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GRIEF, thou hast lost an ever-ready Friend
TO S. H.
XXIII. Excuse is needless when with love sincere Of occupation, not by fashion led, Thou turn'st the Wheel that slept with dust o'erspread; My nerves from no such murmur shrink, - tho' near, Soft as the Dorhawk's to a distant ear, When twilight shades bedim the mountain's head. She who was feigned to spin our vital thread Might smile, O Lady! on a task once dear To household virtues. Venerable Art, Torn from the Poor! yet will kind Heaven protect Its own, not left without a guiding chart, If Rulers, trusting with undue respect To proud discoveries of the Intellect, Sanction the pillage of man's ancient heart.
XXIV. - DECAY OF PIETY. Oft have I seen, ere Time had ploughed my cheek, Matrons and Sires - who, punctual to the call Of their loved Church, on Fast or Festival Through the long year the House of Prayer would seek: By Christmas snows, by visitation bleak Of Easter winds, unscared, from Hut or Hall They came to lowly bench or sculptured Stall, But with one fervour of devotion meek. I see the places where they once were known, And ask, surrounded even by kneeling crowds, Is ancient Piety for ever flown? Alas! even then they seemed like fleecy clouds That, struggling through the western sky, have won Their pensive light from a departed sun!
COMPOSED ON THE EVE OF THE MARRIAGE OF A FRIEND, IN
THE VALE OF GRASMERE.
What need of clamorous bells, or ribands gay,
Faultless does the Maid appear;
FROM THE ITALIAN OF MICHAEL ANGELO.
Yes ! hope may with my strong desire keep pace,
XXVII.- FROM THE SAME. No mortal object did these eyes
behold When first they met the placid light of thine, And my Soul felt her destiny divine, And hope of endless peace in me grew bold: Heaven-born, the Soul a heaven-ward course must hold; Beyond the visible world She soars to seek (For what delights the sense is false and weak) Ideal Form, the universal mould. The wise man, I affirm, can find no rest In that which perishes: nor will he lend His heart to aught which doth on time depend. 'Tis sense, unbridled will, and not true love, That kills the soul: love betters what is best, Even here below, but more in heaven above.
The prayers I make will then be sweet indeed
XXIX. SURPRISED by joy — impatient as the Wind I turned to share the transport-Oh! with whom But Thee, deep buried in the silent Tomb, That spot which no vicissitude can find? Love, faithful love, recalled thee to my mindBut how could I forget thee? Through what power, Even for the least division of an hour, Have I been so beguiled as to be blind To my most grievous loss? — That thought's return Was the worst pang that sorrow ever bore, Save one, one only, when I stood forlorn, Knowing my heart's best treasure was no more ; That neither present time, nor years unborn Could to my sight that heavenly face restore
METHOUGHT I saw the footsteps of a throne
“ WEAK is the will of Man, his judgment blind ; “ Remembrance persecutes, and Hope betrays;
Heavy is woe; and joy, for human-kind,