To Friendship

By Benjamin Hine

Were there none to use thy name,
But such as feel thy sacred flame,
None but those who friends would be,
Were we in adversity.
And whether fortune frowned or smiled,
Heaped her favours or withheld,
A friend unshaken would remain,
To soothe our grief, to ease our pain,
To help in every time of need,
And thus evince a friend indeed.
How long might thou neglected lie,
Even obsolete become, and die,
Or from our language be erased,
Thy import lost, thy name effaced;
And is it thus, and can it be?
O, no, forbid it charity.
Are there not some might justly claim,
Without abuse, thy hallowed name?
A chosen few, whose friendship pure,
Throughout all changes would endure.
Whose souls embrace the mighty plan,
Of love to God, and love to man.

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