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Perhaps thou gav'st me, though unfelt, a kiss ;
Where once we dwelt our name is heard no more, Children not thine have trod my nurs’ry floor; And where the gard'ner Robin, day by day, Drew me to school along the public way, Delighted with my bauble coach, and wrapp'd In scarlet mantle warm, and velvet cap, 'Tis now become a hist'ry little known, That once we calld the pastral house our own. Shortliv'd possession ! but the record fair, That mem'ry keeps of all thy kindness there, Still outlives many a storm, that has effac'd A thousand other themes less deeply trac'd.
Thy nightly visits to my chamber made, That thou mightst know me safe and warmly laid ; Thy morning bounties ere I left my home, The biscuit, or confectionary plum; The fragrant waters on my cheeks bestow'd By thy own hand, till fresh they shone and glow'd : All this, and more endearing still than all, Thy constant flow of love, that knew no fall, Ne'er roughen’d by those cataracts and breaks, That humour interpos'd too often makes; All this still legible in mem’ry's page, And still to be so to my latest age, Adds joy to duty, makes me glad to pay Such honours to thee as my numbers may; Perhaps a frail memorial, but sincere, Not scorn'd in Heav'n, though little notic'd here,
Could Time, his flight revers'd, restore the hours, When, playing with thy vesture's tissu'd flow'rs, The violet, the pink, and jessamine, I prick'd them into paper with a pin, (And thou wast happier than myself the while, Wouldst softly speak, and stroke my head, and smile) Could those few pleasant days again appear, Might one wish bring them, would I wish them here? I would not trust my heart-the dear delight Seems so to be desir'd, perhaps I might.But no-what here we call our life is such, So little to be lov'd, and thou so much, That I should ill requite thee to constrain Thy unbound spirit into bonds again.
Thou, as a gallant bark from Albion's coast (the storms all weather'd and the ocean cross'd)
156 ON THE RECEIPT OF MY MOTHER'S PICTURE.
Shoots into port at some well-haven'd isle,
What virtue, or what mental grace,
Will boast it their possession ?
And dulness of discretion.
If every polish'd gem we find
Provoke to imitation;
Or rather constellation,
No knave but boldly will pretend
A real and a sound one ;
And dream that he had found one.
Candid, and generous, and just,
An error soon corrected
Is most to be suspected? VOL, XXXVII.
But here again a danger lies,
And taken trash for treasure,
A mere Utopian pleasure.
An acquisition rather rare
Nor is it wise complaining,
We sought without attaining.
No friendship will abide the test,
Or mean self-love erected ;
For vicious ends connected.
Who seek a friend should come dispos’d; To' exhibit in full bloom disclos'd
T'he graces and the beauties, That form the character he seeks, For 'tis a union, that bespeaks
Mutual attention is implied,
And constantly supported;
Our own as much distorted.