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Amusing, chanc'd beside his reaper train
To walk, when poor Lavinia drew his eye,
Unconscious of her pow'r, and turning quick
With unaffected blushes from his gaze;

He saw her charming, but he saw not half
The charms her downcast modesty conceal'd.
That very moment love and chaste desire
Sprung in his bosom, to himself unknown;
For still the world prevail'd, and its dread laugh,
Which scarce the firm philosopher can scorn,
Should his heart own a gleaner in the field;
And thus in secret to his soul he sigh❜d.


"What pity! that so delicate a form,

By beauty kindled, where enliv'ning sense "And more than vulgar goodness seem to dwell, "Should be devoted to the rude embrace "Of some indecent clown! She looks, methinks; "Of old Acasto's line; and to mind

"Recalls that patron of my happy life,

"From whom my lib'ral fortune took its rise; "Now to the dust gone down; his houses, lands, "And once fair-spreading family dissolv'd.

"Tis said, that in some lone obscure retreat, "Urg'd by remembrance sad, and decent pride, "Far from those scenes which knew their better

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"His aged widow and his daughter live, "Whom yet my fruitless search could never find. "Romantic wish! would this his daughter were!"

When, strict enquiring, from herself he found She was the same, the daughter of his friend, Of bountiful Acasto; who can speak

The mingled passions that surpriz'd his heart,
And through his nerves in shiv'ring transports ran?
Then blaz'd his smother'd flame, avow'd, and bold;
And as he view'd her, ardent, o'er and o'er,
Love, gratitude, and pity, wept at once.
Confus'd, and frighted at his sudden tears,
Her rising beauties flush'd a higher bloom,
As thus Palemon, passionate and just,
Pour'd out the pious rapture of his soul.

"And art thou then Acasto's dear remains? "She, whom my restless gratitude has sought "So long in vain: O heavens! the very same, "The soften'd image of my noble friend, "Alive his ev'ry look, his ev'ry feature,

"More elegantly touch'd. Sweeter than Spring, "Thou sole surviving blossom from the root "That nourish'd up my fortune! Say, ah! where, "In what sequester'd desert hast thou drawn "The kindest aspect of delighted heaven?

"Into such beauty spread, and blown so fair; "Though poverty's cold wind, and crushing rain, "Beat keen and heavy on thy tender years?

"O let me now, into a richer soil



Transplant thee safe, where vernal suns and "Diffuse their warmest, largest influence; "And of my garden be the pride and joy! "Ill it befits thee, O it ill befits

"Acasto's daughter, his, whose open stores, "Tho' vast, were little to his ampler heart, "The father of a country, thus to pick "The very refuse of those harvest fields, "Which from his bounteous friendship I enjoy. "Then throw that shameful pittance from thy hand, "But ill apply'd to such a rugged task; "The fields, the master, all, my fair, are thine; "If to the various blessings which thy house "Has on me lavish'd, thou wilt add that bliss, "That dearest bliss, the pow'r of blessing thee!"

Here ceas'd the youth: yet still his speaking eye Express'd the sacred triumph of his soul, With conscious virtue, gratitude, and love, Above the vulgar joy divinely rais'd. Nor waited he reply. Won by the charm Of goodness irresistible, and all

In sweet disorder lost, she blush'd consent.

The news immediate to her mother brought,
While, pierc'd with anxious thought, she pin'd away
The lonely moments for Lavinia's fate!

Amaz'd, and scarce believing what she heard,
Joy seiz'd her wither'd veins, and one bright gleam
Of setting life shone on her ev'ning hours,
Not less enraptur'd than the happy pair;
Who flourish'd long in tender bliss, and rear'd
A mumerous offspring, lovely like themselves,
And good, the grace of all the country round.



GREAT GOD! with conscious blushes, lo, I come

To cry for pardon, or receive my doom:

But O, I die when I thy anger meet,
Prostrate I lay my body at thy feet.
How can I dare to sue for a reprieve?
Must I still sin, and must my GOD forgive?
Thy justice will not let thy mercy flow,

Strike then, O strike, and give the deadly blow.
Do I still live? and do I live to prove

The inexhausted tokens of thy love?
This unexampled goodness wounds me more
Than ev'n the wrath I merited before.

O, I am all a blot, the foulest shame

Has stain'd my sceptre, and disgrac'd my name:
A name which once I could with honour boast,
But now the father of the people's lost.
Though in the secret paths of sin I trod,
Yet do not quite forsake me, O my GOD!
'Tis thou alone canst ease me of my pain,
Thy healing hand can wash out ev'ry stain,
Can purge my mind, and make the leper clean.
Though darkly thy mysterious prophet spoke,
Whilst from his lips the fatal message broke;
Fix'd and amaz'd, I stood confounded whole,
Too soon his dreadful meaning reach'd my soul:
Thou art the Man, has fix'd a deadly smart,
Thou art the Man, lies throbbing at my heart.
I am whate'er thy anger can express,
Nor can my sorrow make my follies less.

Rais'd and exalted to the first degree, Thy heav'nly will had made the monarch free: Indulg'd in ease, I rul'd without controul, And to its utmost wish enjoy'd my soul: Vain boast of pow'r which vanish'd into air, Since I forgot the LORD who fix'd me there. Was it for this thou gav'st the glorious land, And thy own flock committed to my hand? Was I the shepherd to go first astray, Till innocence itself became my prey?

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