Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

Then homeward all take off their sev'ral

way: The youngling cottagers retire to rest; The parent pair their secret homage pay,

And proffer up to Heaven the warm request, That He who stills the raven's clamorous nest,

And decks the lily fair in flow'ry pride, Would, in the way His wisdom sees the best,

For them and for their little ones provide ; But chiefly in their hearts with grace divine preside.

From scenes like these old Scotia’s grandeur springs,

That makes her loved at home, revered abroad : Princes and lords are but the breath of kings,

“ An honest man's the noblest work of God :" And certes, in fair virtue's heavenly road,

The cottage leaves the palace far behind ; What is a lordling's pomp? a cumbrous load,

Disguising oft the wretch of human kind, Studied in arts of hell, in wickedness refined !

O Scotia! my dear, my native soil !

For whom my warmest wish to Heaven is sent: Long may thy hardy sons of rustic toil

Be bless'd with health, and peace, and sweet content And, oh, may Heaven their simple lives prevent

From luxury's contagion, weak and vile! Then, howe'er crowns and coronets be rent,

A virtuous populace may rise the while, And stand a wall of fire around their much-loved Isle,

O Thou! who pour'd the patriotic tide

That stream'd through Wallace's undaunted heart; Who dared to nobly stem tyrannic pride,

Or nobly die, the second glorious part, (The patriot's God, peculiarly Thou art,

His friend, inspirer, guardian, and reward !) O never, never, Scotia’s realm desert,

But still the patriot, and the patriot bard, In bright succession raise, her ornament and guard

MAN WAS MADE TO MOURN.

A DIRGE,

When chill November's surly blast

Made fields and forests bare,
One evening as I wandered forth

Along the banks of Ayr,
I spy'd a man, whose aged step

Seemed weary worn with care;
His face was furrowed o'er with years,

And hoary was his hair.

Young stranger, whither wanderest thou?

Began the reverend sage;
Does thirst of wealth thy step constrain,

Or youthful pleasure's rage?
Or haply, prest with cares and woes,

Too soon thou hast began
To wander forth, with me, to mourn

The miseries of Man.

The sun that overhangs yon moors,

Out-spreading far and wide, Where hundreds labour to support

A haughty lordling's pride;
I've seen yon weary winter-sun

Twice forty times return;
And every time has added proofs,

That Man was made to mourn.

O Man! while in thy early years,

How prodigal of time!
Mis-spending all thy precious hours,

Thy glorious youthful prime!
Alternate follies take the sway ;

Licentious passions burn;
Which tenfold force give nature's law,

That Man was made to mourn.

Look not alone in youthful prime,

Or manhood's active might;
Man then is useful to his kind,

Supported in his right.
But see him on the edge of life,

With cares and sorrows worn,
Then age and want, oh! ill-matched pair

Show Man was made to mourn.

Many and sharp the num'rous ills

Inwoven with our frame !
More pointed still we make ourselves,

Regret, remorse, and shame!

And Man, whose heaven-created face

The smiles of love adorn, Man's inhumanity to man

Makes countless thousands mourn !

See yonder poor, o'er-labour'd wight,

So abject, mean, and vile, Who begs a brother of the earth

To give him leave to toil ; And see his lordly fellow-worm

The poor petition spurn, Unmindful, tho' a weeping wife

And helpless offspring mourn.

If I'm design'd yon lordling's slave

By nature's law design'dWhy was an independent wish

E'er planted in my mind? If not, why am I subject to

His cruelty, or scorn? Or why has Man the will and power

To make his fellow mourn ?

Yet, let not this too much, my son,

Disturb thy youthful breast;
This partial view of human kind,

Is surely not the last !
The poor oppressed, honest man,
Had

never, sure been born, Had there not been some recompense

To comfort those that mourn !

O Death ! the poor man's dearest friend,

The kindest and the best!
Welcome the hour my aged limbs

Are laid with thee at rest!
The great, the wealthy, fear thy blow,

From pomp and pleasure torn!
But, oh! a blest relief to those

That weary-laden mourn.

TO A MOUNTAIN DAISY.

ON TURNING ONE DOWN WITH THE PLOUGH, IN APRIL 1786.

Wee, modest, crimson-tippèd flow'r,
Thou's met me in an evil hour;
For I maun crush

amang

the stoure
Thy slender stem.
To
spare

thee now is past my pow'r,

Thou honnie gem.

Alas it's no thy neebor sweet,
The bonie lark, companion meet!
Bending thee 'mang the dewy weet

Wi' spreckled breast,
When upward-springing, blythe to greet

The purpling east.
Cauld blew the bitter-biting north
Upon thy early humble birth;
Yet cheerfully thou glinted forth

Amid the storm,
Scarce rear'd above the parent earth

Thy tender form.

« ZurückWeiter »