Imágenes de páginas

The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart, and soul
Of all my moral being.

4. Nature never did betray

The heart that loved her; 't is her privilege,
Through all the years of this our life, to lead
From joy to joy; for she can so inform
The mind that is within us, so impress
With quietness and beauty, and so feed
With lofty thoughts, that neither evil tongues,
Rash judgments, nor the sneers of selfish men,
Nor greetings where no kindness is, nor all
The dreary intercourse of daily life,
Shall e'er prevail against us, or disturb
Our cheerful faith, that all which we behold
Is full of blessings.


5. Therefore let the moon

Shine on thee in thy solitary walk;
And let the misty mountain winds be free
To blow against thee: and in after years,
When these wild ecstasies shall be matured
Into a sober pleasure, when thy mind
Shall be a mansion for all lovely forms,
Thy memory be as a dwelling-place
For all sweet sounds and harmonies,
6. O! then,

If solitude, or fear, or pain, or grief,

Should be thy portion, with what healing thoughts
Of tender joy wilt thou remember me,
And these my exhortations!

7. Nor, perchance,

If I should be where I no more can hear

Thy voice, nor catch from thy wild eyes these gleams

Of past existence, wilt thou then forget
That on the banks of this delightful stream
We stood together; and that I, so long
A worshiper of nature, hither came,
Unwearied in that service: rather say
With warmer love, oh! with far deeper zeal
Of holier love.

8. Nor wilt thou then forget,

That after many wanderings, many years
Of absence, these steep woods and lofty cliffs,
And this green pastoral landscape, were to me
More dear, both for themselves and for thy sake.


Gradual Approaches of Age.- CRABBE.*

1. SIX years had passed, and forty ere the six, When time began to play his usual tricks; The locks once comely in a virgin's sight, Locks of pure brown, displayed the encroaching white; The blood, once fervid, now to cool began, And Time's strong pressure to subdue the man. 2. I rode or walked as I was wont before, But now the bounding spirit was no more; A moderate pace would now my body heat; A walk of moderate length distress my feet.

3. I showed my stranger guest those hills sublime, But said, "The view is poor; we need not climb." At a friend's mansion I began to dread The cold neat parlor and the gay glazed bed: At home I felt a more decided taste,

And must have all things in my order placed.

4. I ceased to hunt; my horses pleased me less -
My dinner more; I learned to play at chess.
I took my dog and gun, but saw the brute
Was disappointed that I did not shoot.

5. My morning walks I now could bear to lose,
And blessed the shower that gave me not to choose:
In fact, I felt a languor stealing on;
The active arm, the agile hand, were gone;
Small daily actions into habits grew,

And new dislike to forms and fashions new.

I loved my trees in order to dispose;

I numbered peaches, looked how stocks arose ;
Told the same story oft, in short, began to prose.


The Sabbath. GRAHAME.t

1. How still the morning of the hallowed day! Mute is the voice of rural labor, hushed The plowboy's whistle and the milkmaid's song.

*Born 1754; died 1832.

† Born 1765; died 1811.

[ocr errors]

The scythe lies glittering in the dewy wreath
Of tedded grass, mingled with fading flowers,
That yester-morn bloomed waving in the breeze.

2. Sounds the most faint attract the ear, the hum
Of early bee, the trickling of the dew,
The distant bleating midway up the hill.
Calmness seems throned on yon unmoving cloud.

3. To him who wanders o'er the upland leas,
The blackbird's note comes mellower from the dale;
And sweeter from the sky the gladsome lark
Warbles his heaven-tuned song; the lulling brook
Murmurs more gently down the deep-sunk glen;
While from yon lowly roof, whose curling smoke
O'ermounts the mist, is heard at intervals
The voice of psalms, the simple song of praise.

4. With dove-like wings Peace o'er yon village broods
The dizzying mill-wheel rests; the anvil's din
Hath ceased; all, all around is quietness.
Less fearful on this day, the limping hare
Stops, and looks back, and stops, and looks on man,
Her deadliest foe.

[ocr errors]

5. The toil-worn horse, set free,
Unheedful of the pasture, roams at large;
And, as his stiff, unwieldy bulk he rolls,
His iron-armed hoofs gleam in the morning ray.
6. But chiefly man the day of rest enjoys.
Hail, Sabbath! thee I hail, the poor man's day.
On other days, the man of toil is doomed
To eat his joyless bread, lonely, the ground
Both seat and board, screened from the winter's cold
And summer's heat by neighboring hedge or tree.
7. But on this day, embosomed in his home,
He shares the frugal meal with those he loves;
With those he loves he shares the heartfelt joy
Of giving thanks to God, - not thanks of form,
A word and a grimace, but reverently,
With covered face, and upward earnest eye.

8. Hail, Sabbath! thee I hail, the poor man's day: The pale mechanic now has leave to breathe The morning air pure from the city's smoke; While wandering slowly up the river's side, He meditates on Him whose power he marks In each green tree that proudly spreads the bough, As in the tiny dew-bent flowers that bloom

Around the roots; and while he thus surveys
With elevated joy each rural charm,
He hopes (yet fears presumption in the hope)
To reach those realms where Sabbath never ends.


Gentleness of Manners with Firmness of Mind.-CHES


1. I MENTIONED to you, some time ago, a sentence, which I would most earnestly wish you always to retain in your thoughts, and observe in your conduct; it is suaviter in modo, fortiter in re. I do not know any one rule so unexceptionably useful and necessary in every part of life.

2. The suaviter in modo, alone, would degenerate and sink into a mean, timid complaisance and passiveness, if not supported and dignified by the fortiter in re; which would also run into impetuosity and brutality, if not tempered and softened by the suaviter in modo: however, they are seldom united.

3. The warm, choleric man, with strong animal spirits, despises the suaviter in modo, and thinks to carry all before him by the fortiter in re. He may possibly, by great accident, now and then succeed, when he has only weak and timid people to deal with; but his general fate will be, to shock, offend, be hated, and fail.

4. On the other hand, the cunning, crafty man thinks to gain all his ends by the suaviter in modo only: he becomes all things to all men; he seems to have no opinion of his own, and servilely adopts the present opinion of the present person; he insinuates himself only into the esteem of fools, but is soon detected, and surely despised, by everybody else. The wise man (who differs as much from the cunning as from the choleric man) alone joins the suaviter in modo with the fortiter in re.

5. If you are in authority, and have a right to command, your commands delivered suaviter in modo will be willingly, cheerfully, and consequently well obeyed whereas, if given

*Suaviter in modo (Latin) means Gentleness of manners; Fortiter in re, Firmness in mind.

only fortiter, that is, brutally, they will rather, as Tacitus says, be interpreted than executed.

6. For my own part, if I bade my footman bring me a glass of wine, in a rough, insulting manner, I should expect, that, in obeying me, he would contrive to spill some of it upon me and I am sure I should deserve it. A cool, steady resolution should show that, where you have a right to command, you will be obeyed; but, at the same time, a gentleness in the manner of enforcing that obedience should make it a cheerful one, and soften, as much as possible, the mortifying consciousness of inferiority.

If you are to ask a favor, or even to solicit your due, you must do it suaviter in modo, or you will give those, who have a mind to refuse you either, a pretence to do it, by resenting the manner; but, on the other hand, you must, by a steady perseverance and decent tenaciousness, show the forti

ter in re.

8. In short, this precept is the only way I know in the world of being loved without being despised, and feared. without being hated. It constitutes the dignity of character, which every wise man must endeavor to establish.

9. If, therefore, you find that you have a hastiness in your temper, which unguardedly breaks out into indiscreet sallies, or rough expressions, to either your superiors, your equals, or your inferiors, watch it narrowly, check it carefully, and call the suaviter in modo to your assistance: at the first impulse of passion, be silent till you can be soft.

a most

10. Labor even to get the command of your countenance so well that those emotions may not be read in it, unspeakable advantage in business! On the other hand, let no complaisance, no gentleness of temper, no weak desire of pleasing on your part, no wheedling, coaxing, nor flattery, on other people's, make you recede one jot from any point that reason and prudence have bid you pursue; but return to the charge, persist, persevere, and you will find most things attainable that are possible.

11. A yielding, timid meekness is always abused and insulted by the unjust and the unfeeling; but meekness, when sustained by the fortiter in re, is always respected, commonly successful.

12. In your friendships and connections, as well as in your enmities, this rule is particularly useful: let your firmness and vigor preserve and invite attachments to you; but, at the same time, let your manner hinder the enemies of your

« AnteriorContinuar »