All the good Uncle of his feelings told,
All he lamented—and the ready tear
Falls as he listens, soothed, and grieved to hear.
“Did he not curse me, child?”—“He never cursed,
But could not breathe, and said his heart would burst.”
“And so will mine:”—“Then, father, you must pray:
My uncle said it took his pains away.”
Repeating thus his sorrows, Isaac shows
That he, repenting, feels the debt he owes,
And from this source alone his every comfort flows.
He takes no joy in office, honours, gain;
They make him humble, nay, they give him pain:
“These from my heart,” he cries, “all feeling drove;
They made me cold to nature, dead to love.”
He takes no joy in home, but sighing, sees
A son in sorrow, and a wife at ease;
He takes no joy in office—see him now,
And Burgess Steel has but a passing bow;
Of one sad train of gloomy thoughts possess’d,
He takes no joy in friends, in food, in rest —
Dark are the evil days, and void of peace the best.
And thus he lives, if living be to sigh,
And from all comforts of the world to fly,
Without a hope in life—without a wish to die.
THE LEARNED BOY.
Like one well studied in a sad ostent,
To please his grandam.
Shakespeare, Merchant of Venice.
And then the whining schoolboy with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping, like a snail,
Unwillingly to school.
As You Like it.
He is a better scholar than I thought he was; he has
a good sprag memory.
Merry Wives of Windsor.
One that feeds
On objects, arts, and imitations,
Which out of use, and staled by other men,
Begin his fashion.
Oh! torture me no more—I will confess.
Henry VI, 2.
An honest man was Farmer Jones, and true;
He did by all as all by him should do;
Grave, cautious, careful, fond of gain was he,
Yet famed for rustic hospitality:
Left with his children in a widow’d state,
The quiet man submitted to his fate;
Though prudent matrons waited for his call,
With cool forbearance he avoided all;
Though each profess’d a pure maternal joy,
By kind attention to his feeble boy;
And though a friendly Widow knew no rest,
Whilst neighbour Jones was lonely and distress’d;
Nay, though the maidens spoke in tender tone
Their hearts’ concern to see him left alone,
Jones still persisted in that cheerless life,
As if ’twere sin to take a second wife.
Oh! ’tis a precious thing, when wives are dead,
To find such numbers who will serve instead;