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And, when accomplish'd in her wayward school,
Calls gentleman whom she has made a fool.
Tis an unalterable fix'd decree,
That none could frame or ratify but she ;
That Heav'n and Hell, and righteousness and sing
Snares in his path, and foes that lurk within,
God and his attributes (a field of day
Where 'tis an angel's happiness to stray),
Fruits of his love and wonders of his might,
Be never nam'd in ears esteem'd polite;
That he who dares, when she forbids, be grave,
Shall stand proscrib'd, a madman or a knave,
A close designer not to be believ'd,
Or, if excus'd that charge, at least deceiv'd.
Oh folly worthy of the nurse's lap,
Give it the breast, or stop its mouth with pap!
Is it incredible, or can it seem
A dream to any, except those that dream,
That man should love his Maker, and that fire,
Warming his heart, should at his lips transpire?
Know then, and modestly let fall your eyes,
And veil your daring crest that braves the skies ;
That air of insolence affronts your God,
You need his pardon, and provoke his rod :
Now, in a posture that becomes you more
Than that heroic strut assum'd before,
Know, your arrears with ev'ry hour accrue
For mercy shown, while wrath is justly due.
The time is short, and there are souls on earth,
Though future pain may serve for present mirth,
Acquainted with the woes, that fear or shame,
By Fashion taught, forbade them once to name;
And having felt the pangs you deem a jest,
Have prov'd them truths too big to be express'd.
Go seek on revelation's hallow'd ground,
Sure to succeed, the remedy they found;
Touch'd by that pow'r that you have dard to mock,
That makes seas stable, and dissolves the rock,
Your heart shall yield a life-renewing stream,
That fools, as you have done, shall call a dream.
Instance of happy Conversation.
It happen'd on a solemn eventide,
Soon after He that was our surety died,
Two bosom friends, each pensively inclin'd,
The scene of all those sorrows left behind,
Sought their own village, busied as they went
In musings worthy of the great event:
They spake of him they lov'd, of him whose life
Though blameless, had incurrid perpetual strife,
Whose deeds had left, in spite of hostile arts,
A deep memorial graven on their hearts.
The recollection, like a vein of ore,
The further trac'd, enrich'd them still the more;
They thought him, and they justly thought him, one
Sent to do more than he appear'd t' have done;
Texalt a people, and to place them high
Above all else, and wonderd he should die.
Ere yet they brought their journey to an end,
A stranger join'd them, courteous as a friend,
And ask'd them, with a kind engaging air,
What their affliction was, and begg'd a share.
Inform’d, he gather'd up the broken thread,
And, truth and wisdom gracing all he said,
Explain'd, illustrated, and search'd so well
The tender theme, on which they chose to dwell.
That reaching home, 'The night, they said, 'is near,
We must not now be parted, sojourn here-
The new acquaintance soon became a guest,
And, made so welcome at their simple feast,
He bless'd the bread, but vanish'd at the word,
And left them both exclaiming,' 'Twas the Lord !
Did not our hearts feel all he deign'd to say,
Did they not burn within us by the way?"
Now theirs was converse, such as it behoves
Man to maintain, and such as God approves.
SPIRITUAL FREEDOM. He is the freeman, whom the truth makes free And all are slaves beside. There's not a chain, That hellish foes, confed'rate for his harm, Can wind around him, but he casts it off, With as much ease as Samson his green withes. He looks abroad into the varied field Of nature, and though poor perhaps, compard With those whose mansions glitter in his sight, Calls the delightful scen’ry all his own. His are the mountains, and the valleys his, And the resplendent rivers. His t enjoy With a propriety that none can feel, But who, with filial confidence inspir'd, Can lift to Heav'n an unpresumptuous eye, And smiling say— My Father made them all !” Are they not his by a peculiar right, And by an emphasis of intrest his, Whose eye they fill with tears of holy joy, Whose heart with praise, and whose exalted mind With worthy thoughts of that unwearied love, That plann'd, and built, and still upholds, a world So cloth'd with beauty for rebellious man?
Yes—ye may fill your garners, ye that reap
The loaded soil, and ye may waste much good
In senseless riot; but ye will not find
In feast, or in the chase, in song or dance,
A liberty like his, who, unimpeach'd
Of usurpation, and to no man's wrong,
Appropriates nature as his Father's work,
And has a richer use of yours than you.
He is indeed a freeman. Free by birth
Of no mean city ; plann'd or ere the hills
Were built, the fountains open'd, or the sea
With all his roaring multitude of waves.
His freedom is the same in ev'ry state;
And no condition of this changeful life,
So manifold in cares, whose ev'ry day
Brings its own evil with it, makes it less :
For he has wings, that neither sickness, pain,
Nor penury, can cripple or confine.
No nook so narrow but he spreads them there
With ease, and is at large. Th' oppressor holds
His body bound: but knows not what a range
His spirit takes unconscious of a chain;
And that to bind him is a vain attempt,
Whom God delights in, and in whom he dwells.
Acquaint thyself with God, if thou would'st taste
His works. Admitted once to his embrace,
Thou shalt perceive that thou wast blind before :
Thine eye shall be instructed ; and thine heart
Made pure shall relish, with divine delight
Till then unfelt, what hands divine have wrought.
Brutes graze the mountain-top, with faces prone,
And eyes intent upon the scanty herb
It yields them; or, recumbent on its brow,
Ruminate heedless of the scene outspread
Beneath, beyond, and stretching far away
From inland regions to the distant main.
Man views it, and admires; but rests content
With what he views. The landscape has his praise,
But not its Author. Unconcern'd who formid
The Paradise he sees, he finds it such,
And, such well-pleas'd to find it, asks no more.
Notso the mind, that has been touch'd from Heav'n,
And in the school of sacred Wisdom taught,
To read his wonders, in whose thought the world,
Fair as it is, existed ere it was.
Not for its own sake merely, but for his
Much more, who fashion'd it, he gives it praise ;
Praise that from earth resulting, as it ought,
To earth's acknowledg'd Sov'reign, finds at once
Its only just proprietor in Him.
The soul that sees him or receives sublim'd
New faculties, or learns at least t employ
More worthily the pow'rs she own'd before,
Discerns in all things what, with stupid gaze
Of ignorance, till then she overlook'd,
A ray of heav'nly 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 Heav'n, 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 Heav'n rang, when ev'ry star, in haste
To gratulate the new-created Earth,