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TO A FRIEND ON THE BIRTH OF HIS FIRST BORN.
THY little one has now begun
Her journey in a vale of tears, And cradl'd on a mother's breast,
She shares her anxious hopes and fears;
For many a scene before her lies,
Ere death will close those smiling eyes.
To gaze upon that lovely face,
To hear her softe n'd tender cry;
Reminds us of those early days—
Our helpless years of infancy;
When once as young, and free from care,
A mother breath'd for us her prayer.
Her morn of life is calm and bright,
No envious cloud is ling'ring there;
And may the noon and eve of life
Present a scene as richly fair:
And may those hopes our God hath given,
Lead her thro' life from earth to heaven.
Oh! Thou that know'st our wand'rings here, We dedicate this babe to thee;
This tender bud which bears within,
A spark of immortality:
And from thy bright and holy place,
Look on her with a smiling face.
TO THE MEMORY OF QUINTIN LEITCH, ESQ.
Look on that grave, it is no common spot,
Nor will that hallowed place be soon forgot:
Ah! let no monumental pile be here,
To court the tribute of a passing tear;
Let but the name, the simple name he shown,
And 'tis enoughto decorate the stone;
Enough to arrest the thoughtless passer bye,
And bring a tear drop to the gazer's eye.
When he was carried to that lowly place,
'Twas sad to see the mourner's downcast face;
When he was left beneath that silent stone,
Silence was broke by many a heavy mean;
And few descended to the grave's dark bed,
With more regret-more blessings on their head:
'Twas not those feelings sordid souls impart,
But the fond language of the human heart;
Griev'd that those noble traits which nature gave,
Should thus so soon be sunk into the grave:-
Yes, he who slumbers in the dust below,
Was one who keenly felt for others woe;
A kinder bosom, or a heart more brave,
Ne'er tempted danger on the stormy wave:
Where long he voyag'd thro' the angry blast;
Yet bore the seaman's feelings to the last :
Warm, gen'rous, ardent, and in friendship true,
Nor shunn'd the man he when a schoolboy knew.
No common path of life his steps pursued,
For he was ever where he might do good,
To make the load of human suff'ring less,
By giving counsel, or to aid distress;
Yet calm and modest, he would rather shun
The meed of praise his generous deeds had won.
A judgment clear, a firm and active mind,
With all his many virtues were combined;
Yet these, which round his name a lustre shed,
Could not avert a sick and dying bed,
r trouble came, and tho' he linger'd long,
ile death his certain summons did prolong,
No anxious look, no murm'ring word was there,
For he had hopes the righteous only share;
And as the world grew dim, a beam more bright
Burst from that region of unclouded light,
To guide his spirit to that happy shore
Where all is peace, and man can vex no more.
A MORNING HYMN. ADAM AND EVE. THESE are Thy glorious works, Parent of good, Almighty, thine this universal frame,
Thus wondrous fair; thyself how wondrous then!
Unspeakable, who sitt'st above these Heavens
To us invisible, or dimly seen
In these thy lowest works; yet these declare
Thy goodness beyond thought, and pow'r divine.
Speak ye who best can tell, ye sons of light,
Angels; for ye behold him, and with songs
And carol symphonies, day without night,
Circle his throne rejoicing; ye in Heaven,
On Earth, join all ye creatures to extol
Him first, him last, him midst, and without end.
Fairest of stars, last in the train of night,
*The above lines are due to the memory of this amiable and highly gifted individual; he was for six years Magistrate of Greenock, and the public works which were planned and extended during this period, will long remain as a monument of his pains and industry. Indeed it may be said, that Greenock stands indebted to him for her principal improvements. His death, which took place on the 20th September, 1827, was felt as a severe public loss; and the inhabitants, out of respect for his memory, shut all their shops during the period that his body was consigned to the dust:-Peace to his memory; for a more benevolent or kinder hearted individual never breathed than Quintin Leitch, who was taken amidst his usefulness, and laid in that place where ch affects not, and where the weary are at rest.
If better thou belong not to the dawn,
Sure pledge of day, that crown'st the smiling morn
With thy bright circlet, praise him in thy sphere,
While day arises, that sweet hour of prime.
Thou Sun, of this great world both eye and soul,
Acknowledge him thy greater, sound his praise
In thy eternal course, both when thou climb'st,
And when high noon hast gain'd, and when thou
Moon, that now meet'st the orient sun, now fly'st
With the fix'd stars, fix'd in their orb that flies,
And ye five other wand'ring fires that move
In mystic dance, not without song, resound
His praise, who out of darkness call'd up light
Air, and ye elements, the eldest birth
Of Nature's womb, that in quaternion run
Perpetual circle, multiform, and mix
And nourish all things; let your ceaseless change
Vary to our great Maker still new praise.
Ye Mists and Exhalations that now rise
From hill or steaming lake, dusky or grey,
Till the sun paint your fleecy skirts with gold,
In honour to the world's great Author rise!
Whether to deck with clouds the uncolor'd sky
Or wet the thirsty earth with falling showers,
Rising or falling still advance his praise.
His praise, ye Winds, that from four quarters blow,
Breathe soft or loud; and wave your tops, ye
With every plant in sign of worship wave.
Fountains, and ye that warble as ye flow
Melodious murmurs, warbling tune his praise.
Join voices, all ye living Souls; ye Birds,
That singing up to Heaven's gate ascend,
Bear on your wings and in your notes his praise,
Ye that in the waters glide, and ye that walk
The earth, and stately tread, or lowly creep;
Witness if I be silent, morn or even,
To hill or valley, fountain, or fresh shade
Made vocal by my song, and taught his praise.
Hail universal Lord! be bounteous still
To give us only good; and if the night
Have gather'd aught of evil, or conceal'd,
Disperse it, as now light dispels the dark,
YE midnight shades, o'er nature spread!
Dumb silence of the dreary hour!
In honour of th' approaching dead,
Around your awful terrors pour.
Yes, pour around
On this pale ground
Through all this deep surrounding gloom,
The sober thought,
The tear untaught,
Those meetest mourners at a tomb.
Lo! as the surplic'd train drew near
To this last mansion of mankind,
The slow sad bell, the sable brie,
In holy musing wrapt the mind!
And while their beam,
With trembling stream,
Attending tapers faintly dart;
Each mould'ring bone,
Each sculptur'd stone,
Strikes mute instruction to the heart!
Now let the sacred organ blow,
With solemn pause, and sounding slow