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O

WISDOM! if thy foft controul Can footh the ficknefs of the foul, Can bid the warring paflions cease, And breathe the calm of tender peace; Wifdom! I blefs thy gentle fway, And ever, ever will obey.

But if thou com'ft with frown auftere To nurfe the brood of care and fear; To bid our sweetest paffions dic, And leave us in their room a figh; Or if thine aspect stern have pow'r To wither each poor tranfient flow'r That cheers this pilgrimage of woc, And dry the fprings whence hope fhould flow; Wifdom, thine empire I difclaim, Thou empty boaft of pompous name! In gloomy fhade of cloifters dwell, But never haunt my cheerful cell. Hail to pleafure's frolic train! Hail to fancy's golden reign! Feftive mirth, and laughter wild, Free and fportful as the child Hope with eager fparkling eyes, And eafy faith, and fond furprife! Let thefe, in fairy colours dreft, For ever fhare my carclefs breast: Then, tho' wife I may not be, The wife themfelves thall envy me.

$57. Defpondency. An Ode. BURNS. PPRESS'D with grief, opprefs'd with care, A burden more than I can bear, I fit me down and figh: O life thou art a galling load, Along a rough, a weary road, To wretches fuch as I! Dim-backward as I caft my view, What fick'ning fcenes appear! What forrows yet may pierce me through, Too juftly I may fear! Still caring, defpairing, Muft be my bitter dcom;

My woes here fhall clofe ne'er, But with the clofing tomb! Happy! ye fons of bufy life, Who, equal to the bustling strife, No other view regard!

Ev'n when the wifhed end 's denied,
Yet, while the bufy means are plied,
They bring their own reward:
Whilft I, a hope-abandon'd wight,
Unfitted with an aim,
Meet ev'ry fad returning night
And joyless morn the fame.
You, buttling and jurtling,

Forget each grief and pain;
I, littlefs yet reitlefs,

Find ev'ry profpect vain.
How bleft the Solitary's lot,
Who, all-forgetting, all-forgot,

Within this humble cell,
The cavern wild with tangling roots,
Sits o'er his newly-gather'd fruits,
Befide his cryftal well!

Or haply to his ev'ning thought,
By unfrequented stream,

The ways of men are diftant brought,
A faint-collected dreamn:
While praifing, and raifing

His thoughts to Heav'n on high,
As wand'ring, incand'ring,
He views the folemn fky.
Than I, no lonely Hermit plac'd
Where never human footstep trac'd,
Lefs fit to play the part,
The lucky moment to improve,
And just to step, and just to move,
With felf-refpecting art:

But ah! thofe pleatures, loves, and joys, Which I too keerly tatte,

The Solitary can defpife,
Can want, and vet be bleft!

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In our own ftrength unhappily fecure,
Too little cautious of the adverfe pow'r;
And, by the blaft of felf-opinion mov'd,
We wish to charm, and feek to be belov'd.
On pleasure's flow'ry brink we idly ftray,
Maders as yet of our returning way:
Seeing no danger, we difarm our mind,
And give our conduct to the waves and wind:
Then in the flow'ry mead, or verdant shade,
To wanton dalliance negligently laid,
We weave the chaplet, and we crown the bowl,
And fmiling fee the nearer waters roll;
Till the ftrong gufts of raging paffion rife,
Till the dire tempeft mingles earth and fkies;
And, fwift into the boundlefs ocean borne,
Our foolish confidence too late we mourn:
Round our devoted heads the billows beat;
And from our troubled view the leffen'd lands

retreat.

59. A Paraphrafe on the latter Part of the Sixth Chapter of St. Matthew. THOMSON. WHEN my breaft labours with oppreflive care, And o'er my cheek defcends the falling tear; While all my warring paffions are at ftrife, Oh let me liften to the words of life! Raptures deep-felt his doctrine did impart, And thus he rais'd from earth the drooping heart: Think not, when all your fcanty ftores afford Is fpread at once upon the fparing board; Think not, when worn the homely robe appears, While on the roof the howling tempeft bears; What farther fhall this feeble life fuftain, And what fhall clothe these fhiv'ring limbs again. Say, does not life its nourishment exceed? And the fair body its invefting weed? Behold! and look away your low defpairSee the light tenants of the barren air: To them nor ftores nor granaries belong, Nought but the woodland and the pleafing fong; Yet your kind heav'nly Father bends his eye On the leaft wing that flits along the sky. To him they fing when fpring renews the plain, To him they cry in winter's pinching reign; Nor is their mufic or their plaint in vain: He hears the gay and the diftrefsful call, And with unfparing bounty fills them all.

Obferve the rifing lily's fnowy grace, Obferve the various vegetable race; They neither toil nor fpin, but careless grow, Yet fee how warm they bluth! how bright they

glow! What regal veftments can with them compare? What king fo thining, or what queen so fair?

If ceafelefs thus the fowls of heaven he feeds, If o'er the fields fuch lucid robes he spreads, Will he not care for you, ye faithlefs, fay? Is he unwife? or are ye lefs than they?

$60, Songs of Praife. WATTS.

A general Song of Praise to God. HOW glorious is our heav'nly King, Who reigns above the sky!

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I would not change my native land
For rich Peru, with all her gold:
A nobler prize lies in my hand
Than Eaft or Weftern Indies hold.
How do I pity thofe that dwell
Where ignorance or darknefs reigns!
They know no heav'n, they fear no hell,
Thofe endless joys, thofe endless pains.
Thy glorious promifes, O Lord,
Kindle my hopes and my defire;
While all the preachers of thy word
Warn me to 'fcape eternal fire.

Thy praise shall still employ my breath,
Since thou haft mark'd my way to heav'n;
Nor will I run the road to death,
And waste the bleffings thou haft giv'n.

Praise for the Gospel.

LORD, I afcribe it to thy grace,
And not to chance, as others do,
That I was born of Christian race,
And not a Heathen or a Jew.
What would the ancient Jewish kings
And Jewith prophets once have giv’n,
Could they have heard those glorious things
Which Chrift reveal'd and brought from heav'n!

How glad the Heathens would have been,
That worship'd idols, wood and stone,
If they the book of God had feen,
Or Jefus and his gospel known!
Then, if this gospel I refufe,
How shall I e'er lift up mine eyes!
For all the Gentiles and the Jews
Against me will in judgment rife.

Praife to God for learning to Read. THE praises of my tongue

I offer to the Lord,

That I was taught, and learnt fo young To read his holy word.

That I am brought to know
The danger I was in;
By nature, and by practice too,
A wretched flave to fin,
That I am led to fee

I can do nothing well;
And whither fhall a finner flee
To fave himself from hell?
Dear Lord, this book of thine
Informs me where to go
For grace to pardon all my fin,
And make me holy too.
Here I can read and learn,

How Chrift, the Son of God,
Did undertake our great concern;
Our ranfom coft his blood.
And now he reigns above,

He fends his Spirit down To fhew the wonders of his love, And make his gospel known.

O may

O may that Spirit teach,
And make my heart receive,
Thofe truths, which all thy fervants preach,
And all thy faints believe !

Then fhall I praise the Lord,
In a more cheerful strain,

That I was taught to read his word,
And have not learnt in vain.

WATTS.

§ 61. The Excellency of the Bible demonstrated.
GRE
REAT God, with wonder and with praise
On all thy works I look;
But ftill thy wisdom, pow'r, and grace,
Shine brightest in thy book.

The stars, that in their courfes roll,
Have much inftruction given;
But thy good word informs my foul
How I inay climb to heaven.
The fields provide me food, and fhew
The goodness of the Lord;
But fruits of life and glory grow
In thy moft holy word.
Here are my choiceft treasures hid,
Here my best comfort lies:
Here defires are fatisficd,
And hence my hopes arife.
Lord, make me understand thy law,
Shew what my faults have been;
And from thy gospel let me draw
Pardon for all my fin.

my

Here would I learn how Chrift has died
To fave my foul from hell:
Not all the books on earth befide

Such heav'nly wonders tell. Then let me love my Bible more, And take a fresh delight By day to read thefe wonders o'er, And meditate by night.

62. The All-feeing God. ALMIGHTY God, thy piercing eye Strikes thro' the fhades of night, And our moft fecret actions lie

All open to thy fight.

There's not a fin that we commit,
Nor wicked word we fay,
But in thy dreadful book 'tis writ,
Against the judgment day.
And muft the crimes that I have done
Be read and publish'd there?
Be all expos'd before the Sun,

While men and angels hear?
Lord, at thy foot asham'd I lie;
Upward I dare not look :
Pardon my fins before I die,

And blot them from thy book. Remember all the dying pains

That my Redeemer felt; And let his blood wash out my stains, And antwer for my guilt.

WATTS.

O may I now for ever fear
Tindulge a finful thought,
Since the great God can fee and hear,
And writes down ev'ry fault!

§ 63. Solemn Thoughts concerning God and Death. WATTS

THERE is a God that reigns above,

Lord of the heav'ns, and earth, and feas: I fear his wrath, I afk his love, And with my lips I fing his praife. There is a law which he has writ, To teach us all what we must do: My foul, to his commands fubinit, For they are holy, juft, and true. There is a gospel of rich grace, Whence finners all their comforts draw: Lord, I repent, and feek thy face, For I have often broke thy law. There is an hour when I muft die, Nor do I know how foon 't will come; A thousand children, young as I, Are call'd by death to hear their doom. Let me improve the hours I have, Before the day of grace is filed; There's no repentance in the grave Nor pardons offer'd to the dead. Just as the tree, cut down, that fell To north or fouthward, there it lies; So man departs to heav'n or hell, Fix'd in the ftate wherein he dies.

§64. Heaven and Hell WATTE HERE is beyond the sky A heav'n of joy and love; And holy children, when they die Go to that world above.

TH

There is a dreadful hell,
And everlafting pains;
There finners must with devils dwell,
In darkness, fire, and chains.

Can fuch a wretch as I
Efcape this curfed end?
And may I hope, whene'er I die,
I fhall to heav'n afcend?
Then will I read and pray,

While I have life and breath, Left I fhould be cut off to-day, And fent to eternal death.

§ 65. The Advantages of early Religion. WATTS.

HAPPY the child whofe tender years

Receive instructions well;

Who hates the finner's path, and fears The road that leads to hell.

When we devote our youth to God, 'Tis pleafing in his eyes;

A flow'r when offer'd in the bud
Is no vain facrifice.

'Tis cafier work, if we begin
To fear the Lord betimes;
While finners that grow old in fin
Are harden'd in their crimes.

'Twill fave us from a thousand fnares,
To mind religion young;
Grace will preferve our following years,
And make our virtue ftrong.

To thee, almighty God, to thee,
Our childhood we refign;
"Twill pleafe us to look back and fee
That our whole lives were thine.

Let the fweet work of pray'r and praife
Employ my youngest breath;
Thus I'm prepar'd for longer days,
Or fit for early death.

WATTS.

§ 66. The Danger of Delay. WHY fhould I fay, "'Tis yet too foon

"To feek for Heav'n, or think of death?" A flow'r may fade before 'tis noon, And I this day may lofe my breath. If this rebellious heart of mine Defpife the gracious calls of Heaven, I may be harden'd in my fin, And never have repentance given. What if the Lord grow wroth, and fwear, While I refufe to read and pray, That he'll refufe to lend an ear To all my groans another day! What if his dreadful anger burn, While I refufe his offer'd grace, And all his love to fury turn, And ftrike me dead upon the place! 'Tis dangerous to provoke a God! His pow 'r and vengeance none can tell : One ftroke of his almighty rod Shall fend young finners quick to hell. Then 'twill for ever be in vain To cry for pardon and for grace; To with I had my time again, Or hope to fee my Maker's face!

67 Examples of early Piety. WATTS. WHAT blefs'd examples do I find

Writ in the word of truth, Of children that began to mind Religion in their youth!

Jefus, who reigns above the fky,

And keeps the world in awe, Was once a child as young as I,

And kept his Father's law.

At twelve years old he talk'd with men,
(The Jews all wond'ring ftand)
Yet he obey'd his mother then,
And came at her command.
Children a fweet hofannah fung,

And blefs'd their Saviour's name!
They gave him honour with their tongue,
While feribes and pricfts blafpheme,

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