Page:Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell (Charlotte, Emily and Anne Brontë, 1846).djvu/44

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34
VANITAS VANITATUM, OMNIA VANITAS.


But still the ocean craves for more.
'Tis endless labour everywhere!
Sound cannot satisfy the ear,


Light cannot fill the craving eye,
Nor riches half our wants supply;
Pleasure but doubles future pain,
And joy brings sorrow in her train;


Laughter is mad, and reckless mirth—
What does she in this weary earth?
Should Wealth, or Fame, our Life employ,
Death comes, our labour to destroy;


To snatch the untasted cup away,
For which we toiled so many a day.
What, then, remains for wretched man?
To use life's comforts while he can,


Enjoy the blessings Heaven bestows,
Assist his friends, forgive his foes;
Trust God, and keep his statutes still,
Upright and firm, through good and ill;


Thankful for all that God has given,
Fixing his firmest hopes on heaven;
Knowing that earthly joys decay,
But hoping through the darkest day.

Acton.