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How did the mother see her daughter rise,
A lovely plant to bless her aged eyes!
How oft in thought her future pleasure trace,
Appoint her husband, and enjoy her race !
But now no husband shall enjoy that bloom,
Nor offspring rise from the unfruitful tomb.
An unexpected gift the virgin came,
The last, but fairest, of a falling name ;
A ray to light a father's eve she shone,
And healed the loss of many a buried son :
But soon invading darkness chased away
The beauteous setting of a glorious day;
Soon Heaven, which gave, again resumed its own;
And of his family he remains alone.
His thoughts in her refined no more he'll trace,
Or view his features softened in her face ;
No more in secret on her beauty gaze,
Or hide his gladness when he hears her praise :
Mute is the tongue which pleased his soul before,
And beauty blushes in that cheek no more.
Peace, gentle shade, attend thy balmy rest,
And earth sit lightly on thy snowy breast;
Let guardian angels gently hover round,
And downy silence haunt the hallowed ground:
There let the Spring its sweetest offspring rear,
And sad Aurora shed her earliest tear.
Some future maid perhaps, as she goes by,
Shall view the place where her cold reliques lie:
Folly for once may sadden into care,
And pride, unconscious, shed one generous tear;
While this big truth is swelling in the breast,
That death nor spares the fairest nor the best ;
That virtue feels the unalterable doom,
And beauty's self must moulder in the tomb.
AN OFFICER KILLED BEFORE QUEBEC'.
An me! what sorrow are we born to bear !
How many causes claim the falling tear!
In one sad tenor life's dark current flows,
And every moment has its load of woes :
In vain we toil for visionary ease,
Or hope for blessings in the vale of peace :
Coy happiness ne'er blesses human eyes,
Or but appears a moment, and she flies.
When peace itself can seldom dry the tear,
What floods demand the dreary wastes of war !
Where indistinguished ruin reigns o'er all,
At once the truant and the valiant fall;
Where timeless shrouds inwrap the great and brave,
And Daphnis sinks into a nameless grave.
* Inserted with the initials (J. MʻP.), in the Scots Magasine for October 1759, and reprinted with the name in BLACKLOCK's Collection, Vol. II. p. 134.
Dear hapless youth, cut off in early bloom,
A fair, but mangled victim to the tomb !
No friendly hand to grace thy fall was near,
No parent's eye to shed one pious tear;
No favoured maid to close thy languid eyes,
And send thee mindful of her to the skies :
On some cold bank thy decent limbs were laid ;
Oh ! honoured living, but neglected dead !
So soon forsake us, dear lamented shade,
To mix obscurely with the nameless dead!
Thus baulk the rising glory of thy name,
And leave unfinished an increasing fame !
Thus sink for ever from a parent's eyes !
Wert thou not cruel ? or ye partial, skies?
But what can bound, I thou by all approved !
The sad, sad sorrows of the friend you loved ?
A friend who doted on thy worth before !
A friend who never shall behold thee more!
Who saw, combined, thy manly graces rise,
To please the mind and bless the ravished eyes ;
A soul replete with all that's great and fair,
A form which cruel savages might spare.
If, in the midnight hour, lamented shade,
You view the place where thy remains are laid ;
If pale you hover o'er your secret grave,
Or viewless Ait o'er Hoshelega's * wave;
O! when my troubled soul is sunk in rest,
And peaceful slumbers sooth my anxious breast,
To fancy's eyes in all thy bloom appear,
Once more thy own unsullied image wear;
Unfold the secrets of your world to me,
Tell what thou art, and what I soon shall be.
He comes ! he comes! but O how changed of late !
How much deforms the leaden hand of fate!
Why do I see that generous bosom gored ?
Why bathed in blood the visionary sword?
What rudeness ruffled that disordered hair?
Why, blameless shade, that mournful aspect wear?
For sure such virtues must rewarded be,
And Heaven itself approve of Wolfe and thee.
Yes, thou art blessed above the rolling sphere;
'Tis for myself, not thee, I shed the tear.
Where shall I now such blameless friendship find,
Thou last best comfort of a drooping mind ?
To whom the pressures of my soul impart,
Transfer my sorrows, and divide my heart?
Remote is he who ruled my breast before,
And he shall sooth me into peace no more.
Men born to grief, an unrelenting kind,
Of breasts discordant, and of various mind,
Scarce, 'midst of thousands, find a single friend;
If Heaven at length the precious blessing send,
A sudden death recalls him from below;
A moment's bliss is paid with years
What boots the rising sigh? in vain we weep,
We, too, like him, anon must fall asleep ;
Life, and its sorrows too, shall soon be o'er,
And the heart heave with bursting sighs no more ;
Death shed oblivious rest on every head,
And one dull silence reign o'er all the dead.
An Ode', attempted in the manner of Pindar.
'Twas when the full-eared harvest bow'd
Beneath the merry reaper's hand;
When here the plenteous sheats were strew'd,
And there the corns nod o'er the land;
When on each side the loaden'd ground,
Breathing her ripen'd scents, the jovial season crown'd;
The villagers, all on the green,
The arrival of their lord attend;
The blythsome shepherds haste to join,
And whistling from the hills descend; Nor orphan nor lone widow mourns;
Even hopeless lovers lose their pains ;
· Inserted with the initials (J. M.), in the Scots Magazine for September 1760; reprinted with the name in Blacklock's Collection, Vol. II. p. 170.