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Content and Leisure, hand in hand
With Innocence and Peace, advance, and sing ;
And Mirth, in many a mazy ring,
Frisks o'er the flowery land.
man, how various is thy lot below!
To-day though gales propitious blow,
And Peace, soft gliding down the sky,
Lead Love along and Harmony,
To-morrow the gay scene deforms;
Then all around
Rolls rattling on through heaven's profound,
And down rush all the storms.
Ye days, that balmy influence shed,
When sweet Childhood, ever sprightly,
In paths of pleasure sported lightly,
Whither, ah, whither are ye fled!
Ye cherub train, that brought him on his way,
O leave him not midst tumult and dismay;
For now youth's eminence he gains :
But what a weary length of lingering toil remains !
They shrink, they vanish into air.
Now Slander taints with pestilence the gale ;
And mingling cries assail,
The wail of Woe, and groans of grim Despair.
Lo, wizard Envy from his serpent eye
Darts quick destruction in each baleful glance;
Pride, smiling stern, and yellow Jealousy,
Frowning Disdain, and hagard Hate advance;
Behold, amidst the dire
Pale wither'd Care his giant-stature rears,
And lo, his iron hand
prepares To grasp its feeble prey.
Who now will guard bewildered youth
Safe from the fierce assaults of hostile rage ?
Virtue, that bears the sacred shield of Truth!
Alas! full oft on Guill's victorious car
The spoils of Virtue are in triumph borne;
While the fair captive, marked with many a scar,
In lone obscurity, oppressed, forlorn,
Resigns to tears her angel form.
Ill-fated youth, then, whither wilt thou fly?
No friend, no shelter now is nigh,
And onward rolls the storm.
But whence the sudden beam that shoots along ?
Why shrink aghast the hostile throng?
Lo, from amidst Affliction's night,
Hope bursts, all radiant, on the sight:
Her words the troubled bosom sooth.
“ Why thus dismayed ? “ Though foes invade,
Hope ne'er is wanting to their aid, “Who tread the path of truth. “ 'Tis I, who smooth the rugged way, " I, who close the eyes of Sorrow, “ And with glad visions of to-morrow “Repair the weary soul's decay. “ When Death's cold touch thrills to the freezing heart, “ Dreams of heaven's opening glories I impart, “ Till the freed spirit springs on high, “ In rapture too severe for weak Mortality.”
TROM THE LATIN OF ADDISON.
The pygmy-people, and the feathered train,
Mingling in mortal combat on the plain,
I sing. Ye Muses, favour my designs,
Lead on my squadrons, and arrange the lines ;
The flashing swords and fluttering wings display,
And long bills nibbling in the bloody fray ;
Cranes darting with disdain on tiny foes,
Conflicting birds and men, and war's unnumbered woes!