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But chiefly Man the day of rest enjoys. Hail, Sabbath! thee I hail, the poor man's day.. On other days, the man of toil is doom'd To eat his joyless bread, lonely, the ground Both seat and board, screen'd from the winters's cold, And summer's heat, by neighbouring hedge or tree ;; But on this day, embosom'd in his home, He shares the frugal meal with those he loves; With those he loves he shares the heart-felt joy Of giving thanks to God, not thanks of form, A word and a grimace, but rev'rently, With cover'd face and upward earnest eye.
Hail, Sabbath! thee I hail, the poor man's day :: The pale mechanic now has leave to breathe The morning-air pure from the city's smoke, While wand'ring slowly up the river-side, He meditates on Him whose power he marks In each green tree that proudly spreads the bough, As in the tiny dew-bent flowers that bloom Around the roots; and while he thus surveys With elevated joy each rural charm,
He hopes, (yet fears presumption in the hope,)
To reach those realms where Sabbath never ends.
A Pharaphrase on the 13th Chapter of the First Epistle to the Corinthians.
DID Sweeter sounds adorn my flowing tongue,
Than ever man pronounc'd, or angel sung;
Had I all knowledge, human and divine;
That Thought can reach, or Science can divine;
And had I power to give that knowledge birth,
In all the speeches of the blabbling earth;
Did Shadrach's zeal my glowing breast inspire,
To weary tortures, and rejoice in fire;
Or had I faith like that which Israel saw,
When Moses gave them miracles, and law:
Yet, gracious Charity, indulgent guest,
Were not thy power exerted in my breast ; :
Those speeches would send up unheeded prayer ;:
That scorn of life would be but wild despair ;
A cymbal's sound were better than my voice;
My faith were form; my eloquence were noise..
Charity, decent, modest, easy kind,.
Softens the high, and rears the abject mind;
Knows with just reins, and gentle hand, to guide.
Betwixt vile shame, and arbitrary pride.
Not soon provok'd, she easily forgives';
And much she suffers, as she much believes..
Soft peace she brings where-ever she arrives ;:
She builds our quiet, as she forms our lives;
Lays the rough path of peevish nature even;
And opens in each heart a little heaven.
Each other gift, which God on man bestows,
Its proper bounds, and due restriction knows;
To one fixt purpose dedicates its power;
And finishing its act, exists no more.
Thus, in obedience to what Heaven decrees,
Knowledge shall fail, and Prophecy shall cease ;
But lasting Charity's more ample sway,
Nor bound by time, nor subject to decay,
In happy triumph shall for ever live ;
And endless good diffuse, and endless praise receive..
As through the artist's intervening glass,
Our eye observes the distant planets pass;
A little we discover; but allow,
That'more remains unseen, than Art can show;
So whilst our mind its knowledge wou'd improve,
(Its feeble eye intent on things above,)
High as we may, we lift our reason up,
By Faith directed, and confirm'd by Hope;
Yet are we able only to survey
Dawnings of beams, and promises of day;
Heaven's fuller effluence mocks our dazzled sight;
Too great its swiftness, and too strong its light.
But soon the mediate clouds shall be dispell'd; The Sun shall soon be face to face beheld, In all his robes, with all his glory on, Seated sublime on his meridian throne.
Then constant Faith, and holy Hope shall die,
One lost in certainty, and one in joy:
Whilst thou, more happy power, fair Charity,
Triumphant sister, greatest of the three,
Thy office, and thy nature still the same,
Lasting thy lamp, and unconsum'd thy flame,
Shalt still survive-
Shall stand before the host of heaven confest,
For ever blessing, and forever blest.
The Pleasure and Benefit of an improved and welldirected Imagination.
Oh! blest of Heaven, who not the languid songs
Of Luxury, the siren! not the bribes
Of sordid Wealth, nor all the gaudy spoils
Of pageant Honour, can seduce to leave
Those ever blooming sweets, which, from the store
Of Nature, fair Imagination culls,
To charm the enliven'd soul! What though not all.
Of mortal offspring can attain the height
Of envy'd life: though only few possess
Patrician treasures, or Imperial state;
Yet Nature's care, to all her children just,
With richer treasures, and an ampler state,
Endows at large whatever happy man
Will deign to use them. His the city's pomp,
'The rural honours his. Whate'er adorns
The princely dome, the column and the arch,
The breathing marble and the sculptur'd gold..
Beyond the proud possessor's narrow claim,
His tuneful breast enjoys. For him, the spring-
Distils her dews, and from the silken gem
Its lucid leaves unfold: for him, the hand
Of Autum tinges every fertile branch
With blooming gold, and blushes like the morn.
Each passing hour sheds tribute from her wings;
And still new beauties meet his lonely walk,
And loves unfelt attract him. Not a breeze
Flies o'er the meadow; not a cloud imbibes
The setting sun's effulgence; not a strain
From all the tenants of the warbling shade
Ascends; but whence his bosom can partake
Fresh pleasure, unreprov'd. Nor thence partakės
Fresh pleasure only; for the attentive Mind,
By this harmonious action on her powers,
Becomes herself harmonious: wont so oft
In outward things to meditate the charm
Of sacred order, soon she seeks at home,
To find a kindred order; to exert
Within herself this elegance of love,
This fair inspir'd delight: her-temper'd powers
Refine at fength, and every passion wears
A chaster, milder, more attractive mien.
But if to ampler prospects, if to gaze
On nature's form, where, negligent of all
These lesser graces, she assumes the port
Of that Eternal Majesty that weigh'd
The world's foundations, if to these the Mind
Exalts her daring eye; then mightier far
Will be the change, and nobler. Would the forms
Of servile custom cramp her generous powers?
Would sordid policies, the barbarous growth
Of Ignorance and Rapine, bow her down
To tame pursuits, to indolence and fear;
Lo! she appeals to Nature, to the winds
And rolling waves, the sun's unwearied course,
The elements and seasons: all declare
For what the eternal Maker has ordain'd
The powers of man: we feel within ourselves
energy divine: he tells the heart,
He meant, he made us to behold and love
What he beholds and loves, the general orb
Of life and being; to be great like Him,
Beneficent and active. Thus the men
Whom nature's works instruct, with God himself
Hold converse; grow familiar, day by day,
With his conceptions; act upon his plan;
And form to his, the relish of their souls.
CHA P. IV.
Reflections on the Miseries of Life.
Ah, little think the gay licentious proud, Whom pleasure, power, and affluence surround; They who their thoughtless hours in giddy mirth, And wanton, often cruel riot waste; Ah little think they, while they dance along, How many feel, this very moment, death, And all the sad variety of pain. How many sink in the devouring flood, Or more devouring flame. . How many bleed, By shameful variance betwixt man and man. How many pine in want and dungeon.glooms, Shut from the common air, and common use Of their own limbs. How many drink the Of baleful Grief, or eat the bitter bread Of Misery. Sore pierc'd by wintry winds,. How many shrink into the sordid hut Of cheerless Poverty. How many shakeWith all the fiercer tortures of the mind,