Tales eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 238 pages of information about Tales.
Sarah called Abraham Lord! and who could be,
So Jonas thought, a greater man than he? 
Himself he view’d with undisguised respect,
And never pardon’d freedom or neglect. 
   They had one daughter, and this favourite child
Had oft the father of his spleen beguiled;
Soothed by attention from her early years,
She gained all wishes by her smiles or tears;
But Sybil then was in that playful time,
When contradiction is not held a crime;
When parents yield their children idle praise
For faults corrected in their after days. 
   Peace in the sober house of Jonas dwelt,
Where each his duty and his station felt: 
Yet not that peace some favour’d mortals find,
In equal views and harmony of mind;
Not the soft peace that blesses those who love,
Where all with one consent in union move;
But it was that which one superior will
Commands, by making all inferiors still;
Who bids all murmurs, all objections, cease,
And with imperious voice announces—­Peace! 
They were, to wit, a remnant of that crew,
Who, as their foes maintain, their Sovereign slew;
An independent race, precise, correct,
Who ever married in the kindred sect: 
No son or daughter of their order wed
A friend to England’s king who lost his head;
Cromwell was still their Saint, and when they met,
They mourn’d that Saints were not our rulers yet. 
   Fix’d were their habits; they arose betimes,
Then pray’d their hour, and sang their party-rhymes: 
Their meals were plenteous, regular and plain;
The trade of Jonas brought him constant gain;
Vender of hops and malt, of coals and corn —
And, like his father, he was merchant born: 
Neat was their house; each table, chair, and stool,
Stood in its place, or moving moved by rule;
No lively print or picture graced the room;
A plain brown paper lent its decent gloom;
But here the eye, in glancing round, survey’d
A small recess that seem’d for china made;
Such pleasing pictures seem’d this pencill’d ware,
That few would search for nobler objects there —
Yet, turn’d by chosen friends, and there appear’d
His stern, strong features, whom they all revered;
For there in lofty air was seen to stand
The bold Protector of the conquer’d land;
Drawn in that look with which he wept and swore,
Turn’d out the Members, and made fast the door,
Ridding the House of every knave and drone,
Forced, though it grieved his soul, to rule alone. 
The stern still smile each friend approving gave,
Then turn’d the view, and all again were grave. 
   There stood a clock, though small the owner’s need,
For habit told when all things should proceed;
Few their amusements, but when friends appear’d,
They with the world’s distress their spirits cheer’d;
The nation’s guilt, that would not long endure
The reign of men so modest and so pure: 
Their town was large, and seldom pass’d a day
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Project Gutenberg
Tales from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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