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To teach the wanderer, as his woes increase,
Bid suffer it awhile, and kiss the rod;
HYMN ON SOLITUDE.
HAIL, mildly pleasing Solitude,
Oh! how I love with thee to walk,
Thine is the balmy breath of morn, Just as the dew-bent rose is born; And while meridian fervors beat, Thine is the woodland dumb retreat; But chief, when evening scenes decay, And the faint landscape swims away, Thine is the doubtful soft decline, And that best hour of musing thine.
Descending ages bless thy train, The virtues of the sage and swain; Plain innocence in white array'd, Before thee lifts her fearless head: Religion's beams around thee shine, And cheer thy glooms with light divine: About thee sports sweet liberty; And wrapt Urania sings to thee.
Oh, let me pierce thy secret cell, And in thy deep recesses dwell. Perhaps from Norwood's oak-clad hill, When meditation has her fill,
I just may cast my careless eyes Where London's spiry turrets rise; Think of its crimes, its cares, its pain, Then shield me in the woods again.
HYMN TO DARKNESS.
DARKNESS, thou first great parent of us all,
Thou art our great original;
Since from thy universal womb
Does all thou shad'st below, thy numerous offspring
Thy wondrous birth is even to Time unknown,
Whilst Light did its first being owe
Say, in what distant region dost thou dwell,
To Reason inaccessible?
From form and duller matter free,
Thou soar'st above the reach of man's philosophy.
Involv'd in thee, we first receive our breath,
Great Monarch of the grave and womb, Where'er our souls shall go, to thee our bodies come.
The silent globe is struck with awful fear,
Thou dost compose the air and sea,
And Earth a Sabbath keeps, sacred to rest and thee.
In thy serener shades our ghosts delight,
In vaults and gloomy caves they stray,
Though solid bodies dare exclude the light,
Nor will the brightest ray admit;
No substance can thy force repel,
Thou reign'st in depths below, dost in the centre dwell.
The sparkling gems, and ore in mines below,
To thee their beauteous lustre owe;
Tho' form'd within the womb of night,
Bright as their sire they shine, with native rays of light.
When thou dost raise thy venerable head,
And art in genuine night array'd,
Thy negro beauties then delight;
Beauties like polish'd jet, with their own darkness bright.
Thou dost thy smiles impartially bestow,
All things appear the same by thee,
Tho' light distinction makes, thou giv'st equality.
Thou, Darkness, art the lover's kind retreat,
And dost the nuptial joys complete :
Thou dost inspire them with thy shade,
Giv'st vigour to the youth, and warm'st the yielding