HAPPY those early days, when I
Shind in my Angel-infancy!
Before I understood this place
for my second race,
Or taught my soul to fancy aught
But a white celestial thought:
When yet I had not
A mile or two from my first Love,
And looking backat that short space
Could see a glimpse
of His bright face:
When on some gilded cloud, or flowr,
My gazing soul would dwell an hour,
And in those
weaker glories spy
Some shadows of eternity:
Before I taught my tongue to wound
My Conscience with a
Or had the black art to dispense
A several sin to evry sense,
But felt through all this fleshly
Bright shoots of everlastingness.
O how I long to travel back,
And tread again that ancient track!
That I might once more reach
Where first I left my glorious train;
From whence th enlightned spirit sees
That shady City of
But ah! my soul with too much stay
Is drunk, and staggers in the way!
Some men a forward
But I by backward steps would move;
And when this dust falls to the urn
In that state I came,
MY soul, there is a country
Far beyond the stars,
Where stands a wingàed sentry
in the wars:
There, above noise and danger,
Sweet Peace sits crownd with smiles,
And One born in a
Commands the beauteous files.
He is thy gracious Friend,
AndO my soul, awake!
Did in pure
To die here for thy sake.
If thou canst get but thither,
There grows the flower of Peace,
Rose that cannot wither,
Thy fortress, and thy ease.
Leave then thy foolish ranges;
For none can thee
But One who never changes
Thy God, thy life, thy cure.
SURE thou didst flourish once! and many springs,
Many bright mornings, much dew, many
Passd oer thy head; many light hearts and wings,
Which now are dead, lodgd in thy living bowers.
And still a new succession sings and flies;
Fresh groves grow up, and their green branches
Towards the old and still enduring skies,
While the low violet thrives at their root.
But thou beneath the sad and heavy line
Of death, doth waste all senseless, cold, and dark;
not so much as dreams of light may shine,
Nor any thought of greenness, leaf, or bark.
And yetas if some deep hate and dissent,
Bred in thy growth betwixt high winds and thee,
still alivethou dost great storms resent
Before they come, and knowst how near they be.
Else all at rest thou liest, and the fierce breath
Of tempests can no more disturb thy ease;
this thy strange resentment after death
Means only those who brokein lifethy peace.
THEY are all gone into the world of light!
And I alone sit lingring here;
Their very memory is
fair and bright,
And my sad thoughts doth clear.
It glows and glitters in my cloudy breast,
Like stars upon some gloomy grove,
Or those faint
beams in which this hill is drest
After the suns remove.
I see them walking in an air of glory,
Whose light doth trample on my days:
My days, which
are at best but dull and hoary,
Mere glimmering and decays.
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