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Oh! were I by your bounty fed!--
You'll give me clothing, food, employ? Look down, dear parents! look, and see Your happy, happy orphan boy.
TO THE LADY ANNE HAMILTON.
Too late I stay'd, forgive the crime,
How noiseless falls the foot of Time
What eye with clear account remarks
Ah! who to sober measurement
Time's happy swiftness brings, When birds of Paradise have lent Their plumage for its wings?
WIFE, CHILDREN, AND FRIENDS.
WHEN the black-lettered list to the gods was presented
And slipped in three blessings-wife, children, and friends.
In vain surly Pluto maintained he was cheated,
For earth becomes heaven with-wife, children, and friends.
If the stock of our bliss is in stranger hands vested,
Though valour still glows in his life's dying embers,
How bless'd was his home with-wife, children, and friends.
The soldier, whose deeds live immortal in story,
For one happy day with-wife, children, and friends.
Though spice-breathing gales on his caravan hover,
The bower where he sat with-wife, children, and friends.
The day-spring of youth still unclouded by sorrow,
But drear is the twilight of age, if it borrow
No warmth from the smile of-wife, children, and friends.
Let the breath of renown ever freshen and nourish
The laurel which o'er the dead favourite bends; O'er me wave the willow, and long may it flourish, Bedewed with the tears of-wife, children, and friends.
Let us drink, for my song, growing graver and graver,
Let us drink, pledge me high, love and virtue shall flavour
THE PRISONER OF CHILLON.
My hair is grey, but not with years;
In a single night,
As men's have grown from sudden fears: My limbs are bow'd, though not with toil, But rusted with a vile repose,
For they have been a dungeon's spoil,
And mine has been the fate of those
Six in youth, and one in age,
Proud of Persecution's rage;
For the God their foes denied:
Three were in a dungeon cast,
There are seven pillars of Gothic mould,
A sunbeam which hath lost its way,
And in each ring there is a chain;That iron is a cankering thing,
For in these limbs its teeth remain, With marks that will not wear away, Till I have done with this new day, Which now is painful to these eyes, Which have not seen the sun so rise For years I cannot count them o'er; I lost their long and heavy score When my last brother droop'd and died, And I lay living by his side.
They chain'd us each to a column stone,