
Than that of painted pomp? Are not these woods
More free from peril than the envious court ?
Here feel we but the penalty of Adam,-
The season's difference; as, the icy fang,
And churlish chiding of the winter's wind;
Which when it bites and blows upon my body,
E'en till I shrink with cold, I smile, and say,
This is no flattery : these are counsellors
That feelingly persuade me what I am.
Sweet are the uses of adversity,
Which like the toad, ugly and venomous,
Wears yet a precious jewel in his head.
And this our life, exempt from public haunt,
Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
Sermons in stones, and good in every thing.
Vanity of Human Greatness.
FAREWELL, a long farewell to all my greatness !
This is the state of man : to-day he puts forth
The tender leaves of hope; to-morrow blossoms,
And bears his blushing honours thick upon him ;
The third day comes a frost, a killing frost ;
And when he thinks, good easy man, full surely
His greatness is a-ripening, nips his root,
And then he falls, as I do. I have ventur'd,
Like little wanton boys that swim on bladders,
This many summers, in a sea of glory,
But far beyond my depth : my high-blown pride
At length broke under me; and now hath left me,
Weary and old with service, to the mercy
Of a rude stream, that must for ever hide me.
Vain pomp and glory of the world, I hate ye !
I feel my heart new open’d. O, how wretched
Is that poor man that hangs on prince's favours !
There is betwixt that smile that we aspire to,
That sweet aspect of princes, and their ruin,
More pangs and fears than wars or women have :
And when he falls, he falls like Lucifer,
Never to hope again.
The Address of Adam and Eve to the Deity.
These are thy glorious works, Parent of good,
Almighty, thine this universal frame,
Thus wond'rous fair; thyself how wond'rous then!
Unspeakable, who sitt'st above these heav'ns,
To us invisible, or dimly seen
In these thy lowest works; yet these declare
Thy goodness, beyond thought and pow'r, divine.
Speak ye who best can tell, ye sons of light,
Angels; for ye behold him, and with songs
And choral symphonies, day without night,
Circle his throne rejoicing. Ye in heav'n,
On earth, join, all ye creatures, to extol
Him first, him last, him midst, and without end.
Fairest of stars, last in the train of night,
If better thou belong not to the dawn,
Sure pledge of day, that crown'st the smiling morn
With thy bright circlet, praise him in thy sphere,
While day arises, that sweet hour of prime.