Egerton Webbe (1810-1840)

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To My Fire

My little chirping fire, companion gay,
Whose merry gambols make me less alone,
A blessing on thy glee! Be ever known
At evening hour, when just the dying day
Hath made light sad.--Thou hast a pleasant way
Of muttering low, in many a little tone,
Quaint syllables--that scarcely from his own
The cricket knows, as pausing mid his play.

Sweet is thy precept in that listening hour;
Thou seemst to tell me with thy quiet mirth
How good is hope--regret how little worth:--
And perfect is thy love;--if fate but lour
When sharpest frost impends dost merriest burn.
The cold world leaves us,--thou, with kindlier burn.

First Thoughts and Second Thoughts

First thoughts are good, and second thoughts are good;
Those most enrich us, these do best advise.
First thoughts are like first love, and us surprise
With sudden bliss--till second thoughts intrude
Fraught with wise doubts of much to be eschewed,
Not fit;--where yet the greater danger lies,
Lest while we doubt, the vision from our eyes
Offended pass--thereafter vainly wooed.

First thoughts are mistresses with heat pursued,
And mad devotion;--second thoughts are wives
Oft wed in over-prudence, and a mood
Most passionless.--He wiseliest contrives
Who adds the judgement while the love survives;
For so shall second thoughts, first thoughts include.