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Bid them be chaste, be innocent, like thee;
10 And if so fair, from vanity as free;
As firm in friendship, and as fond in love, Tell them, though 't is an awful thing to die,
('T was ev'n to thee) yet the dread path once trod, Heaven lifts its everlasting portals high,
15 And bids “the pure in heart behold their God.”
ON THE RECEIPT OF MY MOTHER'S
O THAT those lips had language! Life has pass’d
5 “Grieve not, my child, chase all thy fears away!" The meek intelligence of those dear eyes (Blest be the art that can immortalize, The art that baffles Time's tyrannic claim To quench it) here shines on me still the same. 10
Faithful remembrancer of one so dear,
My Mother! when I learn'd that thou wast dead, Say, wast thou conscious of the tears I shed ? Hover'd thy spirit o'er thy sorrowing son, Wretch even then, life's journey just begun? Perhaps thou gavest me, though unfelt, a kiss ; 25 Perhaps a tear, if souls can weep in bliss— Ah, that maternal smile! it answers—Yes. I heard the bell toll’d on thy burial day, I saw the hearse that bore thee slow away, And, turning from my nursery window, drew 30 A long, long sigh, and wept a last adieu ! But was it such ?-It was.—Where thou art gone Adieus and farewells are a sound unknown. May I but meet thee on that peaceful shore, The parting word shall pass my lips no more!
35 Thy maidens, grieved themselves at my concern, Oft gave me promise of thy quick return. What ardently I wish'd, I long believed, And disappointed still, was still deceived; By expectation every day beguiled,
40 Dupe of to-morrow even from a child. Thus many a sad to-morrow came and went, Till, all my stock of infant sorrow spent, I learn'd at last submission to my lot, But, though I less deplored thee, ne'er forgot. 45
Where once we dwelt our name is heard no more, Children not thine have trod my nursery floor; And where the gardener Robin, day by day, Drew me to school along the public way, Delighted with my bauble coach, and wrapt 50 In scarlet mantle warm, and velvet capt, 'T is now become a history little known, That once we call’d the pastoral house our own.
Short-lived possession ! but the record fair,
Could Time, his flight reversed, restore the hours, When, playing with thy vesture's tissued flowers, 75 The violet, the pink, and jessamine, I prick'd them into paper with a pin, (And thou wast happier than myself the while, Wouldst softly speak, and stroke my head, and smile,) Could those few pleasant days again appear,
80 Might one wish bring them, would I wish them here? I would not trust my heart—the dear delight Seems so to be desired, perhaps I might.But no—what here we call our life is such, So little to be loved, and thou so much,
That I should ill requite thee to constrain
Thou, as a gallant bark from Albion's coast,
And, while the wings of Fancy still are free,
O NANCY, WILT THOU GO WITH ME.
O NANCY! wilt thou go with me,
Nor sigh to leave the flaunting town?
The lowly cot and russet gown?
No longer deck'd with jewels rare ;
Where thou wast fairest of the fair?
Wilt thou not cast a look behind ?
Nor shrink before the wintry wind ?
Extremes of hardship learn to bear,
Where thou wast fairest of the fair ?
O Nancy! canst thou love so true,
Through perils keen with me to go,
To share with him the pang of woe ?
Wilt thou assume the nurse's care,