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And the sprouting buds of sensibility were bruised by the harshness of a
school. My soul, look well around thee, ere thou give thine infant unto sorrows. Yet there be boisterous tempers, stout nerves, and stubborn hearts, And there is a riper season, when the mind is well disciplined in good, And a time, when youth may be bettered by the wholesome occasions of
knowledge, Which rarely will it meet with so well as among the congregation of his
fellows. Only for infancy, fond mother, rend not those first affections; Only for the sensitive and timorous, consign not thy darling unto misery.
A man looketh on his little one, as a being of better hope;
In himself ambition is dead, but it hath a resurrection in his son;
That vein is yet untried,—and who can tell if it be not golden ?
While his, well-nigh worked out, never yielded aught but lead:
And thus is he hurt more sorely, if his wishes are defeated there;
He has staked his all upon a throw, and lo! the dice have foiled him.
All ways, and at all times, men follow on in flocks,
And the rise epidemic of the day shall tincture the stream of education;
Fashion is a foolish watcher posted at the tree of knowledge,
Who plucketh its unripe fruit to pelt away the birds:
But, for its golden apples,—they dry upon the boughs,
And few have the courage or the wisdom to eat in spite of fashion :
One while, the fever is to learn, what none will be wiser for knowing,
Exploded errors in extinct tongnes, and occasions for their use are small;
And the bright morning of life, for years of misspent time,
Wasted in following sounds, hath trackel up little sense,
Till at noon a man is thrown upon the world, with a mind expert in
Having yet every thing to learn, that can make him good or useful:
The curious spirit of youth is crammed with unwholesome garbage,
While starving for the mother's milk the breasts of nature yield;
And high-coloured fables of depravily lure with their classic varnish,
While truth is holding out in vain her mirror much despised.
Of olden time, the fashion was for arms, to make an accomplished slayer,
And set gregarious man a-tilting with his fellows;
Thereafter, occult sciences, and mystic arts, and symbols,
How to exorcise a wizard, and how to lay a ghost;
Anon, all for gallantry and presence, the minuet, the palfrey, and the foil,
And the grand aim of education was to produce a coxcomb;
Soon came scholastical dispute with hydra-headed argun
And the true philosophy of mind confounded in a labyrinth of words;
Then, the Pantheon, and its orgies, initiating docile childhood,
While diligent youth strove hard to render his all unto Cæsar;
And now is seen the passion for utility, when all things are accounted by
their price, And the wisdom of the wise is busied in hatching golden eggs. Perchance, not many moons to come, and all will again be for ab
Unravelling the figured veil that hideth Egypt's gods ;
Or in those strange Avatars seeking benignant Vishnu,
Kali, and Kamala the fair, and much.invoked Ganesa. (27)
The mines of knowledge are oft laid bare through the forked hazelwand
of chance, And in a mountain of quartz we find a grain of gold. Of a truth it were well to know all things, and to learn them all at once, And what, though mortal insufficiency attain to small knowledge of
Man loveth exclusions delighting in the sterile trodden path,
While the broad green meadow is jewelled with wild flowers :
And whether is it better with the many to follow a beaten track,
Or by eccentric wanderings to cull unheeded sweets ?
WHEN his reason yieldeth fruit, make thy child thy friend;
For a filial friend is a double gain, a diamond set in gold.
As an infant, thy mandate was enough, but now let him see tny reasons;
Confide in him, but with discretion: and bend a willing ear to his
questions. More to thee than to all beside, let him owe good counsel and gooi!
guidance; Let him feel his pursuits have an interest, more to thee than to all heside
Watch his native capacities; nourish that which suiteth him the readiest; And cultivate early those good inclinations wherein thou fearest he is
most lacking : Is he phlegmatic and desponding ? let small successes comfort his hope; is he obstinate and sanguine? let petty crosses accustom him to life. Showeth he a sordid spirit? be quick, and teach him generosity; Inclineth he to liberal excess? prove to him how hard it is to earn. Gather to thy hearth such friends as are worthy of honour and attention, For the company a man chooseth is a visible index of his heart: But let not the pastor whom thou hearest be too much a familiar in thy
house, For thy children may see his infirmities, and learn to cavil at his teaching. It is well to take hold on occasions, and render indirect instruction; It is better to teach upon a system, and reap the wisdom of books: The history of nations yieldeth grand outlines: of persons, minute details: Poetry is polish to the mind, and high abstractions cleanse it. Consider the station of thy son, and breed him to his fortune with
judgment : The rich may profit in much which would bring small advantage to the
poor. But with all thy care for thy son, with all thy strivings for his welfare, Expect disappointment, and look for pain : for he is of an evil stock, and
will grieve thee.
A wise man in a crowded street winneth his way with gentleness,
Nor rudely pusheth aside the stranger that standeth in his path;
He knoweth that blind hurry will but hinder, stirring up contention
Yet holdeth he steadily right on, with his face to the scope of his pursuit:
Even so, in the congress of opinions, the bustling highway of intelligence,
Each man should ask of his neighbour, and yield to him again concession.
Terms ill defined, and forms misunderstood, and customs, where their
reasons are unknown, Have stirred up many zealous souls to fight against imaginary giants: But wisdom will hear the matter out, and often, by keenness of perception, Will find in strange disguise the precious truth he seeketh; So he leaveth unto prejudice or taste the garb and the manner of her
Content to see so nigh the mistress of his love.
There is no similitude in nature that owneth not also to a difference,
Yea, no two berries are alike, though twins upon one stem;
No drop in the ocean, no pebble on the beach, no leaf in the forest, hath
No mind in its dwelling of mortality, no spirit in the world unseen:
And therefore, since capacity and essence differ alike with accident,
None but a bigot partisan will hope for impossible unity.
Wilt thou ensue peace, nor buffet with the waters of contention,
Wilt thou be counted wise and gain the love of men,
Let unobtruded error escape the frown of censure,
Nor lift the glass of truth alway before thy fellows
I say not, compromise the right, I would not have thee countenance the
wrong, But hear with charitable heart the reasons of an honest judgment; For thou also hast erred, and knowest not when thou art most right; Nor whether to.morrow's wisdom may not prove thee simple to-day: Perchance thou art chiding in another what once thou wast thyself; Perchance thou sharply reprovest what thou wilt be hereafter. A man that can render a reason, is a man worthy of an answer; But he that argueth for victory, deserveth not the tenderness of Truth.
WHILES a man liveth he may mend : count not thy brother reprobate;
When he is dead his chance is gone: remember not his faults in bitterness
A man, till he dieth, is immortal in thy sight; and then he is as nothing;
Make not the living thy foe, nor take weak vengeance of the dead;
For life is a game of chess, where least causeth greatest,
And an ill move bringeth loss, and a pawn may insure victory.
Dost thou suspect? seek out certainty: for now, by self-inflicted pain,
Or ill-directed wrath, thou wrongest thyself or thy neighbour:
Suspicion is an early lesson, taught in the school of experience,
Neither shalt thou easily unlearn it, though charity ply thee with her
Yet look thou well for reasons, or ever mistrust hath marred thee,
Or fear curdled thy blood, or jealousy goaded thee to madness:
For a look, or a word, or an act, may be taken well or ill,
As construed by the latitude of love, or the closeness of cold suspicion.
BETTER is the wrong with sincerity, rather than the right with falsehood:
And a prudent man will not lay siege to the stronghold of ignorant bigotry.
To unsettle a weak mind were an easy inglorious triumph,
And a strong cause taketh little count of the worthless suffrage of a foo) :
Lightly he held to the wrong, loosely will he cling to the right;
Weakness is the essence of his mind, and the seed cannot yield an acorn.
Dogged obstinacy is oftentimes the buttress that proppeth an unstable spirit,
But a candid man blusheth not to own he is wiser to-day than yesterday
A man of a little wisdom is a sage among fools;
But himself is chief among the fools, if he look for admiration from them.
A heresy is an evil thing, for its shame is its pride :