« AnteriorContinuar »
Behold the market-place with poor o erspread!
The Man of Ross divides the weekly bread:
He feeds yon almshouse, neat, but void of state,
Where age and want sit smiling at the gate:
Him portion'd maids, apprentic'd orphans bless,
The young who labour, and the old who rest.
Is any sick? The Man of Ross relieves,
Prescribes, attends, the med'cine makes, and gives.
Is there a variance? Enter but his door,
Balk'd are the courts, and contest is no more.
Despairing quacks with curses fled the place,
And vile attornies, now a useless race.
Thrice happy man! enabled to pursue
What all so wish, but want the power to do !
O say! what sums that gen’rous hand supply?
What mines, to swell that boundless charity?
Of debts and taxes, wife and children clear,
Tbis man possess'd-five hundred pounds a year.
Blush Grandeur, blush ! proud Courts withdraw your blaze!
Ye little stars! hide
And what! no monument, inscription, stone ?
His race, his form, his name almost unknown?
Who builds a Church to God, and not to Fame, Will never mark the marble with his Name : Go search it there, where to be born and die, Of rich and poor makes all the history; Enough, that virtue fill'd the space between ; Prov'd, by the ends of being, to have been. POPR.
Near yonder copse, where once the garden smild,
And still where many a garden flow'r grows
There, where a few torn shrubs the place disclose,
The village preacher's modest mansion rose.
A man he was to all the country dear,
And passing rich with forty pounds a year;
Remote from towns he ran his godly race,
Nor e'er bad chang'd, nor wish'd to change his place ;
Unpractis'd he to fawn, or seek for pow'r,
By doctrines fashion’d to the varying hour;
Far other aims his heart had learn'd to prize,
More skill’d to raise the wretched, than to rise.
His house was known to all the vagrant train,
He chid their wand'rings, but reliev'd their pain;
The long remember'd beggar was his guest,
Whose beard descending swept his aged breast :
Claim'd kindred there, and had his claims allow'd :
The broken soldier, kindly bade to stay,
Sate by his fire, and talk'd the night away;
Wept o'er his wounds, or tales of sorrow done,
Shoulder'd his crutch, and show'd how fields were won.
Pleas'd with his guests, the good man learn’d to glow,
And quite forgot their vices in their wo;
Careless their merits, or their faults to scan,
His pity gave ere charity began.
Thus to relieve the wretched was his pride,
And ev'n his failings lean'd to Virtue's side:
But in his duty prompt at ev'ry call,
He watch'd and wept, he pray'd and felt für all.
And, as a bird each fond endearment tries,
To tempt it's new-fledg’d offspring to the skies ;
He tried each art, reprov'd each dull delay,
Allur'd to brighter worlds, and led the way.
Beside the bed where parting life was laid,
And sorrow, guilt, and pain, by turns dismay'd,
The rev'rend Champion stood. At his control
Despair and anguish fled the struggling soul ;
Comfort came down, the trembling wretch to raise,
And his last falt'ring accents whisperd praise.
At church, with meek and unaffected grace,
His looks adorn'd the venerable place;
Truth from his lips prevail'd with double sway,
And fools, who came to scoff, remain'd to pray.
The service past, around the pious man
With ready zeal each honest rustic ran :
Ev’n children follow'd with endearing wile,
And pluck'd his gown, to share the good man's smile;
His ready smile a parent's warmth express'ds
Their welfare pleas’d him, and their cares distress'd ;
To them his heart, his love, his griefs were giv'n,
But all his serious thoughts had rest in Heav'n.
As some tall cliff that lifts it's awful form,
Swells from the vale, and inidway leaves the storm,
Though round it's breast the rolling clouds are spread,
Eternal sunshine settles on it's head. GOLDSMITH.
CONTENTMENT, parent of delight,
So much a stranger to our sight,
Say, goddess, in what happy place
Mortals behold thy blooming face ;'
Thy gracious auspices impart,
And for thy temple choose my heart.
They, whom thou deignest to inspire,
Thy science learn, to bound desire ;
By happy alchymy of mind
They turn to pleasure all they find;
They both disdain in outward mien
The grave and solemn garb of spleen,
And meretricious arts of dress,
To feign a joy, and hide distress :
Unmov'd when the rude tempest blows,
Without an opiate they repose ;
And cover'd by your shield, defy
The whizzing shafts, that round them fly:
Nor meddiing with the gods' affairs,
Concern themselves with distant cares ;
But place their bliss in mental rest,
And feast upon the good possess'd.
Fore'd by soft violence of pray'r,
The blitbsome goddess sooths my care ;
I feel the deity inspire,
And thus she models my
Two hundred pounds half-yearly paid,
Annuity securely made;
A farm some twenty miles from town,
Small, tiglit, salubrious, and my own;
Two maids, that never saw the town,
A serving man, not quite a clown ;
A boy to help to tread the mow,
And drive, while t'other holds the plough ;
A chief of temper form'd to please,
Fit to converse, and keep the keys;
And, better to preserve the peace,
Commission'd by the name of niece,
With understandings of a size
To think their master very wise :
May Heav'n ('tis all I wish for) send
One genial room to treat a friend,
Where decent cupboard, little plate,
Display benevolence, not state;
And may my humble dwelling stand
Upon some chosen spot of land;
A pond before full to the brim,
Where cows may cool, and
swim : Behind, a green like velvet neat, Soft to the eye, and to the feet; Where od'rous plants in ev'ning fair Breathe all around ambrosial air; From Eurus, foe to kitchen ground, Fenc'd by a slope with bushes crown'd, Fit dwelling for the feather'd throng, Who
pay their quitrents with a song; With op'ning views of hill and dale, Which sense and fancy too regale, Where the half cirque, which vision bounds, Like amphitheatre surrounds; And woods impervious to the breeze, Thick phalanx of embodied trees, From hills, through plains, in dusk array Extended far, repel the day : Here stillness, beight, and solemn shade, Invite, and contemplation aid ; Here nymphs from hollow oaks relate The dark decrees and will of fate;
And dreams beneath the spreading beech
Inspire, and docile fancy teach ;
While soft as breezy breath of wind
Impulses rustle through the mind :
Here Dryads, scorning Phoebus' ray,
While Pan melodious pipes away,
In measur'd motions frisk about,
Till old Silenus puts them out.
There see the clover, pea, and bean,
Vie in variety of green;
Fresh pastures speckled o'er with sheep,
Brown fields their fallow sabbaths keep,
Plump Ceres golden tresses wear,
And poppy topknots deck her hair,
And silver streams through meadows stray,
And Naiads on the margin play,
And lesser nymplis on side of hills
From plaything urns pour down the rills.
Thus shelter'd, free from care and strife,
May I enjoy a calm through life;
See faction, safe in low degree,
As men at land see storms at sea;
And laugh at miserable elves,
Not kind, so much as to themselves,
Curs’d with such souls of base alloy,
As can possess, but not enjoy;
Debarr'd the pleasure to impart,
By av'rice, sphincter of the heart,
Who wealth, hard earn'd by guilty cares,
Bequeath, untouch'd, to thankless heirs.
May 1, with look ungloom'd by guile,
And wearing Virtue's liv'ry, smile,
Prone the distressed to relieve,
And little trespasses forgive,
With income not in Fortune's pow'r,
And skill to make a busy hour,
With trips to town life to amuse,
To purchase books, and hear the news,
To see old friends, brusle off the clowu,
And quicken taste at coming down.