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In hope to bask a little yet,
Just reached it when the sun was set,
Your hermit, young and jovial firs!
Learns something from whate'er occurs
And hence, he said, my mind computes
The real worth of man's pursuits.
His object chosen, wealth or fame,
Or other sublunary game,
Imagination to his view
Presents it decked with every hue,
That can seduce him not to spare
His powers of beft exertion there,
But youth, health, vigour to expend
On so desirable an end.
Ere long approach life's evening shades,
The glow that fancy gave it fades;
And, earned too late, it wants the grace,
Which firft engaged him in the chase.
True, answered an angelic guide, Attendant at the senior's fideBut whether all the time it coft To urge the fruitless chase be loft, Must be decided by the worth Of that, which called his ardour forth, Trifles pursued, whate'er the event, Muft cause him shame or discontent;
A vicious object ftill is worse, Successful there he wins a curse; But he, whom ev'n in life's la t ftage Endeavours laudable engage, Is paid, at least in peace of mind, And sense of having well designed; And if, ere he attain his end, His fun precipitate descend, A brighter prize than that he meant Shall recompense his mere intent. No virtuous wish can bear a date Either too early or too late.
The green-house is my summer seat;
My shrubs displaced from that retreat
Enjoyed the open air;
Two goldfinches, whose sprightly song
Had been their mutual solace long,
Lived happy prisoners there.
They sang, as blithe as finches sing,
That flutter loose on golden wing,
And frolic where they lift;
Strangers to liberty, 'tis true,
But that delight they never knew,
And therefore never missed.
But nature works in every breaft;
Instinct is never quite suppressed;
And Dick felt some desires,
Which, after many an effort vain,
Inftructed him at length to gain
A pass between his wires.
The open windows seemed to invite
The freeman to a farewell flight;
But Tom was still confined;
And Dick, although his way was clear,
Was much too generous and sincere
To leave his friend behind.
For, settling on his grated roof,
He chirped and kifled him, giving proof
That he desired no more;
Nor would forsake his cage at last,
Till gently seized, I shut him faft,
A prisoner as before.
who never knew the joys Of Friendship, satisfied with noise,
Fandango, ball, and rout! Blush, when I tell you how a bird, A prison with a friend preferred
To liberty without.
THERE is a field, through which I often pars,
Thick overspread with moss and filky grass,
Adjoining close to Kilwick's echoing wood,
Where oft the bitch-fox hides her hapless brood,
Reserved to folace many a neighbouring 'squire,
That he may follow them through brake and briar,
Contufion hazarding of neck or spine,
Which rural gentlemen call sport divine.
A narrow brook, by rushy banks concealed,
Runs in a bottom, and divides the field ;
Oaks intersperse it, that had once a head,
But now wear crefts of oven-wood instead;
And where the land slopes to its watery bourn,
Wide yawns a gulph beside a ragged thorn;
Bricks line the fides, but shivered long ago,
And horrid brambles intertwine below;
A hollow scooped, I judge in ancient time,
For baking earth, or burning rock to lime.