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Such heavings had our souls; till, slow and late,
Our life with his return'd, and faith prevail'd on
By prayers the mighty blessing was implor'd,
To prayers was granted, and by prayers restor❜d.
So ere the Shunamite* a son conceiv'd,
The prophet promis'd, and the wife believ'd.
A son was sent, the son so much desir'd;
But soon upon the mother's knees expir'd.
The troubled seer approach'd the mournful door,
Ran, pray'd, and sent his pastoral staff before,
Then stretch'd his limbs upon the child and mourn'd,
Till warmth, and breath, and a new soul return'd.
Thus Mercy stretches out her hand, and saves
Desponding l'eter sinking in the waves.
As when a sudden storm of hail and rain
Beats to the ground the yet unbearded grain,
Think not the hopes of harvest are destroy'd
On the flat field, and on the naked void:
The light, unloaded stem, from tempest freed,
Will raise the youthful honours of his head;
And, soon restor❜d by native vigour, bear
The timely product of the bounteous year.
Nor yet conclude all fiery trials past;
For Heaven will exercise us to the last;
Sometimes will check us in our full career
With doubtful blessings, and with mingled fear;
That, still depending on his daily grace,
His every mercy for an alms may pass ;
With sparing hands will diet us to good;
Preventing surfeits of our pamper'd blood.
So feeds the mother-bird her craving young
With little morsels, and delays 'em long.
*In the second book of Kings, chap. iv.
True, this last blessing was a royal feast;
But where's the wedding-garment on the guest?
Our manners, as religion were a dream,
Are such as teach the nations to blaspheme.
In lusts we wallow, and with pride we swell,
And injuries with injuries repel;
Prompt to revenge, not daring to forgive,
Our lives unteach the doctrine we believe.
Thus Israel sinn'd, impenitently hard,
And vainly thought the present ark their guard;*
But when the haughty Philistines appear,
They fled, abandon'd to their foes and fear;
Their God was absent, though his ark was there..
Ah! lest our crimes should snatch this pledge away,
And make our joys the blessings of a day!
For we have sinn'd him hence, and that he lives,
God to his promise, not our practice gives;
Our crimes would soon weigh down the guilty scale,
But James, and Mary, and the Church prevail.
Nor Amalek can rout the chosen bands,t
While Hur and Aaron hold up Moses' hands.
By living well, let us secure his days,
Moderate in hopes, and humble in our ways.
No force the free-born spirit can constrain,
But charity and great examples gain.
Forgiveness is our thanks for such a day;
'Tis godlike, God in his own coin to pay.
But you, propitious Queen! translated here,
From your mild Heaven, to rule our rugged sphere
Beyond the sunny walks and circling year;
You, who your native climate have bereft
Of all the virtues, and the vices left;
Whom piety and beauty make their boast,
Though beautiful is well in pious lost;
So lost as star-light is dissolv'd away,
And melts into the brightness of the day;
Or gold about the regal diadem,
Lost to improve the lustre of the gem;
What can we add to your triumphant day?
Let the great gift the beauteous giver pay:
For should our thanks awake the rising sun,
And lengthen as his latest shadows run,
That, though the longest day, would soon, too
soon be done.
Let angels' voices with their harps conspire,
But keep the' auspicious infant from the choir:
Late let him sing above, and let us know
No sweeter music than his cries below.
Nor can I wish to you, great Monarch! more
Than such an annual income to your store;
The day which gave this Unit, did not shine
For a less omen, than to fill the Trine.
After a Prince an Admiral beget;
The Royal Sovereign wants an anchor yet.
Our isle has younger titles still in store,
And when the' exhausted land can yield no more,
Your line can force them from a foreign shore.
The name of Great your martial mind will suit;
But Justice is your darling attribute:
Of all the Greeks 'twas but one hero's* due,
And in him Plutarch prophesied of you.
A prince's favour but on few can fall,
But justice is a virtue shar'd by all.
Some kings the name of Conquerors have assum'd, Some to be great, some to be gods presum'd; * Aristides. See his life in Plutarch.
But boundless power and arbitrary lust
Made tyrants still abhor the name of Just;
They shunn'd the praise this godlike virtue gives,
And fear'd a title that reproach'd their lives.
The power from which all kings derive their state,
Whom they pretend, at least, to imitate,
Is equal both to punish and reward;
For few would love their God unless they fear'd. Resistless force and immortality
Make but a lame, imperfect deity:
Tempests have force unbounded to destroy,
And deathless being e'en the damn'd enjoy,
And yet Heaven's attributes, both last and first,
One without life, and one with life accurst:
But Justice is Heaven's self, so strictly he,
That could it fail, the Godhead could not be.
This virtue is your own; but life and state
Are one to Fortune subject, one to Fate:
Equal to all, you justly frown or smile;
Nor hopes nor fears your steady hand beguile;
Yourself our balance hold, the world's our isle.