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"Live like yourself," was soon my lady's word; And lo! two puddings smoked upon the board. Asleep and naked as an Indian lay,
An honest factor stole a gem away:
He pledged it to the knight; the knight had wit, So kept the diamond, and the rogue was bit. Some scruple rose, but thus he eased his thought, "I'll now give sixpence where I gave a groat; Where once I went to church I'll now go twiceAnd am so clear too of all other vice."
The tempter saw his time; the work he plied; Stocks and subscriptions pour on every side, Till all the Demon makes his full descent In one abundant shower of cent per cent, Sinks deep within him, and possesses whole, Then dubs director, and secures his soul.
Behold Sir Balaam now a man of spirit,
Things change their titles, as our manners turn.
There (so the devil ordained) one Christmas-tide
A nymph of quality admires our knight,
In Britain's senate he a seat obtains,
Wife, son, and daughter, Satan! are thy own,
EDWIN AND EMMA.
FAR in the windings of a vale,
There beauteous Emma flourished fair
The softest blush that nature spreads
Gave colour to her cheek;
Such orient colour smiles through heaven,
Nor let the pride of great ones scorn
This charmer of the plains;
That sun which bids their diamonds blaze
To deck our lily deigns.
Long had she fired each youth with love,
And though by all a wonder owned,
Till Edwin came, the pride of swains,
A mutual flame was quickly caught,
What happy hours of heart-felt bliss
His sister, who, like envy formed,
To work them harm, with wicked skill,
The father too, a sordid man,
Long had he seen their mutual flame,
In Edwin's gentle heart, a war
Denied her sight, he oft behind
The spreading hawthorn crept,
Oft, too, in Stanmore's wintry waste,
In sighs to pour his softened soul,
His cheeks, where love with beauty glowed,
A deadly pale o'ercast;
So fades the fresh rose in its prime,
Before the northern blast.
The parents now, with late remorse,
And wearied Heaven with fruitless prayers,
""Tis past," he cried, "but if your souls
Sweet mercy yet can move,
Let these dim eyes once more behold
She came; his cold hand softly touched,
But oh! his sister's jealous care
(A cruel sister she!)
Forbade what Emma came to say,
"My Edwin, live for me."
Now homeward as she hopeless went,
The churchyard path along,
The blast blew cold, the dark owl screamed Her lover's funeral song.
Amid the falling gloom of night,
Her startling fancy found
Alone, appalled, thus had she passed
The visionary vale
When lo! the deathbell smote her ear,
Sad sounding in the gale!
Just then she reached, with trembling steps,
Her aged mother's door:
"He's gone!" she cried, " and I shall see
I feel, I feel this breaking heart
Beat high against my side!"
From her white arm down sunk her head,
BE wise to-day; 'tis madness to defer:
Of man's miraculous mistakes this bears
And scarce in human wisdom to do more.
All promise is poor dilatory man,