Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 328 pages of information about Tales.

Females there are of unsuspicious mind,
Easy and soft and credulous and kind;
Who, when offended for the twentieth time,
Will hear the offender and forgive the crime: 
And there are others whom, like these to cheat,
Asks but the humblest efforts of deceit;
But they, once injured, feel a strong disdain,
And, seldom pardoning, never trust again;
Urged by religion, they forgive—­but yet
Guard the warm heart, and never more forget: 
Those are like wax—­apply them to the fire,
Melting, they take th’ impressions you desire;
Easy to mould and fashion as you please,
And again moulded with an equal ease: 
Like smelted iron these the forms retain,
But once impress’d, will never melt again. 
   A busy port a serious Merchant made
His chosen place to recommence his trade;
And brought his Lady, who, their children dead,
Their native seat of recent sorrow fled: 
The husband duly on the quay was seen,
The wife at home became at length serene;
There in short time the social couple grew
With all acquainted, friendly with a few;
When the good lady, by disease assail’d,
In vain resisted—­hope and science fail’d: 
Then spoke the female friends, by pity led,
“Poor merchant Paul! what think ye? will he wed? 
A quiet, easy, kind, religious man,
Thus can he rest?—­I wonder if he can.” 
   He too, as grief subsided in his mind,
Gave place to notions of congenial kind: 
Grave was the man, as we have told before;
His years were forty—­he might pass for more;
Composed his features were, his stature low,
His air important, and his motion slow: 
His dress became him, it was neat and plain,
The colour purple, and without a stain;
His words were few, and special was his care
In simplest terms his purpose to declare;
A man more civil, sober, and discreet,
More grave and corteous, you could seldom meet: 
Though frugal he, yet sumptuous was his board,
As if to prove how much he could afford;
For though reserved himself, he loved to see
His table plenteous, and his neighbours free: 
Among these friends he sat in solemn style,
And rarely soften’d to a sober smile: 
For this, observant friends their reason gave —
“Concerns so vast would make the idlest grave;
And for such man to be of language free,
Would seem incongruous as a singing tree: 
Trees have their music, but the birds they shield —
The pleasing tribute for protection yield;
Each ample tree the tuneful choir defends,
As this rich merchant cheers his happy friends!”
   In the same town it was his chance to meet
A gentle Lady, with a mind discreet;
Neither in life’s decline, nor bloom of youth,
One famed for maiden modesty and truth: 
By nature cool, in pious habits bred,
She look’d on lovers with a virgin’s dread: 
Deceivers, rakes, and libertines were they,

Project Gutenberg
Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
Follow Us on Facebook