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The orphan babes, and guardian uncle fierce.

O cruel! will no pang of pity pierce

That heart, by lust of lucre sear'd to stone?

For sure, if aught of virtue last, or verse,

To latest times shall tender souls bemoan

Those hopeless orphan-babes by thy fell arts undone.

Behold, with berries smear'd, with brambles torn/
The babes now famish'd lay them down to die;
Amidst the howl of darksome woods forlorn,
Folded in one another's arms they lie;
Nor friend, nor stranger, hears their dying cry:
* For from the town the man returns no more.'
But thou, who Heaven's just vengeance darest defy,
This deed with fruitless tears shalt soon deplore,
When Death lays waste thy house, and flames consume

thy store.
A stifled smile of stern vindictive joy
BrightenM one moment Edwin's starting tear,
'But why should gold man's feeble mind decoy,
And innocence thus die by doom severe?'
O Edwin! while thy heart is yet sincere,
Th' assaults of discontent and doubt repel:
Dark ev'n at noontide is our mortal sphere j
But let us hope •, to doubt is to rebel;
Let us exult in hope, that all shall yet be -well.
Nor be thy generous indignation check'd,
Nor check'd the tender tear to Misery given -
From Guilt's contagious power shall that protect,
This soften and refine the soul for Heaven.
But di-eaciful is their doom, whom doubt has driven
To censure Fate, and pious Hope forego:
Like yonder blasted boughs by lightning riven,
Perfection, beauty, life, they never know,
But frown on all that pass, a monument of woe.
» See the fine old ballad called * 1 he Children in the Wood.

Shall he, whose birth, maturity, and age,

Scarce fill the circle of one summer day,

Shall the poor gnat, with discontent and rage

Exclaim that Nature hastens to decay,

If but a cloud obstruct the solar ray,

If but a momentary shower descend?

(Or shall frail man Heaven's dread decree gainsay,

Which bade the series of events extend [end?

Wide through unnumbered worlds, and ages without

One part, one little part, we dimly scan

Through the dark medium of life's feverish dream j

Vet dare arraign the whole stupendous plan,

If but that little part incongruous seem.

Nor is that part perhaps what mortals deem j

Oft from apparent ill our blessings rise.

0 then renounce that impious self esteem,

That aims to trace the secrets of the skies:

For thou art but of dust j be humble, and be wise.

Thus Heaven enlarged his soul in riper years,

For Nature gave him strength, and fire, to soar

On Fancy's wing above this vale of tears;

Where dark cold hearted sceptics, creeping, pore

Through microscope of metaphysic lore:

And much they grope for Truth, but never hit.

For why? Their powers, inadequate before,

This idle art makes more and more unfit; [wit.

Yet deem they darkness light, and their vain blunders

Nor was this ancient dame a foe to mirth.

Her ballad, jest, and riddle's quaint device

Oft cheer'd the shepherds round their social hearth;

Whom levity or spleen could ne'er entice

To purchase chat, or laughter, at the price

Of decency. Nor let it faith exceed,

That Nature forms a rustic taste so nice.

Ah! had they been of court or city breed,
Such delicacy were right marvellous indeed.

Oft when the winter storm had ceased to rave,
He roam'd the snowy waste at ev'n to view
The cloud stupendous, from th* Atlantic wave
If igh-tow'ring, sail along th'horizon blue:
Where, 'midst the changeful scenery, ever new,
Fancy a thousand wondrous forms decries,
More wildly great than ever pencil drew,
Rocks, torrents, gulfs, and shapes of giant size,
And glitt'ring cliffs on cliffs, and fiery ramparts riac

Thence musing onward to the sounding shore,
The lone enthusiast oft would take his way,
Listening, with pleasing dread to the deep roar
Of the wide-weltering waves. In black array
When sulphurous clouds roll'd on th' autumnal day,
Ev'n then he hastened from the haunt of man,
Along the trembling wilderness to stray,
What time the lightning's fierce career began, [ran.
And o'er Heaven's rending arch the rattling thuuder

Responsive to the sprightly pipe, when all

In sprightly dance the village youth were joiu'd,

Edwin, of melody aye held in thrall,

From the rude gambol far remote reclined,

Soothed with the soft notes warbling in the wind.

Ah then, all jollity seem'd noise and folly.

To the pure soul by Fancy's fire refin'd,

Ah, what is mirth but turbulence unholy, [choly!

When with the charm compared of heavenly melaa*

Is there a heart that music cannot melt?

Alas! how is that rugged heart forlorn;

Is there, who ne'er those mystic transports felt

Of solitude and melancholy born?

He needs not woo thelVTuse: he is her scorn

The sophist's rope of cobweb he shall twine;

Mope o'er the schoolman's peevish page; or mourn,

And delve for life in Mammon's dirty mine;

Sneak with the scoundrel fox, or grunt with glutton

swine.
For Edwin, Fate a nobler doom had plann'd;
Song was his favourite and first pursuit.
The wilcl harp rang to his advent'rous hand,
And languished to his breath the plaintive flute.
His infant muse, though artless, was not mute •
Of elegance as yet he took no care;
For this of time and culture is the fruit;
And Edwin gain'd at last this fruit so rare:
As in some future verse I purpose to declare.

Meanwhile, whate'er of beautiful, or new,
Sublime, or dreadful, in earth, sea, or sky,
By chance, or search, was offer'd to his view,
He scann'd with curious and romantic eye.
Whate'er of lore tradition could supply
From gothic tale, or song, or fable old",
Roused him, still keen to listen and to pry.
At last, though long by penury controll'd,
And solitude, his soul her graces 'gan unfold. ♦

Thus on the chill Lapponian's dreary land,
For many a long month lost in snow profound,
When Sol from Cancer sends the season bland,
And in their northern cave the storms are bound;
From silent mountains, straight, with startling sound,
Torrents are hurl'd : green hills emerge; and lo,
The trees with foliage, cliffs with flowers are crown'd;
Pure rills through vales of verdure warbling go;
And wonder,love, and joy, the peasant's heart o'erflow.*
Here ptfuse, my gothic lyre, a little while;
The leisure hour is all that thou canst claim:
But on this verse if Montague should smile,
New strains ere long shall animate thy frame.
And her applause to me is more than fame;
For still with truth accords her taste refined.
At lucre or renown let others aim,
I only wish to please the gentle mind,
Whom Nature's charms inspire, and iove of human*
kind

* Spring and autumn are hardly known to the Laplanders. About the time trie sun enters Cancer, th» ir fields, which a week before were covered with snow, appear on a sudden full of grass and flower*.— Scheffer's History of Lapland, p. 16.

BOOK II.

OP chance or change O let not man complain,
Else shall he never never cease to wail;
For, from the imperial dome, to where the swain
Rears the lone cottage in the silent dale,
All feel th' assault of Fortune's fickle gale;
Art, empire, Earth itself, to change are doom'd;
Earthquakes have raised to Heaven the humble vale,
And gulfs the mountain's mighty mass entomb'd;
And where th' Atlantic rolls wide continents have
bloom'd.*

But sure to foreign climes we need not range,

Nor search the ancient records of our race,

To learn the dire effects of time and change,

Which in ourselves, alas! we daily trace.

Yet at the darkenM eye, the wither'd face,

Or hoary hair, I never wiU repine:

But spare, 0 Time, whate'er of mental grace,

Of candour, love, or sympathy divine,

Wlme'er of fancy's ray or friendship's flame is mine.

» Plato'* rime us.

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