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To his voracious bag, struggling in vain,
And loudly wond'ring at the sudden change.

Time was when, in the pastoral retreat, Th’unguarded door was safe; men did not watch T'invade another's right, or guard their own. Then sleep was undisturb’d by fear, unscar’d By drunken howlings; and the chilling tale Of midnight murder was a wonder heard With doubtful credit, told to frighten babes. But farewell now to unsuspicious nights, And slumbers unalarm’d! Now, ere you sleep, See that your polish'd arms be prim’d with care, And drop the night-bolt ;-ruffians are abroad; And the first larum of the cock's shrill throat May prove a trumpet, summoning your ear To horrid sounds of hostile feet within. Ev'n day-light has its dangers; and the walk Through pathless wastes and woods, unconscious


Of other tenants than melodious birds,
Or harmless flocks, is hazardous and bold.



PASS where we may, through city or through

town, Village, or hamlet, of this merry land, Though lean and beggar'd, ev'ry twentieth pace Conducts th' unguarded nose to such a whiff Of stale debauch, forth-issuing from the styes That law has licens'd, as makes temp’rance reel. There sit, involv’d and lost in curling clouds Of Indian fume, and guzzling deep, the boor, The lackey, and the groom: the craftsman there Takes a Lethean leave of all his toils; Smith, cobbler, joiner, he that plies the shears, And he that kneads the dough; all loud alike, All learned, and all drunk! The fiddle screams Plaintive and piteous, as it wept and wail’d Its wasted tones and harmony unheard: Fierce the dispute, whate'er the theme; while she, Fell Discord, arbitress of such debate,

Perch'd on the sign-post, holds with even hand
Her undecisive scales. In this she lays
Her weight of ignorance; in that, of pride;
And smiles, delighted with th' eternal poise.
Dire is the frequent curse, and its twin sound
The cheek-distending oath, not to be prais'd
As ornamental, musical, polite;
Like those which modern senators employ,
Whose oath is rhet'ric, and who swear for fame!
Behold the schools in which plebian minds,
Once simple, are initiated in arts,
Which some may practise with politer grace,
But none with readier skill !—'tis here they learn
The road that leads, from competence and peace,
To indigence and rapine; till at last
Society, grown weary of the load,
Shakes her encumber'd lap, and casts them out.


BUT faster far, and more than all the rest,
A noble cause, which none who bears a spark
Of public virtue ever wish'd remov'd,
Works the deplor'd and mischievous effect.
"Tis universal soldiership has stabb’d
The heart of merit in the meaner class.
Arms, through the vanity and brainless rage
Of those that bear them, in whatever cause,
Seem most at variance with all moral good,
And incompatible with serious thought.
The clown, the child of nature, without guile,
Blest with an infant's ignorance of all
But his own simple pleasures; now and then
A wrestling match, a foot-race, or a fair;
Is ballotted, and trembles at the news:
Sheepish he doffs his hat, and, mumbling, swears
A bible-oath to be whate'er they please,
To do he knows not what! The task perform'd,
That instant he becomes the serjeant's care,
His pupil, and his torment, and his jest.
His awkward gait, his introverted toes,


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Bent knees, round shoulders, and dejected looks, Procure him many a curse. By slow degrees, Unapt to learn, and form’d of stubborn stuff, Ile yet by slow degrees puts off himself, Grows conscious of a change, and likes it well: lle stands erect; his slouch becomes a walk; lle steps right onward, martial in his air, His form, and movement; is as smart above As meal and larded locks can make him: wears His hat, or his plum'd helmet, with a grace; And, his three years of heroship expir’d, Returns indignant to the slighted plough. lle hates the field, in which no fife or drum Attends him; drives his cattle to a march; And sighs for the smart comrades he has left. 'Twere well if his exterior change were allBut with his clumsy port the wretch has lost His ignorance and harmless mamers too! To swear, to game, to drink ; to show at home, By lewdness, idleness, and sabbath-breach, The great proficiency he made abroad; T” astonish and to grieve his gazing friends; To break some maiden's and his mother's heart; *To be a pest where he was useful once; Are his sole aim, and all his glory, now!

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