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There all is cheerful, calm, and fair;
Wrath, envy, malice, strife, or pride,
Hath never made its hateful lair
By thee-my own fire-side!
Thy precincts are a charmed ring,
Where no harsh feeling dare intrude;
Where life's vexations lose their sting;
Where even grief is half subdued;
And Peace, the halcyon, loves to brood.
Then let the world's proud fool deride;
I'll pay my debt of gratitude
To thee-my own fire-side!
Shrine of my household duties;
Bright scene of home's unsullied joys;
To thee my burthened spirit flies,
When Fortune frowns, or Care annoys!
Thine is the bliss that never cloys;
The smile whose truth hath oft been tried ;-
What, then, are this world's tinsel toys,
To thee-my own fire-side!
Oh, may the yearnings, fond and sweet,
That bid my thoughts be all of thee,
Thus ever guide my wandering feet
To thy heart-soothing sanctuary!
Whate'er my future years may be,
Let joy or grief my fate betide,
Be still an Eden unto me,
My own-my own fire-side!
WHEN the sheep are in the fold, when the cows come home,
When a' the weary world to rest are gone,
The woes of my heart fa' in showers fra my ee,
Unnoticed by my gudeman, who soundly sleeps by me.
Young Jamie loo'd me weel, and sought me for his bride;
But saving ae crown piece, he'd naething else beside.
To make the crown a pound, my Jamie gaed to sea:
And the crown and the pound, O they were baith for me!
Before he had been gane a twelvemonth and a day,
My father brak his arm, our cow was stolen away;
My mother she fell sick-my Jamie was at sea-
And Auld Robin Gray, oh! he came a-courting me.
My father cou'dna work, my mother cou❜dna spin;
I toil'd day and night, but their bread I cou❜dna win;
Auld Rob maintain'd them baith, and, wi' tears in his ee,
Said, "Jenny, oh! for their sakes, will you marry me?”
My heart it said Na, and I look'd for Jamie back;
But hard blew the winds, and his ship was a wreck;
His ship it was a wreck! Why didna Jamie dee?
Or, wherefore am I spar'd to cry out, Woe is me!
My father argued sair-my mother didna speak,
But she looked in my face till my heart was like to break;
They gied him my hand, but my heart was in the sea;
And so Auld Robin Gray, he was a gudeman to me.
I hadna been his wife, a week but only four,
When mournfu' as I sat on the stane at my door,
I saw my Jamie's ghaist-I cou'dna think it he,
Till he said, "I'm come hame, my love, to marry thee!"
O sair, sair did we greet, and mickle say of a';
Ae kiss we took, nae mair-I bad him go away.
I wish that I were dead, but I'm no like to dee:
For O, I am but young to cry out, Woe is me!
I gang like a ghaist, and I carena much to spin !
I darena think o' Jamie, for that would be a sin.
But I will do my best a gude wife aye to be,
For Auld Robin Gray, oh! he is sae kind to me.
THE glorious sun is set in the west; the night dews fall; and the air, which was sultry and oppressive, becomes cool. The flowers of the garden, closing their coloured leaves, fold themselves up and hang their heads on the slender stalk, waiting the return of day.
The birds of the grove have ceased their warblings; they sleep on the boughs of trees, each one with his head behind his wing. The chickens of the farm-yard are gathered under the wing of the hen, and are at rest; the hen, their parent, is at rest also. There is no murmur of bees around the hive, or amongst the honeyed woodbines; they have finished their work, and now lie close in their waxen cells.
The sheep rest in the fields upon their soft fleeces, and their loud bleating no longer resounds from the hills. There is no sound of the voice of the busy multitude, or of children at play, or the trampling of feet and of crowds hurrying to and fro. The smith's hammer is not heard upon the anvil; nor the harsh saw of the carpenter. All men are stretched upon their quiet beds; and the infant reposes in peace and security on the bosom of its mother. Darkness is spread over the skies, and darkness is upon the ground: every eye is shut, and every hand is still.
Who takes care of all people when they are sunk in sleep; when they cannot defend themselves, nor see if danger approaches? There is an eye that never sleeps; there is an eye that sees in the darkness of night as well as in the brightest sunshine. When there is no light of the sun, nor of the moon; when there is no lamp in the house, nor any star twinkling through the thick clouds; that eye sees everywhere, in all places, and watches continually over all the families of the earth.
The eye that sleeps not is God's; his hand is always stretched out over us. He made sleep, to refresh us when we are weary: he made night, that we might sleep in quiet. As the affectionate mother stills every little noise that her infant be not disturbed; as she draws the curtains around its bed, and shuts out the light from its tender eyes; so God draws the curtains of darkness around us; so he makes all things to be hushed and still that his large family may sleep in
When the darkness has passed away, and the beams of the morning sun strike through your eyelids, begin the day with praising God, who has taken care of you through the night. Flowers, when you open again, spread your leaves and smell sweet to his praise. Birds, when you awake, warble your thanks amongst the green boughs! Let his praise be in our hearts when we lie down; let his praise be on our lips when we awake.
BUT see the fading many-coloured woods,
Shade deepening over shade, the country round
Imbrown; a crowded umbrage dusk and dun,
Of every hue from wan declining green
To sooty dark. These now the lonesome muse,
Low-whispering, lead into their leaf-strown walks;
And give the season in its latest view.
Meantime, light shadowing all, a sober calm
Fleeces unbounded ether: whose least wave
Stands tremulous, uncertain where to turn
The gentle current: while illumin'd wide,
The dewy-skirted clouds imbibe the sun,
And through their lucid veil his softened force
Shed o'er the peaceful world. Then is the time
For those whom virtue and whom nature charm
To steal themselves from the degenerate crowd,
And soar above this little scene of things;
To tread low-thoughted vice beneath their feet,
To soothe the throbbing passions into peace;
And woo lone quiet in her silent walks.
Thus solitary, and in pensive guise,
Oft let me wander o'er the russet mead,
And through the sadden'd grove, where scarce is heard
One dying strain, to cheer the woodman's toil.
Haply some widow'd songster pours his plaint,
Far, in faint warblings, through the tawny copse;
While congregated thrushes, linnets, larks,
And each wild throat, whose artless strains so late
Swell'd all the music of the swarming shades,
Robb'd of their tuneful souls, now shivering sit
On the dead tree, a dull despondent flock!
With not a brightness waving o'er their plumes,
And naught save chattering discord in their note.
Oh, let not, aim'd from some inhuman eye,
The gun the music of the coming year
Destroy; and harmless, unsuspecting harm,
Lay the weak tribes a miserable prey,
In mingled murder, fluttering on the ground!
The pale descending year, yet pleasing still,
A gentler mood inspires; for now the leaf
Incessant rustles from the mournful grove-
Oft startling such as, studious, walk below,
And slowly circles through the waving air.
But should a quicker breeze amid the boughs
Sob, o'er the sky the leafy deluge streams;
Till, chok'd, and matted with the dreary shower,
The forest-walks, at every rising gale,
Roll wide the wither'd waste, and whistle bleak.
Fled is the blasted verdure of the fields;
And, shrunk into their beds, the flowery race