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EDWIN AND ANGELINA.
· TURN, gentle hermit of the dale,
And guide my lonely way,
With hospitable ray:
For here forlorn and lost I tread,
With fainting steps and slow; Where wilds immeasurably spread,
Seem lengthening as I go.'
Forbear, my son,' the Hermit cries,
• To tempt the dangerous gloom; For yonder faithless phantom Aies
To lure thee to thy deom.
Here to the houseless child of want
My door is open still ;
I give it with good will.
Then turn to-night, and freely share
Whate'er my cell bestows; My rushy couch and frugal fare,
My blessing and repose.
6 No flocks, that range the valley free,
To slaughter I condemn; Taught by that power that pities me,
I learn to pity them :
• But from the mountain's grassy side
A guiltless feast I bring ; A scrip with herbs and fruits supplied,
And water from the spring.
Then, pilgrim, turn, thy cares forego ;
All earth-born cares are wrong : Man wants but little here below,
Nor wants that little long.'
Soft as the dew from heaven descends,
His gentle accents fell :
And follows to the cell.
Far in a wilderness obscure
The lonely mansion lay;
And strangers led astray.
No stores beneath its humble thatch
Required a master's care; The wicket, opening with a latch,
Received the harmless pair.
And now, when busy crowds retire
To take their evening rest,
And cheered his pensive guest;
And spread his vegetable store,
And gayly pressed and smiled ; And, skilled in legendary lore,
The lingering hours beguiled.
Around in sympathetic mirth,
Its tricks the kitten tries;
The crackling faggot flies.
But nothing could a charm impart
To sooth the stranger's wo; For grief was heavy at his heart,
And tears began to flow.
His rising cares the Hermit spied,
With answering care opprest : And whence, unhappy youth ! he cried,
• The sorrows of thy breast?
From better habitations spurned,
Reluctant dost thou rove:
Or unregarded love?
"Alas! the joys that fortune brings,
Are trifling, and decay ;
More trifling still than they.
s And what is friendship but a name,
A charm that lulls to sleep ;
And leaves the wretch to weep?
And love is still an emptier sound,
The modern fair-one's jest ; On earth unseen, or only found
To warm the turtle's nest.
For shame, fond youth ! thy sorrows hush,
And spurn the sex!' he said : But while he spoke, a rising blush
His love-lorn guest betrayed.
Surprised he sees new beauties rise,
Swift mantling to the view, Like colours o'er the morning skies,
As bright, as transient too.
The bashful look, the rising breast,
Alternate spread alarms:
A maid, in all her charms.