« 前へ次へ »
pects of advantage. His friends were numerous and respectable; but his extreme indolence was such, that it induced him to neglect those favorable opportunities which providence pointed out for his affiftance and relief. This was certainly the surest way to forfeit the regard of those who had been his warmest friends; and no doubt, the loss of their favors, added to his own imprudent conduct, reduced him to the state we have described.
In these circumstances, it is probable, he was first brought to lament the follies of his life. Adversity, though a hard, is yet a kind instructor. Prosperity, though calculated to excite our gratitude and promote our happiness, is not in general fo successful. And a consideration similar to this might induce the Lord once to say, “ I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence and seek my face;" and then to add " in their affliction they will feek me early.” I trust this was indeed the case with Mr. Boyse: but that the candid reader may be enabled to determine for himfelf, I will transcribe a letter which he wrote a little before his death to Mr. Hervey.
Reverend and dear Sir,
your tender adnionitions and excellent ad
vice, I am truly indebted to you; as they “ discover a generous and compassionate concern for “ my better part.--I bless God I have reason to hope, great
work is not to do; for of all the marks
" of infatuation I know amongst men, there can be
none equal to that of trusting to a death-bed repentance. " I do not pretend to vindicate my own conduct nor can I ever forget the very
christian sense of my condition and misfortunes, which (notwithstand
ing all my misbehavior) you have so pathetically " expreffed.-The follies of my youth have furnished
a plentiful harveft of reflection for my latter years;
as I have now been for a long time in a manner * buried from the world, so it has been my endeavor “ to spend that time in lamenting my past errors, and “ in pursuing a course of life void of offence towards " God and man.
56 I have learnt to trust in God as my only portion, “ to bless him for his Fatherly corrections, which " have been much gentler than my demerit; and by " which I have been taught to know him and myself; is his infinite mercy and goodness; my own ingrati “ tude and unworthiness, so that I may truly fay “ with the returning prodigal, “ Father, I have “ finned against heaven, and against thee, and ain “ not worthy to be called thy son."
“My health is in a very precarious state; and the “ greatest hopes of recovery I have (which are very ss small) arise from warm weather and the country “ air. I thank God I am absolutely resigned to his “ holy and blessed will. I have seen enough of the “ vanity and folly of earthly things, and how insuf“ficient they are to satisfy the desires of an immor
« tal foul. I am sensible of my own wretchednefe 6 and nothingness, and that my only hope of salva“tion is through that blessed Redeemer, who died te " fave lost finners. This is my rock of hope against an approaching eternity.
May you long, Sir, taste those true and unfad. “ing pleasures, which attend the practice of reli
gion and virtue ; and may you, by your shining “ example, be a means of turning many to righte" ousness: this is the fincere and ever grateful wish
" Your most obliged, and “ faithful servant,
« S. BOYSE."
Any inaccuracies in the course of this work, that have escaped my notice, I must intreat the candid and impartial reader to excuse. To convey pleasure and instruction in the dress of poetry, was my design in making this collection. And if my endeavors are successful, I shall think myself more than paid for my
trouble.---The whole I commit into the hands of God; praying that it may be instrumental for the promotion of his glory in the spread of religion and virtue.
ROM earth's low prospects, and deceitful aims,
From wealth's allurements, and ambition's
My passions still, my purer breast inflame,
Whence sprung this glorious frame, or whence The various forms the universe compose ? [arose From what almighty cause, what mystic springs Shall we derive the origin of things ? Sing heavenly guide ! whose all-efficient light Drew dawning planets from the womb of night! Since reason, by thy facred dictates taught, Adores a power beyond the reach of thought. First cause of causes! fire supreme of birth! Sole light of heaven! acknowledg'd life of earth! Whose word from nothing call'd this beauteous whole, This wide-expanded all from pole to pole! Who shall prescribe the boundary to thee? Or fix the æra of eternity! Should we, deceiv’d by error's sceptic glass, Admit the thought absurd--that nothing was ! Thence would this wild, this false conclusion flow, That nothing rais'd this beauteous all below! When from disclosing darkness splendor breaks, Affociate atoms move, and natter speaks ! When non-existence bursts its close disguise, How blind are mortals ? not to own the skies !