In the First Page of an Album by One Whose Handwriting Is Wretchedly Bad

First flowret of the year is that which shows
Its rival whiteness 'mid surrounding snows;
To guide the shining Company of Heaven,
Brightest as first, appears the star of Even;
Upon imperial brows the richest gem
Stands ever foremost in the Diadem;
How then could mortal so unfit engage
To take his Station in this leading page?
For others marshall with his pen the way
Which shall be trod in many a future day!
Why was not some fair Lady called to write
Dear words for memory, ‘characters of light’?
Lines which enraptured fancy might explore
And thence create her Image! but no more;
Strangers! forgive the deed, an unsought task,
For what you look on Friendship deigned to ask.
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