Full well the busy whisper, circling round,
Convey'd the dismal tidings when he frown'd;
Yet he was kind, or, if severe in aught,
The love he bore to learning was in fault;
The village all declar'd how much he knew-
'Twas certain he could write, and cypher too ;
Lands he could measure, terms and tides presage,
And even the story ran that he could guage;
In arguing too, the parson own'd his skill,
For even tho' vanquish’d, he could argue still;
While words of learned length and thund'ring sound,
Amaz'd the gazing rustics rang’d around,
And still they gaz'd, and still the wonder grew,
That one small head could carry all he knew.
But past is all his fame: The very spot
Where many a time he triumph’d, is forgot!

Near yonder thorn, that lifts its head on high,
Where once the sign-post caught the passing eye,
Low lies that house where nut-browndraughts inspir'd,
Where grey-beard mirth and smiling toil retir’d,
Where village statesmen talk'd with looks profound,
And news much older than their ale went round.
Imagination fondly stoops to trace
The parlour splendors of that festive place;
The white-wash'd wall, the nicely sanded floor,
The varnish'd clock that click'd behind the door;
The chest, contriv'd a double debt to pay,
A bed by night, a chest of drawers by day;
The pictures plac'd for ornament and use,
The Twelve Good Rules, the Royal Game of Goose;
The hearth, except when winter chillid the day,
With aspin boughs, and flow'rs, and fennel gay,


While broken tea-cups, wisely kept for show, Rang’d o'er the chimney, glisten’d in a row.

Vain transitory splendors! could not all Reprieve the tott'ring mansion from its fall! Obscure it sinks; nor shall it more impart An hour's importance to the poor man's heart : Thither no more the peasant shall repair, To sweet oblivion of his daily care; No more the farmer's news, the barber's tale, No more the woodman's ballad shall prevail; No more the smith his dusky brow shall clear, Relax his pond'rous strength, and lean to hear; The host himself no longer Mall be found Careful to see the mantling bliss go round; Nor the coy maid, half willing to be prest, Shall kiss the cup, to pass it to the rest.

Yes! let the rich deride, the proud disdain These simple blessings of the lowly train To me more dear, congenial to my heart, One native charm, than all the gloss of art; Spontaneous joys, where nature has its play, The soul adopts, and owns their first-born sway; Lightly they frolic o'er the vacant mind, Unenvy'd, unmolested, unconfind. But the long pomp, the midnight masquerade, With all the freaks of wanton wealth array'd In these, ere triflers half their wish obtain, The toiling pleasure fickens into pain; And, even while fashion's brightest arts decoy, The heart, distrusting, alks if this be joy.

Ye friends to truth-ye statesmen who survey The rich man's joys encrease, the poor's decay



While, scourg'd by famine from the smiling land,
The mournful peasant leads his humble band;
And while he sinks, without one arm to save,
The country blooms-a garden and a grave.

Where then, ah! where shall poverty reside,
To 'scape the pressure of contiguous pride?
If to some common's fenceless limits stray'd,
He drives his flock to pick the scanty blade,
Those fenceless fields the sons of wealth divide,
And even the bare-worn common is deny’d.

If to the city sped-what waits him there?
To see profusion that he must not share;
To see ten thousand baneful arts combin'd
To pamper luxury, and thin mankind;
To fee each joy, the sons of pleasure know,
Extorted from his fellow-creatures' woe;
Here, while the courtier glitters in brocade,
There the pale artist plies the sickly trade;
Here, while the proud their long-drawn pomps display,
There the black gibbet glooms beside the

The dome where pleasure holds her midnight reign,
Here, richly deckt, admits the gorgeous train;
Tumultuous grandeur crowds the blazing square,
The rattling chariots clash, the torches glare.
Sure scenes like these no troubles e'er annoy!
Sure these denote one universal joy!
Are these thy serious thoughts?—Ah, turn thine eyes
Where the poor houseless shiv'ring female lies!
She once, perhaps, in village plenty blest,
Has wept at tales of innocence distrest;
Her modest looks the cottage might adorn,
Sweet as the primrose peeps beneath the thorn:

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Now lost to all-her friends, her virtue fled,
Near her betrayer's door she lays her head,
And, pinch'd with cold,and shrinking from the show'r,
With heavy heart deplores that luckless hour,
When idly first, ambitious of the town,
She left her wheel and robes of country brown.

Do thine, sweet Auburn-thine, the loveliest train,
Do thy fair tribes participate her pain?
Even now, perhaps, by cold and hunger led,
At proud men's doors they ask a little bread!

Ah! no. To distant climes, a dreary scene, Where half the convex world intrudes betweenThro’ torrid tracts with fainting steps they go, Where wild Altama murmurs to their woe. Far different there from all that charm'd before, The various terrors of that horrid shore; Those blazing suns that dart a downward ray, And fiercely shed intolerable day; Those matted woods where birds forget to sing, But silent bats in drowsy clusters cling; Those pois'nous fields, with rank luxuriance crown'd, Where the dark scorpion gathers death around; Where, at each step, the stranger fears to wake The rattling terrors of the vengeful snake! Where crouching tigers wait their hapless prey, And savage men, more murd'rous still than they; While oft in whirls the mad tornado flies, Mingling the ravag'd landscape with the skies: Far different these from every former sceneThe cooling brook, the graffy vested green, The breezy covert of the warbling grove, That only shelter'd thefts of harmless love.

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