A1r

Miscellaneous
Poems,

by
A Lady.

“The watchful bee imbibe the mixed perfume, And float delighted down the fragrant vale, Taste ev’ry sweet, and rifle ev’ry bloom.”

Printed for the author, and sold by the booksellers
in Norwich and Norfolk. 1790MDCCXC

A1v B1r

Saham Gardens,
A Poem:

Addressed to the Rev. Charles Parrott.

Be mine, O Pollio, oft to rove

Adown the slope, or thro’ the grove,

When Spring bestows her choicest green

On Saham’s gay, luxuriant scene!

When essence hangs on vernal bloom

And opening rose-buds breathe perfume:

Full oft, at early morn, to pass

O’er gravel firm, with verge of grass,

To trip the Terrace blithe along,

Listening to the wood-lark’s song;

B ’Neath B1v 2

’Neath the Cornel-hedge to stray

Cornel, favorite bush of May!

When the blossoms ’gin t’appear,

Earnest of the smiling year:

Up the steepy Mount to climb,

Mount, emboss’d with fragrant thyme;

Art, in Nature’s simple guise,

Swell’d the round, and bad it rise.

Next the fair Exotics view,

Spangled o’er with morning dew;

How they fondly strive to sip

Sweets, from Zephyr’s humid lip!

Extending wide his downy wing,

He sweeps the musky lap of Spring;

Bearing thence her odours rare

Thro’ lucid tracts of yielding air,

He hovers o’er each blushing flower,

Diffusing far the fragrant shower.

Then give my willing feet to stray

Where dubious windings pose the way;

Hedge-row trim, in rustic pride,

Smiles, the daisied-mead beside:

Art and Nature, hand in hand,

Wait, O Pollio, thy command;

Still the vivid scene renewing,

Still thy favorite plan pursuing,

All B2r 3

All their various graces blending,

Still advancing, still amending,

Till fair perfection’s goal they reach,

The mode, my Pollio, thou canst teach:

Liberal Nature bends to thee,

Nor revels too profusely free;

Ductile Art the measure treads

As thy plastic genius leads;

Genius, Nature, Art conspire,

To make the ravish’d world admire.

On to Beechen-grove I’ll wander—

Turn, to view the Ruin—yonder;

Round the fabric, stately trees

Wave, and murmur to the breeze;

Here and there, the boughs between,

Distant landscape’s coyly seen—

Verdent meadow starts to view!

Busket grey, and hillock blue,

Herds, and flocks—at random straying,

Rimpled streamlet—nimbly playing,

Lurid heath, with aspect keen;

Varying still the rural scene.

Beneath the Beechessilken shade

(For Loves and laughing Pleasures made,

And Fairies boon, who joy to play

When Phœbe sheds her silver ray),

B2 I’ll B2v 4

I’ll sit,—.and deftly tune the lyre;

Each jocund muse, the lay inspire,

Inspire the lay, and pour along

The rural elegance of song!

Linnets, catch the dulcet strain,

Warble back the notes again;

Sky-larks, poiz’d on buoyant wing,

Mount, and flutter, as ye sing;

Tuneful throstles, swell your throats,

Varying oft your mellow notes;

Blackbirds quaint, on hawthorn spray,

Trill the wild, untutor’d lay,

Hopping blithe, from bush to bush,

Cheerly join the vocal thrush;

Cuckoos, tell the am’rous tale

To your sleek-mates, in the vale:

Hark!—the halcyon ring-dove’s voice!

Sons of pleasure, now rejoice;

Blissful murmurs fill the grove!

This the season—meet for love.

(O! cou’d the Muse, with mystic spell,

Call yonder Bullfinch from his cell!

His cell,—where death and darkness spread

The gloomy awning o’er the dead:

Cou’d she re-plume his faded wing,

Re-tune his bill, and hear him sing

Such B3r 5

Such strains as, erst, her Bully sung!

On which the ear enraptured hung!

When, on the finger of the fair—

He warbled Laura’s favorite air!

Peace to thy manes, gentle bird!

Before the choral tribe preferr’d;

Lo! Pollio builds thy mural tomb,—

Immortal sweets around thee bloom!

And, last when Sappho wander’d here,

She dropp’d the sympathetic tear,—

The tear—still twinkles to the view

To vulgar eyes—a drop of dew).

Hither, maid and jovial swain,

Gaily join the rural train,

Life and pleasure quickly fly;

The theme is love, and harmony!

Rosy Pan, O come along,

Lead the band, and raise the song,—

Raise the song, the band advance—

Swell the chorus, form the dance;

Hither, nymphs and satyrs, all,

Nymphs and satyrs, wait the call,

Form the dance in mystic round,

Nimbly tread the mossy ground,—

“Now advancing, now retreating,”

Twinkling feet, harmonious beating,

B3 With B3v 6

With steps responsive to the lay—

Quick third the maze and scud away.

At eve the Cavern’d-path I’ll tread,

With branching hornbeams overspread,

Where the fragrant woodbines twine—

Round the slender eglantine;

Heapy stones we there discover,

Stones, with ivy-broider’d over;

On the bank the primrose pale;

’Neath,—the lily of the vale

Mingling oft with vi’let blue,

Tipp’d all day, with algid dew;

Faint the beams that steal between

Boughs that shadow o’er the scene,

Trembling rays, that help to show

Plants, and moss, and roots below:

There, my Pollio’s taste design’d

A banquet for the cultured mind,

Excluding thence the fulgent ray

That leads the errant thoughts astray.

Hail! to thy gloom, sequester’d shade!

For Contemplation aptly made;

Great, philosophic maid—repair,

And deign to meet thy vot’ry there!

With thee, I’ll number o’er the dead

Whom erst thy plastic hand hath led,

Thro’ B4r 7

Thro’ vaulted caves, and aisles along,

Old storied urns and busts among;—

We’ll trace, with Young, the awful gloom,

Still deep’ning o’er the recent tomb;

With Rowe Mrs. Rowe. behold the spirit rise,

Thro’ faith’s pure medium to the skies.

Suppose, with Maro, then we trace,

The godlike chiefs, of Trojan race ?

Or, shun, with Tully, toils of state,

In calm Arpinum’s safe retreat?

Next with lofty Plato rove

Enrapt, in academic grove ?

And, thence, essay the ways to scan

That science taught to erring man.

Be mine, at lonely twilight hour,

To muse beneath the ruin’d Tower,

Where pensile-ivy loves to crawl

In mystic mazes on the wall—

Winding mould’ring stones beside,

Where the deep chink yawneth wide;

When the droning beetle sings,

When the bat, on ebon wings

Flits around the nodding dome,

And the vagrant rooks come home;

Then, B4v 8

Then, on moss-grown step reclined,

I’ll give to Fancy all my mind,

Yield to her hand the mental rein,

And, airy skim her light domain.

Shou’d mimic forms, in changeful guise

Float afore my vacant eyes,

And shrilling pipe, with unwist sound,

Breathe from the hallow walls around;

While frantic winds, from Boreas sent,

Long in his vaulted caverns pent,

Come howling fierce, and loud, and strong,

Driving the rattling hail along—

Still, unappall’d, and void of fear,

I’d pass my frequent vigils here.

Oft-times rambling up the Hill

I mark the Watton. Town, and neighb’ring Mill—

Extending all her buxom fails

Sporting with the wanton gales:

From thence the Mirror Saham Meer. broad, I view,

Reflecting Nature’s impress true,—

Trees from rushy-banks depending,

Fleeting clouds with ether blending—

Catching in their transient way—

Various modes, and tinges gay;

Oft B5r 9

Oft on its fair expanse, the bow,

With answering hues, appears to glow;

And oft the meteor, as it flies

Athwart the murky midnight skies,

In traits exact, and strong, and clear,

Portrays its beaming phases here;

And oft we see the full-orb’d moon

When “riding near her highest noon,”

Reflected in the argent tide,

With many a bright-star by her side.

Sequester’d in the lonely dell—

My Pollio fix’d his favorite Cell;

The nitid shells he curious chose,

And placed them round in equal rows;

Within, he taste and neatness join’d,

At once to strike and win the mind;

He taught the devious light to play

Thro’ pictured-glass, with changeful ray,

And here, and there askaunce to throw

Gay cinctures on the floor below:

The glass with many a tale inwrought,

Gives hints to aid the cultured thought;

E’en to the eye of village swain

Close poring thro’ the storied pane,

The lustres yield unwist delight,

As near he strains the dazzled orbs of sight.

There B5v 10

There oft have we in converse sat,

All smiling at his easy chat;

Or, raptured, on the numbers hung,

That jovial Horace, whilom sung:

For ah! ’tis his, to tune the lyre—

Replete with genuine Roman fire,

In flowing measures, sweet and clear,

Adapted to the British ear.

Now the evening steals along,

Gradual sinks the choral song;

Sober silence wins its way,

Thro’ the tranquil pause of day;

Wearied airs a requiem hold;

“Drowsy tinkling lull the fold;”

Now the owl resumes her flight,

And the glow-worm’s tipp’d with light;

And the snail, demure and slow,

Glides along the path below;

And the hoary mantle’s spread—

O’er the distant mountain’s head;

Hark!—the bell, with minute-toll,

Strikes with sudden awe—the soul!

Let me greet the hallow’d sound—

Pealing slow, thro’ airs profound;

While tipp’d by yonder ling’ring beam

That streaks the western skies’ extreme,

Thro’ B6r 11

Thro’ yawning glade, of sable yew,

The Urn, prophetic, meets my view!

There we’ll close the varied scene,

Emblem of this Ball Terrene.

Here Art woos Nature’s winning guise,

Here light and shade alternate rise,

And sunny hill, and busky dell,

And pile antique, and rural cell;

And all that captivates the eye—

That Art and Nature can supply;

And all the judging mind—holds dear,

That prompts the wish to linger here:

Yet vain the wish!—since all things tend

(Thus sang the Horace. bard) to one sad end;

A few short years, the scene is o’er,

Ourselves, our Works exist no more.

Be mine to snatch the present hour,

The next, perchance, eludes my pow’r,

And grateful,—consecrate to fame

A verse, enrich’d with Pollio’s name.

But, if some loftier bard, inspired

With scenes that Pope had sung untired,

Shou’d bolder strike the sounding wire,

Harmonious warbling to the lyre,—

How Pollio’s genius round the place

Draws every Muse, and every Grace,—

To B6v 12

To view, with elegance design’d,

This vivid portrait of his mind:

A mind—beneficent and great,

Capacious, eminent, complete!

I’ll silent watch the grateful strain;

Bid echo waft it o’er the plain:

Resign the task, the lyre resign—

Enrapt in minstrelsy divine!

So, some sleek linnet, on the spray,

Wakes blithe the rude unpolish’d lay,

And hops, and flits, and chirps along

Thro’ all the minor modes of song:

When philomel resumes her notes!

Thro’ ether bland, the descant floats,

Till raptured Nature hear the sound,

From many a vocal steep rebound!

The linnet pauses on the bush,

And nestles close to list’ning thrush:

She marks the strain,—her song is o’er,

She hops, and flits, and chirps no more;

But, as the graceful chorist sings

Applauding floats her dewy wings,

“Then, clasps her pinions to her breast

And gently drops into her nest.”

This Poem was finished the year preceding
Mr. Parrott’s death, i.e. 17861786.
C1r 13

Pastoral Elegy,

on
The late Rev. Charles Parrott,
Rector of Saham, Norfolk.

Come shepherds, and lift to the lay,

Come virgins, attend to the verse,

Bring flowrets as fresh as the May,

And scatter them over the hearse,—

The hearse—where my Pollio is laid:

Alas! ’tis with anguish I tell

He’s number’d, too soon, with the dead.

How solemn and slow tolls the knell!

Come hither, and haste to prepare—

Ere they snatch the dear Saint from the view,

Bring quickly the primrose so fair,

The pansey, and violet-blue,

The lily, that blooms in the vale

That leads to the ivy-clad tower;

You know how he lov’d the cool dale,

Where blossoms his favorite flower.

C Bring C1v 14

Bring boughs of each flourishing green

He planted, and labour’d to rear,

The cypress and myrtle between—

Let the laurel and yew-branch appear;

And now we’ll the chaplet entwine,

As we stand round the grave in a ring:

Ye shepherds the eulogy join,

That gratitude prompts us to sing.

Recitative.—By the Shepherds.

Tho’ translated to the sky,

Pitying view thy friends below;

A moment we stern grief defy,

Invoke the powers of harmony:

Tho’ the heart replete with woe

Prompt the twinkling tear to flow,

Tho’ the struggling sigh represt

Throb with anguish all the breast,

Yet the tongue essays to sing,

Trembling fingers urge the string;

Reluctant strings imperfect tones convey,

And sad and solemn sounds the funeral lay.

Air C2r 15

Air.—

First Shepherd

Religion come, celestial maid!

Descend, with ministrelsy divine,

Attune the voice, the dying numbers aid—

With warblings sweet the hallow’d requiem
join.

Chorus of Shepherds.

While on earth, he gave to thee

All the raptured soul could give!

Here—we bend the suppliant knee—

Teach us thus to act, and live,

Thus to meet the venom’d dart

When it strikes the quiv’ring heart,

Thus—to yield the fleeting breath,

Smiling in the grasp of death:

For thus to live, and thus to die

Is, surely, bliss beneath the sky:

Air.—

First Shepherd.

A foretaste of immortal joy,

Which time, securely, hastes to bring,

Which robs the grave of victory,

And death of his empoison’d sting

C2 Chorus C2v 16

Chorus of Shepherds.

For thus to live, and thus to die,

Is, surely, bliss, beneath the sky.

Air.—

First Shepherd.

With thee to mount, and soar, and sing,

Upborne on light etherial wing,

With thee ecstatic songs to raise,

To hymn the great Jehovah’s praise

To raptured sounds of living lyre,

In strains symphonious with th’ angelic choir.

Chorus of Shepherds.

With thee to mount, and soar, and sing,

Upborne on light etherial wing,

Be our’s when life’s short date is o’er,

In realms, where pain and sorrow are no more.

Elegy.

First Shepherd.

Return, ye shepherds, to the Cypress-grove,

Descending dews impregn the hallow’d sod;

The gentle Spirit, sooth’d with heavenly love,

Reposes, in the bosom of its God.

Here C3r 17

Here will we meditate,—the lunar-beam

Now shines effulgent thro’ the starry-sky,

See, how it twinkles on the rimpled stream,

And gives the Terrace, brightening, to the eye:

How was he wont beside the Urn to stand,

To view his smiling paradise, around,

The beech-tree rising from the fallow-land,

The oak, wide-spreading o’er the swelling
mound.

Yon rustic Fane, for meditation meet,

He, judging, placed in low sequester’d dell;

There musing thought, and melancholy sweet,

And science bland, and poesy love to dwell.

Erst have we seen him, at the spring of day,

Slow climbing up the branching elms between,

Or, cheerly tripping by the hedge-row gay,

Or, musing on the margin of the green.

And, C3 C3v 18

And, oft he’d seek, at gloomy twilight hour,

When scarce a beam illumed the fading west,

The solemn umbrage of the gothic tower;

While holy raptures swell’d his throbbing
breast!

’Twas there his bosom heaved the ardent sigh,

From hallow’d lips the pious accents stole,

To heav’n he raised the supplicating eye

Enrapt in fervent ecstasy of soul!

Pastoral.

The shepherds return’d at the dawn,

To seek for the flow’rets that grew

On the border that skirted the lawn;

But the flowrets were shrunk from the view:

Not a primrose, or vi’let were seen,

Tho’ they search’d for them carefully round;

The leaves, that at eve were so green,

Lay scatter’d, and parch’d on the ground.

The blast blew so harsh to the ear

It fill’d their sad bosoms with woe;

Each twig was impregn’d with a tear,

And it dropp’d on the herbage below:

Thick C4r 19

Thick vapours obstructed the sky,

The landscape was wrapt from the sight,

No beauty attracted the eye,

No vestige of former delight.

The lark was all hush in the grove,

Nor call’d up the slumbering morn;

The turtle sat mute by her love,

And the blackbird she droop’d on the thorn:

’Twas the lark, that high floating in air,

Due poiz’d on light quivering wing,

Trill’d the matin, so wondrous rare,

’Twas rapture to hear the bird sing!

Then Pollio observed her on high,

As he sprang from the bed of repose,

And he watch’d the sweet bird in the sky

While he hastily threw on his clothes;

Alert from the mansion he flew,

Ere the cows from their pastures were led,

While the herbage was sprinkled with dew,

And the orient all glowing with red:

Then C4v 20

Then the blackbird, so blithe, on the spray:

Saluted his ear with a song;

And she’d sing to him all the long day,

If Pollio attended so long:

How oft her wild notes would he cheer—

And whistle, and stop while she sung;

And often he pluck’d the ripe-ear

To nourish the bird and her young.

Alas! what a change will be seen,

When Mira returns to the plain!

No music is heard on the green,

All mute is the pastoral strain!

Not a blackbird will swell her sweet throat,

Not a lark will her pinions extend;

But the redbreast still pours his sad note,

All by the dank grave of his friend.

Come shepherds, let’s haste to retire,

Adieu! to the scenes that he loved!

His plaudits gave force to the lyre,

And sweet was the lay he approved:

All mirth from the village is fled,

The song and pastime are o’er;

But, the dirge shall be sung for the dead—

Till friendship and life be no more.

Lines C5r 21

Lines occasioned by reading Collins’s
Poems, in the year 17861786.

Where slept the Muses—when their Collins
fled

Mute, and inglorious—to the gloomy dead—

That not a minstrel struck the hallow’d lyre?

Awake to all the sympathies of woe!

Harmonious warbling to the quiv’ring wire—

In tones accordant,—and in measures slow;

In strains symphonious with the dying gale,

That, melting, murmurs down the winding vale.

On Arun’s banks my virgin lyre was strung;

And mazy Arun listen’d while he sung:

O! had I heard the fascinating song!

That charm’d the naiads as they skimm’d along,

That sent the waters, vocal with the strain,

All wildly murm’ring, to the wond’ring main!

But, envious time had shadow’d o’er the scene

Ere my light footsteps press’d the humid green—

Or sought the oozy margin of the flood—

Where Collins, plaintive bard! had erst, enraptured,
stood.

All C5v 22

All ’neath the willow where his lute had hung

The rude-rush flourish’d, and the bramble sprung,

And not a zephyr whisper’d to my ear—

That such a bard had roved, and caroll’d there;

Else had my childish muse essay’d a verse,

And hung the humble distich on his hearse.

But, when my mind, with dawning hope elate,

Skimm’d lightly o’er the adverse turns of fate,

His—rambling, sought the visionary cell

Where sounds unwist, and forms fantastic, dwell;

Light forms that twinkle in the mental ray,

When sickly reason quits the sov’reign sway;

And fancy leads her desultory train

Thro’ every burning inlet of the brain.

To strains melodious, wild ecstatic lays—

And all that merited eternal praise—

Succeeded stupor, with benumbing glare;

Or moon-struck madness, verging on despair. Collins was, at times, quite raving, and noisy; though
Dr. Johnson thought otherwise.

What are the gifts that genius, wit impart—

What vivid fancy, and the feeling heart—

What all the blessings Providence bestows—

When thro’ distemper’d veins, the boiling fever
flows?

Erst as I tripp’d the cloister aisle along,

What time the beetle ’gins his evening song,

My C6r 23

My trembling ear has startled at the sound,

And my quick-glance—brought flitting spectres
round!

“No spectre shriek’d—’twas Collins gave the
cry:”

The tale I heard, and heard it with a sigh,

While chilling horrors o’er my senses ran,

And pity melting for the hapless man.

When with my years my rip’ning genius grew,

And scenes poetic brighten’d to my view,

Just as I ’gan, with tow’ring fancy fraught,

To trace the gay vicissitudes of thought—

My My Father. patron dropp’d—my hand forsook the wire,

And on his tomb I laid— the votive lyre.

Then was it mine, remote from native praise,

To weave the tissue of succeeding days,

And, ’mid a madd’ning world’s illusive strife—

Meet the mix’d ills of complicated life.

Awhile, supine, on sorrow’s lap I lay,

Tear after tear enforced its rapid way;

My lab’ring soul, with recent grief oppress’d,

Urged the deep sigh, that struggled in my breast:

But time brought hope, and, smiling in her train

The blue-eyed pleasures skimm’d the flow’ry
plain;

And C6v 24

And poesy came—with fascinating spell—

Touch’d, as he pass’d, the soul enchanting
shell—

Call’d forth the sounds of harmony divine,

The varied warblings of the tuneful Nine.

Again the dawn with beamy splendors glow’d,

And down the glade the purple lustres flow’d,

The muses, sporting in the solar beam,

Raised the bold thought, and urged the future
theme;

And fancy, glitt’ring in her vivid dyes,

Waved the light wing, excursive, in the skies;

Her painted vesture, flutt’ring in the air,

Tinged the thin clouds that deck’d the welkin
rare:

Still as she, tow’ring, gain’d superior height,

My eager eyes pursued the trailing light,

My mind expanding as she swept along—

Caught the bright flash, and kindled into song.

’Twas then I scann’d, with retrospective eye,

The motley scenes that time had hurried by;

Trim youth return’d, with friends, a simp’ring
train,

And antic dance, and light untuneful strain—

From bards of vapid tone, and authors fleet,

Who mar the surface of the lab’ring sheet.

Next D1r 25

Next rose companions of maturer age,

The learn’d conductors of the polish’d page:

Then judging method, with precision came,

And recollection oped the lists of fame;

There Collins’ name by Langhorne’s hand enroll’d

Appear’d—in characters of living gold:

And, where’s the bard, in ecstasy I cried,

The bard, who charm’d fair Arun’s mazy tide?

Who sent his waters, vocal with the strain,

All wildly murmring—to the wond’ring main?

“Alas! no more! a kindred spirit said,

No votive garland crown’d his drooping head,

Unnoticed, and unwept he stole away;

As fades the shadow at the close of day,

When, gradual, mixing with the gloom of
night,

The transient semblance dies upon the sight.”

Alas! ’twas his, with genuine fancy fraught,

To prove the wild excursive powers of thought;

’Twas his the force of harmony to prove—

Free, and unbias’d by the voice of love;

’Twas his to sweep with angel-hand the lyre,

And chant such strains as Angels might admire!

If powers like these, in life’s meridian bloom,

Were lost, ere death unbarr’d the shelt’ring tomb,

D Were D1v 26

Were lost, nor left one glimm’ring beam behind

On the dim chaos of the shapeless mind,

Where torpid apathy assumed the sway,

And wiped, from mem’ry’s page, each former
trait away:

If fate like his demand the pensive song—

Come, mournful Muse, and pour the dirge along.

Tho’ here PI wander ’mid sequester’d plains,

Where musing solitude eternal reigns,

Tho’ here I tune the soft inglorious lyre

In secret concert with the woodland choir;

Uncheer’d by praise, unknown to public fame,

And all that swells, and elevates a name,—

Yet here my Muse repeats his varied lays,

And echo spreads the pensive tones of praise,

Wafts them thro’ flow’ry lawns, and length’ning
glades,

Thro’ heathy-glens, and blissful beechen-shades;

To wakeful shepherds tells the tale of woe,

In numbers sad, and querulous, and slow,

Till trickling tears their sun-burnt cheeks bedew,

All silent list’ning ’neath the church-yard yew:

What time grey evening spreads her solemn
gloom,

And fear stands tiptoe by the recent tomb.

O, D2r 27

O, might the rustic Muse a wish impart!

The pious wish that warms her feeling heart,

That wish should be—to see one living line—

To him inscribed, by Hayley’s pen divine.

Say, hast thou hung, with kindred thoughts
deprest,

O’er the mute-sod where Collins’ manes rest?

There hast thou shed the sympathetic tear,

And mourn’d his lot, distressful, and severe?

Where wert thou Hayley, whom the Nine inspire

With all the rage of true poetic fire,

Thou, who can’st sweep with mystic force the
string,

Sublimely soaring on extended wing,

Who round Parnassus takest thy arduous flight,

Wrapt in the blaze of empyreal light!

Where wert thou Hayley, when his spirit fled

Mute, and inglorious to the gloomy dead?

That not a distich graced his early hearse;

Nor on his tomb appears the monumental verse.

Tho’ timid youth, unequal to the force

That now maintains thy ripe meridian course,

Declined the tow’ring flight, the radiant skies

Where worlds on worlds in beauteous order rise,

Yet, e’en in infancy thy lisping strains

Won honest praises from the wondring swains;

D2 For D2v 28

For tho’ the simple rhyme unmeasured ran,

The prompt effusion mark’d the future man.

’Twas then Eugenia, Eugenia, the late Mrs. Hayley. with maternal joy,

Hung, all-enraptured, o’er the darling boy,

Foretold the honors that await her son,

And stopp’d her fair career, where Hayley’s fame
begun.

Thus Luna sets, when Sol displays his light,

And thro’ the welkin fiercer splendors glow;

Lest two vast orbs, intolerably bright,

At once confound, and blind the world below.

’Tis thine, O, Hayley, yes, ’tis thine to own

The luxury, to vulgar minds unknown;

How oft dost thou invoke the solemn lyre,

And drop a tear on each accordant wire—

When lost Eugeniaswells the theme of woe,

How soft, how sad the melting measures flow!

There are, who verging to the noon of life

Warp’d by ambition, avarice, love or strife,

Throw off the trammels of the filial tie;

The savage sons of lawless liberty!

But thou improvest what fond nature wrought,

On the light tissue of the infant thought,

Where she in dubious characters design’d

The first faint sketches of thy future mind,

And D3r 29

And but one trait in vivid col’rings drew,—

Clear, and conspicuous to the parent’s view—

That the keen yearnings of the soul exprest:

She mark’d, and clasp’d thee to her doting breast.

Low, and imperfect was the nursling’s cry—

The shades of death hung hovering o’er thine eye,

Thy pallid cheek—a chilly dew o’erspread,

And cold, and lifeless sunk thy infant head:

But heaven approving, bless’d her pious care—

Recording angels watched the rising pray’r:—

Thro’ thy weak frame returning vigour stole,

New strung thy nerves, and harmoniz’d thy soul;

Each tepid limb with kindling fervor glow’d,

And thro’ the swelling veins the genial current
flow’d.

Soon on her words thine ear delighted hung,

And gratitude unloos’d thy trembling tongue,

The thronging sounds in sweet confusion strove

Expressive all of tenderness, and love!

How bless’d the time! when nature thus imparts

The purest transports, to the purest hearts!

And bless’d the man, who can untainted run

Thro’ life’s mix’d scenes, and still preserve the
son,—

Bless’d be the bard! immortal be his name—

Who founds on filial piety—his fame.

D3 A D3v 30

A Vision,

Occasioned by my visiting Cambridge, 1787-11Nov.
1787
.

The sun was sunk beneath the western main,

The dews descended from the murky sky,

Thick humid vapours hover’d o’er the plain,

And chilly blasts assail’d the roving eye;

Fatigued and languid, at the solemn hour

When fades the distant landscape on the view,

My prying glance descried an ancient tower,

As near its base my weary footsteps drew.

What sudden transport o’er my senses stole!

O! then for voice, for minstrelsy divine!

To sing the fervid transports of the soul—

How weak the aid of all the boasted Nine.

Soft flows the verse,—and soft the music flows

When fancy leads the light fantastic throng,

But heighten’d joys, or heart corroding woes

Disdain the gaudy pageantry of song.

In D4r 31

In simple non-age on the tale I hung,

Paternal eloquence enrich’d the tale,

Sweet to my ear, as when the blackbird sung,

Or cheerful linnet warbled in the vale:—

Of Alma-Mater—would he joy to tell,

Of youthful friends, whom erst his soul held
dear,

With fond affection on each scene he’d dwell,

’Till twinkling eyes betray’d the urgent tear:

The soft infection pliant childhood caught,

The tender sorrows glisten’d in my eyes:

Now oft emblazon’d on the pictured thought—

The gentle images successive rise.

Oft would he tell, while rapture swell’d his heart,

Of Clare’s bland aspect, and her verdant meads,

Where Camus wantons, not devoid of art,

And oft, with murm’rings wild, the errant
student leads.

There D4v 32

There had fair science mark’d him for her son,

Design’d the sketch that stampt his future fame,

And, when the transient course of life was run,

Gave the bold traits to consecrate his name.

Now darkness reign’d, and wrapt from mortal
sight,

The mingled mass of half creation lay;

When fancy, beaming from the gloom of night,

Shed o’er my silent couch, her many-tinctured
ray:

The motly vision, on my yielding mind,

With mystic pen, and vivid touch she drew,

The various characters her hand design’d—

In bright succession open’d on my view

My vagrant feet the tender herbage prest,

What time the sun illumes the eastern sky,

When feather’d warblers flutter from the nest

And dew-drops glitter to the downcast eye;

When D5r 33

When lo! a female of celestial race!

Of stature tall, and eminently fair!

Peace in her look, in every motion grace—

Approach’d, with tranquil, and majestic air;

Loose flow’d her azure vestments in the wind,

And all unbound, her swelling bosom rose,

Her golden tresses—on her neck behind

Wanton’d—like sun-beams on the mountain
snows.

Struck with amazement! fearful I withdrew,

When lo! a voice—of energy divine!

“Turn, trembling mortal, turn thy timid view,

Lo! Alma-Mater woos thee to her shrine:

Behold, the Muse, the Genius, and the
Guide—

Of all who grace yon venerable pile;

I o’er the Schools, with regal power preside,

And swell the Anthem, pealing thro’ the
aisle.”

Quick D5v 34

Quick changed the scene:—when active fancy
brought

A splendid structure, Senate House. ’fore my wondring eyes,

With curious art the polish’d walls were wrought,

And the tall columns glitter’d to the skies!

The Guide celestial led the devious way,

The steps ascending, gently swept along:

While round her temples beaming lustres play,

Soft Music breathes, and desultory song.

Next to my sight a beauteous fabric rose,

I mark’d it well, I mark’d the verdant meads—

Where silver Camus all luxuriant flows,

And oft, with murm’rings wild, the errant
student leads—

Gilt with the western sun, thro’ broider’d vale,

Gaily meand’ring rolls his halcyon stream,

The waters rimpled by the sportive gale

In varied cinctures, twinkle in the beam:

On D5r 35

On the rich margin of his mazy tide

The niveous-pink, and motlied-daisy grow,

And, all-depending from his sloping side

The slim-rush trembles o’er the wave below:

There, sweetly warbling from o’er-arching trees,

The feather’d chorists hail the breathingmorn;

There, lightly quiv’ring in the rising breeze,

Pellucid dew-drops glitter on the thorn:

’Twas there Alcanor My Father. in the silent shade

Met sacred science—at the lonely hour,—

For solemn thought, and contemplation made,

What time the moon-beams tip the hallow’d
tower.

Thus glanced reflection on my wav’ring mind,

While things fantastic mingled with the true,

When, lo! a Form, long since to death consign’d,

Rose, pure, and perfect to my raptur’d view!

Such was the man, when nature in her prime

Gave the smooth cheek the animated glow;

Ere pain assail’d him, or the shafts of time,

Or sorrows, urged by complicated woe.

High D5v 36

High rose his forehead, prominent and fair,

With mild effulgence beam’d the orbs of sight;

In glossy ringlets waved his auburn hair,

Streak’d—as it flow’d, with transient gleams
of light.

Supreme, adown the mure admiring throng,

With looks of soft benignity, and love,—

He graceful past—with gliding pace along,

Light as the breeze that fans the vernal grove.

The full-toned organ struck the hallow’d ear,

The form paternal waved the radiant hand,

High rose the strains, sonorous strong, and clear,

As the Bright-Vision, join’d the tuneful band—

Where King’s Coll. Chapel. the arch’d roof displays the powers of art,

Where pictured glass admits the varied ray,

Where rapt devotion fires the fervent heart,

And woos the spirit from its mass of clay:

Where E1r 37

Where the loud anthem fills the vaulted choir,

While kindling souls to ecstasy are wrought,

As themes celestial fan the holy fire

And plume the pinions of excursive thought:

Thro’ the wide roof the heavenly pæans rung,

Angelic voices join’d the raptured lays,

Loud hallelujahs flow’d from every tongue,

And the deep organ swell’d the tones of praise;

Transported nature could sustain no more:

Beyond the limits to frail mortals given

When the bold spirit rashly dares to soar,

Back to its source the towering mind is driven:

Thus, at the dawn, recoil’d the roving thought,

And sober reason stood confest to view;

But such the scenes by fancy’d pencil wrought,

That sober reason wish’d the vision true.

E Ode, E1v 38

Ode,

On the Death of my dear Mother.

Hail! to thy powers—O Solitude!

Thy brumal-gale, thy tempest rude,

Attune the pensive mind;

The awful blast, that howls along,

Gives energy to plaintive song,

The song—to grief assign’d.

Pour on ye thick descending rains,

Quick deluge all the neighb’ring plains,

Accordant to my woe;

My tears shall swell the devious tide,

As, rushing down the mountain’s side

It seeks the stream below.

Give me the wild tremendous roar

Of billows dashing ’gainst the shore

When midnight horrors reign;

When low-brow’d rocks, and caverns, round,

Re-bellow to the fearful sound,

Loud issuing from the main:

Then, E2r 39

Then, seated in some lonely tow’r—

I’ll hail the solemn midnight hour,

And watch the raging deep;

While thunders roll, and lightnings glare,

And woes,—hard bordering on despair,

Conspire to—“murder sleep.”

To grief attuned, my wakeful lyre

Shall woo no vague fantastic fire,

Nore feign’d—Apollo’s art:

To grief attuned—and pungent woe—

My numbers wild, and sad, and slow—

Shall touch the feeling heart.

A Friend I mourn!—indulgent heaven—

To sooth my cares, a Friend had given,

To heighten every joy;

Our love was firm, ’twas pure, refined;

Deep centred in the heart, and mind,

It knew no gross alloy.

E3 Snatch’d E2v 40

Snatch’d, in a moment, from my eyes!

The spirit sought its kindred skies—

And dropp’d its mass of clay!

High soaring thro’ the fields of light,—

The vision mock’d my wilder’d sight

Wrapp’d in the blaze of day!

Epitaph, E3r 41

Epitaph,

To the pious Memory of Jane, Relict of the
Reverend, and learned Daniel Gittins,
L.L.B. Rector of South Stoke, and Vicar of
Leominster, in Sussex,—who exchanged her
Mortality for Immortality, 1779-12-22December22, 1779,
aged 61 years.

In Friendship’s arms resigning up her breath,

Serene and tranquil at the hour of death—

Composed she lay, with eyes uplift to heaven,

And sunk in peace, each venial fault forgiven:

Without a groan th’ immortal part withdrew,

And left the mortal! smiling to the view.

Here rests entomb’d the cold inconscious clay;

While the free spirit seeks its bless’d abode—

Soars toward the mansions of eternal day,

And pants to view the radiance of the God.

E3 When E3v 42

When the Archangel gives the final sound,

And, thro’ the skies responsive thunders roll,

When Nature trembles to her furthest bound,

And livid lightnings dart from pole to pole,—

Then shall these scatter’d particles unite,

And, bursting from the tomb, in glory rise,

A fairer form, superlatively bright,

Prepared for happiness, in purer skies.

The Tomb, with this Inscription, was erected by
her daughters, Anne and Margaret, in the Churchyard,
of Edgefield, in Norfolk; in testimony of their tender
and filial affection.
Elegy, E4r 43

Elegy,

In Memory of my late pious Friend Mrs. Bold,
of Wade Court, Hampshire,

How oft remembrance brings thee to my
mind,

In all the glow of youthful beauty bright!

Ere thy soft charms, to death’s cold grasp consign’d,

Sunk to the grave, in dull oblivious night:

Thy loved remains, in mute inconscious rest,

Now lie, unheeded by the busy throng;

Yet still, Eliza, in thy Anna’s breast

Thou livest—the darling subject of her song.

Thrice bless’d was I!—when dearer to thy soul

Than all the toys this idle world bestows:

How oft did’st thou my wayward thoughts
controul,

Or sooth my sorrow with congenial woes.

In E4v 44

In infant sports our ductile minds agreed—

We dress’d the baby, or we threw the ball,

Tripp’d round the May-pole with unwearied
speed,

Or hymn’d the carol, sounding thro’ the hall.

’Twas our’s adown the graceful dance to move

With rival steps, accordant to the strains;—

While looks of innocence, and cordial love,

Drew lively plaudits from the raptured swains.

As year on year with rapid motion flew,

How thought we then, life’s meridian
bloom?

My gayer mind the halcyon prospect drew,—

While your’s—deep centred in the mould’ring
tomb:

Thy graver fancy chose the solemn theme,

And life’s short date educed from sacred lore,—

“How shall we wake, as from an awful dream,

When this strange scene, and all its charms
are o’er.”

Short E5r 45

Short was thy date, and transient was thy joy,

Prepared, thou met’st th’ inevitable blow,

Thy spirit, freed from ev’ry base alloy,

Rose pure and spotless from this vale of woe.

Ah! dear to friendship! if allow’d to view

The varying modes that added years attend,

Accept the tribute to thy virtues due,

The distant tribute of a faithful friend.

Nore time, nor chance, the steady mind can
change,

In mem’ry’s page thou livest, for ever dear!

Allow’d thro’ long-drawn scenes in thought to
range,

I, silent, drop the unavailing tear:

And oft when slumbers seal my wearied eyes,

What time the cock proclaims the dawning
light,

I, raptured, see thy gentle spirit rise!

Pure as the air, and as the morning bright.

The E5v 46

The blissful vision leaves a trace behind

To gild the precincts of returning thought,

Stamps its fair vestige on the wakeing mind

By reason nurtured, tho’ by fancy wrought.

Such be the charm, thro’ life’s precarious road,

Still may’st thou cheer me in the gloomy way,

Till angels waft me to their bless’d abode,

To thee, Eliza, in the realms of day.

Elegy, E6r 47

Elegy,

Addressed to Mrs. D――n, on the Death of a
dear, deserving Son.

When Maro mourn’d Marcellus dead—

Th’ afflicted matron hung her head

And dropp’d the silent tear:

When he his early prowess sung,

Enraptur’d on the strains she hung!

Such strains as gods might hear!

Immortal in the matchless song,

She heard him rank’d the gods among,

Nor longer wept his doom:

Transported—saw is deathless name

Enroll’d amongst the lists of fame;

Victorious o’er the tomb.

Fame cou’d the Roman’s grief controul;

For nobler principle her soul—

Had never understood:

In reason’s darkling maze she stray’d,

What reason taught, her mind essay’d;

But knew no greater good.

All E6v 48

No darkling maze have we to tread—

Thro’ fabled regions of the dead

To wind a devious way:

Religion points the certain road,

She lights the longing soul to God,

With truth’s unerring ray.

Shall we,—with Revelation blest,

While faith shows all the God,—confest

To each enquiring eye,—

Shall we lament, as void of hope?

Who view unveil’d the boundless scope

Of blest Eternity?

Cease Sacharissa,—cease to mourn;

Nor pious tears o’er Florio’s urn—

Still, unavailing, shed:

Angelic—in the purer skies

Behold his brighten’d form arise!

Nor rank him with the dead.

Superior F1r 49

Superior to the farce of life—

Illusive joy—destructive strife,

He nobly met his doom,

And bless’d the hand that dealt the blow;

As hov’ring o’er the vale of woe—

He mark’d the deep’ning gloom;—

“What art thou life? (the spirit said)—

A motly scene—of light, and shade,

An unsubstantial toy:

Nor more my pure pervasive sight,

Can view the vision with delight,

Can call the phantom—joy.

For lo! afore my ravish’d eyes—

What bright celestial glories rise,

To tempt my ardent gaze!

Oh! for the skill to pour along!

Th’ ecstatic energies of song!

The Great Creator’s praise!”

F Thus F1v 50

Thus the freed soul essay’d to join

The heav’nly choir,—the hymn divine—

By raptured spirits sung:

Applauding Angels caught the sound—

As, echoing thro’ the vast profound,

The mighty chorus rung.

On F2r 51

On the Loss of a dear Friend. My valued Mother.

Virgins, I have lost my friend,

No more you’ll see her wander,

Where the willow-boughs extend

Wide o’er the streamlet, yonder:

I, for her, my home forsook

Near Arun’s lucid fountain,

Left the plain, and glassy brook

That winds beneath the mountain.

Never shall we see her more!

(Expect not her returning)

’Till we reach the halcyon shore,

Where joy succeeds to mourning:

Thither is my Portia flown—

O, Nymphs, I tell ye, thither!

Ah! woe—for me! from earth she’s gone—

“For ever!—and for ever!”

F2 Elegy, F2v 52

Elegy,

On the Death of a Reverend Friend:
Addressed to Mrs. A――n.

Sayshould the lyre remain unstrung—

And, lost to eloquence, the tongue

Attempt no plaintive strain?

When numbers can the force controul

Of pointed grief that wrings the soul,

And sooth the hour of pain.

’Tis Friendship lifts the glowing eye!

She calls the powers of harmony

Around her lonesome cell;

She woos the pensive muse to sing,

And strikes, with trembing hand, the string—

To sound the sad—farewel:

Farewel!—accept the fault’ring lay;

If, ling’ring near the dormant clay,

Thy timid spirit tries—

In faint, imperfect modes of flight

Its force,—nor yet enwrapt in light

Expatiates in the skies.

Farewell F3r 53

Farewel—blest shade!—too early fled!

In these drear mansions of the dead

Despondent Friendship mourns:

The hallow’d walls and caverns, round,

Return the melancholy sound:

The gale her voice returns:

Fear startles at the midnight gale—

All mournful murm’ring down the vale

In strains of mimic woe!

While ruthless grief her aid supplies—

And prompts the momentary sighs,

And prompts the tears to flow.

But who, at this sequester’d hour,

Beneath the ivy-mantled tower

Hangs o’er the recent tomb?

’Tis sad Constantia;—sunk in grief

Her harrass’d soul, disdains relief,

And seeks the shelt’ring gloom:

F3 With F3v 54

With heart-corroding woes opprest,

Maternal anguish wrings her breast,

And swells her tearless eye:

Be dumb my cares,—shall I complain ?

Constantia mark the soothing strain,

That Friendship bids me try.

Enough to ruthless grief is given:

Lo! beamy Hope, descends from heaven,

In native glory bright!

Deck’d in the panoply of love—

Calm gliding thro’ the cypress grove,

She radiates on the sight!

And now she points, thro’ Faith, the road,

Where Spirits—bless’d, unite with God

When time shall be no more!

She shows the intermediate space,

Where all the favor’d sons of grace—

In trembling hope adore.

A F4r 55

A Sacred Ode.

Bring me a lute, ye minstrels of the sky,

Tune ev’ry string to sacred harmony;

Bid raptures breathe from each resounding wire,

Raise ev’ry thought, and ev’ry wish inspire,

Let your bright influence o’er my senses roll,

And wake to ecstasy divine my soul!

Else how shall mortal swell the tones of praise?

How from this earth the themes angelic raise?

How teach the laughing hills, and vallies round—

How the tall woods to catch th’ enchanting
sound?

How make the rocks the joyful strains proclaim

And the deep lakes repeat Jehovah’s name?

When tuneful David rais’d the Hebrew song,

Sweet flow’d the verse, tho’ sweet—sublime and
strong;

With skill divine he swept the golden strings,

Applauding angels clapp’d their radiant wings,

With notes symphonious swell’d the hallow’d lay

And raptured breath’d it thro’ the realms of day.

“Jehovah F4v 56

“Jehovah praise (the royal psalmist cry’d,—

With answ’ring sounds his full-ton’d harp
reply’d),

To brazen trumpets join th’ ecstatic voice—

Let heav’ns, and earth, and seas, and floods
rejoice!

And lofty woods, and cloud-capt mountains
sing,

The theme is Judah’s—and ’tis David’s king.

When God shone forth in majesty profound,

The frail earth trembled to its utmost bound,

Beneath his feet the heav’ns astonish’d bow’d,

The rains rush’d furious from th’ encircling
cloud;

Sublime, upon the spirit’s wings he flew!

And coals were kindled at his piercing view:

Above, about the livid lightnings play’d—

Reflectent, on the deep impervious shade;

Then conscious Sinai felt the present God,

And mov’d submissive at the sov’reign-nod;

Like melted wax adown her smoking sides

The liquid metals flow’d, in sparkling tides.”

Soft F5r 57

Soft stole the numbers of the sapient king,

With lighter touch he wak’d each warbling
string,

To rouse the soul the halcyon monarch strove,

With all the winning energy of love,

The Saviour’s love—the Church’s grace he sung;

While music dropp’d, like honey, from his
tongue.

But who can reach Isaiah’s hallow’d fire,

Or mark the force of his prophetic lyre,

Who trace his skill, his minstrelsy divine?

The task, O Lowth, th’ immortal task, was
thine:

To thee, bless’d Saint, the wondrous powers
were given

T’ expound the Seer, the favorite Seer of heaven.

Thro’ Edom’s wilderness, in times of yore,

Three martial kings their potent legions bore,

Seven weary days they kept the devious way,

Athirst, and scorch’d by sol’s pervasive ray;

No bubbling fountains cheer’d the famish’d
ground,

But all was parch’d,—; wild,—; desert round!

The F5v 58

The pallid legions dropp’d the listless hand,

And sank, despondent, on the burning sand:

With pangs convulsive, in the grasp of death,

The panting cattle drew the faultring breath:

When Isral’s monarch smote his throbbing
breast,

And thus, in plaintive terms, his woe exprest—

“Is this, alas! the pre-determin’d hour,

When we must yield to Moab’s cursed pow’r?

And hath Jehovah in his mighty rage—

Now call’d us forth, a hopeless war to wage?

Dismay’d we shrink beneath the chast’ning
rod,

Raising our suppliant hands to thee, O!
God.”

When thus Jehosaphat (with princely grace,

Celestial wisdom beaming from his face)—

“Is there not, mighty king, some holy Seer—

Some sacred personage, some Prophet here?

That we may learn Jehovah’s sov’reign will?

Fulfil our duty, and his mind fulfil.”

Then F6r 59

Then spake a man of Israel’s royal train,

From those who stretch’d recumbent on the
plain,

“Elisha’s here who from the limpid spring

Pour’d water on Elijah’s hands,—O! king.”

Submiss, the monarchs sought the Seer’s abode,

Prepar’d to meet the mandate of their God.

With solemn majesty the Prophet rose,

A harp well tuned, the sacred minstrel chose,

Then touch’d with dubious hand the quiv’ring
wire,

Then swept with mightier force the sounding
lyre;

As o’er the bounding chords his fingers flew—

Near, and more near the present Godhead drew:

High soar’d the strain, with inspiration fraught,

His mind expanding with the stretch of thought,

O’er all the man, the heav’nly ardor stole,

Tun’d his warm tongue, and harmoniz’d his
soul,

Then struck by God’s right hand, he lifts his
voice,

“Rejoice, he cries, ye sons of care rejoice!

“Thus F6v 60

Thus saith the Lord, all-gracious, and benign,

The Lord who succors Judah’s chosen line,

No rains shall fall, no furious tempest blow,

Yet thro’ this desert vale, the streams shall
flow;

When breathing morn, the solemn rites proclaims,

And the pure victim meets the hallow’d
flames.”

Such pow’rs to sacred minstrelsy belong,

And such the force of all-commanding song!

Teach me then, skill’d musicians, how to raise,

With varying modes, the dulcet notes of praise;

For as the thirsty hart the brook desires,

So long my soul for pure celestial fires.

Ye waving forests, and ye rocks attend,

Ye rushing streams, that down those rocks
descend,

Ye bleak brow’d mountains that horrific rise,

Brave the mad storm, and shoot in the skies,

Ye flow’r-clad vallies, and ye verdant plains—

Attend my numbers, and prolong my strains:

In G1r 61

At solemn eve the pious strains prolong,

When heav’nly transports prompt th’ advent’rous
song,

When all enrapt the spirit steals away,

In airy vision, from the dormant clay,

Hears harps celestial sounding from above,

And roves unbounded thro’ the fields of love.

Verses G G1v 62

Verses addressed to Mrs. F――g and Mrs.
J――s.

When friendship such as yours inspires,

’Tis Virtue fans the poet’s fires,

She tunes the voice, she bids us sing,

While rapture breathes from ev’ry string:

Then while my soul with fervor glows,

Accept the tribute as it flows,

’Tis holy friendship gilds the song,

’Tis friendship pure, sincere, and strong.

Sequester’d from the tinsel glare,

Of all that’s rich, and all that’s fair,

Of all that’s vain, and all that’s great,

Of all the proud parade of state—

You, shelter’d in yon lonely cell,

With contemplation choose to dwell,

Secure in friendship’s sacred tie,

The varied ills of life defy.

When G2r 63

When torrents deluge all the plain,

And hoarse winds harrow up the main,

When lightnings flash, and thunders roll,

And rock the skies from pole to pole—

Then Piety—celestial maid,

In heav’nly panoply array’d!

Descends—to shield the blest abode;

And raise the trembling soul to God:

She sooths the mind with zealous care,

Inspires the consecrated pray’r—

Assists the orisons to rise—

And wafts the incense to the skies.

Borne on devotion’s ardent wing,

Your raptured spirits soar, and sing,

’Till op’ning on the mental sight—

Expand the visions of delight!

To you bless’d Pair, to you ’tis giv’n

To antedate the joys of heav’n,

To catch, with faith’s discerning eye,

A glimpse of bright futurity.

G2 What G2v 64

What could enure you to sustain

An age of agonizing pain ?

When nature, hopeless of relief,

Sinks—“in satiety of grief”

Nought, save the lenient balm of love,

Descending from the source above;

Whence copious emanations flow,

On ev’ry suppliant child of woe.

When transient ease brings back the mind,

From meditation more refine’d,

Friendship displays her sov’reign pow’r,—

Diffusive, o’er the halcyon hour.

From earth, and earth-born joys apart,

She meets the mild, devoted heart,

The wearied pilgrim stops, and cheers;

Sad journeying in this vale of tears.

When nature shrinks, and faultring breath

Betrays the quick approach of death,

She smooths the couch, the head sustains,

And shares, and mitigates the pains:

And G3r 65

And when the vital spirit’s fled,

Awhile she hovers round the dead,

Expands her wings—then soars away,

To radiate in eternal day.

A G3 G3v 66

A Sacred Ode
to
Spring.

To silent glooms, and solemn glades,

To thick impenetrable shades,—

Where the calm sage life’s toil evades,

Direct my errant feet:—

There will I all my soul enjoy,

Its whole expressive powers employ;

Raptures, unconscious of alloy,

And Meditation sweet.

On Contemplation’s buoyant wing,

O let me mount, and soaring sing

The beauties of th’ enliv’ning spring;

And thank my God, benign;

Who, kind, allures his creatures eye,

That they may excellence descry

In nature’s justest harmony,

And praise the work divine.

Bring G4r 67

Bring living lutes, the viol bring,

Praise the supreme, celestial King!

Let soul-expressing anthems rise!

Pour forth the full-toned organ’s peal;—

Now warbling sighs symphonious steal;

Now deep-mouth’d thunders shake the skies!

On oaten pipe the rustic swain,

Sweet, modulates his humble strain;

Grateful, he sings the youthful year;

And God inclines his list’ning ear.

“How verdant appear the gay fields!

How sport the young lambs on the plain!

The earth all her fragrancy yields,

Refresh’d by the soft-dropping rain.

Fair nature I view in her dawn:

The birds fill the woods with their lays;

The nightingale, perch’d on the thorn,

Re-echoes her quavering praise.

“My G4v 68

My heart with warm gratitude burns;

Accept, my great God, my applause,

To serve it most cheerfully learns,—

To follow thy peace-bearing laws.”

With holy ardor hymns inspire,

Kindle in me sacred fire!

Attend ye rapt, celestial choir!

Strike the resounding chord:

Wing’d music quivers in the air;—

Notes sympathising souls prepare;—

Symphonious minstrels praise declare

Of great Jehovah,—lord.

Arise! enthusiastic bard;

All groveling, worldly thoughts discard;

Let not their load our flight retard

To mansions of delight:

Ascending craggy heights sublime,

Above the empire let us climb,

Ruled by the iron hand of time,—

To realms, ætherial, bright

R.B.F.

Ode, G5r 69

Ode,

On the Arrival of His Royal Highness
Prince William of Gloucester, at the University
of Cambridge.

Fair Science! wave thy golden hair;

Deck with smiles thy beauteous face;

The royal pupil be thy care;

And his brow with laurels grace.

Science! shew thy charms around,

Thy form divine, with varied garlands crown’d:

With matchless skill unfold his wond’ring mind,

To joys sublime, to wisdom’s laws consign’d.

The changing scenes with art disclose,

And mark where splendid honor grows,

And virtue springs:—beneath fair Albion’s sky,

While goodness reigns, enthron’d, in majesty.

“From realms of empyrean light,”

Benignant, bend thy airy flight!

With amaranthine chaplet crown’d—

Descend, propitious, on the ground!

Flow’rets G5v 70

Flow’rets ’neath thy footsteps spring,

Woodland warblers sweetly sing;

In renovated foliage gay

The trees with sportive zephyrs play:

Triumphant nature hails the nymph, divine,

Regards her beauty with a smile benign:

Creation glows with sympathetic fire,

And wisdom’s praise—chants forth th’ enraptured
choir!

Camus! roll thy silver stream,

Sparkling with the solar beam;

Full smoothly glide the rural walks between,

And kiss the margin of the flow’ry green:

With conscious pride, high swell the limpid
wave,

Heave thy big bosom, and thy borders lave:

Bear to the Prince each joy that time can give!

Long may his virtue!—long his glory live!

But, hark! what festive sounds salute my ear!

Transporting music floats the air around;

Lo! princely virtue pours her influence here:

Sound the loud trump, th’ awak’ning viol
sound!

Bring G6r 71

Bring living lutes, the merry cymbals bring,

Attune to harmony the throng!

With rapture strike each soul-enchanting string,

And raise the sweet ecstatic song.

Let full-toned organs wake the mind to joy;

Or, warbling, sound their dulcet melody.

Can breasts, with patriotic transport fired,

Or honest hearts, with loyal love inspired,

Refuse the praise the princely offspring claims?

Can Britons, taught to reverence their King,

His virtues celebrate, his praises sing;—

Can they withhold the tribute of applause,

Decreed by wisdom’s just, unerring laws?

Britannia’s sons shall e’er rejoice to crown

Their noble heroes, of deserv’d renown,

With circling wreaths of glorious laurel made,

Whose bloom, in virtue’s clime, can never fade.

Lo! science comes, with eye serene,

Describes this wond’rous orb terrene;

And leads her royal pupil thro’ the maze—

That nature treads in varied round,

Thro’ heights sublime, thro’ depths profound,

While mortals with inquiring eye-balls gaze.

She G6v 72

She tells, how first the world began;

The glorious origin of man;

And all the orbs, that grace the sky,

The fowls that ’mid the æther fly;

The beasts that feed in grassy fields;

The myriads that the ocean yields;

And ev’ry plant that decks the sod,

All existing from our God:—

Then bids him bow to great Jehovah’s name,

Raise the rapt hymn, and celebrate his fame:

Imbibe religion’s holy joys, refin’d;

Admire the works by providence design’d.

Behold, he listens with attentive ear;

Surveys the mysteries with awful fear;

Seeks to explore the hidden laws, sublime,

Wrapt in the mantle of obscuring time:

Nature’s stupendous works he learns to scan,

And view the mightiest—most exalted—Man;

The mind he searches with inquiring eye,

And traces, deep, her grand immensity;

The mind, that knows no limit to her way,

But soars to regions of ætherial day.

Thus H1r 73

Thus heav’n-born science guides the royal youth,

And leads him o’er the universe terrene:

Her steps he follows, with majestic grace,

In search of happiness, and simple truth:

“The rising star of Brunswick shines, serene,”

And darts effulgence on his leader’s face.

R.B.F.

The H H1v 74

The Complaint.

Ye rocks, where cold solitude dwells,

I fly to your caverns, distrest,

I spend the sad day in your cells,

And heave the deep sigh from my breast:

Ye woods, where pale sorrow delights,

Conceal in your bosom a swain!

Your wildness no longer affrights;—

Ah! what can embitter my pain?

To roam in the desert—I love;

To pour my complaints to the wind:

To mourn with the pitying dove:—

“Miranda no longer is kind!”

I fly to the den of dismay;—

The gloomy and terrible cave,

Where despair sits—all pining away,—

While her tears swell the neighbouring wave.

I H2r 75

I shun the keen eye of my friend,

In solitude pass the long day:

My sorrow—ah! when will it end?

My anguish will ne’er flee away.

I weep, as I sit ’neath the height

With ivy and bramble o’ergrown,

Till all be envelop’d in night

And each cavern re-echo my moan.

R.B.F.

H2 An H2v 76

An Ode to Melancholy.

Come Melancholy, heaven-born maid!

Attend thy suppliant’s prayer:

She woos thee to the sylvan shade,

The sylvan scene, the moss-grown glade,

Are objects of thy care.

Full oft at eventide,

Where argent streamlets glide

Vernal banks between,

Winding, warbling sweet along

Tufted grass and stones among,

Art thou seen;

Pensive queen,

With step sedate and slow—

Imprinting oft th’ enamell’d green—

Soft musing as you go

Toward yon humid cell:

Where tenfold echoes dwell—

Returning full the solemn sound,

When thunders burst, and tempests yell:

From yawning caves and depths profound—

Hark it murmurs!—round and round

The H3r 77

The undulating measures roll,

Music to the pensive soul!

Mysterious all, and holy,

Fit recess for melancholy.

Come away thrice welcome fair

Lo! I fly to meet thee there,

For there thy much lov’d Milton us’d to stray

From noise and business free;

And Shakespear, Fancy’s child, and sweetly

plaintive Gray,

Retired full oft to meditate with thee.

’Tis soothing all,

The water’s fall;

The brook that chinks along;

The coming breeze

That bends the trees,

The beetle’s droning song.

Hither give my feet to stray,

What time pale Hesper sheds his ray;

When Cynthia from the mountain-brow,

Beholds the checker’d vale below,

And sportive throws her silver beams

O’er lucid founts, and twinkling streams.

When moping owl, from time-shook tower

Hails shrill, the deep sequester’d hour;

A H3 H3v 78

And Philomela thro’ the vale,

Trills soft her love-lamenting tale—

Be mine to seek the cavern’d cell,

Where the babbling echoes dwell,

And the drops besprent with light—

Glittering on the curious sight,

Hang in many a shining row;

Or where adown the sloping side

Wand’ring soft the vagrants glide

Increasing as they go—

Stealing pointed spars between,

Glimm’ring o’er the pebbles sheen;

Oft in wanton maze delighting,

Now dividing, now uniting;

Quick and quicker now they pour

“Descending in a trickling show’r,”

’Till the streamlet on the floor

Winding, wander here, and there,—

Cool, pellucid, fresh and fair:

Now increasing to a rill,

Hark! it rushes down the hill,

Gains at length the level plain;

And steals, in gentle murmurs, to the main.

Thus the Bæotian Mount beside,

Gurgling on in native pride,

Thro’ H4r 79

Thro’ the flow’r-besprinkled vale,

Glides the bright stream of tuneful Acidale.

Oft the Heliconian spring,

Aids the infant Muse’s wing,

’Till all sublime she soar,

Mount to new worlds, and mightier themes
explore.

Be mine to quaff the mystic draught

Urging on the lab’ring thought,

’Till all-inspired I rise,

Mount the brisk gale, and soar amid the skies!

Aid me goddess, sage, and holy,

Aid me, pensive Melancholy.

Lo! I strike the mystic shell!

Echo answers from the cell!

How the solemn measures swell!

Be hush’d my Muse, attentive stand,

A bard superior sweeps the bounding strings,

Around him wait a fair angelic band,

And wond’ring spirits brighten as he sings!

Thus when angels strike the lyre,

Swelling high the heavenly choir,

Skill’d in the great sublime of song,

Breathe forth th’ecstatic airs, and rise, and pour
along.

On H4v 80

On yonder cloud bedight in grey,

Whose skirtings catch the lunar-ray—

Sits the great bard;—whose hands divine

Th’ immortal lyre explore:

Celestial forms bright hov’ring o’er

Extend their lucid wings:

While kindred spirits flock around,

And catch the sweet harmonious sound,

Enraptur’d as he sings!

’Tis Gray—immortal Gray!

Adown his form in radiant foldings play

The purple vestments bright,

With glist’ning gems bedight,

And all the various hues of vivifying light,

Contrasted full with deep surrounding night.

All hail! sweet bard, sublime, and holy!

Erst the friend of Melancholy.

How flow’d thy numbers while below?

Pensive—soft—and slow—

The melting notes attun’d to woe—

Sunk in the yielding heart;

Full oft thou badst the tear to flow:

Then with the nicest touch of art

Thou to the rising soul cou’d’st purest joys impart.

When H5r 81

When thou soar’d’st on daring pinion,

Bards inferior, blest thy skill;

Bending own’d thy high dominion,

All subservient to thy will.

When he to heavenly themes aspired,

I plume’d my vent’rous wing,

Pursued his rapid flight untir’d,

By his immortal verse inspired:

And e’en essay’d to sing:—

To sing,—’twas then my Muse began,

The yielding chords to try,

And thro’ the latent mazes ran

Of melting harmony!

She sought her down the lowly vale,

And up the tow’ring hill:

Her voice oft swell’d the whisp’ring gale,

When drowsy evening’s shades prevail,

And copious dews from algid rocks distill.

O, if a mortal voice can rise,

Amid th’ immortal choir—

Stoop from thy station in the skies,

That suppliant voice inspire:

To thee, great bard, belong

The mighty powers of song,

Grant me a spark of thy celestial fire,

And touch with mystic force, my full resounding
lyre.

Ode H5v 82

Ode to Friendship.

Hail! Friendship hail, thou pow’r benign!

But destin’d on how few to shine

With pure unsullied ray:

Too oft thy mild diffusive beam,

Converges to the fierce extreme

Of love’s capricious day.

How oft beneath thy specious name,

We harbour love’s destructive flame,

Regardless of our peace;

’Till reason found the dread alarm—

Contemn the jest, dissolve the charm,

And bid delusion cease.

Thine is the mild refulgent light

That decorates the brow of night,

When nature smiles serene;

When, free from care, and active strife

And all the bustling coil of life,

We hail the tranquil scene.

His H6r 83

His is the fierce, pervasive ray

That animates the face of day

When in meridian height;

Apollo from his flaming car

Pours his redundant beams afar,

Intolerably bright!

Thrice happy she whose equal mind

Feels thy full force, thy flame refin’d,

Thy sympathetic glow:

Who views with philosophic eye,

The sportive loves that flutter by

And fill the vale below:

Her’s—is the mild unruffled joy

That knows no turbid, base alloy,

No passion in extreme:

Reason supplies the balmy gale,

“Buoyant on hope” she spreads the sail

And skims the halcyon stream.

Were H6v 84

Were I allow’d to form a pray’r—

Remote from love, and noise, and care,

Where reason points the seat;

With thee, I’d unambitious dwell:

And call the Muses round my cell,

To bless the snug retreat.

An I1r 85

An Ode,
(Inscribed to a Friend)

Written on leaving Stoke, and Caister, in Norfolk,
in the year 17781778.

Ye nymphs of Aganippe’s spring

Who teach the youthful bard, to sing

And form the varied dream,

When ’fore his glad enraptured eyes—

Poetic images arise,

To gild his future theme;

’Tis yours to aid the tow’ring thought;

By you the sons of Græcia taught

To loftiest themes aspired:

Bold Pindar wing’d superior flight,

And round Parnassus’ airy height

Pursued his course untired.

I I I1v 86

I ask not Pindar’s god-like force;

Nor his who charm’d Ilissus’ course

With eloquence divine!

The simplest sounds, devoid of art,

That melting, mingle with the heart—

That eloquence be mine.

How oft, when youth and fortune smile’d,

Have you my errant thoughts beguil’d

In fancy’s bright domain;

As rapt in all the charms of song—

I warbled wild, the path along,

And pleas’d the rustic swain.

Nor bid the sweet delusion cease,

Tho’ years, and bustling cares increase,

And youth has ta’en its flight:

Still deign to bless my rural hours,

With all your soft enchanting pow’rs,

Your visions of delight!

Teach I2r 87

Teach me to weave the tale of woe

In measure full, and soft, and low,

With melancholy fraught;

That when it meet Anselmo’s eye,

Distinct from ev’ry borrow’d dye

He trace the genuine thought.

’Tis his, with e’en paternal care,

The busy ills of life, to share,

That pain my anxious mind:

And, when the gloomy prospect clears,—

He points beyond this vale of tears—

To happiness refined.

When transient gleams from western skies,

Tinge humid vapours, as they rise,

With variegated beams;

’Tis then, with keen enquiring sight,

I pierce the floating mass of light,

That hovers o’er the streams:

I2 Thrice I2v 88

Thrice happy! if on neighb’ring hill,

Or, by the brook that turns the mill,

Anselmo greet my view!

Descending quick, the banks between,

Or nimbly tripping cross the green,

To shun the ev’ning dew.

O! must I quit thee, dear retreat! The Cottage at Stoke.

Of friendship long, the favor’d seat,

Where too, the voice of love,

Hath waked—with purest strokes of art,

The finer feelings of the heart,

Soft warbling from the grove?

Farewel ye groves! ye mural cells! Caister,—the ancient Venta Icenorum of the Romans.

Yon vaulted tower, where echo dwells,

Responsive to my song!

Who joys to catch the parting sound

As thro’ the vale, or o’er the mound

It murm’ring floats along.

Nymph I3r 89

Nymph of the many-figured voice,

Still mourn with me, with me rejoice

In imitative strain,

When, far from Caister’s gentle tide,

I sing, on ocean’s craggy side,

Or to the waves complain.

Attentive to my present tale,

Thou mak’st the rampire and the dale

Companions of my woes;

The sympathetic sorrow spreads!

The zephyrs sigh along the meads—

The stream repining flows!

Flow on thou soft repining stream!

And, aid some abler poet’s dream,

When I am far away;

Enough for me, that clear, and strong,

Thy present cadence rolls along,

Accordant to the lay:

I3 But I3v 90

But tell him—prattling Naiads, tell—

How, Laura sung her sad farewel,

And dropp’d—a parting tear!

While, on the trembling branch she hung

The little ditty that she sung,

To melancholy dear.

An I4r 91

An Ode,
On His Majesty’s Illness.

Long fix’d in this rural retreat,

To pleasures domestic confined,

No troubles, I thought, of the great

Cou’d ruffle the calm of my mind:

Each morning contented I rose,

And bless’d the return of the light;

At even, prepared for repose,

And quietly slept thro’ the night.

The moments thus glided away,

Reliev’d by the Muse, with a song;

So cheerfully pass’d the long day,

That I never once thought it too long;

For friendship, with love in her train,

Enraptured the moments that flew;

And the forest and furze-skirted plain,

Were objects still dear to the view.

But, I4v 92

But, ah! what sad tidings I hear!

With anguish I list to the tale!

My eye is surcharge’d with a tear,

And I sigh to the sorrowing gale!

The heart that is human must mourn,

The tear of compassion will flow:

Will the bright-sun of healing return—

To gild this horizon of woe?

O, Lord of soft mercy, attend!

The ragings of frenzy controul,

Bid the beams of refreshment descend,

And relume the dark sphere of his soul!

In pity—Oh! hear us complain!

In mercy—attend to our prayer!

Assist him, his woes to sustain,

And shield his sad mind from despair!

O, Thurlow, thy virtue is great,

(Thy virtue with transport I sing)

May blessings for ever await

The man—thus attach’d to his King!

Be steady, and firm in the cause

Which heaven commits to thy hand,

Defend us and succour our laws,

The bulwark, and strength of the land.

And I5r 93

And Pitt, thou great champion of truth!

In wisdom and politics—sage,

Who temper’st the ardour of youth—

With the thought and precision of age:

Whose manners, all pure, and refined,

Disdain the vain trappings of art;

Whose cause—is the cause of mankind,—

“Whose words—the excess of the heart,”

A heart—with benevolence fraught,

Which Faction, adverse, would repress;

Which nature indulgently taught—

To soften the pangs of distress:

Who feels for the Monarch he loves,

Whose right he, intrepid, maintains;

And, while reason his conduct approves,

The jargon of faction—disdains:—

O, listen awhile to the lay,—

The motive that prompts me to sing

Is the homage affection would pay—

To the man—I adore as my King!

How I5v 94

How sweet are the tones of the lyre—

When duty engages the song!

When gratitude breathes on the wire,

And wafts the soft measures along!

The forest and furze-skirted plain

No longer afford me delight;

The landscape is varied in vain,

The objects grow dim on the sight:

I feel for the woes of the great,

My heart is with anguish opprest;

No language, alas! can relate

The sorrow that saddens my breast.

Thou bright-sun of healing return!

Thou source of sweet-comfort descend!

Our hearts shall with gratitude burn,

Till life, and till gratitude end:

Then, aloft in the mansions of air

Enraptured we’ll strike the bold strings—

Loud pæans of glory prepare—

To the Lord—the protector of Kings.

An I6r 95

An Ode
On His Majesty’s Recovery.

Tune—The favorite Hymn of Eve.

Sound lute, the sweet concords of praise!

Enraptured I strike the bold string,

Loud pæans of gratitude raise,

For God has restor’d me my King!

Pale Faction in solitude mourns!

Leave the tears of her Minions to flow;

The bright-sun of healing returns,

And gilds the horzion of woe.

See, the Monarch from languor arise!

He bends at the footstool of grace;

Fair gratitude beams from his eyes,

And devotion illumines his face!

See the Circle of Virtue attend,

With looks of complacence and love;

Their raptures like incense ascend—

And angels record them above.

What I6v 96

What bosom, but throbs with delight,

When fancy presents to the mind

The Pair whom such virtues unite,—

The blessing, and pride of mankind!

O! long may the God they adore

Grant life, un-impair’d by alloy!

When life is a blessing no more—

Transport them, to mansions of joy!

O, Lord of sweet mercy, to thee—

With fervent devotion I sing;

My spirit, exalted and free,

Exults in the praise of my King?

O, grant, that a subject’s faint pray’r

May reach thy celestial abode!

Wing the theme thro’ the regions of air,

And, give it access to my God.

To devotion He temper’d the clay

Embellish’d and form’d by his hand,—

Soon the mind caught the heav’nly ray

And, instant, began to expand;

Devotion K1r 97

Devotion enraptured the tongue,

The passions confess’d its controul,—

And bless’d were the transports that sprung

All warm, and direct from the soul!

Now bless’d be the God we adore!

Who pours down his balm from above!

Who smites, in displeasure, no more—

But turns—with refreshment, and love:

The boon should our gratitude raise,

And urge, in full chorus, to sing,—

Till the forest, made vocal with praise,

Re-echo with—God save the King!

An K K1v 98

An Ode,

Sung at Edgefield Church, on the 1789-04-2323d of April,
1789
,
By the Scholars of the Sunday School.

Britons your voices raise,

Sound the full chords of praise,

Strike the loud string:

Let’s in full chorus join,

To our great God, benign,

Who bids his mercy shine

On George our King.

O Lord, our God, attend—

While the pure themes ascend

On raptured wing;

Accept the grateful strain;

Long may our Monarch reign;

Exempt from care, and pain—

Long live the King.

Hark! K2r 99

Hark! the long aisle rebounds!

Raise the seraphic sounds,

Hosannas sing!

Join ye attentive throng—

Swell the ecstatic song,

With notes sublime, and strong—

To God, our King.

Leah K2 K2v 100

Leah to Jacob.

Permit me, Israel, ere I close mine eye

In death, in darkness, and obscurity,

Once more to crave forgiveness at thy hand,

For prompt obedience to my fire’s command.

Long ere that night,—this tortur’d bosom
strove

With all the pangs of ill-requited love:

When first I saw thee at my father’s gate,

Supreme in grace, in native beauty great!

As o’er thy form mine eye delighted ran—

’Twas then—my train of miseries began,

That fatal moment seal’d my future doom—

A life of sorrows,—and a distant tomb.

My happier sister mock’d my silent woe,

And oft, too oft, constrain’d the tear to flow,

For ah! in vain it strove to lurk conceal’d,

Her biting taunts the latent ill reveal’d.

When seven revolving years had roll’d away,

Clear, and auspicious dawn’d the bridal day:

Then K3r 101

Then gen’rous It may be supposed that Leah beheld in a favorable
light, that act of Laban which put her in possession of the man
she loved, she therefore speaks with tender regard of her
father
Laban spread the lib’ral feast,

And call’d around each friend, & Syrian guest;

The ready guests in chosen robes drew near,—

While melting music fill’d the ambient air!

The bridal strains, the skilful shepherds sung,

And list’ning maidens, on the carol hung.

The favor’d flocks, in vernal garlands drest,

By chearful bleatings inwards joys exprest;

While lowing herds, responsive to the strain,

Pour’d the deep cadence o’er the vocal plain.

I rose reluctant from a bed of woe,

And spite of pride the gushing tears would flow:

Oh! how I wish’d for dark surrounding night,

To shroud my sorrows from the prying sight

Of friends, of guests;—but most of all from
thee

Too lovely author of my misery!

O Jacob, then,—exulting in the pride

Of youthful beauty, shone thy peerless bride!

With art she cull’d each variegated flower,

To raise her charms, and aggrandize her power;

K3 The K3v 102

The vivid wreath her blooming temples prest,

And the full rose glow’d, conscious, on her breast;

Her glossy tresses turn’d with nicest care

Flow’d on her neck,—too exquisitely fair!

You mark’d those charms, thus artfully display’d,

The swelling whiteness, and the deep’ning
shade,—

And while the transport kindled in your eyes!

Unheeded flow’d my tears,—unheeded stole my
sighs.

But, Laban mark’d the anguish of my mind,

For his warm soul to pity e’er inclin’d:

As thus he spake,—with all a father’s care,

His twinkling eye but ill conceal’d a tear,

The half-form’d sigh rose struggling in his breast,

While thus his fault’ring tongue his fixt resolve
exprest—

“O think not Leah, that I mean to break

Thro’ Syria’s well-fram’d laws, for Rachel’s
sake;

She weds not first, altho’ the genial feast

Already smile propitious, on the guest;

Tho’ Jacob woo her, be it thine to share

The fond endearments of his nightly care!

“Assume K4r 103

Assume th’ accustom’d veil, It is a custom
in the East for the bride to be presented
to the bridegroom covered with a veil, which made it
easy for Laban to deceive Jacob.
retire with speed;

A father’s blessing sanctifies the deed.”

What mighty tumults in my bosom strove!

What quick vicissitudes of fear, and love!

Conflicting passions tore my inmost soul,

And raged at large impatient of controul.

At length the morn arose—the orient light

Disclosed the cheat; you started at the sight!

I look’d—for love,—but oh! the signs of hate—

Hung on your brow, and stampt my future fate:

“Avaunt bold maiden, all enraged you cried,

Is this my Rachel! this my promis’d bride?”

And spurn’d me, half expiring, from your side.

To her you flew, and mad with wild despair,

In raving frenzy tore your auburn hair:

Her own keen feelings cautiously supprest,

’Twas thus she sooth’d your mighty soul to rest—

(Attentive on th’ enchanting sounds you hung,

And blest the honey’d accents of her tongue!)

“I too am thine:—one irksome week endure;

The next unites us in a league secure;

Thus K4v 104

Thus Laban sware: and Leah shall resign

Thy envied person; for thy heart is mine:

Tenacious of the prize, the world to me

Were light, were worthless if deprived of thee:

For Rachel’s sake let well-dissembled ease

Smile on thy cheek, thro’ six succeeding days:

Lest Laban, marking thy contracted brow,

Rise to fierce wrath, and abrogate his vow:

So, should I mourn thee—torn from all that’s
dear,

And ceassless pour the unavailing tear.”

Shunn’d, and neglected, that sad week I past,

And sigh’d, and pray’d each hour might be my
last;

No more you deign’d to view my hated face:—

And all was sorrow, shame, and fell disgrace:

Alone I pined, and hopless of relief

Had sunk in deep satiety of grief—

But for that Power who hears the orphan’s cry,

And aids the cause of helpless misery;

That Power benign,—on whom thou bad’st me
call,

That Power who made, sustains, and governs
all!

Who to thy fathers lent a gracious ear;

Whom still I honor, supplicate, revere;

For K5r 105

For whose dread name I quit our houshold gods;

On whom I trust for peace in those abodes

Where raptured spirits disembodied soar,

In bliss distinct, ’till time shall be no more.

As ’fore his throne one night, I prostrate lay,

From the broad east burst forth a dazzling ray!

The lucid splendor o’er the chamber stole—

And a bright beam of hope illumed my sinking
soul—

When lo! a voice angelic, strong, and clear

Brake the deep silence, and assail’d mine ear!

“Leah, be comforted, the vision said,

Lift from abject ground, thy drooping
head:

Thy prayers ascend, thy supplications rise

Above the starry concave of the skies;

E’en to the throne of God, they force their
way,

The radiant mansions of eternal day!

From thence commission’d to thine ear I bear

The awful mandate, thro’ the fields of air.

Lo! from thy womb, a train of Patriarchs
springs,

Of Priests, of Prophets, and of future Kings:

Increasing tribes shall swell thy honor’d fame,

And late posterity revere thy name:

“From K5v 106

From thee derived, in Judah’s chosen line,

Messiah comes! the promised Seed—divine—

The test of sacred love, to human-race,

Pointing to glory—thro’ the means of grace:

Thousands unborn shall bless thee as they rise,

And waft, in grateful themes, thy praises to
the skies.”

How sweet the voice! how raptured was the
strain!

O’er the scorch’d surface of the famish’d plain

Thus spreads the genial show’r; the vivid green

With renovated verdure clothes the laughing
scene:—

Thus rose my soul, with added vigour fraught,

My mind expanding brighten’d into thought!

Lo! Israel, now, the awful hour draws nigh,

That trembling Leah must prepare to die;

Composed of brittle earth, the timid clay

Anticipates the act; and dreads decay:

While the rapt spirit darts the bright’ning eye

And dares the prospect of futurity;

To Him who gave it shall the spark return:—

But my cold corse, religiously inurn.

Oh! hold me, sinking, to thy honor’d breast,

Thy Leah hastens to the port of rest:

Yet K6r 107

Yet still she hesitates,—the love of thee

Breaks in,—and combats with eternity.

The Patriarch heard,—and drew a length of
sighs,

While the big drops roll’d, conscious, from his
eyes;

His lab’ring heart with mighty thought opprest

Leap’d from its seat, and throbb’d against his
breast:

Remorse, and gratitude, alternate strove—

And almost roused his yielding soul to love:

Full on th’ expiring fair, his eyes he threw—

But shrunk appall’d—and shudder’d at the view!

Th’ impatient soul that instant sprang away—

And death’s chill dews enwrapt the pallid clay.

Dido K6v 108

Argument.

Dido, Queen of Carthage, was daughter of
Belus, King of Tyre, and wife to Sichæus, one of the
priests of Hercules. Sichæus having been basely
slain at the altar by Pygmalion, the brother of Dido
(at that time King of Tyre) appeared to her, and informed
her of the impious deed; discovering to her
the place where his treasures were deposited, he
warned her to fly instantly. Dido flew to Afric,
(accompanied by her sister Anna, Barce, the nurse of
Sichæus, and many Tyrians, who were grown
weary of the cruelties and oppressions of Pygmalion);
settling there, she founded Carthage.

Iarbas, son of Jupiter Ammon, king of Getulia,
sought her in marriage: but she, resolutely determined
to keep her vows to her deceased lord inviolate,
refused him. The enraged Moor made war against
her, conquer’d, and reduced her to the necessity of
marrying him, or dying. She, to gain time, required
a few days to appease the manes of her deceased
husband, and retiring to a grove consecrated
to his memory, there stabbed herself.

The L1r 109

The first part of this epistle is supposed to be written
while Iarbas sues as an obsequious lover: it is descriptive;
the sentiments being those of a great mind
at full liberty, it is declarative of contempt; and shows
a fixt resolution to shun the object of its aversion.

The latter part, as flowing from the heart of an
enraged, conquered, but magnanimous woman,
abounds with anger, resentment and imprecation.

The author having only morality to build upon,
hopes that the mode of her Heroine’s exit, will
merit the excuse (if not the approbation) of the candid
Christian.

L Dido L1v 110

Dido to Iarbas:
A Poetical Epistle.

Fix’d, and determined as the will of fate,

Is Dido’s firm, irrevocable hate:

Whether you woo her in smooth Lydian strains,

Soft as the melting music of the plains,

When ’neath the sycamore’s extensive shade

The raptured Tyrian wins, his long obdurate
maid:

Or to more lofty strains invite the lyre,

Strains more adapted to the Queen of Tyre,

You sing, and nations listen to the sound!

While tenfold echoes waft the rapture round!

The lighter notes, in airy measures rise,

Mount the tall hills, and ring along the skies,

While the deep cadence fills the vales below

With accents bold, sonorous, full, and slow.

You sing my form, all graceful to the sight

As the young cedar, of majestic height;

More pure my cheek than Sharon’s envied rose,

Or those bright tints the ruddy orient shows;

More L2r 111

More white my neck—more exquisitely fair!

Than Alpine-snows, or virgin-lilies are.

Ah! such is flattery—such the art of man!

Thrice happy she who knows the truth to scan;

Who looks beyond the common face of things,

And reads the thoughts of peasants, and of kings.

Not thus Sichæus won my virgin heart;—

Pure native eloquence, devoid of art—

The emanation of a soul refined,

Gain’d on mine ear, and stole upon my mind.

In vain thou plead’st—Eliza scorns thy flame,

Turns pale and sickens at Iarbas’ name:

Turns pale and sickens—not with abject fear—

Know mighty Moor, she scorns a woman’s
tear:

Let cowards weep, and timid maidens cry;

Tyre’s firm Queen unsullied lifts the eye:

With anger fell—her ruddy cheek grows pale,

And her soul sickens at thy loathsome tale.

The strain melodious when it flows from thee

Is dull, and harsh, ’tis dissonance to me.

Eliza scorns thy animated lay,

And deaf to all great Ammon’s son can say,

Resolves to fly him, far as pole from pole;

Stung by a keen antipathy of soul.

L2 Far L2v 112

Far from Eliza be the thought of change,

Let lawless savages licentious range,

From clime to clime may maids abandon’d
rove,

And shameless boast variety in love.

My honor dearer than my life I prize:

In constant firmness all that honour lies;

To one fix’d object all my soul adheres,

Unmoved by promises, unawed by fears;

Secure of that—and to my fate resign’d,

I wait th’ event with fortitude of mind.

Ah, well thou know’st that when Sichæus
bled,

I drew down vengeance on the murd’rer’s head,

More than his life, his treasures forced away,

And bore them guiltless o’er the briny sea:

My swift wing’d gallies flew with eagles’ speed;

For Juno saw, and sanctified the deed.

Blest in my subjects, in my sister blest.,

I fondly hoped to’ve gain’d the port of rest.

Ah! why relentless, hast thou quench’d the ray,

That dawn’d to gild my visionary day,

The beamy hope, that o’er the mazy tide,

Led my frail bark,—or bad it safely ride,

When, lodged at anchor ’neath the Libyan shore,

I heard from far, the bursting tempest’s roar.

Can L3r 113

Can I who reverence the hallow’d dead,

Who hourly curse the hand by which he bled;

Who to his manes have each honor aid,

And hold nocturnal converse with his shade:

Can I my vows retract, and stoop to join

My hand, with one of Ammon’s swarthy line?

No:—all the gods our union must oppose,

Or sign the contract with a train of woes.

Retreat then nobly, leave me to my fate,

To guide the senate, and confirm the state,

To rule my subjects by unerring laws,

To speak—till thousands echo back applause.

Thus blest, my lot,—ere bold Iarbas came—

Beloved, and reverence’d, my spotless name;

Unshaken rectitude adorn’d my breast,

True conscious honor all my soul possest:

“Thus arm’d without, as innocent within,”

I founded peace—on abstinence from sin.

My state, my people were the points in view,

True to those objects, to their interest true;

How oft have I neglecting needful rest,

The turns of fate revolving in my breast,

Quick from my couch with keen impatience
flown,

The hasty mantle o’er my shoulders thrown,

L3 While L3v 114

While all redundant play’d the robe behind,

As chance incautious gave it to the wind:

When first Aurora darts the gleams of light

On the grey tissue of receding night.

Then o’er the loom, delighted, as I bent,

The white-woof marking, curiously intent;

Or, at the cauldron view’d the glowing dye,

The tints commixing, beauteous to the eye;

Or turn’d to where the finish’d purples lay,

Bright as the ruddy harbingers of day;

The builders then beheld their active queen,

And quicker plied the strokes, nor paused nor
talk’d between,

Redoubled ardors fired the gladden’d throng,

The pond’rous burdens moved alert along,

The polish’d marbles up the rampires flew,

Composed the square, or met the judging view

In spiral forms, commensurate, and true.

But now amazed I hear the clarions sound!

And thick as bees the squadrons gather round:

Dost woo me then, with armies at my gate?

Detested tyrant—object of my hate!

My kingdom’s lost! the haughty Moor commands,

Around my palace wait the swarthy bands;

The L4r 115

The lyre unstrung;—the jav’lin now he wields,

And all illumined flash the brazen shields,

Along the walls the bright refulgence gleams,

And lucid cieeilings catch the trembling beams:

Rank within rank the proud battalions stand,

Drive far my subjects, and despoil my land;

While their said Queen, to inward griefs a prey,

Sighs thro’ the dreary vacuum of the day.

But what important doth yon herald bear ?

The silver trumpets rend the fields of air!

And heaven’s high concave conscious to the
sound,

Repeats the martial notes, and spreads the clangour
round!

Alas! no peace—the hated name of wife,

Must end the war, and seal the curse for life:

Dreadful alternative!—forbad to fly,

Condemn’d to wed him, or decreed to die!

Dost think by threats to bend Eliza’s heart?

Her mind unawed still ’poses art, with art:

Threat on proud Moor,—she baffles all thy skill,

And only yields to fate’s superior will.

Stern, and deliberate behold him wait—

A slave ennobled, and a wretch in state!

Dark as thy outward form, I view thy soul,

Where all the vices in succession roll;

Reason L4v 116

Reason, benighted there, emits no ray,

To gild the horizon, and form the day:

But one continued, unremitting gloom

Hand o’er thy natal hour, and shrowds thee to
the tomb.

Ah, what is man! when passion bears the sway

And tott’ring reason verges to decay ?

When to loose appetite the rule’s consign’d,

And wayward fancy dictates to the mind ?

Vain thy prerogative O sov’reign man,

And vain thy boast mysterious things to scan,

If spite of reason, like the brute you live;

Grasping at all resistless power can give.

Would then Getulia’s monarch deign to wed,

And drag reluctant to his throne, and bed—

A captive Queen?— a Queen whose stedfast
soul

Disdains Iarbas, and disdains controul.

Women, like me, no lukewarm medium
know;

We rise to rapture, or we sink to woe:

Nature composed us of a mould refined,

Attuned the heart, and harmonized the mind;

The fellow-heart in unison must move

To strike the key, and wake the soul to love.

If L5r 117

If no attractive sympathies impart

The finer feelings to the judging heart—

Then all in vain the suppliant lover woos;

We hear the tale, and harden as he sues.

If to his suit the venal dame give way,

How cursed the Hymen of that joyless day;

Repugnant Juno blushes to behold

Her rites prophaned, her sacred honors /old.

Far less I dread th’ inevitable hour

When death comes on, with unresisted power,

When all invelop’d in cimmerian gloom,

We shrink appall’d, and shelter in the tomb.

Should thirst of gold o’er virtuous minds prevail,

Or fear of death preponderate the scale ?

Women, by nature delicate, refined,

Should seek those joys concentrated in the mind;

Should wait till reason give th’ assenting voice,

And Heaven approving ratify the choice.

Dost think, vain man, that Dido now withdraws

To plead in secret proud Iarbas’ cause?

To combat self;—to bid her stubborn heart

Submit to Ammon’s son?—; kiss the dart—

The dart accursed, by all the furies driven!

Unlike the arrow, that, elanced from heaven,

The L5v 118

The gods benignant at Eliza threw,

When blest Sichæus met her raptured view ?

Wouldst then succeed him when the manes
smile?

Elusive stratagem—O pious guile!

And dost allow to these dissembled rites

The mystic space of three revolving nights?

Within that space my soul enlarged and free,

Shall look with pity—on a crown, and thee.

Imperial Juno, from thine awful throne

Bend to my prayer, and pour thy vengeance
down!

Mark well this object of my ruthless hate,

This bane of freedom, and my rising state;

And when thy Dido slumbers with the dead,

Wreak thy fierce wrath on his devoted head;

Let conscience sting him to the inmost soul,

Nor one faint glimpse of radiant hope controul

The direful terrors that unceasing rise

In mixt confusion ’fore his tortured eyes!

By day may phantoms glare upon his sight,

And ghastly visions haunt him thro’ the night;

Till toward despair, bewilder’d fancy move,

And all the ills of disappointed love,

And all the curses of a ruin’d state—

Rush on his mind, and urge him to his fate:

Be L6r 119

Be then no tender friend, no comfort nigh,

But all unwept, unpitied let him die!

But, O my Anna—dearer to my heart,

Than all those charms delusive courts impart,—

In all my troubles have I found in thee

A friend sincere, from prejudices free.

No woman’s softness hung about thy mind,

Clear was thy judgment, as thy will resign’d;

Alarm’d, Pygmalion would have won thee o’er;

How vain his promises, his threats, his power!

How shall I leave thee—leave thee thus
distrest,

My throbbing heart beats high against my breast!

And she who scoffs at death—the mighty she—

Shrinks to a coward, when she thinks of thee:

Nature pleads warmly, friendship aids her call;

But ’tis decreed, and I, alas! must fall.

Barce adieu! thy friendly eye, I trust,

Shall see inurn’d my consecrated dust.

And now all hail thou reverential grove!

Recess held sacred to the power of love:

Hail to thy honors venerable shade!

Where still my nightly orisons are paid.

Here curling vines embrace the sable yew,

And fun’ral cypress weeps in tears of dew;

The L6v 120

The liquid-pearls on quiv’ring branches glow,

Or falling deck the spiral grass below.

Thick-pointed myrtles spread their fragrance
round,

And yellow asphodels bedeck the ground:

How oft these hands their tender stems have
graced,

With vervain garlands mystically placed;

How oft with snowy-wool their branches
crown’d,

And their smooth trunks with holy fillets bound.

Deep in the midst, secured by lasting fame

The marble structure rises to the name

Of good Sichæus: more than half divine,

Ere his pure blood distain’d the hallow’d shrine.

Here oft I meet him at the noon of night,

When silver Cynthia sheds her trembling light;

’Tis then our souls, in holy union join’d,

Rush soul to soul, and mind cements to mind.

Hither I haste to meditate on thee—

While the rapt spirit struggling to be free,

Indignant spurns its cumbrous mass of clay,

And pants to join thee in the realms of day.

Oh! when irresolute I shiv’ring wait

On the dread confines of this mortal state,

When half envelop’d in the glooms of night,

And half reveal’d the prospect meets the sight,

The M1r 121

The scenes eternal flashing on the eye,

As flaming meteors glance athwart the sky!

While the wing’d soul prepares to soar away,

Yet lingers still to prop the tottering clay,

Fearful to plunge amid the flood of day!

O then lov’d shade—what yet remains of thee

Attend to aid, and set my spirit free:

Observe me struggling in the grasp of death,

Watch my last pang, and catch my parting
breath.

O Junosov’reign Empress of the skies!

To whose dread name, you splendid fane doth
rise;

Who, when sad exiles on the Libyan strand,

Led to this destin’d spot our wand’ring band;

Here bad the columns rise, the domes aspire,

And on the altars blaze the sacred fire;

If ere I bow’d before thy hallow’d shrine,

And breathed the vow, that seal’d me wholly
thine;

Whilst thou propitious gav’st th’ assenting nod,

And Jove’s own thunder spake th’ approving
God;

O shield me now, at this tremendous hour—

When death comes on with unresisted power;

When M M1v 122

When the cold dagger rankling at my heart,

Drives thro’ each tortured nerve intolerable smart.

When various horrors in succession rise,

And mingled objects swim before mine eyes.

As all convulsive on the couch I lie,

O teach thy vot’ry nobly how to die!

She whispers soft—“Tis thro’ conflicting strife

The lab’ring soul emerges into life.”

I hear thee guardian-goddess, and behold,

Thro’ death’s dim medium various charms
unfold!

Now as this mortal frame dissolves away,

Pure, and effulgent breaks the dazzling ray,

That gilds th’ eternal sphere, and vivifies the day.

Now rapt in ecstasy the spirit soars!

And lost in wonder boundless themes explores.

Argument. M2r 123

Argument.

Anna, sister to Dido, Queen of Carthage, and
daughter of Belus, King of Tyre, accompanying her
sister in her flight, settled with her in Africa, after
whose death, being in great affliction, and in a distressful
situation, she determines to follow Æneas
into Italy: previous to her departure from Carthage,
the following Epistle, it must be presumed, was
written.

Anna M2 M2v 124

Anna to Æneas:
A Poetical Epistle.

O Say—if ’mid the charms of regal state

Æneas feel—for wretched Anna’s fate ?

If friendship’s flame still animate his breast?

A constant, peaceful, unremitted guest!

Or if variety with pow’rful art,

Hath forced her image from its seat,—his heart?

There was a time,—ah! how I blest the day!

When fervent friendship swell’d thy polish’d lay;

When, all-inspired, you sung the sacred flame;

And Anna’s praises reach’d the ears of fame:

How stole thy fingers o’er the warbling wire!

While the chaste Muses fann’d the lambent fire,—

(Sweet flows the strain when friendship’s flame
refined

Beams from the soul, and dignifies the mind,

Swells the warm heart, and prompts the ardent
sigh,

Glows in the cheek, and sparkles in the eye!)

The willing lyre responsive sounds convey’d,

While all enraptured sat thy favor’d maid!

The M3r 125

The mighty theme, immortal as thy song,

Rais’d the full tones, and soar’d sublime along:

My ravish’d thoughts ascended as you sung!

And thro’ the vaulted aisles the length’ning
echoes rung,

Till Carthage-Tow’rs, as conscious to the
strains

Caught the bold notes, and pour’d them o’er
the plains.

Eliza Dido. too, unenvious, heard the lays,

And join’d her voice—to swell a sister’s praise.

Oh! had she view’d with me, each blooming
grace

That smiling sat depicted on thy face!

Had she to friendship ev’ry wish confined,—

And left her hopes, dependent on the mind!

But ah! the gods had other things in store:

And mortals frail should tremble and adore.

Hermes of late descending from above,

Commission’d from the court of sov’reign Jove,

Shot, meteor like, athwart the dusky skies;

What time we watch the midnight sacrifice;

When the pure flames in spiral forms ascend,

And chosen virgins on the rites attend.

M3 I M3v 126

I mark’d him well—as thro’ the glooms of night,

The radiant godhead wing’d his rapid flight,

And tipt the Trojan ships, with gleams of momentary
light.

At Jove’s command the soft Idalian boy

Came fraudful, vested in the guise of Troy:

What were the joys of that delusive night!

When all were lost in rapture, and delight!

When royal Dido, like the queen of love

Deck’d to approach the throne of regal Jove,—

Shone all resplendent! ev’ry winning grace

Uniting vied, to dignify her face:

Her cheek, all animated, seem’d to glow

With charms superior to the race below;

Her eye illumined cast a pow’rful ray,

Like those bright beams that vivify the day;

Pure native majesty in ev’ry look

The innate greatness of her mind bespoke:

(But what is greatness in this checker’d vale!

Fate sets her hand, and human efforts fail.)

Graceful she mov’d the parting crouds between,

The raptured Tyrians hail’d their beauteous
queen!

While Troy’s bold sons rejoin’d the gen’ral voice,

And, undiscenring, blest their prince’s choice!

’Twas M4r 127

’Twas then we mark’d the heav’n-descended
boy!

Dido beheld him with maternal joy;

Round his fair neck her snowy arms she threw,

View’d his fine form, and kindled at the view!

Each look, each gesture spake his high descent:

But blinded all by joy, by merriment—

But most by fate’s immutable decree:

We clasp’d th ’impending ill,—the latent Deity.

Now my sad mind, a stranger to delight,

Reverts to view the horrors of that night—

That fatal night! when loved Eliza fled

From Anna’s arms, to join th’ illust’rous dead.

Unhappy Dido! parent—sister—friend—

How oft I contemplate thy direful end!

How oft the dreadful tragedy review,—

Still vibrates in mine ear thy last adieu!

When thy wan lips, all tremulous, essay’d

To sound thy sad farewell—“farewell distressed
maid!”

When thy dim eyes regain’d, but loath’d the
light—

Then closed, and set in everlasting night.

Silent, and solemn thro’ the awful grove

The pyre observing, was I left to rove;

Silent, M4v 128

Silent, and solemn, long I wander’d round,—

Till my torn heart a transient requiem found;

Sigh following sigh convulsive tore my breast,

And wearied nature sunk—to sullen rest;

The passions ebb’d—and reason wing’d her flight,

And broken slumbers lull’d me thro’ the night:

The gentle Barce Sichæus’s Nurse. near me took her seat,

Revolving in her mind the various turns of fate.

When half creation, wrapt in calm repose,

Forgot the day, and all its train of woes,

When Cynthia, riding in meridian power,

Gave solemn splendor to the midnight hour;

As all neglectful on the couch I lay,

Lo! fancy form’d a visionary day;

The mimic lustre play’d thro’ all the room,

And brighten’d objects started from the gloom:

Tall, and majestic Dido stalk’d along!

Enlarged her figure, and her voice more strong!

“Fly Anna fly,—the princely vision said,—

Fly, wretched Anna,—dear ill-fated maid!

Bereft of ev’ry friend! prepare to fly,—

Thy guardian genius points,—to Italy;

There good Æneas, waits to sooth thy woe:

The Fates ordain it,—Jove will have it so.

“The M5r 129

The rites sepulchral, hasten to prepare,

Lest wasted on the bosom of the air,

My luckless ashes, unprotected driven,

Should adverse fly,—the scoff of angry heaven.

Those rites perform’d, my pensive soul
shall go,

Descending peaceful, to the realms below;

With good Sichæus haply doom’d to stray,

’Mid the pure regions of eternal day.

Lo! the sad fate!—the dire impending
doom!—

My Carthage trembles ’fore the sons of Rome!

The world’s great mistress rises to my eye;

And Carthage sinks in dread obscurity.”

She spake—and sudden vanish’d from my sight,

Lost and invelop’d in the shades of night.

Ensuing visions drew a motley scene—

A friend propitious,—but a jealous Queen:

Methought I fled from thy Lavinia’s face

O’er rocks sharp pointed, with unequal pace,

Till from a promontory’s awful brow

Rushing precipitate! the stream below

Instant recoiling to the fountain-head,

Receiv’d me peaceful in his ouzy bed.

Then bright Aurora with her roseate ray,

Dissolv’d the gloom, and usher’d in the day.

The M5v 130

The various-featur’d images withdrew,

As sick’ning fancy languish’d on the view.

Ere mighty Sol, from the stupendous height

Of eastern mountain, pour’d his flood of light,—

Ere his redundant beams, diffusive given,

From burning sands the panting hind had
driven—

I left my couch, and sought the awful scene

Where luckless Dido fell: ill-fated Queen!

The sacred relicks from the heap they brought,

(How my soul sickens at the dreadful thought!)

From my cold cheek the vital color fled;

As the sad priests inurn’d the mighty dead,

Thick dankish mists descended from above,

And hollow murmurs whisper’d thro’ the grove!

The cypress trembled, and the baleful yew

Distill’d in copious drops the conscious dew.

Furious Iarbas threats our infant state;

And the young kingdom verges to its fate:

The artists languish, and the priests despair,

The slighted virgins tear their golden hair;

Neglected thro’ the streets the children roam,

While the sad parents sit absorb’d in grief at
home:

The tow’rs unfinish’d meet the uplift eye;

And shrines forsaken in confusion lie.

Go M6r 131

Go Barce, go, the smoking entrails view,

Shall we go to Italy our fate pursue ?

Propitious be the signs—the fair portent

Shall guide our choice, and justify th’ event.

Propitious omens! spread the nival sail—

Replete with hope, I court the springing gale;

Now ye bland zephyrs whisper o’er the deep,

Rouse ye fair Nereids from your balmy sleep:

The heaving billows break the level green,

Bright shines the clear expanse, the foamy waves
between;

The pompous galley on the ocean rides,

The gentle surges lash her golden sides:

Now here, now there the varied cinctures play,

As changeful waters catch the solar ray.

Haste my bold Tyrians—fierce Orion sleeps,

Nor more our plains with rushing torrent steeps.

Early instructed in the sacred lore,

I learn’d to read celestial wonders o’er;

Led by Sichæus, thro’ the mighty maze—

Where clouds engender, and where comets blaze,

I learn’d the art, by Cynosure to guide

The bounding galley, o’er the foaming tide:

Her friendly orb, replete with argent light,

Shall safe conduct us thro’ the glooms of night.

But M6v 132

But wherefore waste we this important hour?

Pour to the briny beach, ye Tyrians pour,—

Unfurl the canvass to the coming gale,

Which pants impatient for the bellying sail:

The dancing galley croud on ev’ry side;

Extend your oars, the glassy deep divide:

Loose the fixt hawsers, spring alert away,

O’er the broad bosom of the halcyon sea.

Fearless my friends now launch into the main,

Anna’s firm hope the destin’d port shall gain:

Ply your light oars, to Italy we fly,

The sea invites us, and the smiling sky;

Mark how the dolphins o’er the surface glide,

And lash with silver tails the gently-curling tide:

Bend to your strokes, the rising billows sweep,

Till answering strokes reverberate thro’ the deep.

Adieu fair Carthage!—lessening to the view,

Ye dancing spires—eternally adieu!

Ye lofty rocks adorn’d with verdant woods

That hang dependent o’er the azure floods;

Ye humid grots, where blue-ey’d maids reside,

The tranquil daughters of the ouzy tide,

Who tell the tale, and watch the tinkling rill

That winding wanders down the shaggy hill;

Ye swarthy sons of Libya’s scorching plains,

Ye maids attentive to your swarthy swains,

All N1r 133

All, all farewell:—the swift wing’d galley flies—

Those scenes delusive mock my aching eyes;

Scarce the broad billow bursting on the shore

Returns in feeble sounds its undulating roar:

Quick, and more quick she speeds her rapid
flight—

Till the faint objects die upon the sight.

As the chief of this story is from Virgil, a person
acquainted with the Æneid will easily recollect those
incidents referred to.
N William N1v 134

William and Emma:
A Tale.

In L――y’s venerable shade

A gothic mansion stands,

Whose front adown the opening glade

The distant view commands;

Antique the pile, the windows small

Admit a feeble ray,

And thro’ the old romantic hall,

Pours slow the dubious day.

There—Otho dwelt, a man revered!

With many a virtue fraught,

Whose hand a tender maiden rear’d;

By all the graces taught!

Fair as the orient ray of morn,

Young Emma met the view,

Or virgin rose, that decks the thorn,

Besprent with pearly dew.

A N2r 135

A raptured father’s watchful eye

Beheld each dawning grace,

The lily hue, the vermil dye—

That blended on her face:

He saw the outward structure fair,

Soft, elegant, refined!

And, strove with true paternal care

To decorate the mind:

The social virtues, first he taught,

Which teach the mind to glow,

Then, gradual led the ripening thought

To Him—from whom they flow:

Then nature’s volume, nature’s laws

Unfolded to her view;

And shew’d the grand essential Cause—

Whose hand, the landscape drew.

And oft she heard the story told

Of ancestors renown’d,

Of feats of arms, and heroes bold

With verdant laurels crown’d!

N2 Full N2v 136

Full oft the sculptured hall she traced,

Where many a valiant knight—

The length’ning wall, in order graced,

In burnish’d armor dight!

With timid step, at even-tide

(Awed by the thickening gloom)

On tiptoe soft, she used to glide,

All through the solemn room!

But, Otho seized her trembling hand,

And measured back the ground—

“Yon hero mark, behold him stand

Scar’d o’er with many a wound!

The conflict dire—the painful strife—

Magnanimous, he bears,

Propp’d on his spear, resigns his life

Amid a nation’s tears!

My Emma weeps!—indulge awhile

The luxury of woe!

That Power who bade creation smile,

Gave sorrow’s tear—to flow.”

Beneath N3r 137

Beneath a tender father’s care

Young Emma still improved,

Allow’d by all—so wondrous fair!

By every youth beloved.

But, yet untouch’d her virgin heart

Had felt no partial flame,

’Till Cupid threw a fatal dart—

Inscribed with William’s name!

As droops, before the northern blast,

The lily of the vale,

When chilly mists, the skies o’ercast,

Or driving rains assail—

So Emma droop’d:—the roseat dye

All from her cheek was flown;

The diamond languish’d in her eye,

And every charm was gone!

Alarm’d,—the father saw her fade,

And press’d the cause to know!

When, thus, with tears, the trembling maid,

Began the tale of woe—

N3 “Thy N3v 138

“Thy Emma, loves! she falt’ring cried,

And loves, without thy leave.”

“Then am I doom’d, he stern replied,

For Emma’s crime to grieve!

All vain my hopes, deluded man!

Adieu to my future rest!”

A chilly horror, o’er her ran—

She heard, and sunk opprest.

Amazed, he view’d the breathless form

Extended on the floor!

The passions ebb’d, the gathering storm

Was hush’d,—and swell’d no more:

Paternal fondness took the lead

Within his glowing mind,

“My Emma, live,—O! hear me plead!—

No more to be unkind:

Live, live my child, unseal those eyes,

Quick heaves the falt’ring breath!

Thy William comes; my Emma rise,

Elude the grasp of death:”

Thy N4r 139

Thy William comes,—she heard him say,

And health, and peace arose;

Arose to gild one transient day—

That seal’d a life of woes.

He came—with ev’ry beauty fraught,

And ev’ry winning grace,

That Venus gave, or Cupid taught

To smile upon the face!

And soon the bridal morning came

In gold, and saffron bright,

And brought the laughter-loving dame

Array’d in shining white;

Her radiant head a chaplet crown’d

With rose, and myrtle twined;

Her flowing tresses, all unbound

Light wanton’d in the wind:

And next came Love, the dimply boy,

And led the nimble Hours,

Replete with mirth, and festive joy,

They strew’d the path with flowers.

An N4v 140

And Flora blithe, a welcome guest,

Upon the bride bestow’d—

Two rose-buds fair; on Emma’s breast

The blooming present, glow’d.

All beauteous, as the queen of love,

Advanced the blushing bride:

Majestic, as the regal Jove,

Young William graced her side.

The contract sign’d,—the conscious smile

By raptured William cast,

His Emma mark’d, as down the aisle

The gay procession past:

A deeper blush her cheek o’erspread,

Down dropp’d her timid eye!

One, luckless, flower—had lost its head,

She saw, and heaved a sigh!

Sad bodings seized her throbbing heart,

And tore her tortured mind,

“Ye—Powers! she cried, the sign avert!

Can William prove unkind?”

The N5r 141

The country round, the feast partook,

And bless’d the costly cheer:

But Otho’s cheek, the blood forsook,

He turn’d,—and dropp’d a tear.

For many a week the bridal feast

In order meet, was placed;

And Otho welcomed ev’ry guest

That Emma’s nuptials graced.

At length to F—nd—n’s calm retreat

Retired the raptured pair;

And heaven, to make their joy complete,

Bestowed a blooming heir.

But short, and fading was her joy,

For William’s errant mind,

While Emma clasp’d the darling boy,

To other views inclined.

She mark’d the change,—she heard him say—

“That man is born to rove.”

No more she join’d the young and gay,

But sought the darkling grove.

Report N5v 142

Report soon caught the rising tale—

And bore to Otho’s ear—

How—“Emma’s cheek was waxen pale,

Wash’d by the frequent tear.”

Nor more effectual sped the dart

When Phaæbus drew the bow,—

The tidings pierced his heaving heart,

His heart, replete with woe!

“Ah! me—ye pitying Powers, he cried,

Attend a parent’s prayer—

Be you, thro’ life, my Emma’s guide,

And shield her from despair.”

Thus, Otho spake—the hand of death

Quick closed his languid eyes:

Attendant spirits caught his breath,

And bore him to the skies.

The dismal tale, to Emma’s ear,

Repeated rumours brought,

Appall’d she heard,—nor friendly tear

Allay’d the tortured thought.

Inconstant N6r 143

Inconstant William felt no sting,

Nor dire remorse, had he;

He heard the tempting syren sing,

And join’d the frantic glee.

No tender friend, nor husband nigh,

To stem the tide of grief,

In silent eloquence—her eye—

Of heaven implored relief;—

One ardent prayer, inspired by love—

All for her darling boy,

She breathed;—’twas register’d above,

She felt:—and all was joy!

To worlds unknown, her spirit fled,

By angels borne away;

And airy minstrels, round the dead,

Attuned the fun’ral lay.

Miranda: N6v 144

Miranda:

A Tale.

Miranda loveliest of the train

Of Sussex-Belles renown’d!

The fairest damsel on the plain,

With peerless beauty crown’d,

Beheld the early dawn of life

In Horsa’s Horsham, a town in Sussex, so called from Horsa the
Saxon.
green retreat:

Where fortune seem’d remote from strife,

To ’ve fixt her future seat.

Far from the noisy din of courts,

She past her youthful days;

Content with ease, and rural sports,

Content with rural praise.

She O1r 145

She knew to raise the cheerful song,

To swell the raptured choir;

To trill the various airs along

Responsive to the lyre:

Skill’d in the sprightly dance to move

With each attractive grace;

Or on the hill, or mid the grove,

“To join the jovial-chace.”

Such was the maid:—when Varro came,

A youth bred up in arms;

Whose soul athirst for martial fame,

Had felt no soft alarms:

Bent on the glorious deeds of war,

He led his train along;

While wond’ring swains beheld from far,

The bold, resplendent throng!

The blushing maidens stole a glance;

Miranda drew more near,

She saw the martial band advance,

Unawed by timid fear:

O Supreme O1v 146

Supreme she moved above the rest—

In genuine beauty bright!

Th’ admiring crouds her charms confest,

Enraptured at the sight!

So, fresh returning from the chace,

Array’d in vivid green,

Young health, and pleasure in her face,

Appears the huntress-queen.

Varro beheld the blooming fair,

And kindled at the view—

His trusty hand forsook the spear;

His hand till then so true!

True to the sturdy god of war,

He’d yet undaunted stood,

And oft had hail’d his fiery car,

Immersed in seas of blood!

But then to bend his mighty soul,

The softer passions strove;

That heart which brook’d no stern controul,

Yet own’d the pow’r of love.

No O2r 147

No more he talk’d of feats of arms,

No more of battles sung;

A milder theme—Miranda’s charms—

Now dwelt upon his tongue.

Æneas thus forgot old Troy,

And, blind to future fame,

Trod the soft paths of love, and joy,

To win the Tyrian dame.

Miranda saw the martial youth,

And saw him, not unmoved;

She heard him vow eternal truth—

And felt,—and own’d she loved.

Acasto Her Father. too beheld their flame,

And gave th’ assenting voice:

Enraptured Varro urged his claim,—

“Might Hymen seal his choice?”

O2 ’Twas O2v 148

’Twas then the vengeful god of war,

Bespoke th’ Idalian boy—

“’Tis mine to form with nicest care,

’Tis thine for to destroy:

Employ young god, thy puny darts,

On more ignoble prey;

Will none suffice but martial hearts—

Thou trifling urchin say?

But, vain, and fruitless shall it prove,

I sound the dire alarms,

And, all regardless of his love,

My soldier flies to arms.”

Cupid, indignant, heard him say,

And thus the bloomy god—

“Avaunt stout Mars, we know the day,

When e’en thy plumes did nod:

I grasp the bow, I point the darts,

Elanced, the arrows fly,

Till deep in warm devoted hearts,

The missive weapons lie.”

The O3r 149

The martial drum, the trumpet’s sound,

Proclaim’d th’ approaching war,

The mimic thunders shook the ground,

And discord shriek’d from far!

Varro astonish’d, heard the cry!

Then first ill-boding fear

Forced from his constant breast a sigh,

And almost—forced a tear!

The trembling maid beheld the strife,

She saw her hero bend:

“O Varro live—on thee my life,

And happiness depend:

I’ll fly dear youth, if bless’d with thee,

To earth’s extremest bound,

Or, dauntless o’er th’ encircling sea,

Will skim old ocean round.”

But stern Acasto’s strict command,

Constrain’d her fatal stay;

And pensive Varro left the land,

Alas! to rue the day!

O3 Bereft O3v 150

Bereft of all her soul held dear,

Miranda sought the grove,

Alone to pour the copious tear,

And wail her absent love.

Varro deserved her tend’rest care,

Incapable of change,

He own’d no other damsel fair,

Tho’ destined far to range.

No more she moved with tuneful pace

The mazy dance along,

Nor foremost in the rapid chace,

Appear’d the youth among:

Neglected lay the warbling lyre,

Or tuned to strains of woe—

Deprived of its accustom’d fire,

Breathed querulous, and slow.

Lorenzo then,—so fate decreed,

First saw the charming fair,

And flew with all a lover’s speed,

To gain Acasto’s ear:

His O4r 151

His wealth was great, his passion strong,

Nor sentiment refined,

Impress’d with eloquence his tongue,

Or dignified his mind.

He saw, he loved, and urged his suit,

With all that pow’rful art,

Which strikes the tongue of av’rice mute,

And sways the vulgar heart.

Acasto heard,—he view’d the gold,

Mark’d well the precious store;

He saw the massy treasures told—

Nay, help’d to count them o’er:

His heart took fire—“Miranda’s thine,”

(The harden’d fire replied)

“Destined in glitt’ring gems to shine;

Ye gods! how bless’d a bride!”

But oh! what Muse can paint the grief,

That seized Miranda’s mind?

In vain she begg’d,—no kind relief!

To mercy none inclined.

Lorenzo O4v 152

Lorenzo urged by heat of youth,

And love’s impetuous flame,

Laugh’d at her talk of broken truth—

And Varro’s prior claim.

A father’s threats—his stern command,

Was tremblingly obey’d:

He seized her cold reluctant hand—

And thus indignant said—

“To me she owes the boon of life,

And ev’ry blessing given;

Take then Lorenzo, take thy wife,

And seal thy vows in heaven.”

The day was fix’d, the morning rose,

With deep, and sullen gloom;

Prophetic morn! replete with woes,

And big with future doom.

Deck’d with the nicest tricks of art,

Appear’d the pensive bride

For ah! they strove the bursting heart,

’Neath specious shew to hide:

But O5r 153

But lost to ev’ry future joy,

Awake to present woe;

Miranda cursed each garish toy,

And all the labor’d show.

She wept—she droop’d as some fair flow’r

Before the chilly blast;

The angry Fates had stamp’d the hour,

The certain die was cast.

Oft at the sullen noon of night,

The frantic bride arose,

With sudden starts—and dread affright,

And visionary woes!

Then injured Varro’s form drew near

To meet her glowing eye,

In the sad guise of anguish drear,

Of hopeless misery!

Kind nature strove, but strove in vain,

To heal the rankling smart:

Distraction seized her tortured brain,

And burst her throbbing heart:

Acasto O5v 154

Acasto view’d the dying fair,

And smote his heaving breast;

His empty sighs dispersed in air:

Miranda sunk to rest.

Soon as the dreadful news was brought,

To Varro’s trembling ear,

He rush’d to arms,—and quick as thought

Sent forth the threat’ning spear:

Amid the foremost rank he stood,

And dared the coming foe,

Imploring death, in tides of blood

To drown his mighty woe.

Venus, in pity left the skies,

And lighting on the field,

Assumed the warrior’s rough disguise,

And grasp’d the bossy shield:

She strung the bow, the dart she chose,

(While Varro dealt around

Destruction on the falling foes)

The goddess gave the wound—

His O6r 155

His willing heart received the stroke,

And instant burst in twain,—

The hero fell! thus falls the oak

Recumbent on the plain.

The goddess stretch’d the azure wing,

And sought those fair abodes,

Where nectar flows, and minstrels sing

In honor of the gods.

’Tis said; that Cupid pluck’d a quill

From Cytherea’s dove,

And, on the rock, that bounds the hill

Inscribed the tale of love,

He sung—Miranda’s ruthless doom,

And Varro’s constant flame,

And there he raised a mural tomb

To consecrate their fame:

And more—the Muse was heard to say,

That when the god drew near

To write the sad funereal lay,

He dropp’d a pitying—tear;

The O6v 156

The tear depending from the stone

Still twinkles in the air,

And tho’ the god have long been gone,

The drop—remaineth there.

P1r 157

Acetus:

A Tale.

Awake, O pensive Muse, and sing,

The lighter airs forego,

Strike deep the sad-resounding string,

The string attuned to woe:

’Twas when trim youth, and pleasure smiled,

And Cupid, dimply boy,

The laughing hours with love beguiled,

And all the scene was joy;

One eve, as sol’s declining beams

The western skies o’er-spread,

And fleecy clouds, and rimpled streams

Were tinged with glowing red:

Beneath a quivering aspen-spray,

With pendent dew-drops bright,

A woe-fraught swain, despondent lay,

And, thus bespoke the wight—

P “Ah! P1v 158

Ah! me,—ye cheerly nymphs, and swains,

That gambol round, and round;

Till all the woods, that skirt the plains,

The jocund notes rebound!

Awhile my rueful tale attend,

A tale, with woe in-wrought!

Alas! for me, no feeling friend

Allays the tortured thought!

I ask not life; no boon I crave

Save this one sad request,

I die;—and in the silent grave,

O grant my bones to rest:

And, let this casket, ever dear!

On my cold breast repose;

When these sunk-eyes, refuse the tear,

That now, unbidden flows.

When manly vigour strung my frame,

And health illumed my face,

I, luckless, loved a beauteous dame,

A dame, of noble race!

“A P2r 159

A mutual flame my Vesta fired,

And own’d her spotless love;

As oft from prying eyes retired

We met, in yonder grove:

But adverse fate, our hopes opposed,

Our mutual wishes crost;

And soon a convent’s walls enclosed—

This gem, for ever lost!

A cruel father’s ruthless hand

Repell’d her from his gate;

And forced her, in a distant land,

To wail her hapless fate:

For stern Philander’s rigid mind

Confess’d the Roman sway;

And to its narrow pale,—confined

Faint reason’s timid ray.

His riches found a foreign heir:

His wealth were nought to me:

I never sought that wealth to share,

Nor rank of high degree.

P2 “Content P2v 160

Content within my tranquil sphere,

A patient flock to guide;

I glean’d my pittance from the year;

And scorn’d—the gaudes of pride.

But Vesta, hopeless of relief

Her painful vigils past,

A prey to agonizing grief,

Too mighty long to last!

It fed upon her tender frame,

And sapp’d her maiden bloom,

Unpitying quench’d the vital flame,

And sunk her to the tomb.

But, when she saw, the deadly dart

Prepared to strike the blow—

Preserve, she cried, this faithful heart,

This heart,—that bursts with woe!

When thro’ the scatter’d gloom of death,

Darts pure, eternal day;

And, this faint struggling, anxious breath,

Shall quit the dormant clay—

“Then P3r 161

Then, close my eyes, in decent sort;

And from my pallid side—

Convey my heart:— no more the sport,

Of cruelty, and pride.

To dear Acetus’ hand restore,

This token of my love,

He’ll bless the deed, the pledge adore;

When I am—far above.

This said;—to realms of endless light,

The gentle spirit fled:

The fading cheek appall’d the sight.

As dropp’d the listless head.

Then, careful from her snowy breast,

The clay-cold heart, they drew:

And gave the peaceful corpse to rest

Beneath a sacred yew.

To me the precious relic came,

The pledge—for ever dear!

Still glows the pure exhaustless flame,

Still lives her image here;

P3 “And P3v 162

And still within my faithful breast,

The vivid traits shall glow;

Till this sad heart, that pants for rest

Shall, sighing, burst with woe.

The foregoing Tales are founded on Truth.
Imitations P4r 163

Imitations
From the
Poems of Ossian.

Ryno, youngest son of the King of Morven, was
slain in Ireland, in the expedition against Swaran.
He was remarkable for his beauty, agility,
and great exploits. Minvane, daughter of Morni,
and sister to Gaul, was in love with Ryno.
See her lamentation, in a note on Berrathon, p.
270: This little piece opens, with the departure
of Fingal, from Ireland, after his conquest over
Swaran. P. 85.

Thus pass’d the night, in jovial song,

And brought the rosy morn along:

’Twas then supreme, upon the bright’ning heath,

The glorious Fingal rose!

He shook his glitt’ring spear, the spear of death—

Bravely victorious o’er his trembling foes;

Then graceful moved tow’r’ds Lena’s glowing
plain:

And, as a fiery beam, so moved his radiant train.

“Spread P4v 164

“Spread the white sails, cried Morven’s king,

And catch the winds that pour

From Lena’s, lessening shore.”

We mount the swelling waves, and joyous sing,

Forth rush to sea;—the foaming billows fly:

The lofty measures reach the vaulted sky,

And, on the broken surge the fainter accents die.

From Morven’s rock, Minvane bends,—

And o’er the rolling main

Her snowy arms, in vain, extends,

On Ryno, calls—in vain!

She saw the bow, and glittering shield,

Our darkling looks she read—

That Ryno, in green Ullin’s field—

Lay, mould’ring with the dead:

That, pale, upon the clouds he flew

Which o’er tall Morven pass;

His voice was in the gust, that blew

Along the trembling grass.

Minvane.

And, is the son of Fingal low

On Ullin’s mossy plain?

Strong was the arm, and strong the bow

That have my Ryno, slain!

Ah! P5r 165

Ah! me—the sad Minvane cries!

I’m left, alas! forlorn!

Ye boasting winds, that catch my sighs

And lift my hair, in scorn—

Know this, alone I will not dwell,

Nor sigh to empty air;

I’ll seek sad Ullin’s darksome cell,

And sleep with Ryno, there.

I see thee not, all graceful move

Returning from the chace!

The night is round Minvane’s love

In Ryno’s silent place.

Where are thy dogs, of boasted ire!

That chaced the flying deer?

The bow, the shield, the sword of fire,

And Ryno’s glittering spear?

Thy mingled arms, which blood distain,

Low, in the ship, I see!

In thy dark hall, those arms were vain,

Once Ryno, dear to thee!

When will the morn—with cheerful sound,

Cry—king of spears—arise?

The hunter’s out, the hind, the hound—

Where sleeping Ryno, lies!

Away, P5v 166

Away, thou fair-hair’d morn; away!

All wrapp’d in sullen gloom,

He hears thee not; the hinds in play

Bound o’er my Ryno’s tomb,

But, O, my king! I’ll softly tread—

And sighing, yield my breath

Where fate has made thy narrow bed,

Where Ryno, sleeps in death.

The tuneful maids, shall seek me long,

But seek me long—in vain!

For me they raise the parting song;

Regardless of the strain!

Cease, cease your songs, ye tuneful maids,

And cease, for me, to weep:

For I, in Ullin’s mossy shades—

With fair-hair’d Ryno, sleep.

Address P6r 167

Address
to the
Evening Star:

From the Songs of Selma. Ossian, page 209.

Star of the gently-falling night!

Fair in the West, thy trembling light

Illumes the orb terrene!

From yon gay cloud,—thy fleecy bed,

Thou graceful lift’st thy beamy head—

To view this nether scene;

I see thee yonder mountain gain,

Now, stately bending o’er the plain—

What see’st thou in the vale?

The stormy winds are soft, and low,

The distant torrents murmuring slow,

Responsive to the gale.

Afar P6v 168

Afar—the swelling billows roar

And, towering climb the rocky shore:

Slow move the evening-flies—

And, scarce upborn on feeble wing,

Along the field they droning sing,

And now the murmur dies.

Star of the gently-falling night!

What see’st thou, fair, declining light!

From yonder verge—extreme ?

The lucent waves, with joy prepare

To bathe thy bright luxuriant hair:

Farewel!—thou silent beam!

The Q1r 169

The
Songs
of the
Five Bards, & of the Chief,
Versified:

From the Poems of Ossian. See Note on Croma. Page 253.

The story.

Five Bards, passing the night, in the house of a
Chief, who was himself a poet, went severally to
make their observations on, and returned with an
extempore description of, Night.—The night happened
to be one in October, and in the North of
Scotland, it has all that variety, which the Bards
ascribe to it, in their descriptions.

Q Song Q1v 170

Song of the First Bard.

All dark, and doleful is the night!

The clouds on mountains lie;

No star displays its trembling light,

No moon illumes the sky:

I hear the blast, that shakes the wood,

The blast, that distant blows;

I hear the valley’s sudden flood—

Hoarse murmur—as it flows.

From yonder tree the grave beside,

I hear the owl complain;

I see a dim-form slowly glide—

Across the danky plain!

A ghostly form!—it fades!—it dies!

Some funeral pomp shall pass—

Where yonder fiery meteor flies,

Along the kindling grass.

The distant dog, with howlings shrill,

Astounds the echoing vale;

All from the lone-hut, on the hill,

That braves the wint’ry gale.

The Q2r 171

The stag’s on mountain moss reclined

(The wind is in his horns)

Safe by his side, the timid hind—

Lies sleeping, ’neath the thorns;

All in his branchy horns, she hears

The rude-winds roar amian,

She starts! she looks! erects her ears,

Then sinking,—sleeps again.

Deep in the cavern of the rock

The roe, securely sleeps:

With head beneath his wing, the cock

His peaceful vigil keeps.

No beast, or bird will venture forth

When such fierce tempests howl,

To brave the fury of the north,—

Save fox, and hooting owl;

Lone, blinking on a leafless tree,

She creaks her empty bill:

And, starting from the covert, he—

Scuds o’er the cloud-capt hill.

Dark, panting, trembling, wan with fear,

The devious pilgrim strays,

Thro’ shrubs, thro’ thorns, thro’ buskets drear,

Appall’d with dire amaze!

Q2 He Q2v 172

He hears the vagrant waters chink

Adown the rocky steep,

He fears the fen, that forms the brink—

Of yonder vasty deep;

He fears the ghost and stands aghast!

That stalks his nightly rounds:

The old-tree groans before the blast,

The falling branch resounds.

The wind, with breath, collected, strong,

Sweeps o’er the quivering grass,

It whirls the gathering burs along:

He hears them, as they pass!

The tread of passing ghost is near!

It lightly hurries by;

But fear assails his trembling ear,

And floats afore his eye.

Dark, dusky, howling is the night:

The shrowded spectres rise!

And thro’ the air, the wilder’d spright—

With boding pinions flies!

From yawning grace, the livid form

In ghostly pomp, ascends!

The night is dark; the threat’ning storm

Returns me, to my friends.

Song Q3r 173

Song of the Second Bard.

The winds aloft, the coming blast—

Sweeps o’er the desert plain;

The lurid clouds, the sky o’ercast,

Descend, in pouring rain.

From yon glum mountain shrieks the spright,

His shrieks astound the gale!

The woods, that fringed, the airy height

Fall thundering down the vale.

The windows flap: the torrents roar,

To pass the pilgrim tries,

The faithless ford, that tempts him o’er

Gives way,—he shrieks, and dies.

Before the driving storm, the horse

Sweeps—from the mountain’s brow:

The wary goat, with slanting course

Leads on the lowing cow,

They tremble, as they steal along,

And dread the swelling tide;

The current dashing loud, and strong

The mould’ring bank beside.

The hunter, starting from repose

Looks round the darksome room!

The fire he wakes, the chimney glows,

And cheers the midnight gloom;

Q3 His Q3v 174

His wet dogs smoke around his feet;

He stuffs his chinky wall:

Two mountain streams, that near him meet—

In roaring torrents fall.

Sad, on the side of yon grey hill,

The shepherd wails his flock;

The tree resounds, the swelling rill

Falls dashing down the rock:

’Tis dark, and dismal all around,

In vain he’d further roam;

Till rising moon-beams gild the ground,

To light the wanderer home.

Ghosts, on the darkling tempest ride,

Borne on the blast along;

And when the howling squalls subside,

Sweet breathes the heav’nly song.

And now the pouring rain is past,

But still the dry wind blows;

The driving torrent, meets the blast—

And backward, bellowing flows:

The windows flap, the discord shrill

Confounds the distant roar;

The cold-drops from the roof distill

And moisten all the floor.

Again, Q4r 175

Again, the stars relume the sky,

But clouds their beams deform;

The West is gloomy, to the eye,

And dark the gathering storm:

The trembling lustres die away,

No lingering gleam of light,

Now marks the sphere with glimmering ray:

Receive me from the night.

Song of the Third Bard.

The wind still sounds along the glens,

The mountains feel the shock;

It whistles thro’ the grass that bends

Depending from the rock:

The fir-trees from their station fall,

The turfy hut, is torn;

The thin clouds fly before the squall,

The stars’ clear orbits burn.

The meteor, harbinger of death,

Flies, sparkling, thro the air!

On yonder hill, it rests;—the heath

And blasted fern, appear:

The rock, and fallen oak, I see,

Illumined by its beam.

Who, shrowded stands, beneath the tree,

That trembles o’er the stream?

The Q4v 176

The waves dark-tumble on the lake

And lash its rocky side:

The oars, the brimful boat forsake,

And float adown the tide.

Beneath an algid rock, reclined,

A lovelorn maiden mourns;

She views the rolling stream, the wind—

Her woe-fraught plaint returns:

She mourns her ling’ring love’s delay,

And strains her weary sight;

His bark she saw, when twilight grey

Led on the dusky night.

“Is this, his broken boat that lies,

Upon the ruthless shore?

Are these his groans, that fill the skies!”

Alas! he comes no more!

Hark! the hail, it rattles round,

Descends the flaky snow,

With white the top-most hills are crown’d,

The winds are hush’d, and low:

Cold, glum and various is the air,

The sky with clouds bedight;

I, shivering, to the hall repair:

Receive me from the night.

Song Q5r 177

Song of the Fourth Bard.

The night is settled—soft, and fair,

Blue, starry, and serene;

With balmy freshness breathes the air,

No clouds obscure the scene,

They sink behind the snow-capt hill;

The moon, the mountain gains:

Bright drops, from trembling trees distill,

And glitter, on the plains.

The sparkling streams, the rock forsake,

And, gurgling, downwards flow,

Till, gathering in a settled lake,

The mirror shines below.

The trees uptorn, from broken rocks,

And scatter’d sheaves, I see;

The wakeful hind, rebuilds the shocks,

“And whistles on the Leigh.”

Calm, fair, and settled is the night.

What pallid spectre’s there?

That form, with robe, all snowy-white,

White arms, and dark-brown hair;

Our chieftain’s daughter, peerless maid,

Who late lamented, died!

Let’s view thee now, illusive shade!

Of heroes, erst, the pride!

Before Q5v 178

Before the driving blast it flies;

I see the phantom, still,

Wan, shapeless now, it fading, tries

To climb the misty hill.

The deep blue mists, before the gale,

Slow—undulating move,—

They hover o’er the narrow vale,

And wrap the heights above—

To heaven they join their towering head.

Night’s settled, calm, and fair,

The starry canopy is spread,

And balmy breathes the air.

The moon with mild effulgence gay

Diffuses silver light;

Receive me not: her tranquil ray—

All lovely makes the night.

Song of the Fifth Bard.

The night is drear, but calm the air,

The troublous wind’s at rest:

The moon, that lately shone so fair,

Now slumbers in the West—

Thick gathering clouds obstruct her beams,

Her silver lustres hide;

And, faint the passing radiance gleams

Along the mountain’s side:

And Q6r 179

And now the distant wave I hear,

The torrent louder roars,

Their mingled murmurs strike the ear,

Rebounding from the shores.

The cock’s shrill clarion, thins the gloom,

And startles drousy night!

The house-wife, groping round the room,

Calls up the settled light,

The embers glow, the sparkles rise,

Diffusive spreads the ray:

The startled hunter, rubs his eyes!

And hails the fancied, day!

He calls his bounding dogs along,

And breathless, gains the steep:

Oft—whistling blithe, and loud, and strong—

To break the bands of sleep:

The driving blast, comes howling by—

And shakes the leafless trees;

The driving blast, has clear’d the sky—

The Northern-plough he sees!

Much of the night is yet to pass!

Ah! luckless wight, forlorn!

Beside the rock, on tufted grass

He nods, till rising morn.

Hark! Q6v 180

Hark! the whirlwind hurries forth,

(Some direful woe impends!)

The baleful whirlwind, of the North,

The trembling forest bends:

Low murmurs groan along the vale—

And, thro’ the caverns spread!

As, pouring from the awfu!l gale—

Descend, the mighty dead!

The pale moon shrinks behind the hill,

Her last faint trembling ray—

On yonder steep-rock, lingers still,

Now fades, and dies away:

The trees that crown its topmost height

Extend their length’ning shades,

Where, thro’ the yawning cleft, the light

The sullen gloom pervades.

The night is still, but cold, and drear,

Receive me, gentle friends:

Glum darkness o’er this nether-sphere

Her brooding wing extends.

Song R1r 181

Song of the Chief.

Let clouds upon the mountains rest,

Wan spirits haunt the skies,

Fell fear assail the pilgrim’s breast;

And stormy winds arise:

From bellowing clouds, the tempest break,

While answering torrents roar,

From shatter’d roofs, the windows shake,

And drops be-dew the floor.

And, let the vague, astonish’d sight

The green-wing’d meteor trace—

As, slanting down the brow of night,

It speeds its fiery race:

Or, rise the moon,—from mountain sheen—

Her pale refulgence spread,

Or, pass a lurid cloud between

And wrap her radiant head—

Alike, is waning night to me,

Blue, stormy, gloomy, still:

Night’s shadows ’fore the morning flee,

When pour’d from eastern hill:

The young-day, rises from his gloom,

The hours, his beams restore;

But man, once set—beneath the tomb,

Returns, alas! no more.

R Ah! R1v 182

Ah! where are now our chieftains fled;

Our kings, of mighty name?

The well-fought fields, erst strew’d with dead,

No more declare their fame!

Scarce now their mossy tombs remain:

We too, shall quickly pass,

Our sons shall seek this hall, in vain,

Among the spiry grass:

E’en they, shall ask, of aged seer—

“Where stood our father’s wall?

No vestige marks its ruins here,

No trait records its fall.”

Then raise the song,—to cheerful sound

Of harp, your voices raise:

Dispense the joyous shells around;

On high, let tapers blaze!

And bid the youths, and maids advance;

And some grey bard, be near,

Who, as they thrid the mazy dance,

May charm my listening ear:

And while with raptured voice he sings,

Of deeds, and times of yore,

Of chieftains famed, and valiant kings,

Whom we behold no more,—

The R2r 183

The cheery night shall wear away,

And rosy morning rise;

When thro’ the hall, her welcome ray

Salutes our glowing eyes—

(The skilful bow-men, all at hand,

The dogs of fleetest pace,

Which leads along the racy land,

The youths, that love the chace—)

Then, up the steepy hill we’ll go—

With shouts, the morning cheer!

Till, from the rustling brake below—

Out starts—the trembling deer!

R2 A R2v 184

A Sacred Ode,

On his Majesty’s Recovery.

See Albion’s Bard desponding laid!

Beneath the willow’s silver shade,

Where Thames delights to hide his gentle
stream:

The grisly phantoms of some wayward dream

To him their woe, their endless horrors sung!

His harp, neglected, on a poplar hung,

No longer warbling with the tuneful choir,

Oft as the breeze, light hov’ring o’er the mead,

With downy pinion smote its trembling wire,

Join’d in sad murmurs with the sighing reed.

Hark! I hear a festal lay,

Sweetly sounding from afar,

Hail the cheerful dawn of day,

Riding in his gilded car:

Awake! my Bard; pale visions fly!

And shun th’ approach of morn—

The rosy beam, the halcyon sky,

And dew-bespangled lawn.

Awake! R3r 185

Awake! behold a virgin train,

With ev’ry winning grace endued,

Descending on the velvet plain,

Forms the fair band of heaven-taught Gratitude.

With lovely mein she strikes her hallow’d shell;

And as the melting numbers steal along,

That from her lips in sweetest cadence fell,

Joy wakes his living lyre, and swells the
choral song.

Ere this th’ enraptured Minstrel join’d the lay:

And O! what accents in the strain were heard!

When he, amid the tuneful band,

His sacred hymn to heaven preferr’d,

Who spared the Monarch, and preserved the
land:

Who breathes from realms of pure celestial day,

The fragrant breeze, the life-renewing gale,

Whence drooping mortals strength inhale,

And joys that reason’s self regale:—

Again he strikes the trembling strings,

And roseate Health, responsive to the lively measure
sings.

R3 “Favor’d R3v 186

“Favor’d sons of Albion’s isle,

Raise the song, and wake the lyre,

Strains that ev’ry care beguile,

Strains that heavenly gifts inspire.

From the azure space above,

Sent by pure, eternal love,

Who heard th’ afflicted Monarch groan;

To yonder Sage I gave the balm,

That fever’s boist’rous tide can calm,

And heal the Sov’reign fainting on his
throne.

Ye blooming daughters of this sea-girt plain,

Where soft-eyed Peace delights to dwell,

With ev’ry milder virtue in her train;

Awake to ecstasy the sweet melodious shell!

Lo! advance the royal pair,

Indulgent heaven’s tend’rest care;

And with them, wedded love, of chastest eye,

Compassion mild, and kindred charity.”—

She sang:—and, while their heaving bosoms
glow,

Her notes are echo’d by the virgin band;

Then smiling Health, with rosy-tinctured hand,

Binds a fair chaplet on the Monarch’s brow.

His R4r 187

His well-tuned harp the hoary Minstrel takes;

“Praise Him, Britannia’s much-lov’d sons
(he cries),

Who reigns above the empyrean skies;

Glory sing to God on high!

Guard of sacred Majesty:

Benignant love her slumb’ring soul awakes,

Awakes to gratitude and joy;

While Virtue’s bright, celestial charms,

And Peace that Faction’s rage disarms,

Her days serene in noblest deeds employ.

Glory sing to God on high!

Guard of sacred Majesty.”

R.B.F.


Edgefield Parsonage,
1789-04-27April 27, 1789.

Written R4v 188

Written at Edgefield,
On
a Calm Winter’s Day.

No more the hostile tempests blow

And shake the cottage, topp’d with snow;

Sturdy oaks encased in white,

Glitter on the aching sight,

Many a pearl, and transient gem,

Emboss the branches, and the stem,

Pendent—here, and there—are seen

Crystal sparks,— the boughs between:

Lofty ashes rear their head

With hoary mantles, overspread:

Deck’d with plumes of nival hue,

The fir conif’rous, starts to view,

Boldly spreads its ample round,

Graceful, bending o’er the ground,

Then less, and less its spiral form

Meets the sky, and braves the storm:

There the laurel, fringed with snow,

Shades the nitid shrubs below;

Its ample leaves, in part, how green!

Virid, ’mid the brumal scene,

’Mid R5r 189

’Mid the ruthless breath of frost

Stands, with partial touch, embost;

Yields, reluctant, to the hand,

That whitens o’er the frigid land:

Sacred, venerable tree!

Dear to Petrarch, and to me!

Haste, thy foliage to repair,

’Gainst spring approach, all debonair,

Welcome shade, at noon of day,

When Phœbus sheds his fervid ray;

Then at thy halcyon foot reclined,

I’ll warble numbers, so refined—

That birds shall stop their gay career,

And, wond’ring elfins, stop to hear!

And, if the soul of Laura, dwell—

As fabled, in thy mystic cell,

I’ll try the powers of harmony,

To set the ling’ring spirit free,

To speed it thro’ the nether sky,

And waft it, gentle bard, to thee.

Yonder weeping-willow bends,

O’er its stem, the frost extends,

Round its slender boughs entwines,

Twigs in glassy fetters binds;

Mark the sun’s declining rays—

On the fretted branch—he plays,

Here, R5v 190

Here, and there a doubtful beam,

Tips with gold, the point extreme.

Last the cypress, strikes my sight—

Mournful tree! array’d in white:

Mournful tree, yet ever dear!

Accept the tributary tear!

Accept the tear, that drops on thee,

Mournful, emblematic tree.

The R6r 191

The Storm.

Now Boreas comes, he comes along!

And hurls the tempest, loud, and strong,

The turgid clouds before him fly—

Impulsive, thro’ the raging sky;

Now with the blast the driving hail

Ruthless—sweeps the desert vale,

Pelts the mountain’s nitid side,

Dances on the frigid tide:

Here—lofty ashes feel the stroke—

They bend,—and bends the sturdy oak;

Crashing branches scatter round

Mimic crystals, on the ground,

No more the pearl, and lucid gem

Emboss the boughs, and grace the stem,

No more, bedropp’d with varying light,

They glitter, on the aching sight,

But all the halcyon scene is past,

The tempest howls, the sky’s o’ercast!

My garden, late in niveous vest,

A thousand magic charms possest,

There R6v 192

There the active hand of frost,

Silent wrought the fairy-scene,

Slender twigs with gems embost,

Mimic foliage threw between;

Here, the snowy plumage flow’d,

Lightly trembling in the wind,

There, the pendent dew-drop glow’d

To the snowy-plumage join’d.

Lo! the distant forest bends!

Fast the rattling hail descends!

To the warm shed the shiv’ring cows retire:

Quick shut the door,—and heap the crackling
fire.

Form the circle round the hearth,

Give the present hour to mirth,

While we feel the tepid glow

Bid the sparkling liquors flow,

Let the can, and genial glass

All in decent order pass.

Reach the lute, we’ll raise the song,

Strephon’s voice is sweet, and strong,

Sweet, as linnet’s—from the spray,

Strong, as Philomela’s lay.

Now I strike, the trembling strings—

Listen maidens, while he sings,

Strephon S1r 193

Strephon greets the judging ear

With carol sweet, and strong, and clear.

Now, suppose we lead the dance?

Nymphs, and jovial swains advance,

Come, and trip it as ye go,

On the light fantastic toe;

While the measures, brisk and free,

Wake the youthful mind to glee:

Now, advancing hand in hand,

Let me view the agile band,

Meeting now, and now retreating,

Yielding floor alternate beating,

All alert, and blithe, and gay,

Now’s the time for mirth and play.

Let the pealing organ blow,

Bold, symphonious, full, and slow;

Bid advance the chosen pair,

With gesture meet, and debonair,

Skill’d with artful steps to trace—

The dance, thro’ every varied grace,

Skill’d to move the ample round

With step—accordant to the sound.

Has the graceful dance an end?

Then the mirthful tale attend—

S While S1v 194

While we sip refreshing tea,

Far be scandal, far away!

Fly to dull Bæotia—fly;

We love truth, and harmony.

Thus, we mock stern Bruma’s reign

Tho’ wide he spread his bleak domain;

Why from Heber strays the god;

Ruling here with iron rod:

Britain irks thy chill embrace;

Return, old boy, return to Thrace.

A S2r 195

A Song.

Long have I wander’d o’er the plain,

In quest of one, a gentle swain—

A swain—of soul refined;

Who, void of care, would all day long,

Attentive listen to my song,

On mossy bank—reclined:

At eve—to sit the brook beside,

To watch the gently purling tide,

The sparkling wave to view:

To catch, perchance, the lucent bow,

While in the glassy stream, below,

We trace each varied hue.

For me,—when such my blissful lot,

By all the bustling world forgot,

I’ll sit, unenvied, down;

Far from the scenes of gay delight,

Where sparkling beauties, share the night

With foplings, of renown.

S2 To S2v 196

To Mr. B. B――n,
On his presenting me with a Bottle of Essence.

This token of thy love, I view

With rapture and delight!

Such passions angels might pursue—

In blissful fields of light.

Thy perfumes scent the morning air,

They scent the evening skies;

Thy virtues, eminently fair,

Like these sweet odours rise.

Thy mind, attuned to social joy

By reason’s nice controul,

Feels no imperfect, base alloy,

Nor apathy of soul:

By friendship warmed, thy passions run

In one harmonious train:

So frigid streams, that catch the sun,

Will purl along the plain.

O may no cloud of vice obscure

Thy full meridian beam;

Thy soul can all the force endure—

Of virtue, in extreme.

A S3r 197

A Pastoral:

Addressed to a Gentleman in Wales.

O, Strephon, how can you forsake

Those scenes—where the goddesses rove?

The mountain, that’s crown’d with the lake,

The grotto, that’s veil’d by the grove?

The seat, that you scoop’d in the rock?

Where oft you, at even, recline,—

Hear shepherds return with their flock

All under your favorite pine.

One morn, the beginning of May,

At dawn, to the mountain you flew,

The landscape around you was gay,

The grass—all-bespangled with dew;

The lake’s mossy-margin you prest,

The rod was suspended on high,

A Naiad, she stood all confest,

Directing the fish to the fly:

S3 The S3v 198

The halcyon skimm’d over the flood

And ruffled the wave with her wing,

Blithe Zephyrus paused in the wood,

“To hear how the feather’d-folks sing;”

A moment he stopp’d in the grove,

Then brush’d to the top of the hill;

There breathing soft accents of love,—

To the tink of a neighb’ring rill.

“O give me,—enraptured you cried,

On the brow of this mountain to dwell,

Sweet Clio, shall sit by my side,

Her voice shall make vocal my cell;

Then Boreas unheeded may blow,

Bid tempests wide ravage the dale;

We’ll mark how the clouds roll below,

All born on the wings of the gale.”

Thus, Strephon, was heard to essay

The ditty, that flow’d from his heart;

Dan Phœbus, assisted the lay,

’Twas eve, and he wish’d to depart—

His S4r 199

His last vivid beam, struck the rock,

As flaming, he plunged in the main:

The shepherd return’d with his flock,

And his pipe, it enliven’d the plain.

Just then, the chaste Luna was seen—

With Vesperus close by her side,

Slow rising, the mountains between

Aslant—struck her rays on the tide:

He thought it high time to descend,

(His farm touch’d the foot of the hill)

Yet, paused he awhile to attend—

To the tink of his favorite rill.

Thus musing, he sank on his seat,

That hung on the verge of the steep;

Old Morpheus he play’d him a cheat—

And, instantly lull’d him to sleep:

Bright Sol found him there when he rose,

And put madam Fancy to flight;

Who’d checker’d poor Strephon’s repose,

With all the mad whims of the night:

He S4v 200

He dream’d—back to N――, he flew,

Thro’ ether, at cool even-tide,

And suddenly, rose to his view—

A mansion, and fair-blushing bride!

“Farewell—ye bleak mountains (he said)

Ye wilds, and ye deserts—so drear!

I fly,—to embrace the dear maid;

Whose image still follows me here.”

A S5r 201

A Pastoral:

Addressed to a Gentleman on his leaving Wales.

Ye swains of Plinimmon attend,

Who pipe on the verge of the steep,

Where torrents sonorous descend

Thro’ pastures white over with sheep;

Attend to the bard of the dale,

Who mourns at the foot of the rock;

While scattered abroad thro’ the vale,

All carelessly rambles his flock.

Ye swains of the mountain—adieu!

Ye torrents sonorous—farewel!

How oft have I listen’d to you,

Reclined in my moss-cover’d cell;

While Severn roll’d chearful along,

Clear Rydall, and sweet-flowing Wye;

And oft I have warbled a song

To the waves that ran murmuring by.

Ah! S5v 202

Ah! then I was jovial and gay,

As the blush that emblazons the dawn,

As the stream that steals gently away,

And purls—as it glides o’er the lawn:

Alert from my grotto I flew—

Snatch’d my pipe, and my sachel, and crook,

While the herbage was sprinkled with dew,

And the mist it still hung o’er the brook.

But why do I droop with my woe,

And mingle my sighs with the wind?

I’m forced my loved plains to forego

And leave my Sabrina behind!

Ye zephyrs that fan the sad grove,

Thro’ the willows all-plaintively creep;

Llwellin is forced from his love,

His fountains, his grottos, and sheep.

How heavily drags the sad day!

While I linger, as loath to depart;

Tho’ forced from my charmer away—

Her image still dwells in my heart:

I S6r 203

I sit by a fountain and weep,

And pour forth my plaints to the wind,

Oh! why must I leave my poor sheep?

And leave my Sabrina—behind?

Ah! what will become of my flock,

My crook, and my pipe, and my bowl,

My vineyard that clings to the rock—

Whose clusters enliven the soul!

My kid, and my favorite Tray?

Alas! ye soft lambkins adieu!

No longer Llwellin must stay

On the plains—with Sabrina, and you.

Come fancy, and paint on my mind—

In traces so vivid, and bright,—

The moment my fair-one was kind,

And my soul was absorb’d in delight—

How she smiled when I told my soft pain,

Then blushing—corrected her smile:—

In vain, my Sabrina, in vain—

You strove your fond swain to beguile:

For S6v 204

For the language of love is sincere,

Tho’ the tongue in feign’d descant may rove,

Regardless the jargon we hear—

While th’ eyes speak the language of love:

The anguish I felt at my heart,

When last from your arms I withdrew

Was soften’d,—you bade me depart,—

But your eyes said—“Llwellin be true.”

And true to his love he’ll remain

While the mountain o’er-shadows the dale,

While Severn glides swift thro’ the plain,

And her waves they make fertile the vale:

Tho’ forced those dear charms to forego—

Thy image shall dwell in my mind,

My heart it would burst with its woe,

Should I fancy Sabrina unkind.

Plinlimmon is an extreme lofty mountain of South
Wales
, or rather a heap of mountains piled one upon the
other; from its vast sides three rivers derive their source—
Severn, Rydall, and Wye. On the flats of the hills
which together form this mountain, the richest pastures
are found, which abound with sheep, and are watered with
various streams issuing from the impending rocks. Sometimes
these waters rush headlong with a mighty roar; at
others, collected in an ample bason, form a calm lake: at
others, meandering over the plain, murmur to the passing
breezes & wander here & there with undetermined course.
Sabrina T1r 205

Sabrina to Llwellin:

A Pastoral.

Ah! why did Llwellin depart!

And why did he fly from the plain?

He still is the pride of my heart,

Tho’ he leave me, unkind, to complain:

I mourn at the foot of the rock,

Or wander distress’d thro’ the vale;

The maidens take care of my flock,

But marvel to see me so pale!

I slept by the side of a stream,

I dreamt—my Llwellin stood by,

I woke,—and behold ’twas a dream!

All day I did nothing but cry:

My satchel lay fast by my crook,

On the margin, that bounded the tide,

My pipe it was dropp’d in the brook,

That murmuring ran by my side;

T How T1v 206

How rapid it floated along!

’Twas in vain that I bad it to stay;

Since sorrow has sadden’d my song—

Why,—bear it ye Naiads away:

Alas! from Llwellin it came!

He said—“’twas a token of love,”

And carved on its surface—his name,—

All by the tall beech, in the grove.

He gave me a locket of hair,

Which whilom, I wore on my breast;

(I think I shall die with despair!)

’Tis lost!—and I never can rest!

I once was as cheerful as May,

My cheeks—all as fresh as the rose!

My bloom it is wither’d away!

I’m sure I shall die with my woes!

But why do I sigh, and complain?

Why rove, disregarded, my sheep?

I late was the pride of the plain,

But now, I do nothing but weep:

Yet T2r 207

Yet, ask not the cause of my woe

Ye maidens, who pity my grief;

My tears—they for ever must flow,

I’m hopeless, alas! of relief.

When he last came to bid me adieu!

I falter’d, I blush’d, and I sigh’d;

My heart it was fervent, and true,—

What language its feelings cou’d hide!

Yet prudence forbad me to tell

The anguish I felt at my breast,

I bad the dear shepherd—farewel;

And now am a stranger to rest.

One eve to his grotto I stray’d,

Gay Phœbus was sunk in the main,

The mountain extended its shade;

For Cynthia illumined the plain:

The shepherd gang’d home, with his flock,

His pipe was melodious, and clear;

I lean’d on the side of the rock,

And sigh’d, as I thought of—my dear!

T2 The T2v 208

The stars they bespangled the sky,

The zephyrs were lull’d in the grove,

A nightingale, warbled hard by—

And mourn’d the sad fate of her love:

The fountain, Llwellin had taught

To wander, and wind thro’ the dale

Soft murmur’d,—and gave to my thought,

What she left me to guess, of her tale:

I listen’d awhile to her lay;

Her plaints but encreased my despair:

I startled!—’twas nothing but Tray,

He thought that his master was there;

Sagacious—he flew round the cell:

Poor fellow! thy search is in vain,

Thy master he bids us farewel;

We’ve nothing to do, but complain.

All pensive I wander’d along

The path-way that led to my cot,

The night-owl begun her harsh song,

And shriek’d as she flew by the grot:

My T3r 209

My heart it beat high in my side,

I trembled and fell at the gate—

My sorrows will kill me,—I cried,

Come maidens, and mourn my hard fate!

Come shepherds,—and see me laid low,

In the midst of yon shadowy grove,

Ye fountains, all plaintively flow,

Ye zephyrs, all plaintively move!

The bard, from the verge of the steep—

Shall chant the sad dirge to my shade,

Sit round me ye virgins and weep;

When spectres glide over the glade.

T3 Pastoral: T3v 210

Pastoral:

To Corydon.

You tell me all nature looks gay,

You point where the primroses bloom;

But what are the beauties of May

To a mind that’s envelop’d in gloom!

I saw where my Corydon lay,

I wept as I stood by his side:

Ah! what are the beauties of May!

Then sadly complaining, I cry’d:

Those beauties which nature bestows,

All lavishly painting the ground,

With jonquil and cinnamon-rose,

She scatters the asphodel round:

On the tulip what colouring glows,

What tincts on the iris I view;

The vi’let exults as it blows,

In regal apparel of blue.

Ah! T4r 211

Ah! once I could mark as they sprung

The flowers that enamell’d the glade,

Could dwell on the dew-drops that hung

Depending from boughs in the shade:

Could join the sweet birds as they sung,

Instructed by nature and love;

The music that flow’d from my tongue,

Kind echo prolong’d thro’ the grove.

The stream that meander’d along

Slim rushes and pebbles between,

Oft paused to attend to my song,

Then murmur’d afresh to the green;

As warbling, the willows among,

The moon-beams play’d full on the tide,

Came fairies,—a glistering throng,

And Mab, with her spark by her side.

I’ll ramble again o’er the plain,

And mark how the flow’rets arise;

When health paints the cheek of my swain

And gladness relumines his eyes:

Till T4v 212

Till then I’ll in silence remain,

Unstrung, and unnoticed my lyre;

When the heart is averse to the strain,

No muse will the ditty inspire.

The T5r 213

The
Ghost of Charlotte
at the
Tomb of Werter.

By the willow that waves o’er the tomb,

O, think not ’twas Charlotte, you spied;

When Werter had seal’d his sad doom,

She heard,—she despair’d,—and she died!

How deep, and how awful the sound—

Of the bell,—as it broke on the gale!

From the steep-rock I heard it rebound,

And it plaintively poured thro’ the vale.

Where the yew-tree extends its dank shade,

And yarrow in loose-tufts appears,

At even I saw her corpse laid;

And I moisten’d the sod with my tears:

I mark’d when young Albert drew nigh,

All pale, and dejected was he!

I saw the big tear in his eye,

As he leant on the stem of the tree:

’Twas T5v 214

’Twas pride that forbad it to flow,

’Twas pride that denied him relief;

His heart was depress’d with its woe,

Yet silent,—and sullen his grief!

I mark’d him,—and inwardly said—

(His sorrows inclined to deplore)

Since Charlotte, ill-fated, is dead,

The joys of poor Albert are o’er!

Oft-times, at the noon of the night,

Pale Charlotte appears on the green,

When the moon strikes askaunt on the sight,

And fancy emblazons the scene;

Her cheeks all bereft of their bloom!

Her eye-balls no lustre retain!

She steals, a wan ghost, from the tomb,

And glides to the verge of the plain

Where Werter’s cold relics repose;

(’Neath the willow impregnate with dew,

Where the green-grass luxuriantly grows

Round the tomb—half conceal’d from the
view),

I’ve T6r 215

I’ve seen the light phantom recline,

The marble sustain’d her white breast;

In sounds that were almost divine,

I’ve heard her fond passion exprest:

“Dear shade! to thy Charlotte attend,

Tho’ fate have deprived her of breath,

She hangs o’er the urn of her friend,

And love’s in the mansion of death:”

Soft murmurs ensued from below—

Faint echoes were heard thro’ the grove,

The accents were mingled with woe—

But woe—that was sweeten’d with love.

If fancy impose on my mind

’Tis a cheat I shall ever hold dear,

I muse on their passion refined,

And I think on their fate with a tear:

O! Werter!—I pity thy youth!

Thy love and thy death I deplore,

May ages remember thy truth,

When thy crime is remember’d no more.

The T6v 216

The Invitation:

To a Gentleman in the Isle of Anglesey.

Gentle Druid come away

From the deep embrowning wood,

Where at noon, the doubtful ray

Scarcely strikes the nether flood;

From the mountain’s awful height,

From the rock’s stupendous brow,

Whence the devious orbs of sight

Faintly mark the scenes below—

Hither haste without delay;

Gentle Druid, come away.

Quit the cavern—dank, and drear,

Mystic grot, and hallow’d cell,

Where pliant faith educed from fear—

And superstition love to dwell;

Quit the oak’s impervious gloom

Where the holy minstrels tread—

Chanting round the sacred tomb

Solemn requiems for the dead:

Fly the soul-inthraling lay—

Gentle Druid,—come away.

Or U1r 217

Or does some sylph the wish inspire

O’er Bronwen’s The Kromleck, or tomb of Bronwen, daughter of King
Lhyr, or Leirus, was in the Isle of Anglesey,— the ancient
Mona.
manes still to mourn;

For her to tune the plaintive lyre,

Where legends place her vestal urn?

While Fancy paints her royal fair

In all the charms of beauty drest,

Gives every trait with nicest care,

And leaves her image on thy breast:

Haste to quit her magic sway,

Gentle Druid, come away.

Now the cheery linnets sing

Fluttering round the dewy thorn,

Larks, high poized on quivering wing,

Hail the roseat streaks of morn;

Briskly, here, the eastern breeze

Sweeps adown the spangled vale,

Murmurs thro’ the rustling trees

All graceful bending ’fore the gale

Come, and hail with us the day,

Gentle Druid, come away.

U Come, U1v 218

Come, and sit, and sing with me

Where yellow cowslips blow,

All beneath the willow tree,

While the gurgling streamlets flow,—

Let’s observe the mazy tide,

Wildly wand’ring here, and there,

Trickling down the hillock’s side,

’Mong the flow’rets fresh, and fair;

Come, and join the rustic lay,

Gentle Druid, come away.

Here I deftly tune the lyre—

Not as Orpheus, bard of yore,

Shepherd swains my lays admire

And hum my favorite ditties o’er;

Lambkins frisk it, all around

Fragrance breathing where they tread;

Sweets exhale from thymy ground,

And from purple vi’let-bed:

Come, and see my lambkin’s play,

Gentle Druid, come away.

Ode U2r 219

Ode to a Friend

O fix me in thy calm retreat!

Where friendship spreads her tranquil seat,

Remote from noise, and love,

Where rural beauties deck the glade:

And nightly, thro’ the checker’d shade

The nimble elfins move:

Full oft adown the sloping green—

From window-arch’d, the band is seen,

A light fantastic train!

Blythe Oberon and Mab advance,

And agile, thrid the mystic dance—

Athwart the dappled plain.

When virgin Cynthia, riding high,

Illumes the star-bespangled sky,

And gilds the scene below;

’Tis then, enrapt, you catch the sound—

Of waters stealing o’er the mound

Soft murmuring, as they flow.

U2 O U2v 220

O would the raptured powers of song!

But waft thy rhyming friend along—

And seat me by thy side;

Reclining on the verdant grass—

We’d mark the Naiads, as they pass—

Adown the argent tide:

Nor should a Dryade move unseen—

Across the gay enamell’d green

That bounds the rimpled stream;

I’d charm them with the magic lyre,

While Phœbus fann’d the lambent fire

To aid the gentle theme.

Nor should the joys of vagrant Love

Re-echo from the lonesome grove,

Or from the rock rebound;

I’d teach the grove, and mountain tall,

The cavern’d rocks and water-fall

To swell a nobler sound:

He U3r 221

He, whilom threw, a random dart,

And pierced a young unguarded heart,

Which felt the instant blow;

Awhile with hope it fondly bled,

Anon to hope, and comfort dead,

It pined with ruthless woe!

But now above his arts it soars;

While friendship all her skill explores

To heal the rankling wound:

Now comfort dawns, and joy regains

The smiling empire of the plains,

And rapture laughs around.

U3 Addressed U3v 222

Addressed to the Rev. H. Ll――d, on his Poem
entitled—Swaffham Jubilee,
1789-04-23April 23, 1789.

From the forest, and furze-skirted plain,

Where ease and simplicity dwell,

Soft warbles the wild-flowing strain,

That fancy attunes to the shell:

I sit at the foot of a tree,

And pour forth my song to the gale,

But Zephyr shall waft it to thee,

As he skims o’er the thyme-tufted vale:

He often invites me to sing

In artless accord with his lyre,

Slow murmurs the quivering string

As his pinions approach to the wire;

Then sweet are the strains to the ear—

When Zephyr assists in the lay;

The shepherds flock round me to hear,

Their lambkins all carelessly play.

O U4r 223

O Strephon, thy sweet-flowing song,

To beauty, and merit consign’d,

Thro’ ages thy fame shall prolong,

And stamp its fair traits on the mind:

With truth, and conciseness imprest

Thy numbers harmoniously flow,

Thou wakest to sweet transport the breast,

And strikest the deep measures of woe.

You feel the bright charm that inspires,

You give to sage merit its due,

Beware of the beauty that fires—

It steals on a poet like you:

We sport with the arrows of Love,

He laughs at our folly unseen,

I heard him, ere while, in the grove,

As I sat on the verge of the green:

I saw him at blush of the morn,

Shake the dew from his quivering wing,

He perch’d on a twig of the thorn,

While the lark was essaying to sing,

Then U4v 224

Then sprang thro’ the regions of air;

To Swaffham directed his flight;

You’ll find the sly wanderer there

When Hesperus leads on the night:

Alert to the ball-room he flies,

Where beauty and harmony reign;

Take his station in Mar—n’s bright eyes:

The pride of our rural domain!

When summer comes laughing along,

She gladdens our village and grove,

The woodlands are vocal with song,

And sweet sounds the carol of love.

The praises of Th—pe you rehearse,

The Muses unite in her praise,

The subject ennobles the verse,

With rapture we dwell on the lays!

Her music impassioned, we hear,

Sweet compound of nature and art!

It steals on the listening ear,

And swells with warm transport the heart.

And U5r 225

And B—ch—ry, skilful to trace,

The planets that radiate on high,

Whose mind skims the wonderful space,

The boundless expanse of the sky!

Whose heart still attent to the poor,

Seeks out the wan object distrest,

Who ne’ev from her sheltering door,

Return’d with deep anguish opprest

To Wh—te when you cheerfully sing

I honor the subject you chuse;

A chaplet, the first of the spring,

She’ll accept from the hand of thy muse:

All chaste as its infantine bloom

Is the taste in her manners defined,

And rich as its mingled perfume

The virtues that gladden her mind.

When you tune the sad numbers to Lee—

How truly pathetic they flow!

What mind unaffected can see

The gloomy presages of woe?

O U5v 226

O cease the sad cause to deplore,

Each blessing has still its alloy;

Ah, dwell on misfortune no more;

The season awakes us to joy.

Come see with the sparkling throng

Diana, Diana, Mrs. Ll—――d. the queen of the chace,

She comes with the dance and the song,

She moves,—and each motion is grace!

She sweeps the soft strings of her lyre,

Chaste harmony hovers around!

She warbles—the echoing wire

Returns the just concords of sound.

Attend to the measures she sings—

Her subject is passion refined,

Her language persuasively brings

Calm peace, and content to the mind;

For pleasures more lasting, and true,

She flies the rude champaign, and grove;

To share in the village with you—

The social endearments of love.

Extempore. U6r 227

Extempore.
To Miss Kitty M――s,

Playing with a Squirrel.

Kitty, present thy hand of snow,

And let my raptured Squirrel play—

On that soft palm, where roses blow,

Mixing with lilies, fresh and gay:

For who that lovely hand can view—

That taper finger, pointed nail—

That palm, enrich’d with roseat hue

Blending with lilies of the vale—

And not, with Pug, delight to press

A hand so beaut’ous, and so sweet?

Dear, envied seat of happiness,

Where vagrant loves, the graces meet.

Now fain would he ascend thy breast,

And nestle in his little head;

But Cupid there has fix’d his nest—

And wide his guardian pinions spread:

Then, give him in thy hand to lie,

To view thy cheek’s enchanting bloom;

Bask in the sun-shine of thine eye,

And from thy breath inhale perfume.

Sonnet U6v 228

Sonnet.

Addressed to Miss L――t, on reading her Elegy
on my Weeping Willow, destroyed in a late storm.

Sweetly sing melodious fair,

Strike the deep resounding lyre,

Warbling soft the pensive air—

Accordant to the mournful wire.

Reclining in the blasted shade,

All by the brook that winds along,

The Willow on its margin laid,

I hear thy melancholy song,

Its fall you sing—responsive tones of woe

Breathe thro’ the sighing grove, the waves
sad-murm’ring flow.

Could ought my pensive grief asswage

For yonder dear devoted Tree—

(Mute victim of the tempest’s rage)

’Twere this—its fate is sung by thee.

1789-12December, 1789.
Sonnet. X1r 229

Sonnet.

Gentle Muse, whose flowing lay

Winds the reedy-bank along,

Where the chrystal waters stray

Murm’ring to thy melting song;

Syren, of the silver stream,

That laves Arunda’s sloping side,

Sweet, as tuneful swan of Thame,

Whilom warbling down the tide,

Wake, for me, thy breathing lyre,

Pour the raptured descant round,

All my longing soul inspire

With the rich harmonious sound!

Lead my willing Muse along,

Thro’ thy melting maze of song.

X Sonnet. X1v 230

Sonnet,
to a
Tame Robin.

Pretty warbler, plume thy wing,

Nimbly cleave the liquid way,

Gayly flirt, and sweetly sing

Where Cam’s tuneful waters stray:

From the dewy-spangled thorn,

Let thy matin carol rise,

When the dappled tints of morn

Glow across the eastern skies:

Wake, at eve the dulcet song;

Brisk, sonorous, full, and clear—

When the student prowls along,

Pour the cadence on his ear;

If he pause—to look on thee—

Tell him, sweet, thou camest from me.

Sonnet. X2r 231

Sonnet.

Safely peck the scatter’d grain,

Fearless of the prying eye,

That thro’ the frost-encrusted pane,

Scans the clouds that hover by,

As the blast collected, strong

Whirls the turgid mass along,

And, chilling sweeps the silver-surfaced plain:

Freely cull the scatter’d store,

Here I wait, to scatter more—

(When full, thou tak’st a transient flight)

Of grain, and crumbs all snowy-white:

All I ask, sweet bird, of thee—

A carol from the willow-tree,

When balmy Spring resumes her halcyon
reign.

X2 Sonnet. X2v 232

Sonnet.

Youth’s a busy, curious thing,

Lightly floating here and there,

Buoyant on expanded wing,

Wooing ev’ry passing air;

Now it seeks the gilded hall,

Hears the raptured viols sound!

Now it leads the agile ball—

Gayly tripping round, and round;

View it in its pristine bloom,

Fresh as opening bud of May,—

Swift it hastens to the tomb,

Withers, wastes, and drops away:

Thus is youth,—a transient flower,

Blown, and blasted in the hour.

Sonnet. X3r 233

Sonnet.

On verdant bank, ’neath beechen tree

I sit, and sing of love and thee,

To thee, and love attune the lay,

Soft warbling thro’ the live-long day,

And when the evening shades prevail,

Unwearied I pursue the tale.

When night in slumbers seals my eyes

Thy love-inspiring beauties rise,

In fancy’s vivid colorings drest,

The radiant semblance stands confest:

And when at dappled dawn of day

The gentle vision steals away—

I rise—and ’neath the beechen tree

Retune the lyre to love and thee.

X3 Sonnet. X3v 234

Sonnet.

On the banks of the Cam, on a fine summer’s
day,

The sky was serene, and the month it was May,

I wander’d, and warbled the margin along—

And the waters soft murmur’d, attuned to my
song;

Sly Zephyrus rustled, the rushes among,

And I fancy, he sigh’d out the ditty I sung,

For anon, from the Dryads, that peep’d thro’
the grove,

Breathed the accents of music, enliven’d with
love;

Lone Echo replied from her time-totter’d cell,

And the cadence was sweet as it flow’d thro’
the dell!

While the stream and the bank, and the cave in
the grove,

To the lover’s fond fancy breathed nothing but
love:

If such the soft transports old Cam have in store,

Let me wander, and warble—till youth be no
more.

Addressed X4r 235

Addressed to R.B.F. and C.F. when Boys.

As, eager round a spreading bush,

Two thoughtless children ran,

Perch’d on a trembling twig—a thrush—

Her plaintive tale began,—

She raised her song, she strain’d her throat,

Expressive of her pain,

And pour’d the oft-repeated note

Along the neighb’ring plain:

The tumult in her swelling breast

Gave vigour to her tongue;

She mourn’d her low, defenceless nest,

She mourn’d her callow-young:

But wasted on the desert air,

Had sunk the plaintive lay—

(For strangers still to notes of care,

Are boys, wrapt up in play)—

If Laura had not mark’d her strain,

And mark’d her swelling breast;

She caught the tones, replete with pain,

And trembled for the nest!

“Away X4v 236

“Away, dear boys,—quick haste away,

Mark yonder anxious thrush;

See how she flutters from the spray,

And lures ye, from the bush:

To nature’s voice, O lend an ear,

She swells her plaintive cry;

And prompts the sympathetic tear—

That twinkles in my eye:

When nature acts her wonted part

By providence assign’d,

She tunes to sympathy the heart,

And dignifies the mind.”

To X5r 237

To R.B. Francis (when a Boy) playing with
a Butterfly.

Say, pretty little wand’ring thing,

Upborn on light aërial wing,

Ah! whither art thou wont to fly,

Above the ken of mortal eye?

My Robert views thy form, with joy,

O stay, and bless the happy boy!

Ah! whither woud’st thou wish to stray—

Thou little, fluttering trifler,—say?

He’ll cull thee sweets, he’ll make thee posies,

He’ll feed thee on the buds of roses,

The primrose pale, and vi’let blue—

Shall grace thy bower, and bloom for you.

And wilt thou from his finger fly?

He’s flown!—he cleaves the liquid sky!

He mocks, poor child! thy wond’ring sight,

And revels in the fields of light.

Thus, Robert, thus—that heav’nly flame

That fills, and animates thy frame

Shall burst, ere long, these bands of clay,

Spring up, and soar—in brighter day.

Inscription X5v 238

Inscription
on the
Fragments of a Roman Urn,

Found at Caister, The Venta Icenorum, of the Romans. in Norfolk.

When sar led his bold, imperial band—

Thro’ trembling Britain,—to enslave the land,

Some Roman then, in this distinguish’d place,

Of simple clay, wrought this unpolish’d vase,

Fill’d it with relicks, of th’ illustrious dead,

And o’er the Urn, the earthy covering spread;

Firm grew the sod, as verdant sprang the grass:

Thus, year on year, and age on age did pass;

Safe, undisturb’d the sleeping manes lay,

Securely guarded from the vulgar clay.

But hapless fate! the peasant’s ruthless hand

Mark’d the sad spot, and broke the sacred land,

The earth upturn’d, th’ unshelter’d vase appears,

(Safe had it rested eighteen hundred years.)

At one fell stroke, the shatter’d fragments flew!

The light contents exposed to vulgar view—

In wanton sport, dispersed the passing gale,

And fann’d them, diverse, down the distant vale.

To X6r 239

To Maria.

Possess’d of ev’ry power to please,

Each native charm, improved by art,

Has all of dignity, and ease—

That strikes, pervades, and glads the heart:

Oft art thou present to my mind

In all the glow of beauty dress’d,

Each charm, exalted, and refined;

By fancy’s pencil well express’d.

But, wherefore absent from my sight?

To Anna’s bosom, ever dear!

Who views thee, present, with delight,

Who names thee, absent, with a tear.

Spoken X6v 240

Spoken in a Lady’s Dressing-Room.

Here could I dwell,—O Laura, ever dear!

Spend all my life, and all my wishes here;

Bless’d in thy friendship, years would roll away

“Serenely calm, or innocently gay;”

Secure of that, my thoughts would soar above,

The transient raptures of impassion’d love:

Thy mind my object, hasten to impart

The chastest transports, to the warmest heart,

Which glows with friendship of the purest kind,

By reason sanction’d, and by years refined;

Which pants for joys, that time has yet in store,

For joys that bloom, when passion is no more.

Cepheus.

Impromptu: Y1r 241

Impromptu:

On a Gentleman’s asking—“If my Goldfinches
could supply the loss of my favorite Squirrel?”

You ask— “If yon Goldfinches, gay,

The loss of my Squirrel supply?”

Alas! ’tis with sorrow I say,

I think of him, still—with a sigh!

Tho’ cheerful they hail my return

With accents melodious and clear,

Yet, still for my Squirrel, I mourn,—

Tho’ the carol be sweet to my ear.

Thus, Strephon, the bosom that glows

With friendship all chaste and refined,

Regards not the accents of those,

Whose carol’s as light as their mind:

The friend that is gone, we deplore,

No charm can his absence supply,

No chance can his presence restore;

But we think of him still—with a sigh.

Extempore. Y Y1v 242

Extempore:

On seeing a Rose-bush in bud, in 1788-12December, 1788.

See yonder Rose-bush fresh, and fair,

’Mid brumal blasts, and gloomy skies,

In all its vernal charms appear,

In all its pristine beauties rise!

Such Portia, such thy steady form!

Contemning still the grasp of time

It stands uninjured by the storm,

And buds, and blooms in vernal prime.

Elegy Y2r 243

Elegy on a Robin,

Occasioned by seeing a favorite Cat approach the
dead Bird, and after having examined it, leaving
it unhurt.

’Twas when the snow had powder’d o’er

The nitid landscape—round,

And famish’d birds, could peck no more

The insect, from the ground,—

A solemn yew-tree’s shade beneath

A piteous red-breast lay,

Struck by the icy hand of death;

Cold, as the parent clay!

On little hill of fleecy snow,

His beauteous corpse was laid,

Nor loud laments of shrilling woe,

Recall’d his parting shade:

Nor skillful bill, of red-breast dear,

Had form’d a decent grave,

Nor raised a mound, with pious care,

His loved remains—to save.

Y2 As Y2v 244

As story The Ballad of the Children in the Wood. tells, in days of yore,

They left their scanty food—

Two helpless babes to cover o’er;

All famish’d in the wood:

Leaf, after leaf, unwearied brought

To raise the sylvan tomb:

But brother red-breast now forgot

Lay, friendless, in the gloom;

For, far away—the careful train

Of feather’d-folk, were flown,

None mourn’d the fate of robin, slain,

But trembled for his own.

’Twas Bully then, poor robin found,

As near the spot he drew,

All stretch’d along the hoary ground,

Beneath the frozen yew;

A cat of gentle, gen’rous mind,

Of step, sedate and slow,

Of mein demure, and mew refined,

And heart attuned to woe;

Unlike the feline-race, was he,

By tender mistress bred,

His docile mind, by sympathy,

To nobler thoughts was led:

He Y3r 245

He look’d, he paused,—when on his ear

Broke forth these awful words—

“Grimalkin stop!—a genius hear,

The genius of the birds!

’Tis I, who guard from num’rous ills

These tenants of the grove,

’Tis I, who tune their quivering bills

To melody and love.”

“When forth in spring, they ardent lead

Their young,—in mazy round,

I plume the wing, I point the mead

Where fruit and seeds abound;

And when, by adverse fate they fall,

Their destiny I mourn,

Oft on the fleeting spirit call—

And woo it, to return;

But if averse, it wing its way

Beyond the Stygian tide,

To fair Elysium’s purer day

The wand’ring ghost, I guide;

Thereshalt thou robin, swell thy throat,

And prune thy ruffled wing;

While ravish’d with thy dulcet note

E’en bards forbear to sing:

Y3 “Maro Y3v 246

Maro, perchance, may hear thy song,

And woo thee, to his bower;

Where laurels twine, the vines among,

With every fragrant flower.”

Just then, the lucent form he saw!—

(If Laura’s muse sing true)

And drawing back th’ extended paw—

Pour’d forth—the plaintive—mew!

Soft pity touch’d his glowing breast,

(For pity, cats may move)

Retreating quick, he left to rest—

The tenant of the grove.

A Y4r 247

A Song.

How calm is the eve, and how clear is the
sky,

How awful yon shadowy grove!

While Luna’s pale crescent, just beams on the
eye,

And Philomel wails her lost love;

The bleating of lambs, from the thyme-tufted
hill,

The lowing of herds thro’ the vale,

The fountain that gurgles, and falls from the
rill,

And warbles and winds thro’ the dale—

Yield pleasures more solid than courts can
bestow,

Yield transports more pure and refined,

Make us feel, what we are, little monarchs
below,

For peace and contentment design’d.

The Y4v 248

The Dead Robin.

Ah! sweetest of the feather’d throng,

That chirps, and flits the glades along,

When summer cheers the sky:

When ruddy breast, and thigh of down,

And back, and wing of glossy brown

And pretty sparkling eye—

Who, oft when brumal storms assail’d,

And blust’ring wind, and rain prevail’d

Against my humble seat,

Would’st, shivering, to my roof retire,

And fearless view the sparkling fire,

Cheer’d by the genial heat.

At early dawn, thy quavering throat

Pour’d forth the wild enchanting note—

In descant sweet and strong;

What time my faint returning sight

First caught the trembling beams of light,

Roused by the matin song.

Alas! Y5r 249

Alas! poor bird, I mourn thy lot!

No more thy carol from my cot

Shall drive the lingering gloom:

The weeping Muse her tribute pays,

And in her own, inferior lays,

She consecrates thy tomb.

An Y5v 250

An Elegy,
on a
Favorite Cat.

When vernal nature smiled around,

And all was fresh and gay,

When opening flow’rets deck’d the ground,

In honor of the May,

Then luckless Bully left my cot!

His loss I still deplore;

For ruthless grief hath been my lot,

Since Bully was no more!

Ye thoughtless Cats—O lend an ear,

How can ye frisk and play?

When pensive Muses drop the tear,

To see ye all so gay:

How were ye wont to watch each look,

His ev’ry turn pursue;

And when in mews my Bully spoke,

Ye echo’d back the mew.

The Y6r 251

The fairest female of the train,

In native ermine drest,

Of em’ral’d eye and whisker vain

And vain of snowy breast—

All disregardful of the throng,

Would woo him to the grove;

Ere Philomel returned her song—

Her song of plaintive love.

But now regardless of his doom,

Ye negligently stray;

Nor call the genii round the tomb,

To raise the fun’ral lay:

When cats like him, submit to fate

And seek the stygian strand;

In silent woe, and mimic state,

Should mourn the feline band.

For me—full oft at eventide,

Enrapt in thought profound—

I hear his solemn footsteps glide,

And startle at the sound!

Oft Y6v 252

Oft as the murm’ring gale draws near

(To fancy’s rule consigned)

His tuneful purr salutes mine ear

Soft floating on the wind.

Among the ærial train, perchance,

My Bully now resides;

Or with the nymphs leads up the dance—

Or skims the argent tides:

Ye rapid Muses haste away,

His wand’ring shade attend,

Hunt him thro’ bush and fallow gray,

And up the hill ascend:

O’er russet heath extend your view

And thro’ th’ imbrowning wood;

On the brisk gale his form pursue

Or trace him o’er the flood:

If he a lucid Sylph should fly,

With various hues bedight;

The Muse’s keen pervading eye,

Shall catch the streaming light:

Or Z1r 253

Or if transformed to a Faun,

Or Satyr droll he rove;

You’ll find him on the upland lawn,

Or ’neath the shelt’ring grove:

If gliding down the gurgling rill

You mark a Naiad fair,

Perchance your all discerning skill

May find the vagrant there.

Bring, O ye Muses, to mine ear,

The story of his doom;

Or with his pensive mistress rear,

The solitary tomb:

We’ll hang the chaplets round the stone,

In elegies deplore,—

That Bully, best of cats, if flown,

And purrs—alas! no more.

Elegy Z Z1v 254

Elegy on a Favorite Cat and Dog,

Buried under a Weeping-Willow.

Beneath yon pendent willow-tree,

Known to the weeping muse, and me,

Amid the shelt’ring grove—

Rest,—interr’d with decent care,

Of sweet domestic friends, a pair,—

The objects of my love!

First, Draco, of the feline race,

A Cat endued with every grace,

Resign’d his quiv’ring breath:

As trembling, at my feet he lay

The grateful accents forced their way,

He purr’d, and sunk in death.

Unspoil’d his tabby vest was seen

Extended on the dewy green,

At sober evening gray;

But ah! the piercing orbs of sight

Were set, in everlasting night,

Where gleams no cheery ray.

Next, Z2r 255

Next, Chloe felt the fatal dart,

By slow degrees it reach’d the heart

And drank the vital tide:

Awhile she droop’d, with secret pain;

Each art was tried,—but tried in vain,

She, shivering, groan’d and died.

’Twas her’s the gentle mind to move

With all the winning wiles of love,

In various modes exprest:

She caught sweet rapture from the eye,

Or mark’d, with mimic grief, the sigh

That swell’d the throbbing breast.

Companions of the lonely hour,

Possess’d of each engaging power

That glads the tender mind,

Accept the tributary lay—

That pensive nature bids me pay,

The lay—to grief consigned.

Here Z2 Z2v 256

Here, shall the piteous tale be told,

While tears impregn the conscious mould

That shields your loved remains;

Here, shall the plaintive dirge be sung

To rustic harp, by sorrow strung,

Accordant to the strains.

When Cynthia pours her dubious ray

Light twinkling thro’ the leafy spray

The nimble elfins, sheen,

In vestments—such as fancy brings

From halcyon sleek, or goldfinch-wings,

Imprint the humid green:

’Tis then, beneath the willow-tree,

The Muses oft their gambols see,

And mark the mystic round;

’Tis then the desultory gale

Slow murmuring thro’ the dewy vale

Imbibes the mingled sound:

O! Z3r 257

O! give it to my list’ning ear!

In tones unwist,—yet sweet and clear,

By fancy’s magic wrought,

With all her varied strokes—refined,

Soft pour it on my vacant mind,

To urge the slumb’ring thought.

Still nimbly frisk, ye lucent throng,

Led on by elegiac song

To skim the checker’d plain,

Till, thro’ the scatter’d gloom of night,

Irradiate on my curious sight

The visionary train.

The Z3v 258

The Red-Breast,

or
Poor The name of my Squirrel. Pug’s Ghost;

To the tune of The Children in the Wood.

Mourn not for me, my mistress dear,

Nor heave the piteous sigh,

Repress the unavailing tear

That twinkles in thine eye;

Behold the Bird, on maple-spray,

A Red-breast, trim, to view;

Hark, how he trills the warbled lay!

And waves his plumes—at you!

Will Robins—thus essay to sing?

Meer Robins—of the grove!

Will they extend the quivering wing—

Expressive of their love?

Will Z4r 259

Will they implore the steadfast fight,

And woo thee to attend?

When, all around the dews of night

From weeping twigs descend?

No,—’tis your Squirrel’s voice you hear;

He marks your evening-walk,

And often turns his listening ear—

Attentive to your talk,

And, often swells his quavering song,

As, ’neath the bank you stray;

In descant sweet, and clear, and strong,

All from the maple-spray.

A small white marble Tomb is placed under a Weeping-willow
in the garden, to the memory of this little favorite,—with the
following lines: “Ask’st thou my Friend, who sleepeth here? A Squirrel,—once to Laura dear.”
An Z4v 260

An Elegy on Don Pedro,
A Favorite Spaniel,
Kill’d by a Mastiff:

Addressed to Mrs. T—.

Me—from Hispania’s distant shore,

The rapid galley, trembling, bore

Across the raging main:

Snatch’d from the dangers of the sea—

Fatigued, I sped my weary way

To Edgefield’s chilly plain.

Nursed on the bosom of the fair

Kind Margaretta’s daily care,

Awhile, how bless’d my lot!

Each night within my native bed, A Rush-House, from Spain, presented with the Dog,
to Mrs. T. to Mr. W.

Secure, I laid my little head;

And all my toils forgot.

At Z5r 261

At morn—the milk, with sugar sweet,

To tender dog, delicious treat!

In saucer clean, I found:

Then out I ran, and sniff’d the gale—

And bark’d aloud, and wagg’d my tail,

And frisk’d it round, and round.

But short his date! so fate assigned,

A Mastiff, of ferocious kind—

Observed his feats, unseen,

And rushing forth, with hideous yell,

The little, trembling victim fell,

All breathless, on the green.

The Z5v 262

The Sylph.

The Author after taking leave of her elder Son,
retired to her Closet, with a full heart; but on
opening her bureau—a beautiful Pot of Ginger,
in full bloom, presented itself: curiosity suspended
grief, and the following thoughts occurring, she
threw them into the present form; and addressed
them to her Son.

I turn the key—my temples bloom,

My fingers drop a sweet perfume!

The yielding hinges quick obey,

The lockers meet the eye of day;

When lo! a wonder starts to view—

Gay flow’rets rise, of golden hue!

Thick clustering leaves the stalks enfold,

Each branch an emerald, tipp’d with gold:

A casket fair, the roots enclose

All pure, and white as mountain snows.

And how said I, cou’d flow’rets grow—

Confined—within the dark Bureau?

For here no sun, with fostering rays,

Among the opening foliage plays,

No Z6r 263

No genial breezes flutter here,

No dews descend, the plant to cheer!

A radiant Sylph, in dazzling white,

Then burst upon my wond’ring sight!

His slender form the locker graced,

Above the snowy casket placed;

His cheeks, a roseat bloom o’erspread,

A glittering fillet bound his head;

His glossy hair, in ringlets flow’d,

His eyes with beamy lustres glow’d,

And, such the sweetness of his lip,

As Hybla’s bee, might fondly sip;

A golden zone his bosom bound,

His lucent vesture floating round;

His purple pinions ’dropp’d with light,

Now met, and now retired from sight,

As, gently fluttering in the wind,

Or, graceful falling on the robe, behind:

His teeth were pearls, in even rows,

And soft his speech, as feather’d snows.

“Behold a gentle Sylph! he cried,

Thro’ life’s long road, thy faithful guide;

’Tis our’s, to strew the thorny way,

With flow’rets, ever fresh and gay;

We paint, at will, their varying bloom,

And fill their buds, with sweet perfume,—

“Whether Z6v 264

Whether on sunny bank they grow,

Or, casual, grace the dark Bureau:

The sigh I mark’d, the sad adieu,—

When Damon from thy sight withdrew,

I saw the conflict in thy breast,

And heard thee sob, with woe opprest;

I mark’d the big—maternal tear,

And took my silent station here;

Resolved to strike thy curious sight

With some faint vestige of delight:

’Tis our’s to sooth the vacant hour,

With secret tho’ resistless power,

To lure the mind, from urgent grief,

And bring unseen, unsought relief,

To lead along the roving eye—

Thro’ nature’s fair variety;

Or, with the quainter turns of art—

To greet the sight, and cheer the heart.

How oft, with thee, I secret rove

Thro’ the deep umbrageous grove;

What-time the moon, with twinkling beams

Gilds the gently curling streams,

As the current, wand’ring sheen,

Sparkles—tufted banks between:

Sometimes floating in the breeze

I mystic murmur thro’ the trees,

“Smiling Aa1r 265

Smiling see thee—pause to hear—

Sounds unwist, approaching near;

Then attentive, soft and slow

’Long the checker’d glade you go,

Listening to the warbled lay

Breathing sweet, from hawthorn-spray;

Know ’tis I—who down the vale

Pour the tones, of nightingale,

Raise the notes, sublime the song,

Or, swell the cadence—deep and strong.

Unseen, I’ve watch’d thy varied ways—

Thro’ childhood, youth, maturer days:

Have smiled to hear thy lisping verse

Great Fred’ric’s Alluding to some Lines on the late King of Prussia,
written when the Author was very young.
mighty deeds rehearse;

With trembling hand you struck the string,

The teeming Muse, essay’d the wing,—

With flight unequal, on she flew—

Till lost, and wilder’d to the view.

Then I found the timid maid,

Slumb’ring ’neath a poplar shade,

Wearied with her recent flight;

And wrapt in visions of the night.

’Twas then a motley scene I traced—

With many a varying beauty graced—

Aa “Depictured Aa1v 266

Depictured plains, and lofty mountains,

Chalky rocks, and gushing fountains—

Wand’ring streams, by Naiads led,

From old Arun’s distant bed,

Swift—thro’ sloping meads, descending:

Oziers from the banks depending—

With the current, seem to glide,

Dancing down the sparkling tide.

Elfins next, and nimble faies—

Gambol round, in airy maze,

Forming cinctures, as they pass—

O’er the foot-imprinted grass:

While the pipe, distinct and clear

Breathes harmonious on the ear—

Descant such, as minstrels love

To warble soft—thro’ listening grove.

Then the shepherd feeds his flock

All beneath the shadowy rock,

When the scorching noontide beam

Drives him to the cooling stream;

Or, his tender lambkins leads

Thro’ the daisy-dappled meads;

Or climbs at eve, the mountain’s height,

To fold them, ere departed light.

Critics next arise,—and then

All ‘the busy hum of men;’

“Fretted- Aa2r 267

Fretted-hall, she wond’ring views!—

Scene, unapt— to rural Muse,

Hears the warlike clarion sound—

Echoing thro’ the vault profound!

Shrilling measures, jarring rise

Tumultuous—ringing thro’ the skies;

Halting numbers, vague and slow,

Grumble in the sphere below;

And bulky rhythm, wields along,

Thro’ all the dissonance of song.

Then awoke, by Lydian measures

Laughing loves, and winning pleasures

The lute I took, and struck the string—

Tuned her voice, and bad her sing;

Bad her, unappall’d, essay

The lyric smooth, and roundelay,

Pastorella’s easy strain,

Meet for nymph, and shepherd swain,

Such as artless Phillips sung,

Such as sweeten’d Shenstone’s tongue.

Or grant the Muse, in sonnet quaint,

Delight a favorite thought to paint

In number’d lines, with pleasing art

To trace the features, or the heart—

The task be her’s:—nor further try

The latent source of harmony.

Aa2 “To Aa2v 268

To abler minds the powers belong

To tempt the daring heights of song;

On vent’rous wings, sublime to soar,

As Pindar,—wond’rous bard! of yore,

Who struck, with god-like force the wire,

And sung to deep Æolian lyre—

As here and there with mighty force

He swept—the Pegasean course.”

He said—and melting into light—

Gently glided from my sight.

Lines Aa3r 269

Lines in memory of the late Hon. and Rev.
Mr. Talbot
.

Moved by no int’rest, by no party sway’d,

The Muse indites the melancholy lay,

Pays the just tribute to his hallow’d shade—

The tribute charity delights to pay.

In life’s fair morn the holy man I knew,

Mark’d the sweet plaudits of his pious train,

On mem’ry’s page the vivid portrait drew,

And still the faithful characters remain.

How few like him life’s specious charms
forego, “Friday died at Hammersmith Mr. Talbot, a Franciscan
Friar, and Titular Roman Catholic Bishop of London; which
honor was conferred on him by the Pope, on his relinquishing the
honor of Earl of Shrewsbury, to which he was entitled by descent.”
St. James’s Chron. 1790-02-09Feb. 9, 1790.

The claims of ancestry, the grasp of power,

And meekly stealing thro’ the vale of woe

With joy expect th’ inevitable hour!

Aa3 Aa3v 270

Amid the dangers of ensnaring youth

’Tis said—strict virtue’s rigid path he trod,

By wisdom guided, and the Word of Truth—

The Counsel of his Father, and his God.

Here faith illumed him with her steadfast ray,

Now glorious, towering to the realms above,

A purer radiance gilds his perfect day,

In the bright precincts of Eternal Love.

Farewel bless’d Saint! to recollection dear,

Still may thy conduct animate my mind;

Tho’ steadfast faith in different modes appear,

In blissful union are the virtuous join’d.

An Aa4r 271

An Ode:

Written 1790-01January 1790.

Tho’ far from Arun’s-Vale Arundel, in Sussex. I rove

The verdant mead, the beechen-grove,

The stream that winds along—

Where first, as many a swain can tell,

I waked the soft melodious shell

And kindled into song;

Yet, pictured on my faithful mind,

In vivid traits exact, refined,

Those varied beauties glow;

The Wood ascends in rural pride,

The Castle frowning o’er the tide

That peaceful glides below.

Now fix’d on Norfolk’s bleaky shore,

I hear the German ocean roar

And view the raging main,

As oft at solemn close of day

I steal along the lonesome way,

That skirts the sandy plain:

True Aa4v 272

True to the scenes I once held dear,

I scarce restrain the twinkling tear,

The rising sigh repress,

When Mem’ry from her precious store

Selects those friends, which here no more

My longing eyes shall bless.

O Mem’ry! great immortal power!

Thy solace in the present hour,

Can life’s dull lapse supply;

Thou lead’st along th’ eventful page

From childhood bland, to ripen’d age

The retrospective eye.

Among the scenes of childhood gay

Reverting fancy loves to play

The flowery banks between,

Where tufted thyme, and vi’lets bloom,

And mingling sweet their rich perfume,

Impregn the laughing scene:

She Aa5r 273

She sees the bubbling runnels flow

Brisk issuing from the rock below,

And o’er the bending grass—

Marks how the currents devious glide,

Adown the valley’s sloping side

Gay sparkling as they pass.

She sees in yonder sunny glade

That penetrates the sullen shade,

Alcanor’s graceful form,

With Portia,—whose collected mind,

To all the ills of life resign’d,

Contemn’d the adverse storm.

Descending on the nether plain

Lo! many a nymph, and many a swain

Her eager eyes regale!

The carol that Eliza sung—

As recent from her tuneful tongue,

Still vibrates in the vale:

Alonzo Aa5v 274

Alonzo marks the warbling notes,

And swells the descant as it floats

With minstrelsy sublime!

Companions of my youthful days,

How fancy loves to thrid the maze,

Obscured by misty time!

Where are your gentle spirits flown?

To distant regions all unknown,

From whose sequester’d bourn

No traveller returns,—to say—

How fares the pilgrim on his way,

From earthly comforts torn.

To cheer the span that lies between

The present and the closing scene,

And life’s mix’d coil defy—

To smooth the rugged path below,

And open thro’ this vale of woe

“A visto to the sky”

Be 275

Be this, O sacred Muse thy care,

With pious strains my mind prepare

To meet th’ angelic throng:

That when the spirit takes its flight,

In fields of empyrean height!

I catch the heavenly song.

Finis.