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Full many a dreary anxious hour,

We watch our nets alone In drenching spray, and driving shower,

And hear the night-bird's moan :

At morn we look, and nought is there ;

Sad dawn of cheerless day! Who then from pining and despair

The sickening heart can stay ?

There is a stay-and we are strong;

Our Master is at hand, To cheer our solitary song,

And guide us to the strand,

In his own time : but


awhile Our bark at sea must ride; Cast after cast, by force or guile

All waters must be tried :

By blameless guile or gentle force,

As when He deign'd to teach (The lode-star of our Christian course)

Upon this sacred beach.

Should e'er thy wonder-working grace

Triumph by our weak arm, Let not our sinful fancy trace

Aught human in the charm:

To our own nets ne'er bow we down,

Lest on the eternal shore The angels, while our draught they owno,

Reject us evermore:

Or, if for our unworthiness

Toil, prayer, and watching fail, In disappointment Thou canst bless,

So love at heart prevail.

They sacrifice unto their net, and burn incense

b Habakkuk i. 16. unto their drag.

c St. Matth. xiii. 49.


David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord : and Nathan said unto David, The Lord also hath put away thy sin: thou shalt not die. 2 Samuel xii. 23.

WHEN bitter thoughts, of conscience born,

With sinners wake at morn,
When from our restless couch we start,

With fever'd lips and wither'd heart,
Where is the spell to charm those mists away,
And make new morning in that darksome day?

One draught of spring's delicious air,
One stedfast thought, that God is there.

These are thy wonders, hourly wrought",

Thou Lord of time and thought,
Lifting and lowering souls at will,
Crowding a world of good or ill

d See Herbert's Poems, p. 160.

Into a moment's vision : even as light
Mounts o'er a cloudy ridge, and all is bright,

From west to east one thrilling ray
Turning a wintry world to May.

Wouldst thou the pangs of guilt assuage ?

Lo here an open page,
Where heavenly mercy shines as free,

Written in balm, sad heart, for thee.
Never so fast, in silent April shower,
Flush'd into green the dry and leafless bower',

As Israel's crowned mourner felt

The dull hard stone within him melt.

The absolver saw the mighty grief,

And hasten'd with relief ;-
“ The Lord forgives; thou shalt not die:"-

'Twas gently spoke, yet heard on high,
And all the band of angels, us’d to sing
In heaven, accordant to his raptur'd string,
Who many a month had turn'd away
With veiled eyes, nor own'd his lay,

C And all this leafless and uncolour'd scene

Shall flush into variety again. Cowper.

Now spread their wings, and throng around

To the glad mournful sound, And welcome, with bright open face,

The broken heart to love's embrace.
The rock is smitten, and to future years
Springs ever fresh the tide of holy, tears

And holy music, whispering peace
Till time and sin together cease.

There drink? and when ye are at rest,

With that free Spirit blests,
Who to the contrite can dispense

The princely heart of innocence,
If ever, floating from faint earthly lyre,
Was wafted to your soul one high desire,

all the trembling hope ye feel, Think on the minstrel as ye kneel :


Think on the shame, that dreadful hour

When tears shall have no power,

f The fifty-first Psalm.

3 Ps. li. 12. “ Uphold me with thy free Spirit.” The original word seems to mean “ ingenuous, princely, noble.” Read Bishop Horne's Paraphrase on the verse.


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