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Ah self-deceiv'd! Could I prophetick say

Who next is fated, and who next to fall, The rest might then seem privileg'd to play ;

But naming none, the voice now speaks to ALL.

Observe the dappled foresters, how light

They bound and airy o'er the sunny gladeOne falls—the rest, wide scatter'd with affright,

Vanish at once into tho darkest shade.

Had we their wisdom, should we, often warn'd,

Still need repeated warnings, and at last, A thousand awful admonitions scorn'd,

Die self-accus'd of life run all to waste ?

Sad waste! for which no after-thrift atones,

The gravo admits no cure for guilt or sin;
Dew-drops may deck the turf that hides the bones,

But tears of godly grief ne'er flow within.

Learn then ye living ! by the mouths be taught

Of all these sepulchres, instructers true, That, soon or late, death also is your lot,

And the next op'ning grave may yawn for you.

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ON A SIMILAR OCCASION,

FOR THE YEAR 1789.

....Placidaque ibu demum morte quiedit. VIBG. There calm at length he breath'd his soul away.

"O MOST delightful hour by man

Experienc'd here below,
The hour that terminates his span,

His folly, and his wo!

Worlds should not bribe me back to tread

Again life's dreary waste,
To see again my day o'erspread

With all the gloomy past.

My home henceforth is in the skies,

Earth, seas, and sun, adieu ! All Heav'n unfolded to my eyes,

I have no sight for you.”

So spake Aspasio, firm possess'd

Of faith's supporting rod,
Then breath'd his soul into its rest,

The bosom of his God.

He was a man among the few

Sincere on virtue's side ;
And all his strength from Scripture drew,

To hourly use applied.

That rule he priz'd, by that he fear'd,

He hated, hop'd, and lov’d;
Nor ever frown'd, or sad appear'd

But when his heart had rov'd.

For he was frail as thou or I,

And evil felt within ;
But when he felt it heav'd a sigh,

And loath'd the thought of sin.

Such liv'd Aspasio ; and at last

Call’d up from Earth to Heav'o,
The gulf of death triumphant pass'd,

By gales of blessing driv'n.
His joys be mine, each Reader cries,

When my last hour arrives :
They shall be yours, my verse replies,

Such only be your lives.

ON A SIMILAR OCCASION,

FOR THE YEAR 1790.

Buchanan.

Ne commonentem recta sperne.
Despise not my good counsel.

HE who sits from day to day,

Where the prison'd lark is hung, Heedless of his loudest lay,

Hardly knows that he has sung.

Where the watchman in his round

Nightly lifts his voice on high, None, accustom'd to the sound,

Wakes the sooner for his cry.

So your verseman I and clerk,

Yearly in my song proclaim
Death at hand-yourselves his mark-

And the foes unorring aim.

Duly at my time I come,

Publishing to all aloud-
Soon the grave must be your home,

And your only suit, a shroud.

But the monitory strain,

Oft repeated in your ears, Seems to sound too much in vain,

Wins no notice, wakes no fears.

Can a truth, by all confess'd

Of such magnitude and weight, Grow, by being oft impress'd,

Trivial as a parrot's prate?

Pleasure's call attention wins,

Hear it often as we may ; New as ever seem our sins,

Though committed every day.

Death and Judgment, Heaven and Hell :

These alone, so often heard, No more move us than the bell,

When some stranger is interr’d.

O then, ere the turf or tomb

Cover us from every eye, Spirit of instruction come,

Make us learn, that we must die,

ON A SIMILAR OCCASION,

FOR THE YEAR 1792.

Feliz, qui potuit rerum cognoscere causas,
Atque metus omnes et inexorabile fatum
Subjecit pedibus, strepitumque Acherontis avari!

Virg.
Happy the mortal, who has trac'd effects
To their first cause, cast fear beneath his feet,
stand death, and roaring Hell's voracious fires !

THANKLESS for favours from on high

Man thinks he fades too soon ; Though 'tis his privilege to die,

Would he improve the boon.

But he, not wise enough to scan

His best concerns aright,
Would gladly stretch life's little span

To ages, if he might. .

To ages in a world of pain,

To ages, where he goes
Gall'd by affliction's heavy chain,

And hopeless of repose.

Strange fondness of the human heart,

Enamour'd of its harm!
Strange world, that costs it so much smart,

And still has pow'r to charm.

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