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(Hard is the fate of the infirm and poor!)
Here as I crav'd a morsel of their bread, A pamper'd menial drove me from the door,
To seek a shelter in a humbler shed.
Oh! take me to your hospitable dome,
Keen blows the wind and piercing is the cold! Short is my passage to the friendly tomb,
For I am poor and miserably old.
Should I reveal the sources of my grief,
If soft humanity e'er touch'd your breast, Your hands would not withhold the kind relief,
And tears of pity vould not be repress’d.
Heaven sends misfortunes—why should we repine! .
'Tis Heav'n has brought me to the state you see: And your condition may be soon like mine,
-The child of sorrow and of misery.
A little farm was my paternal lot,
Then like the lark I sprightly hail'd the morn, But, ah! oppression forc'd me from my cot,
My cattle dy'd and blighted was my corn.
My daughter-once the comfort of my age!
Lur'd by a villain from her native home, Is cast abandond on the world's wide stage,
And doom'd in scanty poverty to roam.
My tender wife-sweet soother of my care!
Struck with sad anguish at the stern decree, Fell— lingʻring fell, a victim to despair,
And left the world to wretchedness and me
Pity the sorrows of a poor old man!
Whose trembling limbs have borne him to your door, Whose days are dwindled to the shortest span;
Oh! give relief—and Heaven will bless your store.
HYMN TO BENEVOLENCE.
Hail, source of transport, ever new!
I taste a joy sincere !
Their wishes and their care.
Daughter of God! delight of man !
Which stili thy hand sustains;
And Discord gnash'd in chains.
Far as the pointed sunbeam flies
All nature owns thy nod;
From nothing e'en to God.
By thee inspir'd, the gen'rous breast,
With goodness large and free,
And aid the feeble knee.
O come! and o'er my bosom reign,
Through ev'ry action shine;
And make me wholly thine.
If from thy sacred paths I turn,
Nor with their pleasures glow: Banish'd from God, from bliss, and thee, My own tormentor let me be,
And groan in hopeless woe,
THE COUNTRY CLERGYMAN.
Ear yonder copse, where once the garden smild, And still where many a garden-flow'r grows wild; There, where a few torn shrubs the place disclose, The village preacher's modest mansion rose. A man he was, to all the country dear, And passing rich with forty pounds a-year; Remote from towns he ran his godly race, Nor e'er had chang'd, nor wish'd to change his place; Unpractis'd he to fawn, or seek for power, By doctrines fashion’d to the varying hour; Far other aims his heart had learn'd to prize, More skill'd to raise the wretched, than to rise. His house was known to all the vagrant train, He chid their wand'rings, but reliev'd their pain. The long-remember'd beggar was his guest, Whose beard descending swept his aged breast; The ruin'd spendthrift, now no longer proud, Claim'd kindred there, and had his claims allow'd; The broken soldier, kindly bade to stay, Sat by his fire, and talk'd the night away; Wept o'er his wounds, or tales of sorrow done, Shoulder'd his crutch, and show'd how fields were won. Pleas'd with his guests, the good man learn’d to glow, And quite forgot their vices in their woe;
Careless their merits or their faults to scan,
Thus to relieve the wretched' was his pride,
At church, with meek and unaffected grace,