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ARGUMENT OF THE SIXTH BOOK.
Bells at a distance.--Their effect.-A fine noon in
winter. -A sheltered walk.-Meditation better than books.- Our familiarity with the course of nature makes it appear less, wonderful than it is.—The transformation that spring effects in a shrubbery described.- A mistake concerning the course of nature corrected. God maintains it by an unremitted act. The amusements fashionable at this hour of the day reproved.-Animals happy, a delightful sight.- Origin of cruelty to animals.—That it is a great crime proved from scripture.—That proof illustrated by a tale.- A line drawn between the lawful and unlawful destruction of them.-Their good and useful properties insisted on.- -Apology for the encomiums bestowed by the author on animals. -Instances of man's extravagant praise of man.The
groans of the creation shall have an end. A view taken of the restoration of all things.-An invocation and an invitation of him, who shall bring it to pass.-The retired man vindicated from the charge of uselessness.- Conclusion,
THE WINTER WALK AT NOON.
There is in fouls a sympathy with founds,
And with it all its pleasures and its pains. Such comprehensive views the spirit takes, That in a few short moments I retrace (As in a map the voyager his course) The windings of my way through many years. Short as in retrospect the journey seems, It seemed not always short; the rugged path, And profpect oft so dreary and forlorn, Moved many a figli at its disheartening length. Yet feeling present evils, while the past Faintly impress the mind, or not at all, How readily we wish time spent revoked, That we might try the ground again, where once (Through inexperience, as we now perceive) We miffed that happiness we might have found! Some friend is gone, perhaps his son's best friend, A father, whose authority, in show When most severe, and muftering all its force, Was but the graver countenance of love; Who e favour, like the clouds of spring, might lower, And utter now and then an awful voice, But had a blessing in its darkest frown, Threatening at once and nourishing the plant, We loved, but not enough, the gentle hand, That reared us.
At a thoughtless age, allured By every gilded folly, we renounced
His sheltering fide, and wilfully forewent
The night was winter in his roughest mood; The morning sharp and clear. But now at noon Upon the southern side of the slant hills, And where the woods fence off the northern blast, The season smiles, resigning all its rage, And has the warmth of May. The vault is blue Without a cloud, and white without a fpeck The dazzling splendour of the scene below:
Again the harmony comes o'er the vale ;