William Mason (1725-1797)


A plaintive sonnet flowed from Milton's pen
When time had stolen his three and twentieth year:
Say, shall not I, then, shed one tuneful tear,
Robbed by the thief of three-score years and ten?
No! for the foes of all life-lengthened men,
Trouble and toil, approach not yet too near;
Reason, meanwhile, and health, and memory dear
Hold unimpaired their weak yet wonted reign.

Still round my sheltered lawn I pleased can stray;
Still trace my sylvan blessings to their spring:
Being of beings! yes, that silent lay
Which musing gratitude delights to sing,
Still to thy sapphire throne shall faith convey,
And hope, the cherub of unwearied wing.