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So he evading said: My evil fate
Upon my comforts throws a gloom of late:
Matilda writes not; and, when last she wrote,
I read no letter-'twas a trader's note,
Yours I received, and all that formal prate
That is so hateful, that she knows I hate.
Dejection reigns, I feel, but cannot tell
Why upon me the dire infection fell:
Madmen may say that they alone are sane,
And all beside have a distemper'd brain;
Something like this I feel, and I include
Myself among the frantic multitude:
But, come, Matilda writes, although but ill,
And home has health,and that is comfort still.

George stopp'd his horse, and with the

kindest look

Spoke to his Brother,-earnestly he spoke, As one who to his friend his heart reveals, And all the hazard with the comfort feels: Soon as I loved thee, Richard, and I loved Before my reason had the will approved, Who yet right early had her sanction lent, And with affection in her verdict went,So soon I felt, that thus a friend to gain, And then to lose, is but to purchase pain: Daily the pleasure grew, then sad the day That takes it all in its increase away! Patient thou wert, and kind, but well I knew

The husband's wishes, and the father's too; 1 saw how check'd they were, and yet in secret grew:

Once and again I urged thee to delay
Thy purposed journey, still deferr'd the day,
And still on its approach the pain increased,
Till my request and thy compliance ceased;
I could not further thy affection task,
Nor more of one so self-resisting ask;
But yet to lose thee, Richard, and with thee
All hope of social joys-it cannot be.
Nor could I bear to meet thee as a boy

From school, his parents, to obtain a joy
That lessens day by day, and one will soon
No! I would have thee, Brother, all my own,
To grow beside me as my trees have grown;
For ever near me, pleasant in my sight,
And in my mind, my pride and my delight.
Yet will I tell thee, Richard; had I found
Thy mind dependent and thy heart unsound,
Hadst thou been poor, obsequious, and dis-

With any wish or measure to have closed,
Willing on me and gladly to attend,
The younger brother, the convenient friend;
Thy speculation its reward had made
Like other ventures- thou hadst gain'd in
What reason urged, or Jacques esteem'd
thy due,

Thine had it been, and I, a trader too,
Had paid my debt, and home my Brother


Nor glad nor sorry that he came or went;

Who to his wife and children would have told,
They had an uncle, and the man was old;
Till every girl and boy had learn'd to prate
Of uncle George, his gout, and his estate.
Thus had we parted; but as now thou art,
I must not lose thee-No! I cannot part;
Is it in human nature to consent,
To give up all the good that heaven has lent,
All social ease and comfort to forego,
And live again the solitary? No!
We part no more, dear Richard! thou wilt

Thy Brother's help to teach thy boys to read ;
And I should love to hear Matilda's psalm,
To keep my spirit in a morning-calm,
And feel the soft devotion that prepares
The soul to rise above its earthly cares;
Then thou and I, an independent two,
May have our parties, and defend them too;
Thy liberal notions, and my loyal fears;
Will give us subjects for our future years;
We will for truth alone contend and read,
And our good Jacques shall oversee our creed.

Such were my views; and I had quickly made Some bold attempts my Brother to persuade To think as I did; but I knew too well, Whose now thou wert, with whom thou wert to dwell;

And why, I said, return him doubtful home, Six months to argue if he then would come Some six months after? and, beside, I know That all the happy are of course the slow; And thou at home art happy, there wilt stay, Dallying 'twixt will and will-not many a day, And fret the gloss of hope, and hope itself


Jacques is my friend ; to him I gave my heart:
You see my Brother, see I would not part;
Wilt thou an embassy of love disdain?
Gloss o'er my failings, paint me with a grace
Go to this sister, and my views explain;
That Love beholds, put meaning in my face;
Describe that dwelling; talk how well we live,
Praise the kind sisters whom we love so much,
And all its glory to our village give;
And thine own virtues like an artist touch.
Tell her, and here my secret purpose show,
That no dependence shall my sister know;
Hers all the freedom that she loves shall be,
And mine the debt, then press her to agree;
Say, that my Brother's wishes wait on hers,
And his affection what she wills prefers.

Forgive me, Brother, these my words and


Our friendly Rector to Matilda bore;
At large, at length, were all my views ex-

And to my joy my wishes I obtain'd.
Dwell in that house, and we shall still be near,
Absence and parting I no more shall fear;


And play their gambols when their tasks are done;

Dwell in thy home, and at thy will exclude | Here, on this lawn, thy boys and girls shall
All who shall dare upon thee to intrude.
Again thy pardon,-'twas not my design
To give surprise; a better view was mine:
But let it pass-and yet I wish'd to see
That meeting too: and happy may it be!

Thus George had spoken, and then look'd around,

And smiled as one who then his road had found;

There, from that window, shall their mother view

The happy tribe, and smile at all they do; While thou, more gravely, hiding thy delight,

Shalt cry: 0! childish! and enjoy the sight.


Follow! he cried, and briskly urged his horse:
Richard was puzzled, but obey'd of course; | Well, my dear Richard, there's no more to
He was affected like a man astray,
Lost, but yet knowing something of the way;
Till a wood clear'd, that still conceal'd the

Richard the purchase of his Brother knew; And something flash'd upon his mind not clear, But much with pleasure mix'd, in part with fear;

As one who wandering through a stormy night

Sees his own home, and gladdens at the sight, Yet feels some doubt if fortune had decreed That lively pleasure in such time of need; So Richard felt-but now the mansion came In view direct, he knew it for the same; There too the garden-walk, the elms design'd To guard the peaches from the eastern wind; And there the sloping glass, that when he shines

Gives the sun's vigour to the ripening vines— It is my Brother's!-No! he answers, No! 'Tis to thy own possession that we go; It is thy wife's, and will thy children's be, Earth, wood, and water!—all for thine and thee;

Bought in thy name- -Alight, my friend, and come,

I do beseech thee, to thy proper home; There wilt thou soon thy own Matilda view, She knows our deed, and she approves it too; Before her all our views and plans were laid, And Jacques was there t' explain and to persuade.

Stay, as you will-do any thing--but stay;
Be, I dispute not, steward-what you will,
Take your own name, but be my Brother

And hear me, Richard! if I should offend,
Assume the patron, and forget the friend;
If aught in word or manner I express
That only touches on thy happiness ;
If I be peevish, humoursome, unkind,
Spoil'd as I am by each subservient mind;
For I am humour'd by a tribe who make
Me more capricious for the pains they take
To make me quiet; shouldst thou ever feel
A wound from this, this leave not time to

But let thy wife her cheerful smile withhold,
Let her be civil, distant, cautious, cold;
Then shall I woo forgiveness, and repent,
Nor bear to lose the blessings Heaven has lent.

But this was needless—there was joy of heart,

All felt the good that all desired t' impart;
Respect, affection, and esteem combined,
In sundry portions ruled in every mind;
And o'er the whole an unobtrusive air
Of pious joy, that urged the silent prayer,
And bless'd the new-born feelings - Here
we close

Our Tale of Tales!- Health, reader, and repose!




Tam porro puer (ut sævis projectus ab undis, Navita) nudus humi jacet infans indigus omni Vitali auxilio,

Vagituque locum lugubri complet, ut æquum est, Cui tantum in vita restat transire malorum.

THE year revolves, and I again explore The simple annals of my parish-poor; What infant-members in my flock appear, What pairs I bless'd in the departed year; And who, of old or young,or nymphs or swains, Are lost to life, its pleasures and its pains. No Muse I ask, before my view to bring The humble actions of the swains I sing. How pass'd the youthful, how the old their days;

Who sank in sloth,and who aspired to praise;
Their tempers,manners, morals, customs,arts,
What parts they had, and how they 'mploy'd
their parts;

By what elated, soothed, seduced, depress'd,
Fall well I know—these records give the rest.
Is there a place, save one the poet sees,
A land of love, of liberty and ease;
Where labour wearies not, nor cares suppress
Th' eternal flow of rustic happiness;
Where no proud mansion frowns in awful

Or keeps the sunshine from the cottage-gate; Where young and old, intent on pleasure, throng,

And half man's life is holiday and song? Vain search for scenes like these! no view appears,

By sighs unruffled or unstain'd by tears; Since Vice the world subdued and waters drown'd,

Auburn and Eden can no more be found. Hence good and evil mix'd, but man has skill

And power to part them, when he feels the will!

Toil, care, and patience bless th' abstemious few,

Fear, shame, and want the thoughtless herd pursue.

Behold the cot! where thrives th' industrious swain, Source of his pride,his pleasure, and his gain; Screen'd from the winter's wind, the sun's last ray Smiles on the window and prolongs the day;

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Projecting thatch the woodbine's branches


And turn their blossoms to the casement's top: All need requires is in that cot contain'd, And much that Taste untaught and unrestrain'd

Surveys delighted; there she loves to trace, In one gay picture, all the royal race; Around the walls are heroes, lovers, kings; The print that shows them and the verse that sings.

Here the last Lewis on his throne is seen, And there he stands imprison'd,and his queen; To these the mother takes her child, and shows

What grateful duty to his God he owes ; Who gives to him a happy home, where he Lives and enjoys his freedom with the free; When kings and queens, dethroned, insulted, tried,

Are all these blessings of the poor denied. There is King Charles, and all his Golden Rules,

Who proved Misfortune's was the best of schools:

And there his son, who, tried by years of pain,
Proved that misfortunes may be sent in vain.
The magic-mill that grinds the gran'nams

Close at the side of kind Godiva hung;
She, of her favourite place the pride and joy,
Of charms at once most lavish and most coy,
By wanton act the purest fame could raise,
And give the boldest deed the chastest praise.
There stands the stoutest Ox in England fed;
There fights the boldest Jew, Whitechapel-

And here Saint Monday's worthy votaries live,

In all the joys that ale and skittles give. Now lo! in Egypt's coast that hostile fleet, By nations dreaded and by Nelson beat; And here shall soon another triumph come, A deed of glory in a day of gloom; Distressing glory! grievous boon of fate! The proudest conquest, at the dearest rate. On shelf of deal beside the cuckoo-clock, Of cottage-reading rests the chosen stock; Learning we lack, not books, but have a kind For all our wants, a meat for every mind: The tale for wonder and the joke for whim, The half-sung sermon and the half-groan'd hymn.

No need of classing; each within its place The feeling finger in the dark can trace; First from the corner, farthest from the wall, Such all the rules, and they suffice for all.

There pious works for Sunday's use are found;

Companions for that Bible newly bound; That Bible, bought by sixpence weekly saved, Has choicest prints by famous hands engraved;

Has choicest notes by many a famous head, Such as to doubt have rustic readers led; Have made them stop to reason why? and how?

And, where they once agreed, to cavil now. O! rather give me commentators plain, Who with no deep researches vex the brain; Who from the dark and doubtful love to run,

And hold their glimmering tapers to the


These are the peasant's joy, when, placed at ease,

Half his delighted offspring mount his knees.
To every cot the lord's indulgent mind
Has a small space for garden-ground assign'd;
Here- till return of morn dismiss'd the

The careful peasant plies the sinewy arm,
Warm'd as he works,and casts his look around
On every foot of that improving ground:
It is his own he sees; his master's eye
Peers not about, some secret fault to spy;
Nor voice severe is there, nor censure
Hope, profit, pleasure,—they are all his own.
Here grow the humble cives, and, hard by

Who simple truth with nine-fold reasons | The leek with crown globose and reedy


back, And guard the point no enemies attack. High climb his pulse in many an even row, Bunyan's famed Pilgrim rests that shelf Deep strike the ponderous roots in soil And herbs of potent smell and pungent taste,


A genius rare but rude was honest John;
Not one who, early by the Muse beguiled,
Drank from her well the waters undefiled;
Not one who slowly gain'd the hill sublime,
Then often sipp'd and little at a time;
But one who dabbled in the sacred springs,
And drank them muddy, mix'd with baser

Here to interpret dreams we read the rules,
Science our own! and never taught in schools;
In moles and specks we Fortune's gifts dis-


Give a warm relish to the night's repast. Apples and cherries grafted by his hand, And cluster'd nuts for neighbouring market stand.

Nor thus concludes his labour; near the cot,

The reed-fence rises round some fav'rite spot; Where rich carnations, pinks with purple eyes,

cern, Proud hyacinths, the least some florist's prize, And Fate's fix'd will from Nature's wander-Tulips tall-stemm'd and pounced auriculas ings learn.

Of Hermit Quarle we read, in island rare, Far from mankind and seeming far from


Safe from all want, and sound in every limb; Yes! there was he, and there was care with him.

Unbound and heap'd, these valued works beside,

Lay humbler works, the pedlar's pack supplied;

Yet these, long since, have all acquired a


The wandering Jew has found his way to fame; And fame, denied to many a labour'd song, Crowns Thumb the great, and Hickerthrift the strong. There too is he, by wizard-power upheld, Jack, by whose arm the giant-brood were quell'd:

His shoes of swiftness on his feet he placed; His coat of darkness on his loins he braced; His sword of sharpness in his hand he took, And off the heads of doughty giants stroke: Their glaring eyes beheld no mortal near; No sound of feet alarm'd the drowsy ear; No English blood their pagan sense could smell,

But heads dropt headlong, wondering why they fell.


Here on a Sunday-eve, when service ends,
Meet and rejoice a family of friends ;
All speak aloud, are happy and are free,
And glad they seem, and gaily they agree.
What, though fastidious cars may shun
the speech,

Where all are talkers and where none can teach;

Where still the welcome and the words are old,

And the same stories are for ever told;
Yet theirs is joy that, bursting from the heart.
Prompts the glad tongue these nothings to
impart ;

That forms these tones of gladness we despise, That lifts their steps, that sparkles in their eyes;

That talks or laughs or runs or shouts or plays,

And speaks in all their looks and all their ways. Fair scenes of peace! ye might detain us long,

But vice and misery now demand the song ; And turn our view from dwellings simply


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Riots are nightly heard:-the curse, the cries Of beaten wife, perverse in her replies; While shrieking children hold each threat'ning hand,

And sometimes life, and sometimes food demand:

Boys, in their first-stol'n rags, to swear begin, And girls, who heed not dress, are skill'd in gin:

Snarers and smugglers here their gains
Ensnaring females here their victims hide;
And here is one, the sibyl of the row,
Who knows all secrets, or affects to know;
Seeking their fate, to her the simple run,
To her the guilty, theirs awhile to shun;
Mistress of worthless arts, depraved in will,
Her care unblest and unrepaid her skill,
Slave to the tribe, to whose command she

And poorer than the poorest maid she dupes. Between the road - way and the walls, offence

Invades all eyes and strikes on every sense: There lie, obscene, at every open door, Heaps from the hearth and sweepings from the floor,

And day by day the mingled masses grow, As sinks are disembogued and kennels flow. There hungry dogs from hungry children


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See! as we gaze, an infant lifts its head, Left by neglect and burrow'd in that bed; The mother-gossip has the love suppress'd An infant's cry once waken'd in her breast; And daily prattles, as her round she takes, (With strong resentment) of the want she makes.

Whence all these woes?-From want of virtuous will,

Of honest shame, of time-improving skill; From want of care t' employ the vacant hour, And want of ev'ry kind but want of power. Here are no wheels for either wool or flax, But packs of cards-made up of sundry packs; Here is no clock, nor will they turn the glass, And see how swift th' important moments


Here are no books, but ballads on the wall,
Are some abusive, and indecent all;
Pistols are here, unpair'd; with nets and

Of every kind, for rivers, ponds, and brooks;
An ample flask, that nightly rovers fill
With recent poison from the Dutchman's still;
A box of tools, with wires of various size,
Frocks, wigs, and hats, for night- or day-

And bludgeons stout to gain or guard a prize. To every house belongs a space of ground, Of equal size, once fenced with paling round; That paling now by slothful waste destroy'd, Dead gorse and stumps of elder fill the void; Save in the centre-spot, whose walls of clay Hide sots and striplings at their drink or play: Within, a board, beneath a tiled retreat, Allures the bubble and maintains the cheat; Where heavy ale in spots like varnish shows, Where chalky tallies yet remain in rows; Black pipes and broken jugs the seats defile, The walls and windows, rhymes and reck'nings vile;

Prints of the meanest kind disgrace the door, And cards, in curses torn, lie fragments on the floor.

Here his poor bird th' inhuman cocker brings,

Arms his hard heel and clips his golden wings; With spicy food th' impatient spirit feeds, And shouts and curses as the battle bleeds. Struck through the brain, deprived of both his eyes,

The vanquish'd bird must combat till he dies; Must faintly peck at his victorious foe, And reel and stagger at each feeble blow: When fallen, the savage grasps his dabbled plumes,

His blood-stain'd arms for other deaths

assumes; And damns the craven-fowl, that lost his stake,

And only bled and perish'd for his sake. Such are our peasants, those to whom we yield

Praise with relief, the fathers of the field; And these who take from our reluctant hands, What Burn advises or the Bench commands.

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