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And I'll welcome you
To the land o' the leal.
Our bonnie bairn's there, Jean,
She was baith guid and fair, Jean ;
O we grudged her right sair
To the land o' the leal !
Then dry that tearfu' e'e, Jean,
My soul langs to be free, Jean,
And angels wait on me
To the land o' the leal.
Now fare ye weel, my ain Jean,
This warld's care is vain, Jean ;
We'll meet and aye be fain
In the land o' the leal.
ODE ON A DISTANT PROSPECT OF ETON
Ye distant spires, ye antique towers
That crown the wat'ry glade,
Where grateful Science still adores
Her Henry's holy shade ;
And ye, that from the stately brow
Of Windsor's heights th' expanse below
Of grove, of lawn, of mead survey,
Whose turf, whose shade, whose flowers among
Wanders the hoary Thames along
His silver-winding way:
Ah happy hills ! ah pleasing shade!
Ah fields beloved in vain !
Where once my careless childhood stray'd,
A stranger yet to pain !
I feel the gales that from ye blow
A momentary bliss bestow,
As waving fresh their gladsome wing
My weary soul they seem to soothe,
And, redolent of joy and youth,
To breathe a second spring.
Say, Father Thames, for thou hast seen
Full many a sprightly race
Disporting on thy margent green
The paths of pleasure trace ;
Who foremost now delight to cleave
With pliant arm, thy glassy wave ?
The captive linnet which enthral ?
What idle progeny succeed
To chrase the rolling circle's speed
Or urge the flying ball ?
While some on earnest business bent
Their murmuring labours ply 'Gainst graver hours, that bring constraint
To sweeten liberty :
Some bold adventurers disdain
The limits of their little reign
And unknown regions dare descry:
Still as they run they look behind,
They hear a voice in every wind
And snatch a fearful joy.
Gay Hope is theirs by fancy fed,
Less pleasing when possest;
The tear forgot as soon as shed,
The sunshine of the breast :
Theirs buxom Health, of rosy hue,
Wild Wit, Invention ever new,
And lively Cheer, of Vigour born;
The thoughtless day, the easy night,
The spirits pure, the slumbers light
That fly th' approach of morn.
Alas ! regardless of their doom
The little victims play!
No sense have they of ills to come
Nor care beyond to-day :
Yet see how all around 'em wait
The ministers of human fate
And black Misfortune's baleful train !
Ah shew them where in ambush stand
To seize their prey, the murderous band !
Ah, tell them they are men !
These shall the fury Passions tear,
The vultures of the mind,
Disdainful Anger, pallid Fear,
And Shame that sculks behind ;
Or pining Love shall waste their youth,
Or Jealousy with rankling tooth
That inly gnaws the secret heart,
And Envy wan, and faded Care,
Grim-visaged comfortless Despair,
And Sorrow's piercing dart.
Ambition this shall tempt to rise,
Then whirl the wretch from high
To bitter Scorn a sacrifice
And grinning Infamy.
The stings of Falsehood those shall try,
And hard Unkindness' alter'd eye,
That mocks the tear it forced to flow;
And keen Remorse with blood defiled,
And moody Madness laughing wild
Amid severest woe.
Lo, in the Vale of Years beneath
A griesly troop are seen,
The painful family of Death,
More hideous than their Queen : This racks the joints, this fires the veins, That every labouring sinew strains, Those in the deeper
vitals rage :
Lo, Poverty, to fill the band,
That numbs the soul with icy hand,
And slow-consuming Age.
To each his sufferings : all are men,
Condemn'd alike to groan ;
The tender for another's pain,
Th’unfeeling for his own. Yet, ah ! why should they know their fate, Since sorrow never comes too late, And happinens too swiftly flies? Thought would destroy their paradise ! No more ;—where ignorance is bliss, 'Tis folly to be wise.
Daughter of Jove, relentless power,
Thou tamer of the human breast,
Whose iron scourge and torturing hour
The bad affright, afflict the best !
Bound in thy adamantine chain
The proud are taught to taste of pain,
And purple tyrants vainly groan
With pangs unfelt before, unpitied and alone.
When first thy Sire to send on earth
Virtue, his darling child, design'd,
To thee he gave the heavenly birth
And bade to form her infant mind. Stern rugged Nurse ! thy rigid lore With patience many a year she bore :
What sorrow was, thou bad'st her know,
And from her own she learn'd to melt at others' woe.
Scared at thy frown terrific, fly
Self-pleasing Folly's idle brood,
Wild Laughter, Noise, and thoughtless Joy,
And leave us leisure to be good.
Light they disperse, and with them go
The summer Friend, the flattering Foe;
By vain Prosperity received
To her they vow their truth, and are again believed.
Wisdom in sable garb array'd
Immersed in rapturous thought profound,
And Melancholy, silent maid,
With leaden eye, that loves the ground,
Still on thy solemn steps attend :
Warm Charity, the general friend,
With Justice, to herself severe,
And Pity dropping soft the sadly-pleasing tear.
0, gently on thy suppliant's head
Dread Goddess, lay thy chastening hand !
Not in thy Gorgon terrors clad,
Not circled with the vengeful band
(As by the impious thou art seen)
With thundering voice, and threatening mien,
With screaming Horror's funeral cry,
Despair, and fell Disease, and ghastly Poverty :
Thy form benign, O Goddess, wear,
Thy milder influence impart, Thy philosophic train be there
To soften, not to wound my heart.
The generous spark extinct revive,
Teach me to love and to forgive,
Exact my own defects to scan,
What others are to feel, and know myself a Man.
THE SOLITUDE OF ALEXANDER SELKIRK
I am monarch of all I survey ;
My right there is none to dispute;
From the centre all round to the sea
I am lord of the fowl and the brute.
O Solitude ! where are the charms
That sages have seen in thy face?
Better dwell in the midst of alarms
Than reign in this horrible place.
I am out of humanity's reach,
I must finish my journey alone,
Never hear the sweet music of speech;
I start at the sound of my own.
The beasts that roam over the plain
My form with indifference see ;
They are so unacquainted with man,
Their tameness is shocking to me.
Society, Friendship, and Love
Divinely bestow'd upon man,
O had I the wings of a dove
How soon would I taste you again !