1797 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Richard Farmer

Anonymous, "To the Memory of Dr. Farmer" Whitehall Evening Post (19 September 1797).



Ah! FARMER! Thou hast passed the dreadful gulf,
On whose tremendous brink do millions stand
Trembling with awe at Death's resistless power,
Unwilling to leave life's troubled land.
FARMER, farewel! thou friend of human kind!
Witness the poor, who oft' beset thy way
Asking support; witness the distressed,
Whose sad misfortunes shed no gladsome ray;
These to thy hospitable mansion throng'd,
Under whose roof relief or counsel found
To ease the load of life, to chear the day,
While widows, orphans, loud thy praises sound.
Many will miss thy ever-bounteous hand,
And many sigh that thou art gone before.
Friendship thy bosom glow'd; the chearful hour,
Which thou so oft' hast gladden'd, now's no more.
The Learned to thee for information came:
Thy mind was eminent in Wisdom's lore;
Intelligence and Truth illum'd the soul
Who came to ask true wisdom from thy store.
Such bright examples teach the human heart
Of those who travel through the vale of tears.
His goodly precepts purify'd the soul
O'erwhelm'd with doubt, oppress'd with sceptic fears.
Bless'd be thy name! FARMER, the friend of man!
Thy soul is gone above ethereal skies,
To seek the righteous mansions of the Just,
"Where suns ne'er set, or stars do never rise."