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On some fond breast the parting soul relies,
Some pious drops the closing eye requires; E'en from the tomb the voice of nature cries,
E'eno in our ashes live their wonted fires.°
For thee, who, mindful of the unhonored dead,
Dost in these lines their artless tale relate; If chance,° by lonely contemplation led,
Some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate,
Haply some hoary-headed swain may say,
“ Oft have we seen him at the peep of dawn Brushing with hasty steps the dews away,
To meet the sun upon the upland lawno:
" There at the foot of yonder nodding beech,
That wreathes its old fantastic roots so high, His listless length at noontide would he stretch,
And pore upon the brook that babbles by.
“ Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn,o
Muttering his wayward fancies would he rove, Now drooping, woful-wan, like one forlorn,
Or crazed with care, or crossed in hopeless love.
“ One morn I missed him on the customed hill,
Along the heath, and near his favorite tree; Another came; nor yet beside the rill,
Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was he:
“The next, with dirges due in sad array Slow through the churchway path we saw him
borne: Approach and read (for thou can'st read) the lay 115
'Graved on the stone beneath yon aged thorn.°"
Here rests his head upon the lap of earth
A youth, to fortune and to fame unknown: Fair science frowned not on his humble birth,
And melancholy marked him for her own.
Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere,
Heaven did a recompense as largely send: He gave to misery (all he had) a tear, He gained from heaven ('twas all he wished) a
No farther seek his merits to disclose,
Or draw his frailties from their dread abode, (There they alike in trembling hope repose,)
The bosom of his Father and his God.
ODE ON THE SPRING°
Lo! where the rosy-bosomed Hours,
Fair Venus' train, appear,
And wake the purple year!
The Attic warblero pours her throat,
The untaught harmony of spring:
Their gathered fragrance fling.
Where'er the oak's thick branches stretch
A broader browner shade,
O'er-canopies the glade, o
(At ease reclined in rustic state) How vain the ardor of the crowd, How low, how little are the proud,
How indigento the great!
Still is the toiling hand of Care;
The panting herds repose:
The busy murmur glows!
And float amid the liquid noon:
Quick-glaneing to the sun.°
To Contemplation's sober eye
Such is the race of Man:
Shall end where they began.
In Fortune's varying colors drest:
They leave, in dust to rest.
Methinks I hear, in accents low,
The sportive kind reply:
A solitary flyo!
No painted plumage to display:
We frolic while 'tis May.
ON A DISTANT PROSPECT OF ETON COLLEGE
Ανθρωπος, ικανή πρόφασις εις το δυστυχείν.
Menander. Incert. Fragm, ver. 382.
YE distant spires, ye antiqueo towers,
That crown the watery glade,
Where grateful Science still adores
Her Henry's holy shade°;
Of grove, of lawn, of mead survey,
His silver-winding way:
Ah, fields beloved in vain !
A stranger yet to paino!
15 A momentary bliss bestow,
As, waving fresh their gladsome wing,
20 Say, father Thames, for thou hast seeno
Full many a sprightly race,
The paths of pleasure trace;
25 With pliant arm, thy glassy wave?
The captive linnet which enthral?
Or urge the flying ball ?