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The first Sit years of human life

Like the year's opening month arc found;

Conimenc'd in being's natal strife,

With little obvious produce crown'd;

For when six years their course have run,

Existence scarcely is begun.

'Twas thus, we find, in Mirzah's dream,
That bridge which human life portray'd

Was veil'd from sight at each extreme
As by impenetrable shade;

And only what the Genius told

Could its beginning—end, unfold.

The next six years of life lead on
To boyhood's hopes, and boyhood's fears:

And February, ere 'tis gone,
An emblem of this age appears:

No fruit we find, no lasting flowers,

But mind begins to feel its powers.

i As outward nature now prepares

For finite man the face of earth, And length'ning dny to sight declares

The laughing Spring's approaching birth: So does the glance of boyhood's eye Betoken youth is drawing nigh.

M*Krn follows next; the voice of song
Is heard, and gardens brightly bloom;

Though stormy winds may sweep along,
Their sound inspires no moody gloom;

Though clouds, at times, perchance may lower,

We look beyond the present hour!

And thus does youth, with eye elate,
At blithe Kightken existence view;

Nor stormy winds, nor clouds abate
The wild bird's music, flow'ret's hue:

Life is to him a waking vision, -,

And earth a paradise Elysian.

Now Awl lavishly unfolds

The violet's bloom, the chesnnt's flowers; And, amid weeping clouds, beholds.

With smiling eye, her verdant bowers; And, ere she bids those bowers farewell. Wooes Love to bless them with his spell.

Now too the youth to manhood grown,
From fond eighteen to Twenty-four,

Thinks time mis-spent, if spent alone,
Or flies to solitude the more,

As ardent and romantic love

A source of pain or bliss may prove.

Then May comes on! delightful May!

Dispensing, ere she bid adieu, More genial airs, and skies more gay,

Than wnken'd April's changeful hue: The dnys have nearly rcach'd their length And beauty its more lusty strength.

Man too, at Thirty, may be found,
For intellectual powers at least,

In his best prime, with vigour crown'd,
His earlier ardours scarce decreaa'd,

Although he may not now enjoy

Much that gave pleasure to the boy.

In June some earlier fruits have caught
Their ripen'd glory from the sun;

And other joys to sense are brought
Than can from sight alone be won;

Beauty with usefulness combines,

And from such union brighter shine*.

And thus, when man is Thirty-six,
Some ripening fruits of sager reason

Should with life's lingering blossoms mix,
To dignify that prouder season;

Nor should we then, in friendship, choon

The man who only could amuse!

The sultry noontide of July

Next bids us seek the forest's shade; Or for the crystal streamlet sigh,

That flows in some scquestcr'd glade: Sated with sunshine and with flowers. We learn that life has languid hours.

And he who lives to Forty-two.

Nor has this needful truth been tanght.

That calm retirement must renew,

From time to time, the springs of thought.

Or who would such renewal Shun.

Is, by his folly, half undone!

'Tis not enough to say: "We know,
As yet, no chilling, wintry blight;"

For noontide's fierce, unshaded glow

May wither, when it beams moat bright;

He that hopes evening's tranquil smile.

Must in his zenith pause awhile!

The husbandmen in August reap
The produce of their labours past;

Or, if the ling'ring season keep

Their recompense delay'd, will cast

A frequent glance around, and try

To guess what harvest may supply.

Thus too should man, at Fobtv-eight.
Turn inward to a harvest there;

His mental crops should calculate.
And for their gath'ring-in prepare;

'Tis prudent to look round, and sec

What such a Haeyest-iiowb may be!

September's morn and eve are chill.

Reminding us that time rolls on; And Winter, though delaying still

His wither'd features, woe-begone. On day's decreasing length encroaching. Gives token of his sure approaching.

And let not man at Fifty-four,

Though, like September's noon, he may, At times, be cloudless as of yore,

O'erlook its dawning, closing day;
But by the length'ning nights be taught
Increasing seriousness of thought!

The sere leaf, flitting on the blast,
The hips and haws in every hedge,

Bespeak October come! At last

We stand on Winter's crumbling edge;

Like Nature's opening grave, we eye

The two brief months not yet gone by.

And he who has attain'd Three-score,
Should bear in mind that sere old age

Must, in a few years, less or more,
Conclude his mortal pilgrimage;

And seek to stand aloof from all

That meditation might enthral.

November's clouds are gathering round,
Dispensing darker, deeper gloom;

And Nature, as with awe profound,
Waits her irrevocable doom;

Watching the pale sun's fitful gleam

Through the dense fogs that veil his beam.

And thus, in human life's November,
When Sixty Years And Six are by,

'Tin time that man should oft remember
The hour approaches he mnst die!

TrHC, he may linger to four-score,

But death is waiting at the door!

December closes on the scene;

And what appear the months gone past? Fragments of time, which once have been!

Succeeding slowly, fled too fast Their minutes, hours, and days appear Viewless in that small point, A Yeab!

The man, too, with the year has fled, Three-score And Twelve pronoune'd his doom;

As nature's beauties now seem dead,
His relics rest within the tomb;

Yet both a future life shall see;

His —prove an Immortality!


Ilut if a man live many yean, and rejoice in them all, yet let him remember the day of dark new, for they shall be many. Ecclrsi I>te>, Xi. 8.

I Have not yet lived many years.

Nor have those years been calmly bright; For many cares, and griefs, and fears,

Have darkly veil'd their light: Yet, even now, at times I deem,

To contemplation's pensive eye, Symptoms exist, by which 'twould seem

That darker days draw nigh.

The early flush of sanguine hope,

Which once, elate in confidence, With disappointment well could cope,

And wrestle with suspense;
The vivid warmth of fancy's glow,

Which by its own creative powers Could body forth, on earth below,

The forms of brighter bowers:

The young imaginings of thought,

Freshness of feeling,—all that made
Existence with enchantment fraught,

At times seem wrapt in shade:
And moods of mind will come nnbid,

When dark and darker grows the gloom, Within whose depths obscure, half hid,

Appears the opening tomb!

I will not say that all is night;

For reason's pallid lamp,—the ray
Of revelation's glorious light,

At seasons let in day;
And by its beams, in mercy given,

That soul-enthralling, fearful gloom Unfolds, when thus asunder riven,

A vista through the tomb.

But oh! within, above, around,
Enough is darkly overcast.

From which this painful truth is found-
Life's brightest days are past:

And many a mournful sign appeals
Unto my musing spirit's eye,

Which, to my pensive thought, reveals
That darker days are nigh.

And let them come!—Shall man receive.

In this probationary state,
Good from his God, yet weakly grieve

When He, as wise as great,
Sees right, with merciful design,

To send that salutary ill. Which, meekly borne, through love benign,

Effects his gracious will?

The cloudless glory of morn's sky,

Which ushers in a beauteous day. What time the viewless lark, on high,

('haunts forth his cheerful lay, Is beautiful; but clouds, and showers,

And mists, although they may appear Less lovely than those sun-bright hours.

To Nature are as dear.

The lavish luxury of Spring,

When flowers are bursting into bloom, And tints upon an insect's wing

Out-rival Oi inns loom;

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A meek and quiet spirit gives,

When earth's brief path is trod, To those it bless'd—what still outlives

That spirit's senseless clod; Feelings and thoughts, in part divine, Which live along the length'ning line

Of being—up to God!
And terminate their blissful course
In union with their parent-source!

Believing such high destiny

To be thy blest estate; Immortal spirit! can I sigh

Thy lot to contemplate't No—and though little there might seem In thee for bard's, or painter's theme,

Of high, of rich, of great, Yet beyond rank, wealth, beauty,—all! I love thy virtue's gentler thrall.


The Snow-drop, herald of the spring,

In storm or sunshine born, Some passing images may bring

Of being's varied morn.

When blasts are chill, and clouds are dark,

Its helpless, fragile bloom Appears as set for misery's mark,

To sink in hopeless gloom.

If mild the gale, and bright the beam,

Its beauties charm the eye,
And, while we gaze, we almost dream

That summer-hours are nigh.

But trustless are the outward signs

Which waken hope or fear; The flower whose birth in sunlight shineB,

Chill blasts the soonest sere.

The bud that cold winds nipt at first.

A happier lot may know;
In warmer airs to life may burst,

In brighter sunshine glow.

Thus shall the nursling of despair
Fond sighs and tears requite;

And shine in after-life more fair

Than some whose morn was bright.

Light clouds, that pass in shadow o'er,
Render its hues more bright;

Soft showers may fall, yet these restore
Fresh fragrance to delight.

And thus the shade on Boyhood's cheek

By smiles is chas'd away; The tear which transient grief would speak

But leaves the eye more gay.

The clouds whose darkness threatens life,

Winds of autumnal tone,
Of Winter's storms the fearful strife—

To it are things unknown.

Unknown to Boyhood, too, the stormi
Which after-years may roll

O'er all the beauty that now forms
The summer of its soul.

But mind, immortal, through the gloom
May glorious warfare wage;

And know, when faded Boyhood's bloom. Fresh greenness in old age.


Thr Rose which greets the smile of June,

Unfolding in its joy,
When birds and bees their carols tunc,

May typify The Boy.


The ripen'd corn which clothes in gold
The autumnal landscape round,

Is fair; as comely to behold
Is ripen'd Manhood found.

Hope to fruition now must yield,

The joy of harvest nigh,
In all its plenteousness reveal'd

Before the gazer's eye.

If cultureless that soil had laid,
What now could be its own,

Be what they might its light and shade.
But barrenness alone?

Nor can mere Manhood bring to view Aught more to be enjoyed,

If the mind's spring and summer too Have pass'd by unemployed.

Yet sce'd well sown, and ripe to reap.

May profit fail to win; Prudence no jubilee will keep,

Unknown the gathering in.

When safe into the garner brought.

The triumph is secure; And then, alone, to grateful thought

The joy of harvest pure!

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