ON THE BIRTH OF JOHN ROGERS DAVIES,
THE AUTHOR'S THIRD SON.
THOU little wond'rous miniature of man,
Form'-d by unerring Wisdom's perfect plan;
Thou little stranger, from eternal night
Emerging into life's immortal light;
Thou heir of worlds unknown, thou candidate
For an important everlasting state,
Where this young embryo shall its pow'rs expand,
Enlarging, rip'ning still, and never stand.
This glimm'ring spark of being, just now struck
From nothing by the all-creating Reck,
To immortality shall flame and burn,
When suns and stars to native darkness turn;
Thou shalt the ruins of the worlds survive,
And through the rounds of endless ages live.
Now thou art born into an anxious state
Of dubious trial for thy future fate:
Now thou art listed in the war of life,
The prize immense, and O! severe the strife.
Another birth awaits thee, when the hour
Arrives that lands thee on th' eternal shore;
(And O! 'tis near, with winged haste 'twill come,
Thy cradle rocks toward the neighb'ring tomb ;.)
Then shall immortals fay, "A son is born,"
While thee as dead mistaken mortals mourn;
From glory then to glory thou shalt rise,
Or sink from deep to deeper miseries;
Ascend perfection's everlasting scale,
Or still descend from gulph to gulph in hell.
Thou embryo-angel, or thou infant siend,
A being now begun, but ne'er to end,
What boding fears a Father's heart torment,
Trembling and anxious for the grand event,
Lest thy young foul so late by Heav'n bestovr'd,
Forget her Father, and forget her God!
The following Poems are here retained as a Specimen of the Author's
test, while imprifon'd in this house of clay,
To tyrant lusts stie fall an hetpless prey! ,
And lest, descending still from bad to worse,
Her immortality should prove her curse!
Maker of souls! avert so dire a doom,
Or snatch her back to native nothing's gloom!
ON THE WORDS OF OUR LORD,
LOVEST TIIOU ME? John xxi. 17.
MY God, the wretch that does not love thy name,
To life and being forfeits all his claim;
And may he sink to nothing, whence he came!
Or let the yawn of the dire mouth of hell
Receive him, with his fellow-siends to dwell!
O, if my heart does not to thee aspire,
If aught with equal fervor I desire,
I'm self-condemn'd. and doom myself to sire:
Let not my guilty breath profane thine air,
Nor groaning earth the monstrous burden bear;
Let clouds, with vengeance big, burst o'er my head,
And vollies of red thunder strike me dead;
The fun convert his gentle rays to flames,
And blast the miscreant with his vengeful beams;
The whole creation rife in arms for Thee,
To vindicate the rights of thy divinity.
Vile wretch, that dares refuse to love a God,
Who form'd me man out of my native clod:
Whose breath the faculty of love inspir'd,
And with the heav'nly spark my bosom sir'd;
Whose uncreated beauties charm the sight
Of gazing angels in the realms of light.
Thy glories, saintly copy'd, round me shine,
Great God! and beam through all these works of thine,
Proclaiming Thee their Origin divine:
Thy grace diffus'd around in thousand rills,
A thousand worlds with endless rapture sills:
Thou too, when man to dreadful ruin fell,
Helpless, unpity'd, on the brink of hell,
When frowning justice did the prey demand,
And none could rescue from its vengeful hand,
Thou, touch'd with pity, didst avert his doom,
And gave thy Son a victim in his room!
Nail'd to the cross the bleeding Saviour hangs,
And courts my love with groans and dying pangs.
0! I must love—nor can the pains and blood
Of an incarnate Godhead be withstood!
Yet ah! in some dark hour I scarcely know
Whether I love my gracious God, or no:
Gloomy suspicions, painful jealeusies,
And anxious doubts in all their horrors rife:
1 hear the whisp'rings of misgiving fear,
"Thy love is feign'd, thine ardor insincere."—
Too true, too true, my trembling foul replies,
Else whence so often could these languors rife?
Ah! these unruly passions would not rove
Thus wildly were they sir'd with sacred love,
Nor would the fervors of devotion die
So often, and my pow'rs lethargic lie.
And yet, my God, in some bright moment too,
Methinks I feel the flame divinely glow:
To thee my passions with such ardor move,
That if I love Thee not, I know not what I love.
If I'm deceiv'd in this with empty show,
Then my existence is uncertain too; '''
An universal sceptic I commence
Amidst the glare of brightest evidence,
In spite of reason, and in spite of sense!
0! if I love Thee not, as fears suggest,
Why am I in thine absence thus distrest?
Whence this strange tumult, this uneasy pain, . . ,
Till thy sweet smiles compose mv soul again?
Whence these wild pantings of intense desire?
Or why should breathing dust so high aspire?
1 see my busy fellow-worms pursue
Created good, and nothing nobler view;
They lavish life away estrang'd from thee,
In undisturb'd serene stupidity.
And why like them can't 1 contented play,
And eat, and drink, and sleep my hours away?
Whence this immense ambition in my mind,
To scorn all joys but those of heav'nly kind?
Why should a worm, an animated clod,
Disdain all bliss beneath a boundless God?
O what but the attractive force of love
Thus rais'd my spirit to the worlds above?
Say, great Omniscient! for thou know'st my heart,
Can nature charm me, if thy smiles depart?
Can riches, pleasures, honours, empires, crowns,
Or friends delight me, if I feel thy frowns?
No; all creation dwindles to a toy,
And heav'n itself is striptof ev'ry joy;
Vol. III. Kkk The
The radiant sun is darken'd to my eyes,
And cv'ry blooming beauty round me dies,
Thou great Invisible! Thou dear Unknown!
Why thus to Thee should my affections run,
Thus through the objects of my fenses break,
And charms unseen, and hidden glories seek?
Deep in recesses of approachless light
Thou sitt'lh enthron'd beyond my feeble sight;
Yet diawn by some strange mystjc influence,
I love Thee more than all that strikes my fense,
Than all my ears have heard, or eyes have seen,
Or all my fancy's liveliest pow'rs can feign.
0! if thy love does not my heart inflarne,
Why does my foul rejoice at Jesus' name?
His name is music tomyravifh'd ears,
Sweeter than that which charms the heav'nly spheres -.
A cheering cordial to my fainting breast:
My hope, my joy, my triumph, and my rest.
1 spring from earth, and heav'n is my abode,
When I can speak those charming words, " My God."
My God! celestial rapture's in the found:
Be Thou but mine, and all the fun rolls round,
Without one secret murmur, I resign;
I have enough, may I but call Thee mine.
O! if I love Thee not, why do I choose,
Why love a mansion in thine earthly house?
The sacred morning shines with heav'nly rays,
More bright, more charming than ten thousand days,
Which bids me visit that delightful place:
There would I dwell, and pass my life away,
Till death conveys me to a brighter day.
In all the institutions of thy grace
For Thee I look, and long to fee thy face:
When at thy throne I bow the suppliant knee,
Is pray'r a thoughtless, cold formality?
Or can my pray'rs content me without thee?
No; these are but the channels of thy grace;
Transparent glasses where 1 fee thy face;
I thirst for living waters all in vain,
Shouldst Thou thy gracious influence restrain.:
The radiant mirrors show me nothing fair,
Unless I fee my God reflected there.
Then peace, my restless and suspicious heart;
And ye, dire boding jealousies, depart:
I love my God, or else I nothing love,
And the pure flame ere long shall blaze above,
And in its native element aspire,
Without one mist to damp, or cloud t'obscure the sire.
A MINISTER'S REFLECTIONS ON THE DEATH
OF ONE OF HIS PEOPLE.
OF my dear flock one more is gone
T'appear before th' eternal throne,
And pass the grand decisive test:
"Ashes to ashes, dust to dust:"
Surviving friends with tears intrust
There till the gen'ral doom to rest.
The foul, dismiss'd from cumbrous clay,
Expatiates in eternal day,
And with the Great Jehovah dwells.
The dawn of immortality
With scenes unknown sills all the eye,
And wonders vast and new reveals.
Thus while I'm dreaming life away,
Or books and studies charm the day,
My flock is dying one by one;
Convey'd beyond my warning voice,
To endless pains, or endless joys;
For ever happy or undone.
I too ere long must yield my breath:
My mouth for ever clos'd in death,
Shall sound the gospel trump no more:
Then, while my charge is in my reach,
With fervor let me pray and preach,
And eager catch the flying hour!
Almighty grace, my soul inspire,
And touch my lips with heav'nly sire!
Let faith, and love, and zeal arise!
O teach me that divinest art,
To reach the conscience, gain the heart,
And train immortals for the skies!