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And spoke the meekness of thy spotless mind.
Yes, he hath told how peaceful were the days
The days of happiness he spent with thee,

And sigh'd that thou wert to the "grave gone down." !




Though life declines, and Time, the thief,
Has stolen my bloom away,

I charge thee, fly these haunts, pale-livered Grief! Nor think, if shine my locks all silver-grey, That I, like dotard old, will fall thy sickly prey.

Light was my heart, when days were young,
As kid o'er verdant plain,

I laugh'd and danced, I snigger'd, toy'd and sung, The lads and lasses join'd my gamesome strain, And Age stood smirking by, as growing young again.

Where are those days? They are not fled;

My comrades flourish still;

Old bald-pates, oft we meet, by humour led,

We call up school-boy days with wizard skill, Repeat our merry pranks and then a bumper fill.

Ye m en who worship hoards of gold,

Yet pleasure dare not taste,

Can I but laugh such men-moles to behold?

Or such as riches only know to waste,

Mere squirrels, cracking nuts, and squandering them in haste?

Philosophers who wink and blink

With close-glass'd, peeping eyes,

Can I but laugh, profoundest Sirs, to think,

What pride mid those meek looks in ambush lies, How Folly screens her face mid Wisdom's fair disguise ?

Ye mag-pye poets, chattering rhymes,
And ye, who strains of woe,

Like whining ring-doves, eke against the times,
Magging with saucy clack at all you know,
Or soothing poor dear selves in sonnet sadly slow;

Whether, good Sirs, ye rail or pine
What boots it all to me?

To sit, and prate like mock-bird shall be mine,
To chatter moans like you; then off I'll flee
And jeer you all at once in some high laughing glee.

Ye patriot souls, so wonderous grave,
So loving, good and wise,

Boasting your country you but wish to save;
Ye lanky spiders, snaring silly flies,

Oh! how I sit and laugh to trace your silken lies!

But Kings and Queens, and such like things
I reverence much: and never

No never, will I laugh at Queens or Kings;

But crowns from red-caps, faith! I cannot sever And I could laugh at both for ever and for ever.

And while I laugh, good Joan, my wife
Shall sport like damsel gay;

For Joan, kind soul, has laugh'd with me thro' life,
And still, like two old lutes, in tune we play,

And while our hearts are blithe, ne'er dream of life's decay,

Thus, Falstaff-like, I'll live and die,

Laugh long as I can see ;

And when Death's busy hand shall close my eye,
This bag of jokes I leave the Doctor's fee,

Then, Doctor, when I'm dead, laugh thou, and think of me!

Designed for a TABLET

Over the GRAVE of my LITTLE BOY:


Stranger! beneath a slumbering Infant lies!
He did, indeed, taste of the cup of Life,
But found it bitter-soon he turn'd away,

And sped, in spotless innocence, to God.
O Stranger! if thine heart, at times, heave high
In pity, and in pain, at evil deeds,

Look onward to the last: for, far beyond
The Grave, hath God appointed happiness.
But Stranger! if thine heart be foul with crime,
And trembling throb with inward wickedness;
Repent thee! and remember, that, except
Thine heart become even as this little Child's,
Thou canst not enter Heaven's Eternal Gates.


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