The Philosophy of Love. [A Plea in Defence of Virtue and Truth!] A Poem in Six Cantos, with Other Poems
Love; Philosophy; Religion; LibertyHow well it is to moralize on Love,
Recounting all the bliss its truth contains!
As Heav’n imposes duties, on our lives,
To be fulfill’d; so leaves He such to be
Perform’d, according to our means, or as
Our sev’ral natures will allow, the due
Accomplishment of all that is required.
As none has been restricted to one mode,
Or bound down to one form of instinct; as
The tribes inferior, which each class controls.
So, man is blest with freedom, as becomes
His reason, to adopt what course he deems
Best for the purpose in his nature woven,
When seeking out the partner of his life!
Thus, where he can his prudence exercise,
And in consistency with Heaven’s just laws,
His part perform, such laws his wisdom, which,
According to such laws obey’d, rewards
With comfort, and domestic joys in store!
page 127 But others, who perchance some other mode
Of action have adopted, as impell’d
By force of ardent passions, so they reap;
Perhaps aught else than comfort, or sweet love!—
As Passion ever Reason’s power beclouds,
No wonder than full many go astray!
One may the fair impassionately love
For mere exterior charms; while Reason, blind,
Enquires not for internal truth or worth;
Though fairly aiming at some special good,
He takes his lot; then finds it quite a blank!
Oft fancy vain, and passion are allied;
Thus, both united, powerful is their sway,
Th’ unwary leading into hidden snares!—
Imagination; Philosophy; FutureIf’tis our nature Reason’s power t’ employ,
In oppositon to vain fancy’s mood;
Such nature is a blessing in itself;
’Tis a reward incorporate with means
Employ’d in the fulfillment of our dues.
The duty thus imposed, will in ourselves
Find the due mode, whereby it will be done!
page 128 However varied be the course pursued,
Which ever way is taken, that’s the lot
To us appointed, and to which we must
Ourselves submit; and even in that lot
Still farther duties will themselves evolve.—
If awkward be the lot that’s thus sustain’d,
And contrary to all our former hopes,
Our former, fondest, and best cherish’d hopes;
Our duty is, that energy be roused,
To cope with all adversity, and turn
The evil tide from its o’erflowing sway!
Here is a duty, oft a grievous task
In the performance; but, how good to know
Where we are weak, unable for such tasks,
There’s strength at hand, and ready to assist,
If such we will seek after, and employ:
—That aid, God’s grace imparts unto the soul,—
When every difficulty soon becomes
More easily conquered than it first appear’d!
Sad is his state, who finds himself involved
Unaided in the awkward lot he owns;
page 129 Yes, sad his state, who, when he’s cross,d in love,
Would take a foul revenge upon himself;
’S ifthat would solve the problem to him given!
Such but declares his own unworthiness
Of better blessings, had they been conferr’d.
Love-crosses oft prove blessings in disguise!
Those, who deem such thcy suffer, would they check
The rabid feelings, causd by the rebuff,
Which pride receives; and so await that peace,
Which follows on the heels of what caused pain,
They’d see what cause they rather have for joy;
Arts; NatureAs when the sun dispels the misty cloud,
And shews around fair Nature in her charms!
A lover, fond, discarded by the one
On whom were his affections placed, may serve
T’illustrate such a truth the Muse declares:—
Long had he her adored: his love, so great,
Made her his goddess; yes, she was indeed
The Idol of his heart! His love, a pure
Affection, urging him t’incessant toil,
To gain what would her comfortable make,
page 130 When claiming her his own. Much had he striv’n,
And that with much success; and had in view
Th’ attainment of his aims! But, she tnrn’d [sic: turn’d] round,
And would no longer look him in the face;
She his affections mock’d, because, forsooth,
No flatt’ring tongue had he, and left him lorn!
At such a disappointment, much perplex’d,
He quickly to the throne of grace repair’d,
There pour’d his sorrows out; and felt relief,
By heav’nly comforts flowing in, to cheer!—
She to another gave her heart; who, cheer’d
With such a turn of fortune, as he thought,
On him bestow’d; and by ’r attractive ways
So won, he made her soon his wedded wife.
But mark the change:—Her fond attractiveness
Soon disappear’d; and she became the scourge,
More fit to drive affections out of doors,
Than keep misfortune from her husband’s home!
Thus, the discarded lover soon saw cause
To thank kind Providence she was not his!
What once he had consider’d a hard lot,
page 131 In that he now discern’d much cause for joy;
Though former friendships could not be forgot!
Another instance, of another kind,
May here be giv’n. Maria was beloved
By several swains: but, one above the rest,
To her felt much attached in truthful love;
And quite apart from all untoward ways,
He did his best to gain hers in return.—
But Arts; Societyhe was plain, and modest, and sincere;
He had not that attractive artfulness
So winning, as in others; the glib tongue
To him belong’d not; and the foppish airs
Of pride were not with him, so could not gain
The heart of the beloved, so as to be
By her acknowledged chief in her esteem:
While even then, for truth and constancy,
And conduct good, she could not him despise!
Another was her beau; one smart to see,
And full of sprightliness; aye, one who had
A smooth tongue fit to please the itching ear
That doats on flatt’ry; and knew how to clothe
page 132 The baseness of his heart, with guile’s best grace!
—Such was the one she chose, to whom at length
She pledged her troth, and gave herself away!
The first that loved, though much he felt the pain
Of being thus deserted, and despised;
He o’er his wounded feelings mast’ry gain’d
By industry, and consciousness of truth;
With help from that aid, which God’s grace imparts:
Then turning round, another he discern’d
Fit to refill the void within his heart;
Who, of his offer, prompt acceptance made!
Such was her lot, a happy lot indeed,
For she a faithful loving husband got;
And she was not forgetful to maintain
Affections gain’d, as worth to be preserved!—
Now, mark the contrast:—soon Maria saw
A false step she had taken, when she gave
The ardent lover her refusal cold,
And chose the spark, to whom she had got join’d:
For now her life was sorrowful indeed;
With fancy’s glitter changed to worthless dross!
page 133 Society; Colony; PerceptionDeep, deep regret took hold upon her heart,
And proved the very cancer of her life;
She saw her first in excellence and worth,
And so deseried the worthlessness of him
She own’d,—the “crooked lot” which she took up:
For, dissolute in habits now he proved.
And he at length for forgery was exiled
To penal servitude; there, much disgraced,
He closed his life in wretchedness and woe!
Thus, she a friendless sufferer had become;
While suffering for the deed which was not hers,
All through connection with a worthless one!
’Tis strange that love should gen’rate strongest hate;
So that the one, once held adored, should be
The object of contempt, or vengeful wrath!
Technology; Weather; Perception; LoveThe mind, couvulsed by ardent passions, seems
Like a tempestuous hurricane, enraged,
Beyond control. Such aberration from
The calm composure of truth’s confidence
Tends sadly to turn reason upside down!—
Love changed to hatred, is, as the meek lamb
page 134 The fierceness of the lion would assume.
No reasoning can calm the stormy soul,
When to its depths by jealousy ’tis roused;
Then, vilest falsehood is, as truth, believed,
If such can bear resemblance to enrage;
That sensitiveness, by suspicion touch’d,
Feels keenly the mere semblance of a wrong,
And to the utmost answers with revenge;
As when a spark, gunpowder stores explode!—
Oh Jealousy!—when truth is on thy side,
And prudence tempers thy determined zeal;
The gaurdian of Love’s property, thou art—
The flaming sword of Heaven, to keep intact
Its sacredness; and keep in duty’s path,
The one, who would her virtuous claims deride!
Thus, proving the preserver of her rights!
But, ah! when slumb’ring thou hast been, and off
Thy line of duty, negligent; and when
Base Falsehood sounds alarm;—thy zeal in haste,
In blind haste makes no inquiry for truth;
And like the adder, deaf to every charm
page 135 Will hear no explanation—no excuse
To palliate the awful crime supposed!—
What art thou then?—The canker-worm that eats
The very life out of all social bliss,
Thy nature well thine origin unfolds,
As sent by the Arch fiend to undermine
Love’s happiness! And in her bosom thrust
The deadliest poison’d sting sin can produce;
Whose wounds remain an ever fest’ring sore,
Unqualified by mitigation’s balm!
False Jealousy!—thou pest of human peace,—
Thus, of affections fond, sad havoc made,
Bestrews thy track, and marks thy wild carreer!
So felt Lorenza, in an evil time;
When a malicious rival of the one
He loved, and loved most dearly, to give vent
To spleen, at being unsuccessful in
Her aims attractive, as to get a hold
On his affections, there to reign supreme;
To be revenged, she cunningly contrived
To gain the loved one’s ear, and there pour’d in
page 136 The foulest venom of untruth, and hate,
A vile heart could invent! The loved one’s heart
Got smit with the infection,—“’Twas too much,
To be deceived by one she loved so well!”—
Such was the stern conclusion which she grasp’d,
As with spasmodic clenchings; and she scorn’d
To hear all explanations, or give in
A reason, why he must discarded be!
Such sudden change in fair Chlorida’s mind
To him was unacountable, and strange,
Which drove him near madness! This, him saved,
He conscious was of his fidelity,
And sought to soothe his sorrows in the hope
That Time would clear the matter up, and set
Such painful crosses right in open truth:
But such a secret never got devulged,
Till after she another’s had become!
Meanwhile, to keep his mind in proper trim,
And, so forget the trials he endured,
He sought the assylum of another scene,
When, friendships new again his heart rejoiced!
Society; Love; HonourLove-crossings when improve’d upon aright
Have been the source, whence benefits have sprung,
Yes, such have been the first step of that scale,
Which leads to fame’s high honousr, with renown!
So Damon such a truth could well confirm,
In th’ energies such waken’d in his soul:
Which gave the impulse, to spring from the dust,
And drudgery of mean life, in which he lived,
He being cross’d in love, and to forget
The insult, which he reckon’d he sustain’d,
He gave himself the task ’mid other toils
Of learning ancient languages, and thus
Began a course of life, which led at length
To fame, and high distinction in the world!
Ye love-cross’d swains take courage, and look up.
Why hang the head, and o’er heart-aches repine?
Why conjure up dark woes, and o’er them mope,
And make you griefs, where such need not appear?
—Love may have a firm hold upon thy heart,
But when, by the beloved, ’tis at discount,—
The gift toss’d back, rejected;—duty’s here
page 138 Love; Philosophy; Future; JoyA problem, grave, no doubt, which can be solved
More honourably, than by self-revenge!
Thus, Providence would teach, another course
Of duty is thy lot; and which is thine
To search out, and the task there found, fulfill!
The place, where thou successful search canst make
Is chiefly in thy nature,—not in ought,
Which leads to dissipation, or disgrace,—
Yes, chiefly in thy nature, like good gold
In store ’mid clay or rnbbish; to be had
As the reward for searching; so thou may’st
Have inwrought duties of some special kind,
Adapted to thy genius, which yet lie
Incognito, awaiting such a time
To be sought after; and, in being done,
Reward to good advantage, in the joy
Performance gives, in banishing thy woes!
Thus, vex’d affections, where they’ve been misplaced
May prove the prelude to thy future bliss!
Love-crossings have set noble minds astir,
Who else had slept as in Delilah’s lap.
page 139 Like Samson, when his locks were from him shorn
O’erfancies dreaming, pleased by Syren songs,
Regardless of life’s duties, till too late!
Love; Philosophy; Poetry; Liberty; ScienceBut, being thus aroused, life has been seen;
As such has waked the music of the heart,
In holy numbers, of seraphic strains,
Or other energies, which dormant lay
In idleness, have call’d been to good deeds,
In searching Nature’s treasures, to advance
The cause of science, and of Truth! Such things,
Which much affect love’s pride, have been the source,
In ancient times, whence revolutions sprung
To set in order wry affairs of state!
Love-crossings have made heroes on the field,
And on the main, ’mid battle’s direst work:
And such have work’d a change on simple man,
By rousing him to independent mind.
His faculties thus waked, how such have told
On the surroundings of his sphere!—’Tis thus
Love crossings shew their usefulness; and they
Directly, or may indirectly tell
page 140 What influence has woman over man!
Aye, ev’n although that influence exercised,
In sad reaction, oft has work’d her woe!
How strange the freaks of fancy and vain pride,
When yoked together, and on mischief bent;
When female vanity begins to reign,
(In some,) usurping Reason’s honour’d throne:
Then, every effort is put forth to gain
Th’ affections of some swain;--yes, she will weave
The web of her attractions round his heart,
With all that skill, with which her nature’s fraught,
Till he’s secured, so far, as to begin
Signs of fresh life to shew; such that declares
He has a lover in good truth become!
Next, fond of being flatter’d, and besought,
She’ll now begin to shew her palyful arts,
At teasing his affections, making sport
Of all that love, with which she him inspired,
Like feline nature sporting with its prey!
(How blest it is, all are not so inclined
O’ertrue-love thus to glory as her slave!)
page 141 Such is her way a lover’s truth to try;—
Her trait of charac er display’d, of which
She feels as innocent, though thus impell’d;
In which discretion often is at fault;—
While he, in his simplicity and truth,
Such method little comprehends or likes,
Through which, himself regarding, as befool’d!
Thus, cross’d love will occur; and such that pride
Which tends to drive its votary into woe!
Of such a game, when carried to excess
Where Prudence is asleep; what’s the result?
Desertion!—and perhaps a broken heart;
As instances, full many, could declare!
How oft ’tis seen, nay, often is it felt
A real truth, which cannot be disguised;
That fond affection, howe’er warm its glow,
Or howe’er long it has been cherish’d, as
A tribute to the worth of the beloved,
His treasure ’bove all others held esteem’d:
Yes, such affection met by pride’s cold breath,
At length will dwindle down like winter’s snow,
page 142 Beneath the genial warmth of coming spring!
And even then, how painful is such waste,
In execution! ’tis like Death at work,
As one by one the ties of life he snaps,
Till soul and body’s partnership’s “no more!”
Love; FriendshipTo part with friends, our common friends, is sad:
But, when we’re disappointed in the hopes
We entertain’d of dearest friendship’s growth,
In those we thought our happiness enshrined,
For whom, affections glow’d within our hearts
Such is a trial painful to endure!
The unreciprocated love gives pain:
But when it once was cherish’d,—when it was
Reciprocated freely,—then through some
Misunderstanding, not to be explain’d
’Tis blighted,—dead!—then life to the love-lorn
Becomes a burden, scarce endurable:
Still there’s no cause for harbouring despair;
The wound, though deep, may curable become,
By th’ exercise of patience, and of prayer
Unto thy heav’nly Father; tell Him all,
page 143 And soon the problem to thy heart He’ll solve!
Then why in grief besotted should’st thou be?—
Possess thy mind: resist thy wounded pride;
Such disappointments may at length become
The greatest blessing that could thee befall!
When Providence thy self-will’d pride will baulk,
By raising some misunderstanding strange,
Between thee and the object of thy love;
There’s a wise purpose couch’d beneath, to raise
Reflection, as to make thee think again;
Or re-examine thy position, which
Before, has ne’er been look’d upon aright;
Thy passions to review, and search to find
If reason is not blinded ’gainst thy weal;
Or see how thy affections are misplaced,
And so make reparations ere too late!
Yes, disappointments have their missions good,
Known after their first shock has been repress’d;
As proving like the Angel in the way
With sword in hand rebuking Balaam ways;—
They check some wayward course, if thou’rt astray,
page 144 Out of the path that leads to lasting bliss,
Whether of earth, or thy more future weal!
Love; Science; Technology’Tis well, when grieved by unrequited love,
The mind in other things diversion finds,
To give relief; such acts the safety-valve,
By which all surplus feelings are dispell’d,
Which gen’rated have been by the rebuff;
Such takes up the attention, keeps the mind
From brooding o’er all injuries sustain’d;
And turns its energies to other calls,
As, solving problems of another kind,
Full quite as beneficial to the weal
Of self, as in the end ’tis to the world:
For many good inventions have arisen
From slighted love, which else had scarcely been!
Thus, science a retreat has sometimes proved
For love-vex’d minds, who would its umbrage seek;
And blest is he, who over passions strong,
Obtains control; whose prudence hither leads
In such emergency, for then he’s safe,
Relieved by a variety of themes
page 145 Which claim attention due; and safer still,
When such are qualified by heavenly truths
To fortify the mind; rather than muse
O’er the one idea of a fancied wrong,
Which would a tempting devil ever prove!
Perception; ReligionWhen looking o’er the lottery of life,
Those blanks, or prizes each would seem to draw,
Such, as to purblind man they would appear;—
Yes, man purblind, with all his thoughts awry,
Who can’t descern the hand of Providence
In the appointments giv’n; or make his will
Be in conformity with this, his prayer,
“Thy will be done on earth, as ’tis in Heaven!”
But would the lot, appointed him, ascribe
Unto some myth, call’d “Chanec, or ruling fate.”
—The blanks or prizes, as by us they’re drawn,
Contain our lots appointed; yet, how oft
Is seen how prizes gain’d are much abused;
Where man in worthlessness is bent on change
Or knows not how t’ appreciate such a gift!
Love; Nature; Technology; ArtsThe ideal prize gave pleasue, while it was
page 146 Contemplated in fancy’s speculum
Where first its glitt’ring sheen the mind had charm’d;
Which, when obtain’d attractions seem “no more!”
—What pity, but, that charm could still remain
As a reality, and not a myth;
Then scarcely had the world have known regret!—
Oh! for some good invention, like the art
Which sun impressions takes of Nature’s charms:
That love-seen beauties, either of the form,
Or mind of fhe beloved, should still exist,
Indelibly upon the lover’s heart:
That such should ever beautiful remain,
Instead of gliding like dissolving views,
From love-state, to another of disgust!—
And that the shew of loveliness should prove
A fixture, in the one who such displays;
Yes, that such shew of loveliness should be
Both fresh and fair, unchangeable and good;
Worn, not as a mere mask to hide defects,
Which, when put off, uncomeliness is shewn;
To be the same for loveliness, and grace,
page 147 Then, well to love, and be beloved, would know
No sorrow, and no disappointment dire,
Which, like the poison’d arrow of a foe,
Have wounded oft incurably the heart!
The dispensations of good Providence
How oft are held at discount when obtain’d;
Aye, though in answer to the fond desire!
As in proud hearts would expectations rise
Beyond the bounds of prudence, to believe
A worthiness is theirs, beyond their due:
So will they feel chagrined; and much inveigh
Against the wisdom of the One, who sees
The end from the beginning at a glance;
(’S if that would bring advantage to their weal;
Which will but add to discontentment’s woes!)
Because, they gain not what might be unfit
For their possession; as when edged tools
To children are denied, in case of harm!
They’re unprepared large blessings to receive;
Or know not how t’ advantage such to turn!
Love; Change; Imagination; LandLove’s blessings are not sent as full matured;
page 148 But only as a seed, which much requires
Due cultivation, and much tending care,
To bring it up to its maturity.
But when such cultivation we neglect,
In our contentment merely with the seed,
However small; what blessing could we gain?
The seed itself, through want of special care,
Might rot; or never come to good account;
And so degenerate to a baleful curse;
The chief result of negligence and pride!
The Proud, impatient of such progress slow,
Would make as ’twere a bound the prize to seize;
The prize expected,—only but a myth:
But such impatience falls short of its aim,
Which makes him feel as grasping at the wind!
The ways of Providence are ever best:
And when such are attended to, they yield
To modrate expectations, blessings rich;
When Hope rejoices in the prospect clear
Of a full recompence for all its care.
Love; Land; PhilosophyWhen love, matured, is like the fruitful tree
page 149 In fertile soil, and by the limped stream,
Producing precious fruits, in many joys!
Whate’er may be the nature of the gift
On thee bestowed, as it affects thy loves,
—Such as a kindly spirit in the one
Allotted as companion of thy life;—
If that kind spirit, in its genuine truth,
Receives not thine attention and support,
Its virtues to maintain, and so improve
Its ev’ry worth; responsible art thou
For failure of thy trust—the gift bestow’d
Abused, destroy’d! Thy duty, in neglect,
Its own recrimination will produce,
And bid fair to give sorrow to thy heart.
Yet, notwithstanding those we must approve,
There are, whose hearts are like the barren clay
For cold sterility; no matter what
Is tried, affection’s growth to cherish there;
It still is stunted, if it grows at all;
While oft’ner growth’s abortive and inane!
What blessing then could be expected here?—
page 150 Still surely to’ard thy kindly partner given,
Love; Land; Joy; Home; FriendshipLove cultivated brings its own reward;
It yields like all good crops abundant joy!
A loveless life but ill becomes the soul
That claims to be immortal! Love is life,
And its chief essence, through the course of time,
And must upheld be: the reverse is Death
In all its small details; in which, such bears
No sweet regard for bliss! So in this world
Is man’s probation fix’d, as if to prove
His fitness for a higher state of bliss,
According as th’ affections of the heart
Have cultivated been, to gain the prize!
As Love to God, breeds love to bosom friends;
And Love to bosom friends will act as proof
Their tendency is upward; towards HOME!
But when they’re left, of cultivation, nill
To run wild like the rankling weeds of earth,
That have no upward aim; but which would choke
Aught of an upward growth; or when is felt
Companions only proving bosom foes:—
page 151 Where little else than brutal instinct reigns,
In such, a blank had been the better gift!
Love; Philosophy; Society; JoyA blank, in the affections of the heart,
Is painful to endure, especially
In souls, whose natures sensibly can feel
A strong capacity for bringing forth
The fruits of social love; such as to cheer
Where sorrows would invade; or much advance
The comforts of this life! Yet ’tis the lot
Of many, who seem worthy better cheer;
If aught of cheer can in a blank be found.
Who would not sympathize with loving hearts,
Whose lottery of life would seem a blank?
Who yet, through some fortuitous event
Are unattach’d, unsought-for, and who seem
Quite isolated from love’s social bliss.
That such there are, the world around can tell,
Of either sex, both amiable and wise;
Who seem as if no partners were for them,
As being overlook’d; so must be lone,
As when was Adam found, when he had none
page 152 T’ absorb his spare affections running wild!
Compared with such a loneness, sweet it is
To have a partner meet, on whom can be
Bestow’d a heart-felt kindness; which returns
Unto the loving heart abundant joy!
But take away such priviledge enjoyed,
Then what on earth can compensate the loss?
Yes, blest it is to fondly loving hearts
To have an outlet for affection’s flow,
In the one object of their best regards!
Participation in each others’ joys,
Or other cares, makes up the heart’s delight,
Or gives relief, when sorrows would invade!
Love; Philosophy; ReligionBut where such state is not—no special friend
T’ absorb affection’s flow—love’s principle
Must have some course of action, as it is
A spirit which can ne’er be idly hid;
Or be inactive in some way of good;
Unless it has become deseased,—deranged
From its true nature,—so engend’ring hate,
Misanthrophy, and such pernicious ills,
page 153 As caused by envy—like the canker worm,
Whose nature’s mischief,—preying on the mind!
But where there’s resignation to the will
Of Heaven, in such, its isolated state;
Love’s principle, as healthy, will regard
Its truth inherent sacred; and declare
Its worth in some enjoyment of its own,
Despite what disappointments it sustains!
Love; Poetry; TechnologySome lonely Poet, though he deeply feels
His nature fraught with Love’s most potent power,
Yet has not found a sympathizing heart,
In some one, who might comprehend his thoughts,
He awkwardly expresses; so must fail
T’ impress, as he himself feels love-imprest;
His seriousness befool’d, his heart much pain’d,
He seeks his comforts at the copious spring
Of thought, within his soul—a precions gift,
Of God, when rightly used;—and thus the Muse
Becomes his safety valve, to let off cares,
In plaintive song, or other nobler strains;
When otherwise, such cares his heart had rent
page 154 Like pent up steam, which sad explosion makes!
—But where that gift is misapplied--misused,
From the design, for which ’twas giv’n, astray;—
Vile passions stirring, more than cares to soothe,
The gift will on the victim be revenged!
And so with every other gift bestow’d
Upon our natures, if they’re not applied
God’s glory to advance, amid our cares,
By using them all sorrows to assuage,
(Yes, disappointed love among the rest,
Which needs the best appliances to soothe,)
As was designed; such gift will prove a snare;
The blessing to a baleful curse transform’d!
Love; Technology; PerceptionLove must have some choice object upon which
To rest affections, as its nature craves
This gracious privilege, to exercise
Its calling, in good deeds; as if t’admire
The likeness of its Father, in itself
As in a mirror shewn, with purest grace.
Love; PoetryLove in the heart, thus actuated, when
No other claim of nearer kin presides,
page 155 Will find its joy, ev’n in some mournful theme
As in Memoriam, as it declares
The virtues of departed worth, as such
Embodied were in some dear friend deceased.
Yes, such impressions, on Love’s heart, are all
Held sacred, living there, respited from
Death for a space; like halo, of the sun
Just o’er horizon’s verge, which sheds some rays,
Some lingring looks of farewell o’er the earth,
Ere Darkness enters and o’er-veils the scene:—
Love, weeping o’er the dead, will labour hard
T’ what virtues once were living there,
The while neglecting to improve its own,
By due submission to the will of Heaven!
Love in the heart, though wandering alone
Amid the scenes of life, will find its joy
In the adoption of some child of woe,
Some nurseling of its parents now deprived;
And in providing for its various needs,
And soothing all its ailments. Sympathy
That livelest feeling of the loving heart
page 156 Feels exercised most genially—aye feels
In the outflowings of affection’s fount,
Compensated beyond all other price,
While claiming all its sorrows as her own!
So will the sick-bed, and the lone abode
Of wretchedness, where comforts are required,
Give meet employment to her loving heart;
In which, while labouring, as with Angel-truth,
She feels compensated in doing good!
The Sunday-school, another mode t’employ
Affection’s genius, youth’s young souls to train
In virtue’s way, while pointing them to Heaven,
Where her heart’s treasure isl Thus as she gives
Instruction, so she feels her joys increased,
Her faith in all her Father’s will confirm’d!
Love; Land; MemoryTo have no one to love, or no good deed
To do; or have no influence for good,
Can leave no mark behind, when thou art gone
Beyond life’s bourn, to tell that virtue lived
In such a sphere; thy life will only shew
The image of a desert, amid which
page 157 No water spring is;—all an arid waste!—
The dried up well, with its attending train
Of ills to man, in parching thirst, and pain,
Has much the semblance of a loveless life,
From whieh no good can come or comforts flow!
Something to love is Nature’s earnest call,
’Tis one of life’s first subjects of request:—
The baby on its mother’s breast will shew
The future Mother as it hugs its doll,
That stirring of love’s impulse on its soul.—
Love; Philosophy; TechnologyIn man, or womanhood’s maturity,
If none of one’s own nature can be found
T’absorb the love-o’erflowings of the heart,
In fond caressings bladishments and praise;
They must look round, if only but find
Some bestial pet, on which they lavish may
Their surplus of affections!—Such oft proves
A precious acquisition to the one,
Who has not met yet with a social friend,
Her feelings to reciprocate. This source
Of fond enjoyment has its moral, though
page 158 It is not such to satisfy in truth.
The fond caressings, thus bestow’d on pets
Of lower orders, serve a need; they prove
The safety valve to let off feeling’s force,
Which might the mind afflict with painful cares!
Be cheer’d ye lonely ones; whose hearts have truth
Indwelling and sincere; a kindly eye
Looks down upon your state. Yes, He who sees
The end from the beginning, must have had
His reasons good, that such your lot should be;
As, many cares, which would not coincide
With your peculiar nature, are not yours!
Thus set apart by His wise providence,
For other special duties, He’ll procure
Employment meet your loving hearts t’engage;
And prove your agencies of value good,
In sympathizing with distress woe!
Your sesvices engaged in virtue’s works
Will give response unto the will of Heaven!
Thus following up such duties, your rewards
The best on earth, which Heaven’s approval gives,
page 159 Will there be found; and such will ever prove
An outlet for th’ affections of your hearts,
Which otherwise might stagnate, breeding whims
Of strangest, vexing natures; just as pools
Of stagnant water gen’rate would desease!
Yes your affections active will give joy,
And find th’ approval of your living faith
Shewn in your works, inscribed upon the hearts
Of all who have such benefits received;
These, witness’d by the Spirit of holy love,
Will meet approval at the Throne of Heaven,
Rdounding to your everlasting joy!
Love; Poetry; Religion; PerceptionThus far my song; now here the Muse may stay.
With weak and faltring wing she has pursueb [sic: pursued]
Thə subject more than first had been devised;
Yet, what has been attempted merely shews
The earthly outskirts of the holy theme.
Though step by step beyond her first essay,
Induced to venture thus, as fain to soar
To heights which loom afar; however high
page 160 She would attain, she finds, still far beyond
Her best attainments, lie heights unexplored,
Inviting nobler spirits to attempt
A farther reach, with nobler strains of thought,
Than hitherto evolved. Love is a theme
That may be all beginning without end,
Though much of it is sung, much yet remain
To be attempted, while the theme’s wide stretch
Is boundless as Eternity itself!—
Can Finite grasp the INFINITE?—’Tis more
Than even Seraphim pretend to do!
They fain wonld look into Love’s depths to search
The myst’ry out, but ’tis beyond their power;
So, must they be content with what is seen!
Though such, be but a tithe of what remains
Still undiscover’d by their straining eyes;
They, praising loudly what can be beheld,
Acknowledge must Love is a soundless deep;
And consequently, “is an endless theme!”