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With sophistry their sauce they sweeten,
Till quite from tail to snout 'tis eaten.
NECESSARY TO THE HAPPINESS OF THE
The Lady thus addressed her spouse —
* What a mere dungeon is this house!
'By no means large enough; and was it, 'Yet this dull room, and that dark closet, 'Those hangings with their worn-out graces, 'Long beards, long noses, and pale faces, 'Are such an antiquated scene, 'They overwhelm me with the spleen.* Sir Humphrey, shooting in the dark, Makes answer quite beside the mark: 'No doubt, my dear, I bade him come, 'Engaged myself to be at home, 'And shall expect him at the door,
* Precisely when the clock strikes four."
'You are so deaf,' the lady cried,
(And raised her voice, and frown'd beside)
'You are so sadly deaf, my dear,
'What shall I do to make you hear y
'Dismiss poor Harry The replies;
'Some people are more nice than wise,
'For one slight trespass all this stir?
'What if he did ride whip and spur,
* 'Twas but a mile— your favourite horse 'Will never look one hair the worse.'
'Well, I protest 'tis past all bearing—' 'Child! I am rather hard of hearing—' 'Yes, truly—one must scream and bawl,
* I tell you, you can't hear at all!'
Then, with a voice-exceeding low,
'No matter if you hear or no.'
Alas! and is domestick strife,
That sorest ill of human life,
A plague so little to be fear'd,
As to be wantonly incurr'd,
To gratify a fretful passion,
On every trivial provocation?
The kindest and the happiest pair
Will find occasion to forbear;
And something, every day they live,
To pity, and perhaps forgive.
But if infirmities, that fall
In common to the lot of all,
A blemish, or a sense impair'd,
Are crimes so little to be spared,
Then farewell all, that must create
The comfort of the wedded state;
Instead of harmony 'tis jar,
And tumult, and intestine war.
The love, that cheers life's latest stage,
Proof against sickness and old age,
Preserved by virtue from declension,
Becomes not weary of attention;
But lives when that exterior grace,
Which first inspired the flame decays.
'Tis gentle, delicate, and kind,
To faults compassionate or blind,
And will with sympathy endure
Those evils, it would gladly cure;
But angry, coarse, and harsh expression
Shows love to be a mere profession;
Proves that the heart is none of his,
Or soon expels him if it is.
ON THE RECEIPT OF MY MOTHER'S PICTURE
OUT OF NORFOLK.
THE GIFT OF MY COUSIN, ANN BODHAM.
Oh that those lips had language! Life has pass'd
With me but roughly since I heard thee last.
Those lips are thine—thy own sweet smiles I see,
The same, that oft in childhood solaced me!
Voice only fails, else, how distinct they say,
'Grieve not my child, chase all thy fears away!'
The meek intelligence of those dear eyes
(Blest be the art that can immortalize,
The art that baffles time's tyrannick claim
To quench it) here shines on me still the same.
Faithful remembrancer of one so dear,
0 welcome guest, though unexpected here! Who bid'st me honour with an artless song, Affectionate, a mother lost so long.
1 will obey, not willingly alone,
But gladly, as the precept were her own:
And, while that face renews my filial grief,
Fancy shall weave a charm for my relief.
Shall steep me in Elysian reverie,
A momentary dream, that thou art Shb.
My Mother ! when I learned that thou wast dead,
Say, wast thou conscious of the tears I shed?
Hover'd thy spirit o'er thy sorrowing son,
Wretch even then, life's journey just begun?
Perhaps thou gavest me, though unseen, a kiss;
Perhaps a tear, if souls can weep in bliss— .
Ah that maternal smile! it answers —Yes.
I heard the bell toll'd on thy burial day,
I saw the hearse, that bore thee slow away.
And, turning from my nursery window, drew
A long, long sigh, and wept a last adieu!
But was it such ?—It was.—Where thou art gone
Adieus and farewells are a sound unknown.
May I but meet thee on that peaceful shore,
The parting sound shall pass my lips no more!
Thy maidens, grieved themselves at my concern,
Oft gave me promise of a quick return.
What ardently I wish'd, I long believed,
And, disappointed still, was still deceived.
By disappointment every day beguiled,
(Dupe of to-morrow even from a child,)
Thus many a sad to-morrow came and went,
Till, all my stock of infant sorrow spent,