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To prove at last my main intent
No cutting and contriving-
With stiil less hope of thriving. Sometimes the fault is all our own, Some blemish in due time made known
By trespass or omission; Sometimes occasion brings to light Our friend's defect long hid from sight,
And even from suspicion. Then judge yourself, and prove your man As circumspectly as you can,
And, having made election, Beware no negligence of yours, Such as a friend but ill endures,
Enfeeble his affection.
That secrets are a sacred trust,
That constancy befits them,
And all the world admits them.
To finish a fine building-
The carving and the gilding.
How he esteems your merit,
To pardon or to bear it.
First fixes our attention ;
Must save it from declension.
Some act upon this prudent plan,
Safe policy, but hateful-
Unpleasant and ungrateful.
The man I trust, if shy to me,
No subterfuge pleading
A spy on my proceeding.
Of evils yet unmention'd, -
However well intention'd.
Pursue the search, and you will find,
To be at least expedient,
A principal ingredient.
Though some have turn'd and turn'd it;
Have not, it seems, disceru'd it.
To mortify and grieve me,
Or may my friend deceive me!
The rose had been wash’d, just wash'd in a shower,
Which Mary to Anna convey'd,
And weigh'd down its beautiful head.
And it seem'd to a fanciful view,
On the flourishing bush where it grew.
For a nosegay, so dripping and drown'd,
I snapp'd it, it fell to the ground.
Some act by the delicate mind,
Already to sorrow resign’d.
Might have bloom'd with its owner a while ;
May be follow'd perhaps by a smile.
THE NEGRO'S COMPLAINT.
FORCED from home and all its pleasures,
Afric's coast I left forlorn ;
O’er the raging billows borne.
Paid my price in paltry gold;
Minds are never to be sold.
Still in thought as free as ever,
What are England's rights, I ask, Me from my delights to sever,
Me to torture, me to task ? Fleecy locks and black complexion,
Cannot forfeit Nature's claim ; Skins may differ, but affection
Dwells in white and black the same.
Why did all-creating Nature
Make the plant for which we toil ? Sighs must fan it, tears must water,
Sweat of ours must dress the soil, Think, ye masters iron-hearted,
Lolling at your jovial boards ; Think how many backs have smarted
For the sweets your cane affords.
Is there, as ye sometimes tells us,
Is there One who reigns on high ? Has he bid you buy and sell us,
Speaking from his throne the sky? Ask him, if your knotted scourges,
Matches, blood-extorting screws, Are the means which duty urges,
Agents of his will to use?
Hark! he answers—wild tornadoes,
Strewing yonder seas with wrecks : Wasting towns, plantations, meadows,
Are the voice, with which he speaks. He, foreseeing what vexations
Afric's sons should undergo, Fix'd their tyrant's habitations
Where his whirlwinds answer--no.
By our blood in Afric wasted,
Ere our necks received the chain ; By the mis’ries we have tasted,
Crossing in your barks the main; By our suff'rings, since ye brought us
To the man-degrading mart
Only by a broken heart:
Deem our nation brutes no longer,
Till some reason ye shall find
Than the colour of our kind.
Tarnish all your boasted powers,
Ere you proudly question ours !
When the British warrior queen,
Bleeding from the Roman rods,
Counsel of her country's gods,
Sage beneath the spreading oak
Sat the Druid, hoary chief;
Full of rage, and full of grief.
Princess ! if our aged eyes
Weep upon thy matchless wrongs, "Tis because resentment ties
All the terrors of our tongues.
Rome shall perish— write that word
In the blood that she has spilt ;
Deep in ruin as in guilt.
Rome, for empire far renown'd,
Tramples on a thousand states ;
Hark! the Gaul is at her gates !
Other Romans shall arise,
Heedless of a soldier's name; Sounds, not arms, shall win the prize,
Harmony the path to fame.