Published online by Cambridge University Press: 20 January 2022
Thou art but in life's morning, and as yet
The world looks witchingly: its fruits and flowers
Are fair and fragrant, and its beauteous bowers
Seem haunts of happiness, before thee set,
All lovely as a landscape freshly wet
With dew, or bright with sunshine after showers;
Where pleasure dwells, and Flora's magic powers
Woo thee to pluck joy's peerless coronet.
Thus be it ever:—wouldst thou have it so,
Preserve thy present openness of heart;—
Cherish those generous feelings which now start
At base dissimulation, and that glow
Of native love for ties which home endears;
And thou wilt find the world no vale of tears.
“Thou art but in life's morning!”— Years have sped
Their silent flight since thus my idle rhyme
Addressed thee in thy being's opening prime;
If since that hour some clouds at times have spread
Their shadow o’er thy path, these have not shed
On thee their anger; but, from time to time,
Have led thy thoughts tow’rd sunnier heights to climb;
Communing with the loved, lamented dead!
And still thou art but in the glowing morn
Of thy existence: hearts of finest mould,
And warm affections claim their right to hold
Those purer, nobler feelings with them born,
Which will not let them droop, of hope forlorn,
Nor in a few brief years be changed and cold.