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When the grave houfhold round his hall repair,
Warn'd by a bell, and close the day with pray'r.
At length the world, renew'd by calm repofe,
Was ftrong for toil; the dappled morn arofe;
Before the pilgrims part, the younger crept
Near the clos'd cradle where an infant flept,
And writh'd his neck: the landlord's little pride,
O ftrange return! grew black, and gasp'd, and dy’d.
Horror of horrors! what! his only fon?
How look'd our Hermit when the fact was done?
Not Hell, though Hell's black jaws in funder part,
And breathe blue fire, could more affault his heart.
Confus'd, and ftruck with filence at the deed,
He flies; but, trembling, fails to fly with speed.
His steps the youth purfues; the country lay
Perplex'd with roads, a fervant fhew'd the way:
A river cross'd the path; the paffage o'er
Was nice to find; the fervant trod before :,
Long arms of oaks an open bridge fupply'd,
And deep the waves beneath the bending glide.
The youth, who feem'd to watch a time to fin,
Approach'd the careless guide, and thruft him in:
Plunging he falls, and rifing lifts his head;
Then flashing turns, and finks among the dead.
Wild fparkling rage inflames the father's eyes;
He burfts the bands of fear, and madly cries,
"Detested wretch !"—But scarce his fpeech began,
When the strange partner feem'd no longer man:
His youthful face grew more ferenely fweet;
His robe turn'd white, and flow'd upon his feet;
Fair rounds of radiant points infest his hair;
Celestial odours breathe through purpled air
And wings, whofe colours glitt'red on the day,
Wide at his back their gradual plumes difplay.
The form ethereal bursts upon his fight,
And moves in all the majefty of light.
Though loud at first the Pilgrim's paffion grew,
Sudden he gaz'd, and wist not what to do ;
Surprise in fecret chains his words fufpends,
And in a calm his fettling temper ends.
But filence here the beauteous Angel broke,
(The voice of music ravish'd as he spoke :)
Thy pray'r, thy praife, thy life to vice unknown, In fweet memorial rife before the throne: Thefe charms fuccefs in our bright region find, And force an ángel down to calm thy mind; For this commiffion'd I forfook the skyNay, ceafe to kneel!-thy fellow-fervant I.
Then know the truth of government Divine,
And let thefe fcruples be no longer thine.
The Maker júftly claims that 'world he made,
In this the right of Providence is laid;
Its facred Majefty through all depends
On ufing second means to work his ends;
Tis thus, withdrawn in ftate from human eye,
The Pow'r excris his attributes on high;
Your actions uses, nor controuls your will,
And bids the doubting fons of men be still.
What ftrange events can ftrike with more furprife,
Than those which lately ftruck thy wond'ring eyes?
Yet taught by thefe, confefs th' Almighty juft;
And where you can't unriddle, learn to trust.
The great vain man, who far'd on costly food,
Whofe life was too luxurious to be good;
Who made his iv'ry ftands with goblets fhine,
And forc'd his guests to morning draughts of wine;
Has, with the cup, the graceless custom loft,
And still he welcomes but with lefs of coft.
'The mean fufpicious wretch, whose bolted door Ne'er mov'd in pity to the wand'ring poor, With him I left the cup, to teach his mind That Heav'n can bless, if mortals will be kind. Conscious of wanting worth, he views the bowl, And feels compaffion touch his grateful foul. Thus artifts melt the fullen ore of lead, With heaping coals of fire upon its head; In the kind warmth the metal learns to glow, And, loose from drofs, the filver runs below.
Long had our pious friend in virtue trod, But now the child half-wean'd his heart from God; (Child of his age!) for him he liv'd in pain, And measur'd back his fteps to earth again. To what exceffes had his dotage run! But God to fave the father took the fon.. To all but thee in fits it seem'd to go; (And 'twas my ministry to deal the blow.) The poor fond parent, humbled in the duft, Now owns in tears the punishment was just.
But how had all his fortunes felt a wrack,
Had that falfe fervant fped in fafety back!
This night his treafur'd heaps he meant to steal;
And what a fund of charity would fail!
Thus Heav'n inftructs thy mind: this trial o'er,
Depart in peace, refign, and fin no more."
On founding pinions here the youth withdrew ; The Sage flood wond'ring as the Seraph flew.
Thus look'd Elifha, when, to mount on high,
His mafter took the chariot of the sky:
The fiery pomp afcending left the view;
The prophet gaz'd, and wish'd to follow too.
The bending Hermit here a prayer begun :
Lord! as in heav'n, on earth thy will be done!
Then, gladly turning, fought his ancient place,
And pafs'd a life of piety and peace.
HYMN TO CONTENTMENT, LOVELY, laiting, peace of mind!
Sweet delight of human kind!
Heav'nly born, and bred on high,
To crown the fav'rites of the sky
With more of happiness below
Than victors in a triumph know!
Whither, O whither art thou fled,
To lay thy meek contented head!
What happy region doft thou please
To make the feat of calms and cafe?
Ambition fearches all its sphere
Of pop and state, to meet thee there:
Inereafing avarice would find
Thy prefence in its gold infhrin'd :
The bold advent'rer ploughs his way
Through rocks, amidit the foaming fea,
To gain thy love; and then perceives
Thou wert not in the rocks and waves.
The filent heart which grief affails,
Treads foft and lonefome o'er the valo
Sees daifies open, rivers run,
And feeks (as I have vainly done)
Amufing thought; but learns to know
That folitude's the nurse of woe.
No real happiness is found
In trailing purple o'er the ground:
Or in a foul exalted high,
To range the circuit of the sky,
Converse with ftars above, and know
All nature in its forms below;
The reft it feeks, in feeking dies,
And doubts at laft for knowledge rife,
Lovely, lafting Peace, appear!
This world itfelf, if thou art here,
Is once again with Eden bleft,
And man contains it in his breaft.
'Twas thus, as under fhade I ftood,
I fung my wishes to the wood,
And loft in thought no more perceiv'à
The branches whisper as they way'd:
It feem'd, as all the quiet place
Confefs'd the prefence of the Grace,
When thus fhe spoke-Go, rule thy will,
Bid thy wild paffions all be ftill;
Know God and bring thy heart to know
The joys which from religion flow:
Then ev'ry grace fhall prove its guest,
And I'll be there to crown the rest.
Oh! by yonder moffy feat,
In my hours of sweet retreat,
Might I thus my foul employ,
With fenfe of gratitude and joy: