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This shadow, which, in every clime,

Since light and motion first began, Hath held its course sublime ;

What is it? mortal man ! It is the scythe of time:

A shadow only to the eye ;

Yet, in its calm career,
It levels all beneath the sky;

And still, through each succeeding year,
Right onward, with resistless power,
Its stroke shall darken every hour,
Till nature's race be run,
And time's last shadow shall eclipse the sun.

Nor only o'er the dial's face,

This silent phantom, day by day, With slow, unseen, unceasing pace,

Steals moments, months, and years away; From hoary rock, and aged tree,

From proud Palmyra's mouldering walls, From Teneriffe, towering o'er the sea, From every blade of

grass,

it falls; For still where'er a shadow

sweeps, The scythe of time destroys, And man at every footstep weeps

O'er evanescent joys;

Like flowerets glittering with the dews of morn, Fair for a moment, then for ever shorn :

Ah! soon, beneath the inevitable blow, I too shall lie, in dust and darkness low. Then time, the conqueror, will suspend

His scythe, a trophy, o'er my tomb,
Whose moving shadow shall portend

Each frail beholder's doom.
O’er the wide earth’s illumined space,

Though time's triumphant flight be shown,The truest index on its face,

Points from the churchyard stone.

CLI.

Man is not left untold, untaught,
Untrained to heaven by heavenly things ;
No! every fleeting hour has brought
Lessons of wisdom on its wings ;
And every day bids solemn thought
Soar above earth's imaginings.
In life, in death, a voice is heard,
Speaking in heaven's own eloquence,
That calls on purposes deferred,
On wandering thought, on wildering sense,
And bids reflection, long interred,
Arouse from its indifference.

The present, future, and the past,
It offers to our thoughtless eye;
That present is too short to last-
That
past

is
gone

for ever by; That future comes—a stormy blast That sweeps us to eternity.

CLII.

Fair pledges of a fruitful tree,
Why do

ye
fall

so fast?
Your date is not so past,
But you may stay yet here awhile,
To blush and gently smile,
And

go

at last. What, were ye born to be

An hour or half's delight,

And so to bid ‘Good-night? 'Twas pity Nature brought ye forth Merely to show your worth,

And lose you quite.
But you are lovely leaves, where we

May read how soon things have

Their end, though ne'er so brave; And after they have shown their pride,

Like you, awhile, they glide

Into the grave.

P

CLIII.

STRANGER, whoe'er thou art, that stoop'st to taste
These sweeter streams, let me arrest thy haste;

Nor of their fall,
The murmurs (though the lyre
Less sweet be) stand to admire;

But, as you shall
See from this marble tun,
The liquid crystal run,

And mark withal
How fix'd the one abides,

How fast the other glides.
Instructed thus, the difference learn to see
"Twixt mortal life and immortality.

CLIV.

Pause here, and think : a monitory rhyme
Demands one moment of thy fleeting time.

Consult life's silent clock, thy bounding vein;
Seems it to say—“Health here has long to reign?"
Hast thou the vigour of thy youth? an eye
That beams delight? a heart untaught to sigh?
Yet fear :-Youth, oft-times, healthful and at ease,
Anticipates a day it never sees :
And many a tomb, like Hamilton's, aloud
Exclaims, “Prepare thee for an early shroud.”

IX.

SICKNESS AND DEATH.

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