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Whence has the world her magick pow'r?
Why deem we death a foe? Recoil from weary life's best hour,
And covet longer wo?
The cause is Conscience-Conscience oft
Her tale of guilt renews ;
And dread of death ensues.
Then, anxious to be longer spar'd,
Man mourns his fleeting breath : All evils then seem light, compar'd
With the approach of Death.
'Tis judgment shakes him, there's the fear
That prompts the wish to stay: He has incurr'd a long arrear,
And must despair to pay.
Pay!—follow Christ, and all is paid :
His death your peace ensures ; Think on the grave where he was laid,
And calm descend to yours. VOL. II.
ON A SIMILAR OCCASION,
FOR THE YEAR 1793.
De sacris autem hoc sic una sententia, ut conserdentur.
Cic. de Leg. But let us all concur in this one sentiment, that things sacred be inviolate.
He lives, who lives to God alone,
And all are dead beside ;
Whence life can be supplied.
To live to God is to requite
His love as best we may :
His promises our stay.
But life, within a narrow ring
of giddy joys compris'd,
But rather death disguis’d.
Can life in them deserve the name,
Who only live to prove
An endless life above.
Who much diseas'd, yet nothing feel;
Much menac'd, nothing dread ;
Yet never ask his aid ?
Who deem his house a useless place,
Faith want of common sense ; And ardour in the Christian race,
A hypocrite's pretence ?
Who trample order; and the day,
Which God asserts his own, Dishonour with unhallow'd play,
And worship chance alone ?
If scorn of God's commands, impress'd
On word and deed, imply
With life that cannot die ;
Such want it, and that want uncur'd
Till man resigns his breath, Speaks him a criminal, assurd
Of everlasting death.
Sad period to a pleasant course!
Yet so will God repay
And mercy cast away.
PAUSE here, and think: a monitory rhyme
Consult life's silent clock, thy bounding vein ;
EPITAPH ON A HARE.
HERE lies, whom hound did ne'er pursue,
Nor swifter grayhound follow, Whose foot ne'er tainted morning dew,
Nor ear heard huntsman's halloo.
Old Tiney, surliest of his kind,
Who, nurs'd with tender care, Aind to domestick bounds confin'd,
was still a wild Jack-hare.
Though duly from my hand he took
His pittance ev'ry night, He did it with a jealous look,
And, when he could, would bite,
His diet was of wheaten bread,
And milk, and oats, and straw; Thistles, or lettuces instead,
With sand to sojur his maw.
On twigs of hawthorn he regal'd,
On pippen's russet peel,
Slic'd carrot pleas'd him well.
A turkey carpet was his lawn,
Whereon he lov'd to bound, To skip and gambol like a fawn,
And swing his rump around.
His frisking was at ev'ning hours,
For then he lost his fear,
Or when a storm drew near.
Eight years and five round rolling moons
He thus saw steal away, Dozing out all his idle noons,
And ev'ry night at play.
I kept him for his humour's sake,
For he would oft beguile My heart of thoughts, that made it ache,
And force me to a smile.
But now beneath this walnut shade
He finds his long last home,