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ILLUSTRATED BOOKS AND NEWSPAPERS.
DISCOURSE was deemed Man's noblest attribute,
TO THE SPADE OF A FRIEND.
COMPOSED WHILE WE WERE LABOURING TOGETHER IN HIS
[This person was Thomas Wilkinson, a quaker by religious pro
fession ; by natural constitution of mind, or shall I venture to say, by God's grace, he was something better. He had inherited a small estate, and built a house upon it near Yanwath, upon the banks of the Emont. I have heard him say that his heart used to beat, in his boyhood, when he heard the sound of a drum and fife. Nevertheless, the spirit of enterprise in him confined itself to tilling his ground, and conquering such obstacles as stood in the way of its fertility. Persons of his religious persuasion do now, in a far greater degree than formerly, attach themselves to trade and commerce. He kept the old track. As represented in this poem, he employed his leisure hours in shaping pleasant walks by the side of his beloved river, where he also built something between a hermitage and a summer-house, attaching to it inscriptions after the manner of Shenstone at his Leasowes. He used to travel from time to time, partly from love of nature, and partly with religious friends in the service of humanity. His admiration of genius in every department did him much honour. Through his connexion with the family in which Edmund Burke was educated, he became acquainted with that great man, who used to receive him with great kindness and consideration ; and many times have I heard Wilkinson speak of those interesting interviews. He was honoured also by the friendship of Elizabeth Smith, and of Thomas Clarkson and his excellent wife, and was much esteemed by Lord and Lady Lonsdale, and every member of that family. Among his verses (he wrote many) are some worthy of preservation-one little poem in particular upon disturbing, by prying curiosity, a bird while hatching her young in his garden. The latter part of this innocent and good man's life was melancholy. He became blind, and also poor by becoming surety for some of his relations. He was a bachelor. He bore, as I have often witnessed, his calamities with unfailing resignation. I will only add that, while working in one of his fields, he unearthed a stone of considerable size, then another, then two more, and, observing that they had been placed in order as if forming the segment of a circle, he proceeded carefully to uncover the soil, and brought into view a beautiful Druid's temple of perfect though small dimensions. In order to make his farm more compact, he exchanged this field for another; and, I am sorry to add, the new proprietor destroyed this interesting relic of remote ages for some vulgar purpose.]
SPADE! with which Wilkinson hath tilled his lands,
Rare master has it been thy lot to know;
Health, meekness, ardour, quietness secure,
Here often hast Thou heard the Poet sing
Who shall inherit Thee when death has laid
If he be one that feels, with skill to part
He will not dread with Thee a toilsome day~
His thrift thy uselessness will never scorn ;
A NIGHT THOUGHT.
[THESE verses were thrown off extempore upon leaving Mrs. Luff's
house at Fox-Ghyll, one evening. The good woman is not disposed to look at the bright side of things, and there happened to be present certain ladies who had reached the point of life where youth is ended, and who seemed to contend with each other in expressing their dislike of the country and climate. One of them had been heard to say she could not endure a country where there was “neither sunshine nor cavaliers.”]
Lo! where the Moon along the sky
Or dimly seen,
How bright her mien !
Far different we—a froward race,
Their way pursue,
The whole year through.
If kindred humours e'er would make
Bright ship of heaven!
And be forgiven.
OHARACTERISTIO OF A FAVOURITE DOG.
[This Dog I knew well. It belonged to Mrs. Wordsworth's brother,
Mr. Thomas Hutchinson, who then lived at Sockburn on the Tees, a beautiful retired situation where I used to visit him and his sisters before my marriage. My sister and I spent many months there after our return from Germany in 1799.]
On his morning rounds the Master
See a hare before him started!
Deep the river was, and crusted