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All praise to thee, my God, this night, For all the blessings of the light; Keep me, oh, keep me, King of Kings, Beneath thy own Almighty wings! Forgive me, Lord, for thy dear Son, The ills that I this day have done: That with the world, myself, and thee, I, ere I sleep, at peace may be. Teach me to live, that I may dread The grave as little as my bed: To die, that this vile body may Rise glorious at the judgment-day. Oh! may my soul on thee repose And may sweet sleep mine eyelids close→ Sleep, that may me more vig'rous make To serve my God when I awake. When in the night I sleepless lie, My soul with heav'nly thoughts supply: Let no ill dreams disturb my rest, No pow'rs of darkness me molest. Dull sleep!—of sense me to deprive : am but half my time alive;
Thy faithful lovers, Lord, are griev'd,
To lie so long of thee bereav'd.
But though sleep o'er my frailty reigns,
Let it not hold me long in chains;
And now and then let loose my heart,
Till it an Hallelujah dart.
The faster sleep the senses binds,
The more unfettered are our minds;
Oh, may my soul from matter-free,
Thy loveliness unclouded see!
Oh, when shall I, in endless day,
For ever chase dark sleep away;
And hymns with the supernal choir
Incessant sing, and never tire ?
Oh, may my Guardian, while I sleep,
Close to my bed his vigils keep,
His love angelical instil,
Stop all the avenues of ill.
Fond men, by passions wilfully betrayed,
Adore those idols which their fancy made:
Purchasing riches with our time and care,
We lose our freedom in a gilded snare.
And having all, all to ourselves refuse,
Oppressed with blessings which we fear to lose
In vain our fields and flocks increase our store,
If our abundance makes us wish for more.
How happy is the harmless country maid,
Who, rich by nature, scorns superfluous aid!
Whose modest clothes no wanton eyes invite,
But, like her soul, preserve the native white.
Whose little store her well-taught mind does please;
Not pinch'd with want, nor cloy'd with wanton ease.
Who, free from storms which on the great ones fall,
Makes but few wishes, and enjoys them all.
No care, but Love, can discompose her breast,
Love, of all cares the sweetest and the best!
While on sweet grass her blearing charge does lie,
One happy lover feeds upon ber eye:
Not one, whom on her gods or men impose,
But one whom love has for this lover chose.
Under some fav'rite myrtle's shady boughs,
They speak their passions with repeated vows;
And whilst a blush confesses how she burns,
His faithful heart makes as sincere returns,
Thus in the arms of love and peace they lie;
And, whilst they live, their flames can never die.
LXXXI. SIR CHARLES SEDLEY.
Love, when 'tis true, needs not the aid
Of sighs, nor oaths, to make it known;
And, to convince the cruellest maid,
Lovers should use their love alone.
Into their very looks 'twill steal,
And he that most would hide his flame,
Does in that case his pain reveal:
Silence itself can love proclaim.
2. LOVERS AND MISERS.
Lovers, like misers, cannot bear the stealth
Of the least trifle from their endless wealth.
Beauty, thou art a fair but fading flower,
The tender prey of every coming hour;
In youth thou, comet-like, art gazed upon,
But art portentous to thyself alone :
Unpunished thou to few wert ever given,
Nor art a blessing, but a mark from heaven.
Death shuns the naked throat and proffer'd breast;
He flies, when called to be a welcome guest.
LXXXII. LORD ROCHESTER.
1. LOVE AND LIFE.
All my past life is mine no more,
The flying hours are gone:
Like transitory dreams given o'er,
Whose images are kept in store
By memory alone.
The time that is to come is not;
How can it then be mine?
The present moment's all my lot;
And that, as fast as it is got,
Phillis, is only thine.
Then talk not of inconstancy.
False hearts, and broken vows:
If I, by miracle, can be
This live-long minute true to thee,
'Tis all that Heaven allows.
Unequally th' impartial hand of heaven
Ilas all but this one only blessing given.