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No king of fears
In him appears
Who shuts the scene of human woes;
Beneath his shade
The dead alone find true repose.
Then while we mingle dust with dust,
To One supremely good and wise
Raise hallelujahs. God is just,
And man most happy when he dies.
His Winter past,
Fair Spring at last
Receives him on her flowery shore,
Where pleasure's rose
And sin and sorrow are no more.
THE DYING CHRISTIAN TO HIS SOUL.
VITAL spark of heavenly flame!
Quit, o quit this mortal frame!
Trembling, hoping, lingering, flying ;
Oh the pain, the bliss of dying!
Cease, fond nature! cease thy strife,
And let me languish into life.
Hark! they whisper : angels say,
“Sister spirit, come away.'
What is this absorbs me quite,
Steals my senses, shuts my sight,
Drowns my spirits, draws my breath?
Tell me, my soul, can this be Death?
The world recedes ; it disappears !
Heaven opens on my eyes ! my ears
With sounds seraphic ring:
Lend, lend your wings ! I mount ! I fly!.
O grave! where is thy victory?
o death! where is thy sting?
SOLEMNITY OF THE DAY OF REST. How still the morning of the hallowed day! Mute is the voice of rural labour, hushed The ploughboy's whistle, and the milkmaid's song, The scythe lies glitt'ring in the dewy wreath Of tedded grass, mingled with fading flowers That yester-morn bloom'd waving in the breeze; Sounds the most faint attract the ear ;-the hum Of early bee, the trickling of the dew, The distant bleating, mid-way up the hill. Calmness.sits thron'd on yon unmoving cloud. To him, who wanders o'er the upland leas, The blackbird's note comes mellower from the
And sweeter from the sky the gladsome lark
Warbles his heaven tun'd song; the lulling brook
Murmurs more gently down the deep-worn glen;
While from yon lowly roof, whose curling smoke
O'ermounts the mist, is heard, at intervals,
The voice of psalms, the simple song of praise.
With dove-like wings, Peace o'er yon village
The dizzying mill-wheel rests ; the anvil's din
Hath ceas'd; all, all around is quietness.
Less fearful on this day, the limping hare
Stops, and looks back, and stops, and looks on man,
Her deadliest foe. The toil-worn horse, set free,
Unheedful of the pasture, roams at large;
And, as his stiff unwieldy bulk he rolls,
His iron-armed hoofs gleam in the morning ray...
But chiefly Man the day of rest enjoys.
Hail, Sabbath! thee I hail, the poor man's day.
On other days, the man of toil is doom'd
To cat his joyless bread, lonely; the ground
Both seat and board; screen'd from the winter's
cold, And summer's heat, by neighbouring hedge or tree; But on this day, embosom'd in his home, He shares the frugal meal with those he loves ;. With those he loves he shares the heartfelt joy Of giving thanks to God,--not thanks of form, A word and a grimace, but reverently, With cover'd face and upward earnest eye.
Hail, Sabbath! thee I hail, the poor man's day. The pale mechanic now has leave to breathe The morning air, pure from the city's smoke; While, wandering slowly up the river side, He meditates on Him, whose power he marks In each green tree, that proudly spreads the bough, As in the tiny dew-bent flowers, that bloom Around its root; and while he thus surveys, With elevated joy, each rural charm, He hopes, yet fears presumption in the hope, That Heaven may be one Sabbath without end.
ON THE CLERGY AND THE SABBATH.
YE clergy, while your orbit is your place,
Lights of the world, and stars of human race;
But if, eccentric, ye forsake your sphere,
Prodigies ominous, and view'd with fear ;
The comet's baneful influence is a dream;
Yours real and pernicious in th' extreme.
"What then-are appetites and lust laid down
With the same ease that man puts on his gown?
Will av'rice and concupiscence give place,
Charm'd by the sounds—your rev'rence or your
No. But his own engagement binds him fast;
Or, if he does not, brands him to the last,
What atheists call him-a designing knave, s
A mere churcir juggler, hypocrite, and slave.
Oh, laugh or mourn with me the rueful jest,
A cassock'd huntsman, and a fiddling priest!
He from Italian songsters takes his cue;
Set Paul to music, he shall quote him too.
He takes the field, the master of the pack
Cries-- Well done, saint ! and clars him on the
back. Is this the path of sanctity ? Is this To stand a waymark in the road to bliss ? Himself a wand'rer from the narrow way, His silly sheep what wonder if they stray? Go, cast your orders at your bishop's feet, Send your dishonour'd gown to Monmouth-street! The sacred function in your hands is made Sad sacrilege! no function, but a trade!
Occiduus is a pastor of renown, Then he has pray'dand preach'd the sabbath down,
With wire and catgut he concludes the day,
Quav'ring and semiquav'ring care away,
The full concerto swells upon your ear;
All elbows shake. Look in, and you would swear
The Babylonian tyrant with a nod
Had summon'd them to serve a golden god.
So well that thought th' employment seems to suit,
Psalt'ry and sackbut, dulcimer and flute.
• O fie! 'tis evangelical and pure :
Observe each face, how sober and demure !
Ecstasy sets her stamp on ev'ry mien ;
Chins fall’n, and not an eyeball to be seen."
Still I insist, though music heretofore
Has charm'd me much, (not e'en Occiduus more)
Love, joy, and peace make harmony more meet
For sabbath ev'nings, and perhaps as sweet.
Will not the sickliest sheep of ev'ry flock
Resort to this example as a rock ;
There stand and justify the foul abuse
Of sabbath hours with plausible exeuse ;
If apostolic gravity be free
To play the fool on Sundays, why not we?
If he the tinkling harpsichord regards
As inoffensive, what offence in cards ?
Strike up the fiddles, let us all be gay,
Laymen have leave to dance, if parsons play. .
Oh Italy !-Thy sabbaths will be soon
Our sabbaths, clos'd with mumm'ry and buffoon,
Preaching and pranks will share the motley
Ours parcell'd out, as thine have ever been,
God's worship and the mountebank between.
What says the prophet? Let that day be blest
With holiness and consecrated rest.