Page images

Some are so placid and serene
(As Irish bogs are always green)

They sleep secure from waking;
And are indeed a bog, that bears
Your unparticipated cares

Unmoved and without quaking.

Courtier and patriot cannot mix
Their heterogeneous politics

Without an effervescence,
Like that of salts with lemon juice,
Which does not yet like that produce

A friendly coalescence.

Religion should extinguish strife,
And make a calm of human life ;

But friends that chance to differ
On points which God has left at large,
How freely will they meet and charge!

No combatants are stiffer.

To prove at last my main intent
Needs no expense of argument,

No cutting and contriving-
Seeking a real friend, we seem
To adopt the chemist's golden dream,

With still less hope of thriving.

Sometimes the fault is all our own, Some blemish in due time made known

By trespass or omission;

Sometimes occasion brings to light is Our friend's defect, long hid from sight,

And even from suspicion.

Then judge yourself, and prove your man As circumspectly as you can,

And, having made election, Beware no negligence of yours, Such as a friend but ill endures,

Enfeeble his affection.

That secrets are a sacred trust,
That friends should be sincere and just,

That constancy befits them,
Are observations on the case,
That savour much of common place,'

And all the world admits them.

But 'tis not timber, lead, and stone,
An architect requires alone

To finish a fine building-
The palace were but half complete,
If he could possibly forget

The carving and the gilding.

[ocr errors]

The man that hails you Tom or Jack,
And proves by thumps upon your back

How he esteems your merit,
Is such a friend, that one had need

much his friend indeed To pardon or to bear it.

As similarity of mind,
Or something not to be defined,

First fixes our attention;
So manners decent and polite,
The same we practised at first sight,

Must save it from declension.


Some act upon this prudent plan,
Say little, and hear all you can.”

Safe policy, but hateful-
So barren sands imbibe the shower,
But render neither fruit nor flower,

Unpleasant and ungrateful.

The man I trust, if shy to me,
Shall find me as reserved as he,

No subterfuge or pleading
Shall win my confidence again ;
I will by no means entertain

A spy on my proceeding.

These samples

for alas ! at last These are but samples, and a taste

Of evils yet unmention'd
May prove the task a task indeed,
In which 'tis much if we succeed,

However well intention'd.

Pursue the search, and you will find Good sense and knowledge of mankind

To be at least expedient,

And, after summing all the rest,
Religion ruling in the breast

A principal ingredient.

The noblest Friendship ever shown
The Saviour's history makes known,

Though some have turn'd and turn'd it ;
And, whether being crazed or blind,
Or seeking with a biass'd mind,

Have not, it seems, discern'd it.

O Friendship! if my soul forego
Thy dear delights while here below,

To mortify and grieve me,
May I myself at last appear
Unworthy, base, and insincere,

Or may my friend deceive me!

[blocks in formation]

Go-thou art all unfit to share

The pleasures of this place With such as its old tenants are,

Creatures of gentler race.

The squirrel here his hoard provides,

Aware of wintry storms,
And woodpeckers explore the sides

Of rugged oaks for worms.

The sheep here'smooths the knotted thorn

With frictions of her fleece ; And here I wander eve and morn,

Like her, a friend to peace.

Ah!- I could pity thee exiled

From this secure retreat-
I would not lose it to be styled

The happiest of the great.

But thou canst taste no calm delight;

Thy pleasure is to show Thy magnanimity in fight,

Thy prowess—therefore, go

I care not whether east or north,

So I no more may find thee;
The angry muse thus sings thee forth,

And claps the gate behind ee.

« PreviousContinue »