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So Tongue was the lawyer, and argued the cause With a great deal of skill, and a wig full of learning;
While chief baron Ear sat to balance the laws,
So fam'd for his talent in nicely discerning.
In behalf of the Nose 'twill quickly appear,
And your lordship, he said, will undoubtedly find That the Nose has had spectacles always in wear, Which amounts to possession time out of mind. Then holding the spectacles up to the court— Your lordship observes they're made with a straddle,
As wide as the ridge of the Nose is; in short,
Design'd to sit close to it, just like a saddle.
Again would your lordship a moment suppose
('Tis a case that has happen'd, and may be again)
That the visage or countenance had not a nose,
Pray who would, or who could, wear spectacles
On the whole it appears, and my argument shows,
With a reasoning the court will never condemn,
That the spectacles plainly were made for the Nose,
And the Nose was as plainly intended for them.
Then shifting his side, (as a lawyer knows how)
He pleaded again in behalf of the Eyes:
But what were his arguments few people know,
For the court did not think they were equally wise.
So his lordship decreed, with a grave solemn tone,
Decisive and clear, without one if or but—
That, whenever the Nose put his spectacles on,
By daylight or candlelight-Eyes should be shut!
INSCRIPTION UNDER THE PICTURE OF
AN AGED NEGRO WOMAN.
ART thou a Woman?-so am I; and all
That woman can be, I have been, or am;
A daughter, sister, consort, mother, widow:
Whiche'er of these thou art, O be the friend
Of one who is what thou canst never be!
Look on thyself, thy kindred, home, and country;
Then fall upon thy knees, and cry, " Thank God,
An English woman cannot be A SLAVE!"
Art thou a Man?-O! I have known, have lov'd,
And lost, all that to woman man can be;
A father, brother, husband, son; who shar'd
My bliss in freedom, and my woe in bondage.
A childless widow now, a friendless slave,
What shall I ask of thee, since I have nought
To lose but life's sad burthen; nought to gain
But heaven's repose?-these are beyond thy power;
Me thou canst neither wrong nor help;-what then?
Go to the bosom of thy family,
Gather thy little children round thy knees,
Gaze on their innocence; their clear full eyes,
All fix'd on thine; and in their mother, mark
The loveliest look that woman's face can wear,
Her look of love, beholding them and thee:
Then at the altar of your household joys,
Vow one by one, vow altogether, vow
With heart and voice, eternal enmity
Against oppression by your brethren's hands;
Till man or woman under Britain's laws,
Nor son, nor daughter, born within her empire,
Shall buy, or sell, or hold, or be a slave.
PLEASURES OF MEMORY.
OFT may the spirits of the dead descend,
To watch the silent slumbers of a friend;
To hover round his evening-walk unseen,
And hold sweet converse on the dusky green;
To hail the spot where first their friendship grew,
And heaven and nature open'd to their view!
Oft, when he trims his cheerful heart, and sees
A smiling circle, emulous to please;
There may these gentle guests delight to dwell,
And bless the scene they lov'd in life so well!
O thou! with whom my heart was wont to share
From reason's dawn each pleasure and each care;
With whom, alas! I fondly hop'd to know
The humble walks of happiness below;
If thy blest nature now unites above
An angel's pity with a brother's love,
Still o'er my life preserve thy mild controul,
Correct my views, and elevate my soul:
Grant me thy peace and purity of mind,
Devout, yet cheerful, active, yet resign'd;
Grant me, like thee, whose heart knew no disguise,
Whose blameless wishes never aim'd to rise,
To meet the changes time and chance present,
With modest dignity and calm content.
When thy last breath, ere nature sunk to rest,
Thy meek submission to thy God express'd;
When thy last look, ere thought and feeling fled,
A mingled gleam of hope and triumph shed;
What to thy soul its glad assurance gave,
Its hope in death, its triumph o'er the grave?
The sweet remembrance of unblemish'd youth,
The inspiring voice of innocence and truth!
Hail, Memory, hail! in thy exhaustless mine
From age to age unnumber'd treasures shine!
Thought and her shadowy brood thy call obey,
And place and time are subject to thy sway!
Thy pleasures most we feel when most alone;
The only pleasures we can call our own.
Lighter than air, hope's summer-visions die,
If but a fleeting cloud obscure the sky;
If but a beam of sober reason play,
Lo, fancy's fairy frost-work melts away!
But can the wiles of art, the grasp of power,
Snatch the rich relics of a well-spent hour?
These, when the trembling spirit wings her flight,
Pour round her path a stream of living light;
And gild those pure and perfect realms of rest,
Where virtue triumphs, and her sons are blest!
THE NEEDLESS ALARM.
THERE is a field, through which I often pass,
Thick overspread with moss and silky grass,
Adjoining close to Kilwick's echoing wood,
Where oft the bitch-fox hides her hapless brood,
Reserv'd to solace many a neigbouring squire,
That he may follow them through brake and brier,
Contusion hazarding of neck or spine,
Which rural gentlemen call sport divine.
A narrow brook, by rushy banks conceal'd,
Runs in a bottom, and divides the field;
Oaks intersperse it, that had once a head,
But now wear crests of oven-wood instead;
And where the land slopes to its wat'ry bourn,
Wide yawns a gulf beside a ragged thorn;
Bricks line the sides, but shiver'd long ago,
And horrid brambles intertwine below;
A hollow scoop'd, I judge, in ancient time,
For baking earth, or burning rock to lime.
Not yet the hawthorn bore her berries red,
With which the fieldfare, wintry guest, is fed;
Nor autumn yet had brush'd from every spray,
With her chill hand, the mellow leaves away:
But corn was hous'd, and beans were in the stack;
Now therefore issued forth the spotted pack,
With tails high mounted, ears hung low, and throats,
With a whole gamut fill'd of heav'nly notes,
For which, alas! my destiny severe,
Though ears she gave me two, gave me no ear.
The sun, accomplishing his early march,
His lamp now planted on heaven's topmost arch,
When, exercise and air my only aim,
And heedless whither, to that field I came,
Ere yet with ruthless joy the happy hound
Told hill and dale that Reynard's track was found,
Or with the high-rais'd horn's melodious clang
All Kilwick and all Dinglederry rang.
Sheep graz'd the field; some with soft bosom
The herb as soft, while nibbling stray'd the rest;
Nor noise was heard but of the hasty brook,
Struggling, detain'd in many a petty nook.
All seem'd so peaceful, that, from them convey'd,
To me their peace by kind contagion spread.
But when the huntsman, with distended cheek, 'Gan make his instrument of music speak, And from within the wood that crash was heard, Though not a hound from whom it burst appear'd, The sheep recumbent, and the sheep that graz'd, All huddling into phalanx, stood and gaz'd,