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Is gravest toils, at war with phantasy,
DEC. 18, 1834.
I Stand upon the verge of middle age,
. The present and the past together meet
Vast, void, oh how unlike the dream-throng'd days of yore!
Vast, void, and dim and dark;—and yet therein
With bright and beauteous shapes, though fading now full fast.
Childhood with all its joys—how long departed!
Boyhood and youth fantastically bright,
When, led by love and hope, I roam'd lighthearted
Through an ideal world of wild delight—
All these have fled, like visions of the night;
And lo! young wedlock's bright and cloudless morn,
Majestically rising, puts to flight
The last dim shapes of lingering twilight born: Wedlock—whose sober bliss laughs Fancy's joys to scorn.
A few years pass, and lo! the scene is changed; Life's shifting pageant hath grown graver still; The thoughts are fled which once so wildly ranged, I climb no longer the fair Muse's hill, Of fancies quaint no longer take my fill; But graver duties all my care demand, Whereto I strive to bend my wayward will, And raise my pastoral voice and guiding hand To urge Christ's fainting flock on to their native land.
And bright eyed children gambol round my knees,