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WHILE foft through water, earth and air,
The vernal spirits rove,
From noify joys, and giddy crowds,
To rural fcenes remove.
The mountain fnows are all diffolv'd,
And hush'd the bluft'ring gale:
While fragrant Zephyrs gently breathe
Along the flow'ry vale.
The circling planets' conftant rounds
The wint'ry waftes repair;
And ftill from temporary death,
Renew the verdant year.
But ah! when once our tranfient bloom,
The fpring of life, is o'er,
That rofy feafon takes its flight,
And must return no more.
Yet judge by reafon's fober rules,
From falfe opinion free,
And mark how little pilf'ring years
Can fleal from you or me.
Each moral pleasure of the heart,
Each lafting charm of truth, Depends not on the giddy aid Of wild inconftant youth.
The vain coquet, whofe empty pride
A fading face fupplies,
May juffly dread the wintry gloom,
Where all its glory dies.
Leave fuch a ruin to deplore,
To fading forms confin'd:
Nor age nor wrinkles difcompofe
One feature of the mind.
Amidst the univerfal change
Unconscious of decay,
It views, unmov'd, the fithe of Time
Sweep all befides away.
Fix'd on its own eternal frame,
Eternal are its joys:
While, borne on tranfitory wings,
Each mortal pleasure flies.
While ev'ry fhort-liv'd flow'r of fenfe
Deftructive years confume,
Through Friendship's fair enchanting walks
Unfading myrtles bloom.
Nor with the narrow bounds of time
The beauteous profpect ends,
But, lengthen'd through the vale of death,
HILE Night in folemn fhade invests the pole, And calm reflection foothes the penfive foul; While reafon undisturb'd afferts her fway,
And life's deceitful colours fade away;
To thee, All-conscious-prefence! I devote
This peaceful interval of fober thought:
Here all my better faculties confine;
And be this hour of facred filence thine!
If, by the day's illufive scenes misled,
My erring foul from virtue's path has stray'd;
Snar'd by example, or by paffion warm'd,
Some false delight my giddy fenfe has charm'd;
My calmer thoughts the wretched choice reprove,
And my best hopes are center'd in thy love.
Depriv'd of this, can life one joy afford?
Its utmost boast, a vain unmeaning word.
But, ah! how oft my lawless paffions rove,
And break thofe awful precepts I approve!
Pursue the fatal impulfe I abhor,
And violate the virtue I adore!
Oft, when thy better Spirit's guardian care
Warn'd my fond foul to fhun the tempting fnare,
My ftubborn will his gentle aid reprefs'd,
And check'd the rifing goodness in my breaft;
Mad with vain hopes, or urg'd by falfe defires,
Still'd his foft voice, and quench'd his facred fires.
With grief opprefs'd, and proftrate in the duft, Shouldst thou condemn, I own the fentence just. But, oh, thy fofter titles let me claim,
And plead my caufe by mercy's gentle name.
Mercy that whipes the penitential tear,
And diffipates the horrors of defspair;
From vigorous juftice fteals the vengeful hour,
Softens the dreadful attribute of pow'r,
Difarms the wrath of an offended God,
And feals my pardon in a Saviour's blood!
All-powerful Grace, exert thy gentle sway,
And teach my rebel paffions to obey;
Left lurking folly, with infidious art,
Regain my volatile inconstant heart!
Shall every high refolve devotion frames
Be only lifeless founds and specious names?
O rather, while thy hopes and fears controul,
In this ftill hour, each motion of my foul,
Secure its fafety by a fudden doom,
And be the foft retreat of fleep my tomb!
Calm let me flumber in that dark repose,
Till the laft morn its orient beam difclofe:
Then, when the great archangel's potent found
Shall echo through creation's ample round.
Wak'd from the fleep of death, with joy furvey
The op'ning fplendors of eternal day.
AN ADDRESS TO THE DEITY. Deus eft quodcunque vides, quocunque moveris.
of my life, and Author of my days!
Permit my feeble voice to lifp thy praife;
And trembling take upon a mortal tongue
That hallow'd name to harps of feraphs fung.
Yet here the brightest seraphs could no more
Than hide their faces, tremble, and adore.
Worms, angels, men, in ev'ry diff'rent fphere,
Are equal all, for all are nothing here.
All Nature faints beneath the mighty name
Which Nature's works, through all her parts, proclaim.
1 feel that name my inmost thoughts controul,
And breathe an awful ftillness through my foul;
As by a charm, the waves of grief fubfide;
Impetuous paffion ftops her headlong tide :
At thy felt presence all emotions cease,
And my hufh'd spirit finds a sudden peace,
Till every worldly thought within me dies,
And earth's gay pageants vanish from my eyes;
Till all my fenfe is loft in infinite,
And one vaft object fills my aching fight.
But foon, alas! this holy calm is broke;
My foul submits to wear her wonted yoke;
With fhackled pinions strives to foar in vain,
And mingles with the drofs of earth again.
But he, our gracious Mafter! kind as juft,
Knowing our frame, remembers man is duft.
His Spirit, ever brooding o'er our mind,
Sees the first wish to better hopes inclin'd;
Marks the young dawn of ev'ry virtuous aim,
And fans the fmoaking flax into a flame.
His ears are open to the foftest cry,
grace defcends to meet the lifted eye;
He reads the language of a filent tear,
And fighs are incenfe from a heart fincere.
Such are the vows, the facrifice I give;
Accept the vow, and bid the fuppliant live:
From each terreftrial bondage fet me free;
Still ev'ry with that centres not in thee;
fond hopes, my vain disquiets cease,
And point my path to everlasting peace.