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Far as the pointed sunbeam flies
Through peopled earth and starry skies,
All nature owns thy nod;
We see its energy prevail
Through being's ever-rising scale,
From nothing, e'en to God.
By thee inspired, the generous breast, In blessing others only blest;
With goodness large and free, Delights the widow's tears to stay, To teach the blind their smoothest way,
And aid the feeble knee.
O come! and o'er my bosom reign,
Expand my heart, inflame each vein,
Through every action shine;
Each low, each selfish wish control;
With all thy essence warm my soul,
And make me wholly thine.
If from thy sacred paths I turn,
Nor feel their griefs while others mourn
Nor with their pleasures glow: Banish'd from God, from bliss, and thee, My own tormentor let me be,
And groan in hopeless woe
Near yonder copse, where once the garden smiled,
And still where many a garden-flower grows wild ;
There, where a few torn shrubs the place disclose,
The village preacher's modest mansion rose.
A man he was, to all the country dear,
And passing rich with forty pounds a year ;
Remote from towns he ran his godly race,
Nor e'er had changed, nor wish'd to change his place;
Unpractised he to fawn, or seek for power,
By doctrines fashion'd to the varying hour ;
Far other aims his heart had learn'd to prize,
More skill'd to raise the wretched, than to rise.
His house was known to all the vagraut train,
He chid their wand'rings, but relieved their pain.
The long-remember'd beggar was his guest,
Whose beard descending swept his aged breast;
The ruin'd spendthrift, now no longer proud,
Claim'd kindred there, and had his claims allow'd;
The broken soldier, kindly bade to stay,
Sat by his fire and talk'd the night away :
Wept o'er his wounds, or tales of sorrow done,
Shoulder'd his crutch, and show'd how fields wete wom:
Pleased with his guests, the good man learn’d to glow,
And quite forgot their vices in their woe;
Careless their merits or their faults to scan,
His pity gave ere charity began.
Thus to relieve the wretched was his pride,
And e'en luis failings lean'd to virtue's side;
But in his duty prompt at every call,
He watch'd and wept, and pray'd, and felt, for all.
And as a bird each fond endearment tries
To tempt its new-fledged offspring to the skies ;
He tried each art, reproved each dull delay,
Allured to brighter worlds, and led the way.
Beside the bed where parting life was laid,
And sorrow, guilt, and pain, by turns dismay'd,
The reverend champion stood. At his control
Despair and anguish fled the struggling soul;
Comfort came down the trembling wretch to raise,
And his last faltering accents whisper'd praise.
At church, with meek and unaffected grace, His looks adorn'd the venerable place; Truth from his lips prevail'd with double sway, And fools who came to scoff, remain'd to pray. The service past, around the pious man, With ready zeal, each honest rustic ran; E'en children follow'd with endearing wile, And pluck'd his gown, to share the good man's smile. His ready smile a parent's warmth express'd, Their welfare pleased him, and their cares distress'd;
To them his heart, his love, his griefs were given;
But all his serious thoughts had rest in Heaven. 1 .'
As some tall cliff that lifts its awful form,
Swells from the vale, and midway leaves the storm,
Though round its breast the rolling clouds are spread,
Eternal sunshine settles on its head.
The Lord my pasture shall prepare,
And feed with me a shepherd's care ;
His presence shall my wants supply,
And guard me with a watchful eye;
My noon-day walks he shall attend,
And all my midnight hours defend.
When in the sultry glebe I faint,
Or on the thirsty mountain pant;
To fertile vales and dewy meads
My weary wandering steps he leads;
Where peaceful rivers, soft and slow,
Amid the verdant landscape flow.
Though in the paths of death I tread,
With gloomy horrors overspread,
My steadfast heart shall fear no ill,
For thou, O Lord, art with me still ;
Thy friendly crook shall give me aid,
And guide me through the dreadful shade.
Though in a bare and rugged way,
Through devious lonely wilds I stray,
Thy bounty shall my pains beguile:
The barren wilderness shall smile,
With sudden greens and herbage crown'd,
And streams shall murmur all around.
When all thy mercies, O my God!
My rising soul surveys ; Transported with the view, I'm lost
In wonder, love, and praise !
0! how shall words with equal warmth
The gratitude declare,
That glows within my ravish'd heart!
But thou canst read it there.