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To Earth's acknowledged Sovereign, finds at once
Its only just proprietor in Him.
The soul that sees him, or “eceives sublimea
New faculties, or learns at least to employ
More worthily the powers she own'd before,
Discerns in all things what, with stupid gaze
Of ignorance, till then she overlook'a,
A ray of heavenly light, gilding all forms
Terrestrial in the vast and the minute ;
The unambiguous footsteps of the God,
Who gives its lustre to an insect's wing,
And wheels his throne upon the rolling worlds
Much conversant with Heaven, she often holds
With those fair ministers of light to man,
That fill the skies nightly with silent pomp,
Sweet conference. Inquires what strains were they
With which Heaven rang, when every star, in haste
To gratulate the new-created Earth,
Sent forth a voice, and all the sons of God
Shouted for joy.-- Tell me, ye shining hosts
That navigate a sea that knows no storms,
Beneath a vault unsullied with a cloud,
If from your elevation, whence ye view
Distinctly scenes invisible to man,
And systems, of whose birth no tidings yet
Have reach'd this netber world, ye spy a race
Favour'd as ours; transgressors from the womb,
And hasting to a grave, yet doom'd to rise,
And to possess a brighter heaven than yours ?
As one, who, long detain'd on foreign shores,
Pants to return, and when he sees afar
His country's weather-bleach'd and batter'd rocks
From the green wave emerging, darts an eye
Radiant with joy towards the happy land;
So I with animated hopes behold,
And many an aching wish, your beamy fires,
That shew like beacons in the blue abyss,
Ordain'd to guide th' embodied spirit home
From toilsome life to never-ending rest.
Love kindles as I gaze. I feel desires,
That give assurance of their own success,
And that, infused from Heaven, must thither tend.'
So reads be Nature, whom the lamp of truth Muminates. Thy lamp, mysterious Word! Which whoso sees no longer wanders lost, With intellects bemazed in endless doubt, But runs the road of wisdom. Thou hast built With means, that were not till by thee employ'd, Worlds, that had never been hadst thou in strength Been less, or less benevolent than strong. They are thy witnesses, who speak thy power And goodness infinite, but speak in ears That hear not, or receive not their report. In vain thy creatures testify of thee, Till thou proclaim thyself. Theirs is indeed A teaching voice; but 'tis the praise of thine, That whom it teaches it makes prompt to learn, And with the boon gives talents for its use. Till thou art heard, imaginations vain Possess the heart, and fables false as Hell ; Yet, deem'd oracular, lure down to death The uninform'd and heedless souls of men. We give to chance, blind chance, ourselves as blind, The glory of thy work; which yet appears Perfect and unimpeachable of blame, Challenging human scrutiny, and proved Then skilful most when most severely judged. But chance is not ; or is not where thou reign'sı : Thy providence forbids that fickle power (If power she be, that works but to confound) To mix her wild vagaries with thy laws. Yet thus we dote, refusing while we can Instruction, and inventing to ourselves Gods, such as guilt makes welcome ; gods that sleep Or disregard our follies, or that sit Amused spectators of this bustling stage. Thee we reject, unable to abide They purity, till pure as thou art pure, Made such by thee, we love thee for that cause Por which we shunn'd and hated thee before. Then we are free. Then liberty, like day, Breaks on the soul, and by a flash from Heaven Fires all the faculties with glcrious joy. A voice is heard, that mortal ears hear net,
Till thou hast touch'd them ; 'tis the voice of song.
A loud Hosanna sent from all thy works;
Which he that hears it with a shout repeats,
And adds his rapture to the general praise.
In that bless'd moment Nature, throwing wide
Her veil opaque, discloses with a smile
The author of her beauties, who, retired
Behind his own creation, works unseen
By the impure, and hears his power denied.
Thou art the source and centre of all minds,
Their only point of rest, eternal Word !
From thee departing they are lost, and rove
At random, without honour, hope, or peace.
From thee is all that soothes the life of man,
His high endeavour, and his glad success,
His strength to suffer, and his will to serve.
But I thou bounteous Giver of all good,
Thou art of all thy gifts thyself the crown;
Give what thou canst, without thee we are poor;
And with thee rich, take what thou wilt away.
Bells at a distance.--Their effect.-A fine noon in winter.-A sheltered walk.-Meditation better than books.-Our familiarity with the course of nature nakes it appear less wonderful than It is.-The transformation that spring effects in a shrubbery described.-A mistake concerning the course of nature corrected. -God maintains it by an unremitted act.-The amusements fashionable at this hour of the day reproved.-Animals harry, a delightful sight.--Origin of cruelty to animals.- That it is a great crime proved from Scripture. That proof illustrated by a tale.- A line drawn between the lawful and unlawful destruetion of them. Their good and useful properties insisted on.Apology for the encomiums
bestowed by the author on animals, -Instances of man's extravagant praise of man.-The groans of the creation shall have an end.-A view taken of the restoration of all things.-An invocation and an invitation of Him who shall bring it to pass.--The retired man vindicated from the charge of uselessness.-Conclusion.
THE WINTER WALK AT NOON. There is in souls a sympathy with sounds, And as the mind is pitch'd the ear is pleased With melting airs or martial, brisk or grave; Some chord in unison with what we hear
Is touch'd within us, and the heart replies.
How soft the music of those village bells,
Falling at intervals upon the ear
In cadence sweet, now dying all away,
Now pealing loud again, and louder still,
Cles and sonorous, as the gale comes on!
With easy force it opens all the cells
Where Mem'ry slept. Wherever I have heard
A kindred melody, the scene recurs,
And with it all its pleasures and its pains.
Such comprehensive views the spirit takes,
That in a few short moments I retrace
(As in a map the voyager his course)
The windings of my way through many years.
Short as in retrospect the journey seems,
It seem'd not always short; the rugged path,
And prospect oft, so dreary and forlorn,
Moved many a sigh at its disheart'ning length.
Yet feeling present evils, while the past
Paintly impress the mind, or not at all,
How readily we wish time spent revoked,
That we might try the ground again where once
(Through inexperience, as we now perceive)
We miss'd that happiness we might have found!
Some friend is gone, perhaps his son's best friend,
A father, whose authority, in show
When most severe, and mustering all its force,
Was but the graver countenance of love;
Whose favour, like the clouds of spring, might lower
And utter now and then an awful voice,
But had a blessing in its darkest frown,
Threat’ning at once and nourishing the plant:
We loved, but not enough, the gentle hand
That rear'd us. At a thoughtless age, allured
By every gilded folly, we renounced
His sheltering side, and wilfully forewent
That converse, which we now in vain regret,
How gladly would the man recall to life
The boy's neglected sire! a mother too,
That softer friend, perhaps more gladly still,
Might be demand them at the gates of death.
Sorrow has, since they went, subdued and tamed
The playful humour; he could now endure
(Himself growu sober in the vale of tears),
And feel a parent's presence no restraint.
But not to understand a treasure's worth,
'Till time has stolen away the slighted good,
Is cause of half the poverty we feel,
And makes the world the wilderness it is.
The few that pray at all pray oft amiss,
And, seeking grace to improve the prize they hold,
Would urge a wiser suit than asking more.
The night was winter in his roughest mood
The morning sharp and clear. But now at noon
Upon the southern side of the slant hills,
And where the woods fence of the northern blast,
The season smiles, resigning all its rage,
And has the warmth of May. The vault is blue
Without a cloud, and white without a speck
The dazzling splendour of the scene below.
Again the barmony comes o'er the vale ;
And through the trees I view th' embattled tower,
Whence all the music. I again perceive
The soothing influence of the wafted strains,
And settle in soft musings as I tread
The walk, still verdant, under oaks and elms,
Whose outspread branches overarch the glade.
The roof, though moveable through all its length
As the wind sways it, has yet well sufiiced,
and, intercepting in their silent fall
The frequent flakes, has kept a path for me.
No noise is here, or none that hinders thought.
The redbreast warbles still, but is content
With slender notes, and more than half suppress'd;
Pleased with his solitude, and flitting light
From spray to spray, where'er he rests he shakes
From many a twig the pendant drops of ice,
That tinkle in the wither'd leaves below.
Stillness, accompanied with sounds so soft,
Charms more than silence. Meditatian here
May think down hours to moments. Here the heart
May give a useful lesson to the head,
And Learning wiser grow without his books.
Knowledge and Wisdom, far from being one,