When on life's ocean first I spread my sail, I then implored a mild auspicious gale; And from the slippery strand I took my flight, And sought the peaceful haven of delight. Tyrannic storms arose upon my soul, And dreadful did their mad'ning thunders roll; The pensive muse was shaken from her sphere, And hope, it vanished in the clouds of fear. At length a golden sun broke through the gloom, And from his smiles arose a sweet perfume-- A calm ensued, and birds began to sing, And lo! the sacred muse resumed her wing. With frantic joy she chaunted as she flew, And kiss'd the clement hand that bore her through; Her envious foes did from her sight retreat, Or prostrate fall beneath her burning feet. 'Twas like a proselyte, allied to Heaven-- Or rising spirits' boast of sins forgiven, Whose shout dissolves the adamant away, Whose melting voice the stubborn rocks obey. 'Twas like the salutation of the dove, Borne on the zephyr through some lonesome grove, When Spring returns, and Winter's chill is past, And vegetation smiles above the blast. 'Twas like the evening of a nuptial pair, When love pervades the hour of sad despair-- 'Twas like fair Helen's sweet return to Troy, When every Grecian bosom swell'd with joy. The silent harp which on the osiers hung, Was then attuned, and manumission sung; Away by hope the clouds of fear were driven, And music breathed my gratitude to Heaven. Hard was the race to reach the distant goal, The needle oft was shaken from the pole; In such distress who could forbear to weep? Toss'd by the headlong billows of the deep! The tantalizing beams which shone so plain, Which turned my former pleasures into pain-- Which falsely promised all the joys of fame, Gave way, and to a more substantial flame. Some philanthropic souls as from afar, With pity strove to break the slavish bar; To whom my floods of gratitude shall roll, And yield with pleasure to their soft control. And sure of Providence this work begun-- He shod my feet this rugged race to run; And in despite of all the swelling tide, Along the dismal path will prove my guide. Thus on the dusky verge of deep despair, Eternal Providence was with me there; When pleasure seemed to fade on life's gay dawn, And the last beam of hope was almost gone.
Esteville begins to burn;
The auburn fields of harvest rise;
The torrid flames again return,
And thunders roll along the skies.
Perspiring Cancer lifts his head,
And roars terrific from on high;
Whose voice the timid creatures dread;
From which they strive with awe to fly.
The night-hawk ventures from his cell,
And starts his note in evening air;
He feels the heat his bosom swell,
Which drives away the gloom of fear.
Thou noisy insect, start thy drum;
Rise lamp-like bugs to light the train;
And bid sweet Philomela come,
And sound in front the nightly strain.
The bee begins her ceaseless hum,
And doth with sweet exertions rise;
And with delight she stores her comb,
And well her rising stock supplies.
Let sportive children well beware,
While sprightly frisking o’er the green;
And carefully avoid the snare,
Which lurks beneath the smiling scene.
The mistress bird assumes her nest,
And broods in silence on the tree,
Her note to cease, her wings at rest,
She patient waits her young to see.
The farmer hastens from the heat;
The weary plough-horse droops his head;
The cattle all at noon retreat,
And ruminate beneath the shade.
The burdened ox with dauntless rage,
Flies heedless to the liquid flood,
From which he quaffs, devoid of gauge,
Regardless of his driver's rod.
Pomaceous orchards now expand
Their laden branches o'er the lea;
And with their bounty fill the land,
While plenty smiles on every tree.
On fertile borders, near the stream,
Now gaze with pleasure and delight;
See loaded vines with melons teem—
'Tis paradise to human sight.
With rapture view the smiling fields,
Adorn the mountain and the plain,
Each, on the eve of Autumn, yields
A large supply of golden grain.