a1r a1v
A portrait of the author.

P. Condé sculp.
Oh! Time has Changed me since you saw me last,
And heavy Hours with Time’s deforming Hand,
Have written strange Defeatures in my Face.

a2r

Elegiac Sonnets,
and
Other Poems,

By Charlotte Smith.

Vol. I.

The Eighth Edition.

London:
Printed for T. Cadell, Junior, and W. Davies,
(Successors to Mr. Cadell) Strand. 17971797.

a2v b1r

To
William Hayley, Esq.

Sir,

While I ask your protection for
these essays, I cannot deny having myself
some esteem for them. Yet permit me
to say, that did I not trust to your
candour and sensibility, and hope they
will plead for the errors your judgment
must discover, I should never have
availed myself of the liberty I have
obtained—that of dedicating these
simple effusions to the greatest modern
Master of that charming talent, in which
I can never be more than a distant
copyist.

I am,
Sir,
Your most obedient
and obliged Servant,

Charlotte Smith.

Vol.I b b1v b2r

Preface
to the
First and Second Editions.

The little Poems which are here called
Sonnets, have, I believe, no very just claim
to that title: but they consist of fourteen lines,
and appear to me no improper vehicle for a
single Sentiment. I am told, and I read it as
the opinion of very good judges, that the legitimate
Sonnet is ill calculated for our language.
The specimen Mr. Hayley has given, though
they form a strong exception, prove no more,
than that the difficulties of the attempt vanish
before uncommon powers.

b2 b2v iv

Some very melancholy moments have been
beguiled by expressing in verse the sensations
those moments brought. Some of my friends,
with partial indiscretion, have multiplied the
copies they procured of several of these attempts,
till they found their way into the prints
of the day in a mutilated state; which, concurring
with other circumstances, determined
me to put them into their present form. I can
hope for readers only among the few, who, to
sensibility of heart, join simplicity of taste.

b3r

Preface
to the
Third and Fourth Editions.

The reception given by the public, as well
as my particular friends, to the two first editions
of these poems, has induced me to add to the
present such other Sonnets as I have written
since, or have recovered from my acquaintance,
to whom I had given them without thinking
well enough of them at the time to preserve
any copies myself. A few of those last written,
I have attempted on the Italian model; with
what success I know not; but I am persuaded b3v vi
that, to the generality of readers, those which
are less regular will be more pleasing.

As a few notes were necessary, I have added
them at the end. I have there quoted such
lines as I have borrowed; and even where I
am conscious the ideas were not my own, I
have restored them to the original possessors.

b4r

Preface
to the
Fifth Edition.

In printing a list of so many noble, literary,
and respectable names, it would become me,
perhaps, to make my acknowledgments to those
friends, to whose exertions in my favor, rather
than to any merit of my own, I owe the brilliant
assemblage. With difficulty I repress what
I feel on this subject; but in the conviction that
such acknowledgments would be painful to
them, I forbear publicly to speak of those particular
obligations, the sense of which will ever
be deeply impressed on my heart.

b4v b5r

Preface
to the
Sixth Edition.

When a sixth Edition of these little Poems
was lately called for, it was proposed to me to
add such Sonnets, or other pieces, as I might
have written since the publication of the fifth—
Of these, however, I had only a few; and on
shewing them to a friend, of whose judgment I
had an high opinion, he remarked that some of
them, particularly The Sleeping Woodman,
and The Return of the Nightingale, resembled
in their subjects, and still more in the
plaintive tone in which they are written, the
greater part of those in the former Editions—
and that, perhaps, some of a more lively cast b5v x
might be better liked by the Public—“Toujours
perdrix
,”
said my friend—“Toujours
perdrix,
you know, ne vaut rien.—I am
far from supposing that your compositions can be
neglected or disapproved, on whatever subject:
but perhaps toujours Rossignols, toujours des
chanson triste,
may not be so well received
as if you attempted, what you would certainly
execute as successfully, a more cheerful style of
composition.”
“Alas!” replied I, “‘Are grapes
gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles?’

Or can the effect cease, while the cause remains?
You know that when in the Beech Woods of
Hampshire, I first struck the chords of the
melancholy lyre, its notes were never intended
for the public ear! It was unaffected sorrows
drew them forth: I wrote mournfully because I
was unhappy—And I have unfortunately no reason
yet, though nine years have since elapsed, to b6r xi
change my tone. The time is indeed arrived, when
I have been promised by ‘the Honourable Men’
who, nine years ago, undertook to see that my
family obtained the provision their grandfather
designed for them,—that ‘all should be well,
all should be settled.’
But still I am condemned
to feel the ‘hope delayed that maketh the heart sick.’
Still to receive—not a repetition of promises indeed
but of scorn and insult, when I apply to
those gentlemen, who, though they acknowledge
that all impediments to a division of the
estate they have undertaken to manage, are done
away—will neither tell me when they will proceed
to divide it, or whether they will ever do so at
all
. You know the circumstances under which
I have now so long been labouring; and you
have done me the honor to say, that few Women
could so long have contended with them.
With these, however, as they are some of them b6v xii
of a domestic and painful nature, I will not
trouble the Public now; but while they exist
in all their force, that indulgent Public must
accept all I am able to achieve—Toujours
des Chansons tristes!”

Thus ended the short dialogue between my
friend and me, and I repeat it as an apology for
that apparent despondence, which, when it is
observed for a long series of years, may look
like affectation. I shall be sorry, if on some future
occasion, I should feel myself compelled to detail
its causes more at length; for, notwithstanding
I am thus frequently appearing as an Authoress,
and have derived from thence many of
the greatest advantages of my life, (since it has
procured me friends whose attachment is most
invaluable,) I am well aware that for a woman—
“The Post of Honor is a Private Station.”

London, 1792-05-14May 14, 1792.
b7r
B1r

Elegiac Sonnets.

Sonnet I.

The partial Muse, has from my earliest hours

Smiled on the rugged path I’m doom’d to tread,

And still with sportive hand has snatch’d wild flowers,

To weave fantastic garlands for my head:

But far, far happier is the lot of those

Who never learn’d her dear delusive art;

Which, while it decks the head with many a rose,

Reserves the thorn, to fester in the heart.

For still she bids soft Pity’s melting eye

Stream o’er the hills she knows not to remove,

Points every pang, and deepens every sigh

Of mourning friendship, or unhappy love.

Ah! then, how dear the Muse’s favours cost,

If those paint sorrow best—who feel it most!

Sonnet I.
Line 13. “Ah! then, how dear the Muse’s favours cost, If those paint sorrow best—who feel it most!” “The well-sung woes shall sooth my pensive ghost; He best can paint them who shall feel them most.” Pope’s Eloisa to Abelard, 366th line.
Vol. I. B B1v 2

Sonnet II.

Written at the Close of Spring.

The garlands fade that Spring so lately wove,

Each simple flower, which she had nursed in dew,

Anemonies, that spangled every grove, Sonnet II.
Line 3.
“Anemonies, that spangled every grove.” Anemony Nemeroso. The wood Anemony.

The primrose wan, and hare-bell, mildly blue.

No more shall violets linger in the dell,

Or purple orchis variegate the plain,

Till Spring again shall call forth every bell,

And dress with humid hands her wreaths again.—

Ah! poor humanity! so frail, so fair,

Are the fond visions of thy early day,

Till tyrant passion, and corrosive care,

Bid all thy fairy colours fade away!

Another May new buds and flowers shall bring;

Ah! why has happiness—no second Spring?

B2r 3

Sonnet III.

To a Nightingale.

Poor melancholy bird—that all night long Sonnet III.
Line 1. The idea from the 43rd Sonnet of Petrarch. Secondo
parte.
“Quel rosigniuol, che si soave piagnepiange.”

Tell’st to the Moon thy tale of tender woe;

From what sad cause can such sweet sorrow flow,

And whence this mournful melody of song?

Thy poet’s musing fancy would translate

What mean the sounds that swell thy little breast,

When still at dewy eve thou leavest thy nest,

Thus to the listening night to sing thy fate?

Pale Sorrow’s victims wert thou once among,

Tho’ now released in woodlands wild to rove?

Say—hast thou felt from friends some cruel wrong,

Or died’st thou—martyr of disastrous love?

Ah! songstress sad! that such my lot might be,

To sigh and sing at liberty—like thee!

B2 B2v 4

Sonnet IV.

To the Moon.

Queen of the silver bow!—by thy pale beam,

Alone and pensive, I delight to stray,

And watch thy shadow trembling in the stream,

Or mark the floating clouds that cross thy way.

And while I gaze, thy mild and placid light

Sheds a soft calm upon my troubled breast;

And oft I think—fair planet of the night,

That in thy orb, the wretched may have rest:

The sufferers of the earth perhaps may go,

Released by death—to thy benignant sphere

And the sad children of despair and woe

Forget in thee, their cup of sorrow here.

Oh! that I soon may reach thy world serene,

Poor wearied pilgrim—in this toiling scene!

Plate 1.

Sonnet 4.

A woman in a dress standing beneath a tree by a stream, gazing at the moon. An owl perches on the frame of the image.

Corbould del.delineavit

Milton sculpt.sculpsit

Publish’d 1798-01-01Jany 1. 1789. by T. Cadell, Strand.

Queen of the Silver Bow, &c.

B3r 5

Sonnet V.

To the South Downs.

Ah! hills beloved!—where once, an happy child,

Your beechen shades, your turf, your flowers among, Sonnet V.
Line 2. “Your turf, your flowers among.” “Whose turf, whose shades, whose flowers among.” Gray.

I wove your blue-bells into garlands wild,

And woke your echoes with my artless song.

Ah! hills beloved!—your turf, your flowers remain;

But can they peace to this sad breast restore,

For one poor moment sooth the sense of pain,

And teach a breaking heart to throb no more?

And you, Aruna!— Line 9. “Aruna!” The river Arun. in the vale below,

As to the sea your limpid waves you bear,

Can you one kind Lethean cup bestow,

To drink a long oblivion to my care?

Ah! no!—when all, e’en Hope’s last ray is gone,

There’s no oblivion—but in death alone!

B3v 6

Sonnet VI.

To Hope.

Oh, Hope! thou soother sweet of human woes!

How shall I lure thee to my haunts forlorn?

For me wilt thou renew the wither’d rose,

And clear my painful path of pointed thorn?

Ah, come, sweet nymph! in smiles and softness drest,

Like the young hours that lead the tender year,

Enchantress come! and charm my cares to rest:—

Alas! the flatterer flies, and will not hear!

A prey to fear, anxiety, and pain,

Must I a sad existence still deplore?

Lo!—the flowers fade, but all the thorns remain,

“For me the vernal garland blooms no more.” Sonnet VI.
Line 12. “For me the vernal garland blooms no more.” Pope’s Imit. 1st Ode 4th Book of Horace.

Come then, “pale Misery’s love!” Line 13. “Misery’s Love.” Shakspeare’s King John. be thou my cure,

And I will bless thee, who tho’ slow art sure.

B4r 7

Sonnet VII.

On the Departure of the Nightingale.

Sweet poet of the woods—a long adieu!

Farewel, soft minstrel of the early year!

Ah! ’twill be long ere thou shalt sing anew,

And pour thy music on “the night’s dull ear.” Sonnet VII.
Line 4. “On the Night’s dull ear.” Shakspeare.

Whether on Spring Line 5. “Whether on Spring”— Alludes to the supposed
migration of the Nightingale.
thy wandering flights await,

Or whether silent in our groves you dwell,

The pensive muse shall own thee for her mate, Line 7. “The pensive Muse shall own thee for his mate.” “Whether the Muse or Love call thee his mate. Both them I serve, and of their train am I.” Milton’s First Sonnet.

And still protect the song she loves so well.

With cautious step, the love-lorn youth shall glide

Thro’ the lone brake that shades thy mossy nest;

And shepherd girls, from eyes profane shall hide

The gentle bird, who sings of pity best:

For still thy voice shall soft affections move,

And still be dear to sorrow, and to love!

B4v 8

Sonnet VIII.

To Spring.

Again the wood, and long-withdrawing vale,

In many a tint of tender green are drest,

Where the young leaves unfolding, scarce conceal

Beneath their early shade, the half-form’d nest

Of finch or woodlark; and the primrose pale,

And lavish cowslip, wildly scatter’d round,

Give their sweet spirits to the sighing gale.

Ah! season of delight!—could aught be found

To sooth awhile the tortured bosom’s pain,

Of Sorrow’s rankling shaft to cure the wound,

And bring life’s first delusions once again,

’Twere surely met in thee!—thy prospect fair,

Thy sounds of harmony, thy balmy air,

Have power to cure “all sadness—but despair.” Sonnet VIII.
Line 14. “Have power to cure all sadness—but despair!” “To the heart inspires Vernal delight and joy, able to drive All sadness but despair.” Paradise Lost, Fourth Book.

Plate 2.

Sonnet 812.

A woman sitting pensively on a rocky shore.

Stothard del.delineavit

Neagle sculpt.sculptit

Published 1789-01-01January 1st, 1789 by T. Cadell Strand.

On some rude fragment of the rocky shore.

B5r 9

Sonnet IX.

Blest is yon shepherd, on the turf reclined,

Who on the varied clouds which float above

Lies idly gazing—while his vacant mind

Pours out some tale antique of rural love!

Ah! he has never felt the pangs that move

Th’ indignant spirit, when with selfish pride,

Friends, on whose faith the trusting heart rely’d,

Unkindly shun th’ imploring eye of woe!

The ills they ought to sooth, with taunts deride,

And laugh at tears themselves have “forced to flow.” Sonnet IX.
Line 10. “And laugh at tears themselves have forced to flow.” “And hard unkindness’ alter’d eye, That mocks the tear it forced to flow.” Gray.

Nor his rude bosom those fine feelings melt,

Children of Sentiment and Knowledge born,

Thro’ whom each shaft with cruel force is felt,

Empoison’d by deceit—or barb’d with scorn.

B5v 10

Sonnet X.

To Mrs. G.

Ah! why will Mem’ry with officious care

The long lost visions of my days renew?

Why paint the vernal landscape green and fair,

When life’s gay dawn was opening to my view?

Ah! wherefore bring those moments of delight,

When with my Anna, on the southern shore,

I thought the future, as the present bright?

Ye dear delusions!—ye return no more!

Alas! how diff’rent does the truth appear,

From the warm picture youth’s rash hand pourtrays!

How fades the scene, as we approach it near,

And pain and sorrow strike—how many ways!

Yet of that tender heart, ah! still retain

A share for me—and I will not complain!

B6r 11

Sonnet XI.

To Sleep.

Come, balmy Sleep! tired nature’s soft resort!

On these sad temples all thy poppies shed;

And bid gay dreams, from Morpheus’ airy court,

“Float in light vision round” my aching head! Sonnet XI.
Line 4. “Float in light vision round my aching head.” “Float in light vision round the poet’s head.” Mason.

Secure of all thy blessings, partial Power!

On his hard bed the peasant throws him down;

And the poor sea boy, in the rudest hour, Line 7. “And the poor sea boy, in the rudest hour, Enjoys thee more than he who wears a crown.” “Wilt thou upon the high and giddy mast Seal up the ship boy’s eyes, and rock his brains In cradle of the rude impetuous surge?” &c. Shakspeare’s Henry IV.

Enjoys thee more than he who wears a crown.

Clasp’d in her faithful shepherd’s guardian arms,

Well may the village girl sweet slumbers prove;

And they, O gentle Sleep! still taste thy charms,

Who wake to labour, liberty, and love.

But still thy opiate aid dost thou deny

To calm the anxious breast, to close the streaming eye.

B6v 12

Sonnet XII.

Written on the Sea Shore.—1784-10October, 1784.

On some rude fragment of the rocky shore,

Where on the fractured cliff the billows break,

Musing, my solitary seat I take,

And listen to the deep and solemn roar.

O’er the dark waves the winds tempestuous howl;

The screaming sea-bird quits the troubled sea:

But the wild gloomy scene has charms for me,

“And suits the mournful temper of my soul.” Sonnet XII.
Line 8. “And suits the mournful temper of my soul.” Young.

Already shipwreck’d by the storms of Fate,

Like the poor mariner methinks I stand,

Cast on a rock; who sees the distant land

From whence no succour comes—or comes too late.

Faint and more faint are heard his feeble cries,

’Till in the rising tide the exhausted sufferer dies.

B7r 13

Sonnet XIII.

From Petrarch.

Oh! place me where the burning noon Sonnet XIII.
Line 1. “Pommi ove’l Sol, occide i fiori e l’erba.” Petrarch, Sonnetto 112. Parte primo.

Forbids the wither’d flower to blow;

Or place me in the frigid zone,

On mountains of eternal snow:

Let me pursue the steps of Fame,

Or Poverty’s more tranquil road;

Let youth’s warm tide my veins inflame,

Or sixty winters chill my blood:

Tho’ my fond soul to Heaven were flown,

Or tho’ on earth ’tis doom’d to pine,

Prisoner or free—obscure or known,

My heart, oh, Laura! still is thine.

Whate’er my destiny may be,

That faithful heart still burns for thee!

B7v 14

Sonnet XIV.

From Petrarch.

Loose to the wind her golden tresses stream’d, Sonnet XIV.
Line 1. “Erano i capei d’oro all aura sparsi.” Sonnetto 69. Parte primo.

Forming bright waves with amorous Zephyr’s sighs;

And tho’ averted now, her charming eyes

Then with warm love, and melting pity beam’d.

Was I deceived?—Ah! surely, nymph divine!

That fine suffusion on thy cheek was love;

What wonder then those beauteous tints should move,

Should fire this heart, this tender heart of mine!

Thy soft melodious voice, thy air, thy shape,

Were of a goddess—not a mortal maid;

Yet tho’ thy charms, thy heavenly charms should fade,

My heart, my tender heart could not escape;

Nor cure for me in time or change be found:

The shaft extracted does not cure the wound!

B8r 15

Sonnet XV.

From Petrarch.

Where the green leaves exclude the summer beam, Sonnet XV.
Line 1. “Se lamentar augelli o verdi fronde.” Sonnetto 21. Parte secondo.

And softly bend as balmy breezes blow,

And where, with liquid lapse, the lucid stream

Across the fretted rock is heard to flow,

Pensive I lay: when she whom Earth conceals,

As if still living, to my eyes appears,

And pitying Heaven her angel form reveals,

To say—“Unhappy Petrarch, dry your tears;

Ah! why, sad lover! thus before your time,

In grief and sadness should your life decay,

And like a blighted flower, your manly prime

In vain and hopeless sorrow fade away?

Ah! yield not thus to culpable despair,

But raise thine eyes to Heaven—and think I wait thee
there.”

B8v 16

Sonnet XVI.

From Petrarch.

Ye vales and woods! fair scenes of happier hours! Sonnet XVI.
Line 1. “Valle che de lamenti miei se piena.” Sonnetto 33. Parte secondo.

Ye feather’d people, tenants of the grove!

And you, bright stream! befringed with shrubs and flowers,

Behold my grief, ye witnesses of love!

For ye beheld my infant passion rise,

And saw thro’ years unchanged my faithful flame;

Now cold, in dust, the beauteous object lies,

And you, ye conscious scenes, are still the same!

While busy Memory still delights to dwell

On all the charms these bitter tears deplore,

And with a trembling hand describes too well

The angel form I shall behold no more!

To Heaven she’s fled! and nought to me remains

But the pale ashes which her urn contains.

C1r 17

Sonnet XVII.

From the Thirteenth Cantata of Metastasio.

On thy grey bark, in witness of my flame, Sonnet XVII.
Line 1. “Scrivo in te l’amato nome Di colei, per cui, mi moro.” G8r 95 This is not meant as a translation; the original is
much longer, and full of images, which could not be
introduced in a Sonnet.—And some of them, though
very beautiful in the Italian, would not appear to advantage
in an English dress.

I carve Miranda’s cypher—Beauteous tree!

Graced with the lovely letters of her name,

Henceforth be sacred to my love and me!

Tho’ the tall elm, the oak, and darker pine,

With broader arms, may noon’s fierce ardors break,

To shelter me, and her I love, be thine;

And thine to see her smile and hear her speak.

No bird, ill-omen’d, round thy graceful head

Shall clamour harsh, or wave his heavy wing,

But fern and flowers arise beneath thy shade,

Where the wild bees their lullabies shall sing.

And in thy boughs the murmuring Ring-dove rest;

And there the Nightingale shall build her nest.

Vol. 1 C C1v 18

Sonnet XVIII.

To the Earl of Egremont.

Wyndham! ’tis not thy blood, tho’ pure it runs

Thro’ a long line of glorious ancestry,

Percys and Seymours, Britain’s boasted sons,

Who trust the honors of their race to thee:

’Tis not thy splendid domes, where science loves

To touch the canvas, and the bust to raise;

Thy rich domains, fair fields, and spreading groves;

’Tis not all these the Muse delights to praise:

In birth, and wealth, and honors, great thou art!

But nobler in thy independent mind;

And in that liberal hand and feeling heart

Given thee by Heaven—a blessing to mankind!

Unworthy oft may titled fortune be;

A soul like thine—is true Nobility!

C2r 19

Sonnet XIX.

To Mr. Hayley,
on Receiving Some Elegant Lines From Him.

For me the Muse a simple band design’d

Of “idle” flowers that bloom the woods among,

Which, with the cypress and the willow join’d,

A garland form’d as artless as my song.

And little dared I hope its transient hours

So long would last; composed of buds so brief;

’Till Hayley’s hand among the vagrant flowers,

Threw from his verdant crown a deathless leaf.

For high in Fame’s bright fane has Judgment placed

The laurel wreath Serena’s poet won,

Which, woven with myrtles by the hands of Taste,

The Muse decreed for this her favourite son.

And those immortal leaves his temples shade,

Whose fair, eternal verdure—shall not fade!

C2 C2v 20

Sonnet XX.

To the Countess of A――.
Written on the Anniversary of Her Marriage.

On this blest day may no dark cloud, or shower,

With envious shade the Sun’s bright influence hide!

But all his rays illume the favour’d hour,

That saw thee, Mary!—Henry’s lovely bride!

With years revolving may it still arise,

Blest with each good approving Heaven can send!

And still, with ray serene, shall those blue eyes

Enchant the husband, and attach the friend!

For you fair Friendship’s amaranth shall blow,

And Love’s own thornless roses bind your brow;

And when—long hence—to happier worlds you go,

Your beauteous race shall be what you are now!

And future Nevills thro’ long ages shine,

With hearts as good, and forms as fair as thine!

C3r 21

Sonnet XXI.

Supposed to Be Written By Werter.

Go! cruel tyrant of the human breast!

To other hearts thy burning arrows bear;

Go, where fond hope, and fair illusion rest;

Ah! why should love inhabit with despair!

Like the poor maniac Sonnet XXI.
Line 5. “Poor Maniac.” See the Story of the Lunatic. “Is this the destiny of man? Is he only happy
before he possesses his reason, or after he has lost it?—
Full of hope you go to gather flowers in Winter, and
are grieved not to find any—and do not know why
they cannot be found.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.
I linger here,

Still haunt the scene where all my treasure lies;

Still seek for flowers where only thorns appear,

“And drink delicious poison from her eyes!” Line 8. “And drink delicious poison from thine eye.” Pope.

Tow’rds the deep gulf that opens on my sight

I hurry forward, Passion’s helpless slave!

And scorning Reason’s mild and sober light,

Pursue the path that leads me to the grave!

So round the flame the giddy insect flies,

And courts the fatal fire by which it dies!

C3v 22

Sonnet XXII.

By the Same.
To Solitude.

Oh, Solitude! to thy sequester’d vale Sonnet XXII.
Line 1. “I climb steep rocks, I break my way through
copses, among thorns and briars which tear me to
pieces, and I feel a little relief.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume First.

I come to hide my sorrow and my tears,

And to thy echoes tell the mournful tale

Which scarce I trust to pitying Friendship’s ears!

Amidst thy wild-woods, and untrodden glades,

No sounds but those of melancholy move;

And the low winds that die among thy shades,

Seem like soft Pity’s sighs for hopeless love!

And sure some story of despair and pain,

In yon deep copse, thy murm’ring doves relate;

And, hark! methinks in that long plaintive strain,

Thine own sweet songstress weeps my wayward fate!

Ah, Nymph! that fate assist me to endure,

And bear awhile—what death alone can cure!

C4r 23

Sonnet XXIII.

By the Same.
To the North Star.

To thy bright beams I turn my swimming eyes, Sonnet XXIII.
Line 1. “The greater Bear, favourite of all the constellations;
for when I left you of an evening it used to
shine opposite your window.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.

Fair, fav’rite planet! which in happier days

Saw my young hopes, ah! faithless hopes!—arise,

And on my passion shed propitious rays!

Now nightly wandering ’mid the tempests drear

That howl the woods and rocky steeps among,

I love to see thy sudden light appear

Thro’ the swift clouds—driven by the wind along:

Or in the turbid water, rude and dark,

O’er whose wild stream the gust of Winter raves,

Thy trembling light with pleasure still I mark,

Gleam in faint radiance on the foaming waves!

So o’er my soul short rays of reason fly,

Then fade:—and leave me to despair, and die!

C4v 24

Sonnet XXIV.

By the Same.

Make there my tomb, beneath the lime-tree’s shade, Sonnet XXIV.
Line 1. “At the corner of the church-yard which looks
towards the fields, there are two lime trees—it is there
I wish to rest.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.

Where grass and flowers in wild luxuriance wave;

Let no memorial mark where I am laid,

Or point to common eyes the lover’s grave!

But oft at twilight morn, or closing day,

The faithful friend with fault’ring step shall glide,

Tributes of fond regret by stealth to pay,

And sigh o’er the unhappy suicide!

And sometimes, when the Sun with parting rays

Gilds the long grass that hides my silent bed,

The tear shall tremble in my Charlotte’s eyes;

Dear, precious drops!—they shall embalm the dead!

Yes—Charlotte o’er the mournful spot shall weep,

Where her poor Werter—and his sorrows sleep!

C5r 25

Sonnet XXV.

By the Same.
Just Before His Death.

Why should I wish to hold in this low sphere Sonnet XXV.
Line 1. “May my death remove every obstacle to your
happiness.—Be at peace, I intreat you be at peace.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.

“A frail and feverish being?” wherefore try

Poorly from day to day to linger here,

Against the powerful hand of Destiny?

By those who know the force of hopeless care

On the worn heart—I sure shall be forgiven,

If to elude dark guilt, and dire despair,

I go uncall’d—to mercy and to Heaven!

O thou! to save whose peace I now depart,

Will thy soft mind thy poor lost friend deplore,

When worms shall feed on this devoted heart, Line 11. “When worms shall feed on this devoted heart, Where even thy image shall be found no more.” From a line in Rousseau’s Eloisa.

Where even thy image shall be found no more? Line 11. “When worms shall feed on this devoted heart, Where even thy image shall be found no more.” From a line in Rousseau’s Eloisa.

Yet may thy pity mingle not with pain,

For then thy hapless lover—dies in vain!

C5v 26

Sonnet XXVI.

To the River Arun.

On thy wild banks, by frequent torrents worn,

No glittering fanes, or marble domes appear,

Yet shall the mournful Muse thy course adorn,

And still to her thy rustic waves be dear.

For with the infant Otway, lingering here, Sonnet XXVI.
Line 5. “For with the infant Otway, lingering here.” Otway was born at Trotten, a village in Sussex. Of
Woolbeding, another village on the banks of the
Arun (which runs through them both), his father was
rector. Here it was therefore that he probably passed many of his early years. The Arun is here an inconsiderableVol. I H H1v 98
stream, winding in a channel deeply worn,
among meadow, heath, and wood.

Of early woes she bade her votary dream,

While thy low murmurs sooth’d his pensive ear,

And still the poet—consecrates the stream.

Beneath the oak and birch that fringe thy side

The first-born violets of the year shall spring;

And in thy hazles, bending o’er the tide,

The earliest Nightingale delight to sing:

While kindred spirits, pitying, shall relate

Thy Otway’s sorrows, and lament his fate!

Plate 3.

Sonnet 16.

A child reclining on a river bank.

Stothard del.delineavit
Thornthwaite sculpt.sculptit
Published 1789-01-01Jany. 1. 1789. by T. Cadell Strand.

“For with the infant Otway lingering here.”

C6r 27

Sonnet XXVII.

Sighing I see yon little troop at play,

By sorrow yet untouch’d; unhurt by care;

While free and sportive they enjoy to-day,

“Content and careless of to-morrow’s fare!” Sonnet XXVII.
Line 4. “Content, and careless of to-morrow’s fare.” Thomson.

O happy age! when Hope’s unclouded ray

Lights their green path, and prompts their simple mirth,

Ere yet they feel the thorns that lurking lay

To wound the wretched pilgrims of the earth,

Making them rue the hour that gave them birth,

And threw them on a world so full of pain,

Where prosperous folly treads on patient worth,

And, to deaf pride, misfortune pleads in vain!

Ah!—for their future fate how many fears

Oppress my heart—and fill mine eyes with tears!

C6v 28

Sonnet XXVIII.

To Friendship.

O thou! whose name too often is profaned;

Whose charms, celestial, few have hearts to feel!

Unknown to Folly—and by Pride disdained!

—To thy soft solace may my sorrows steal!

Like the fair Moon, thy mild and genuine ray

Thro’ life’s long evening shall unclouded last;

While pleasure’s frail attachments fleet away,

As fades the rainbow from the northern blast!

’Tis thine, O Nymph! with “balmy hands to bind” Sonnet XXVII.
Line 9. “Balmy hand to bind.” Collins.

The wounds inflicted in misfortune’s storm,

And blunt severe affliction’s sharpest dart!

—’Tis thy pure spirit warms my Anna’s mind,

Beams thro’ the pensive softness of her form,

And holds its altar—on her spotless heart!

C7r 29

Sonnet XXIX.

To Miss C—
On Being Desired to Attempt Writing
a Comedy.

Would’st thou then have me tempt the comic
scene

Of gay Thalia? used so long to tread

The gloomy paths of sorrow’s cypress shade;

And the lorn lay with sighs and tears to stain?

Alas! how much unfit her sprightly vein,

Arduous to try!—and seek the sunny mead,

And bowers of roses, where she loves to lead

The sportive subjects of her golden reign!

Enough for me, if still, to sooth my days,

Her fair and pensive sister condescend,

With tearful smile to bless my simple lays;

Enough, if her soft notes she sometimes lend,

To gain for me of feeling hearts the praise,

And chiefly thine, my ever partial friend!

C7v 30

Sonnet XXX.

To the River Arun.

Be the proud Thames of trade the busy mart!

Arun! to thee will other praise belong;

Dear to the lover’s, and the mourner’s heart,

And ever sacred to the sons of song!

Thy banks romantic hopeless Love shall seek,

Where o’er the rocks the mantling bindwith Sonnet XXX.
Line 6. “Bindwith.” The plant Clematis, Bindwith, Virgin’s Bower,
or Traveller’s Joy, which towards the end of June
begins to cover the hedges and sides of rocky hollows
with its beautiful foliage, and flowers of a yellowish H2r 99
white of an agreeable fragrance; these are succeeded
by seed pods that bear some resemblance to feathers
or hair, whence it is sometimes called “Old Man’s
Beard.”
flaunts;

And Sorrow’s drooping form and faded cheek

Choose on thy willow’d shore her lonely haunts!

Banks! which inspired thy Otway’s plaintive strain! Line 9. “Banks! which inspired thy Otway’s plaintive strain! Wilds! whose lorn echoes learn’d the deeper tone Of Collins’ powerful shell!” Collins, as well as Otway, was a native of this
country, and probably at some period of his life an
inhabitant of this neighbourhood, since in his beautiful
Ode on the Death of Colonel Ross, he says, “The Muse shall still, with social aid, Her gentlest promise keep; E’en humble Harting’s cottaged vale Shall learn the sad repeated tale, And bid her shepherds weep.” H2 H2v 100
And in the Ode to Pity: “Wild Arun too has heard thy strains, And Echo, ’midst thy native plains, Been sooth’d with Pity’s lute.”

Wilds!—whose lorn echoes learn’d the deeper tone Line 9. “Banks! which inspired thy Otway’s plaintive strain! Wilds! whose lorn echoes learn’d the deeper tone Of Collins’ powerful shell!” Collins, as well as Otway, was a native of this
country, and probably at some period of his life an
inhabitant of this neighbourhood, since in his beautiful
Ode on the Death of Colonel Ross, he says, “The Muse shall still, with social aid, Her gentlest promise keep; E’en humble Harting’s cottaged vale Shall learn the sad repeated tale, And bid her shepherds weep.” H2 H2v 100
And in the Ode to Pity: “Wild Arun too has heard thy strains, And Echo, ’midst thy native plains, Been sooth’d with Pity’s lute.”

Of Collins’ powerful shell! Line 9. “Banks! which inspired thy Otway’s plaintive strain! Wilds! whose lorn echoes learn’d the deeper tone Of Collins’ powerful shell!” Collins, as well as Otway, was a native of this
country, and probably at some period of his life an
inhabitant of this neighbourhood, since in his beautiful
Ode on the Death of Colonel Ross, he says, “The Muse shall still, with social aid, Her gentlest promise keep; E’en humble Harting’s cottaged vale Shall learn the sad repeated tale, And bid her shepherds weep.” H2 H2v 100
And in the Ode to Pity: “Wild Arun too has heard thy strains, And Echo, ’midst thy native plains, Been sooth’d with Pity’s lute.”
yet once again

Another poet—Hayley is thine own!

Thy classic stream anew shall hear a lay,

Bright as its waves, and various as its way!

C8r 31

Sonnet XXXI.

Written on Farm Wood, South Downs,
in 1784-05May 1784.

Spring’s dewy hand on this fair summit weaves

The downy grass, with tufts of Alpine flowers, Sonnet XXXI.
Line 2. “Alpine flowers.” An infinite variety of plants are found on these
hills, particularly about this spot: many sorts of
Orchis and Cistus of singular beauty, with several
others.

And shades the beechen slopes with tender leaves,

And leads the shepherd to his upland bowers,

Strewn with wild thyme; while slow-descending showers

Feed the green ear, and nurse the future sheaves!

—Ah! blest the hind—whom no sad thought bereaves

Of the gay Season’s pleasures!—All his hours

To wholesome labour given, or thoughtless mirth;

No pangs of sorrow past, or coming dread,

Bend his unconscious spirit down to earth,

Or chase calm slumbers from his careless head!

Ah! what to me can those dear days restore,

When scenes could charm that now I taste no more!

C8v 32

Sonnet XXXII.

To Melancholy.
Written on the Banks of the Arun,
1785-10October 1785,.

When latest Autumn spreads her evening veil,

And the grey mists from these dim waves arise,

I love to listen to the hollow sighs,

Thro’ the half-leafless wood that breathes the gale:

For at such hours the shadowy phantom, pale,

Oft seems to fleet before the poet’s eyes;

Strange sounds are heard, and mournful melodies,

As of night-wanderers, who their woes bewail!

Here, by his native stream, at such an hour,

Pity’s own Otway I methinks could meet,

And hear his deep sighs swell the sadden’d wind!

O Melancholy!—such thy magic power,

That to the soul these dreams are often sweet,

And sooth the pensive visionary mind!

D1r 33

Sonnet XXXIII.

To the Naiad of the Arun.

Go, rural Naiad! wind thy stream along

Thro’ woods and wilds: then seek the ocean caves

Where sea-nymphs meet their coral rocks among,

To boast the various honors of their waves!

’Tis but a little, o’er thy shallow tide,

That toiling trade her burden’d vessel leads;

But laurels grow luxuriant on thy side,

And letters live along thy classic meads.

Lo! where ’mid British bards thy natives Sonnet XXXIII.
Line 9. “Thy natives.” Otway, Collins, Hayley.
shine!

And now another poet helps to raise

Thy glory high—the poet of the Mine!

Whose brilliant talents are his smallest praise:

And who, to all that genius can impart,

Adds the cool head, and the unblemish’d heart!

Vol. 1 D Dv 34

Sonnet XXXIV.

To a Friend.

Charm’d by thy suffrage, shall I yet aspire

(All inauspicious as my fate appears,

By troubles darken’d, that increase with years,)

To guide the crayon, or to touch the lyre?

Ah me!—the sister Muses still require

A spirit free from all intrusive fears,

Nor will they deign to wipe away the tears

Of vain regret, that dim their sacred fire.

But when thy envied sanction crowns my lays,

A ray of pleasure lights my languid mind,

For well I know the value of thy praise;

And to how few the flattering meed confin’d,

That thou,—their highly favour’d brows to bind,

Wilt weave green myrtle and unfading bays!

D2r 35

Sonnet XXXV.

To Fortitude.

Nymph of the rock! whose dauntless spirit braves

The beating storm, and bitter winds that howl

Round thy cold breast; and hear’st the bursting waves

And the deep thunder with unshaken soul;

Oh come!—and shew how vain the cares that press

On my weak bosom—and how little worth

Is the false fleeting meteor, Happiness,

That still misleads the wanderers of the earth!

Strengthen’d by thee, this heart shall cease to melt

O’er ills that poor humanity must bear;

Nor friends estranged, or ties dissolved be felt

To leave regret, and fruitless anguish there:

And when at length it heaves its latest sigh,

Thou and mild Hope shall teach me how to die!

D2 D2v 36

Sonnet XXXVI.

Should the lone Wanderer, fainting on his way,

Rest for a moment of the sultry hours,

And tho’ his path thro’ thorns and roughness lay,

Pluck the wild rose, or woodbine’s gadding flowers,

Weaving gay wreaths beneath some sheltering tree,

The sense of sorrow he awhile may lose;

So have I sought thy flowers, fair Poesy!

So charm’d my way with Friendship and the Muse.

But darker now grows life’s unhappy day,

Dark with new clouds of evil yet to come,

Her pencil sickening Fancy throws away,

And weary Hope reclines upon the tomb;

And points my wishes to that tranquil shore,

Where the pale spectre Care pursues no more.

Plate 4.

Sonnet 36.

A woman personifying Hope, with an anchor, leans on a tomb; a woman personifying Fancy, with a winged headdress, has cast her pencil to the ground

Corbould deldelineavit
Neagle sculptsculptit

Publish’d as the Act directs by T. Cadell Strand 1789-01-01Jany 1. 1789.

“Her pencil sickening fancy throws away
And weary hope reclines upon the tomb.”

D3r 37

Sonnet XXXVII.

Sent to the Honorable Mrs. O’Neill,
With Painted Flowers.

The poet’s fancy takes from Flora’s realm

Her buds and leaves to dress fictitious powers,

With the green olive shades Minerva’s helm,

And gives to Beauty’s Queen the Queen of flowers.

But what gay blossoms of luxuriant Spring,

With rose, mimosa, amaranth entwined,

Shall fabled Sylphs and fairy people bring,

As a just emblem of the lovely mind?

In vain the mimic pencil tries to blend

The glowing dyes that dress the flowery race,

Scented and colour’d by an hand divine!

Ah! not less vainly would the Muse pretend

On her weak lyre, to sing the native grace

And native goodness of a soul like thine!

D3v 38

Sonnet XXXVIII.

From the Novel of Emmeline.

When welcome slumber sets my spirit free,

Forth to fictitious happiness it flies,

And where Elysian bowers of bliss arise,

I seem, my Emmeline—to meet with thee!

Ah! Fancy then, dissolving human ties,

Gives me the wishes of my soul to see;

Tears of fond pity fill thy soften’d eyes:

In heavenly harmony—our hearts agree.

Alas! these joys are mine in dreams alone,

When cruel Reason abdicates her throne!

Her harsh return condemns me to complain

Thro’ life unpitied, unrelieved, unknown.

And as the dear delusions leave my brain,

She bids the truth recur—with aggravated pain.

D4r 39

Sonnet XXXIX.

To Night.
From the Same.

I love thee, mournful, sober-suited Night!

When the faint Moon, yet lingering in her wane,

And veil’d in clouds, with pale uncertain light

Hangs o’er the waters of the restless main.

In deep depression sunk, the enfeebled mind

Will to the deaf cold elements complain,

And tell the embosom’d grief, however vain,

To sullen surges and the viewless wind.

Tho’ no repose on thy dark breast I find,

I still enjoy thee—cheerless as thou art;

For in thy quiet gloom the exhausted heart

Is calm, tho’ wretched; hopeless, yet resign’d.

While to the winds and waves its sorrows given,

May reach—tho’ lost on earth—the ear of Heaven!

D4v 40

Sonnet XL.

From the Same.

Far on the sands, the low, retiring tide,

In distant murmurs hardly seems to flow;

And o’er the world of waters, blue and wide,

The sighing summer wind forgets to blow.

As sinks the day-star in the rosy West,

The silent wave, with rich reflection glows:

Alas! can tranquil nature give me rest,

Or scenes of beauty sooth me to repose?

Can the soft lustre of the sleeping main,

Yon radiant heaven, or all creation’s charms,

“Erase the written troubles of the brain,”

Which Memory tortures, and which guilt alarms?

Or bid a bosom transient quiet prove,

That bleeds with vain remorse and unextinguish’d love!

D5r 41

Sonnet XLI.

To Tranquillity.

In this tumultuous sphere, for thee unfit,

How seldom art thou found—Tranquillity!

Unless ’tis when with mild and downcast eye

By the low cradles thou delight’st to sit

Of sleeping infants—watching the soft breath,

And bidding the sweet slumberers easy lie;

Or sometimes hanging o’er the bed of death,

Where the poor languid sufferer—hopes to die.

Oh! beauteous sister of the halcyon peace!

I sure shall find thee in that heavenly scene

Where care and anguish shall their power resign;

Where hope alike, and vain regret shall cease,

And Memory—lost in happiness serene,

Repeat no more—that misery has been mine!

D5v 42

Sonnet XLII.

Composed During a Walk on the Downs,
in 1787-11November 1787.

The dark and pillowy cloud, the sallow trees,

Seem o’er the ruins of the year to mourn;

And, cold and hollow, the inconstant breeze

Sobs thro’ the falling leaves and wither’d fern.

O’er the tall brow of yonder chalky bourn,

The evening shades their gather’d darkness fling,

While, by the lingering light, I scarce discern

The shrieking night-jar sail on heavy wing. Sonnet XLII.
Line 8. “The shrieking night-jar sail on heavy wing.” The night-jar or night hawk, a dark bird not so big
as a rook, which is frequently seen of an evening on
the downs. It has a short heavy flight, then rests on
the ground, and again, uttering a mournful cry, flits
before the traveller, to whom its appearance is supposed
by the peasants to portend misfortune. As I
have never seen it dead, I know not to what species
it belongs.

Ah! yet a little—and propitious Spring

Crown’d with fresh flowers shall wake the woodland
strain;

But no gay change revolving seasons bring

To call forth pleasure from the soul of pain;

Bid Syren Hope resume her long-lost part,

And chase the vulture Care—that feeds upon the heart.

D6r 43

Sonnet XLIII.

The unhappy exile, whom his fates confine

To the bleak coast of some unfriendly isle,

Cold, barren, desart, where no harvests smile,

But thirst and hunger on the rocks repine;

When, from some promontory’s fearful brow,

Sun after sun he hopeless sees decline

In the broad shipless sea—perhaps may know

Such heartless pain, such blank despair as mine;

And, if a flattering cloud appears to show

The fancied semblance of a distant sail,

Then melts away—anew his spirits fail,

While the lost hope but aggravates his woe!

Ah! so for me delusive Fancy toils,

Then, from contrasted truth—my feeble soul recoils.

D6v 44

Sonnet XLIV.

Written in the Church-Yard at Middleton
in Sussex.

Press’d by the Moon, mute arbitress of tides,

While the loud equinox its power combines,

The sea no more its swelling surge confines,

But o’er the shrinking land sublimely rides.

The wild blast, rising from the Western cave,

Drives the huge billows from their heaving bed;

Tears from their grassy tombs the village dead, Sonnet XLIV.
Line 7. Middleton is a village on the margin of the sea, in
Sussex, containing only two or three houses. There
were formerly several acres of ground between its small
church and the sea, which now, by its continual encroachments, H3v 102
approaches within a few feet of this
half ruined and humble edifice. The wall, which
once surrounded the church-yard, is entirely swept
away, many of the graves broken up, and the remains
of bodies interred washed into the sea: whence human
bones are found among the sand and shingles on the
shore.

And breaks the silent sabbath of the grave!

With shells and sea-weed mingled, on the shore

Lo! their bones whiten in the frequent wave;

But vain to them the winds and waters rave;

They hear the warring elements no more:

While I am doom’d—by life’s long storm opprest,

To gaze with envy on their gloomy rest.

D7r 45

Sonnet XLV.

On Leaving a Part of Sussex.

Farewel, Aruna!—on whose varied shore

My early vows were paid to Nature’s shrine,

When thoughtless joy, and infant hope were mine,

And whose lorn stream has heard me since deplore

Too many sorrows! Sighing I resign

Thy solitary beauties—and no more

Or on thy rocks, or in thy woods recline,

Or on the heath, by moonlight lingering, pore

On air-drawn phantoms—While in Fancy’s ear

As in the evening wind thy murmurs swell,

The Enthusiast of the Lyre who wander’d here, Sonnet XLV.
Line 11. “The enthusiast of the lyre who wander’d here.” Collins.See note to Sonnet 30.

Seems yet to strike his visionary shell,

Of power to call forth Pity’s tenderest tear,

Or wake wild frenzy—from her hideous cell!

D7v 46

Sonnet XLVI.

Written at Penshurst, in Autumn 17881788.

Ye towers sublime! deserted now and drear!

Ye woods! deep sighing to the hollow blast,

The musing wanderer loves to linger near,

While History points to all your glories past:

And startling from their haunts the timid deer,

To trace the walks obscured by matted fern,

Which Waller’s soothing lyre were wont to hear,

But where now clamours the discordant hern! Sonnet XLVI.
Line 8. “But where now clamours the discordant hern.” In the park at Penshurst is an heronry. The house
is at present uninhabited, and the windows of the
galleries and other rooms, in which there are many
invaluable pictures, are never opened but when strangers
visit it.

The spoiling hand of Time may overturn

These lofty battlements, and quite deface

The fading canvas whence we love to learn

Sydney’s Line 12. Algernon Sidney. keen look, and Sacharissa’s grace;

But fame and beauty still defy decay,

Saved by the historic page—the poet’s tender lay!

D8r 47

Sonnet XLVII.

To Fancy.

Thee, Queen of Shadows!—shall I still invoke,

Still love the scenes thy sportive pencil drew,

When on mine eyes the early radiance broke

Which shew’d the beauteous rather than the true!

Alas! long since those glowing tints are dead,

And now ’tis thine in darkest hues to dress

The spot where pale Experience hangs her head

O’er the sad grave of murder’d Happiness!

Thro’ thy false medium, then, no longer view’d,

May fancied pain and fancied pleasure fly,

And I, as from me all thy dreams depart,

Be to my wayward destiny subdued:

Nor seek perfection with a poet’s eye,

Nor suffer anguish with a poet’s heart!

D8v 48

Sonnet XLVIII.

To Mrs. ****

No more my wearied soul attempts to stray

From sad reality and vain regret,

Nor courts enchanting fiction to allay

Sorrows that sense refuses to forget:

For of calamity so long the prey,

Imagination now has lost her powers,

Nor will her fairy loom again essay

To dress affliction in a robe of flowers.

But if no more the bowers of Fancy bloom,

Let one superior scene attract my view,

Where Heaven’s pure rays the sacred spot illume,

Let thy loved hand with palm and amaranth strew

The mournful path approaching to the tomb,

While Faith’s consoling voice endears the friendly gloom.

E1r 49

Sonnet XLIX.

From the Novel of Celestina.
Supposed to Have Been Written in a
Church-Yard, Over the Grave of
a Young Woman of Nineteen.

O thou! who sleep’st where hazle-bands entwine

The vernal grass, with paler violets drest;

I would, sweet maid! thy humble bed were mine,

And mine thy calm and enviable rest.

For never more by human ills opprest

Shall thy soft spirit fruitlessly repine:

Thou canst not now thy fondest hopes resign

Even in the hour that should have made thee blest.

Light lies the turf upon thy virgin breast;

And lingering here, to love and sorrow true,

The youth who once thy simple heart possest

Shall mingle tears with April’s early dew;

While still for him shall faithful Memory save

Thy form and virtues from the silent grave.

Vol. I E E1v 50

Sonnet L.

From the Novel of Celestina.

Farewel, ye lawns!—by fond remembrance blest,

As witnesses of gay unclouded hours;

Where, to maternal friendship’s bosom prest,

My happy childhood past amid your bowers.

Ye wood-walks wild!—where leaves and fairy flowers

By Spring’s luxuriant hand are strewn anew;

Rocks!—whence with shadowy grace rude nature lours

O’er glens and haunted streams!—a long adieu!

And you!—O promised Happiness!—whose voice

Deluded Fancy heard in every grove,

Bidding this tender, trusting heart, rejoice

In the bright prospect of unfailing love:

Tho’ lost to me—still may thy smile serene

Bless the dear lord of this regretted scene.

E2r 51

Sonnet LI.

From the Novel of Celestina.
Supposed to Have Been Written in the
Hebrides.

On this lone island, whose unfruitful breast

Feeds but the Summer-shepherd’s little flock

With scanty herbage from the half-clothed rock,

Where osprays, Sonnet LI.
Line 4. “Ospray.” The sea-eagle.
cormorants, and sea-mews rest;

Even in a scene so desolate and rude

I could with thee for months and years be blest;

And of thy tenderness and love possest,

Find all my world in this wild solitude!

When Summer suns these Northern seas illume,

With thee admire the light’s reflected charms,

And when drear Winter spreads his cheerless gloom,

Still find Elysium in thy shelt’ring arms:

For thou to me canst sovereign bliss impart,

Thy mind my empire—and my throne thy heart.

E2 E2v 52

Sonnet LII.

From the Novel of Celestina.
The Pilgrim.

Faultering and sad the unhappy Pilgrim roves,

Who, on the eve of bleak December’s night,

Divided far from all he fondly loves,

Journeys alone, along the giddy height

Of these steep cliffs, and as the Sun’s last ray

Fades in the West, sees, from the rocky verge,

Dark tempest scowling o’er the shortened day,

And hears, with ear appall’d, the impetuous surge

Beneath him thunder!—So, with heart oppress’d,

Alone, reluctant, desolate, and slow,

By Friendship’s cheering radiance now unblest,

Along Life’s rudest path I seem to go;

Nor see where yet the anxious heart may rest,

That, trembling at the past—recoils from future woe.

E3r 53

Sonnet LIII.

From the Novel of Celestina.
The Laplander.

The shivering native, who by Tenglio’s side

Beholds with fond regret the parting light

Sink far away, beneath the darkening tide,

And leave him to long months of dreary night,

Yet knows, that springing from the eastern wave

The Sun’s glad beams shall re-illume his way,

And from the snows secured—within his cave

He waits in patient hope—returning day.

Not so the sufferer feels, who, o’er the waste

Of joyless life, is destin’d to deplore

Fond love forgotten, tender friendship past,

Which, once extinguish’d, can revive no more!

O’er the blank void he looks with hopeless pain;

For him those beams of heaven shall never shine again.

E3v 54

Sonnet LIV.

The Sleeping Woodman.
Written in 1790-04April 1790.

Ye copses wild, where April bids arise

The vernal grasses, and the early flowers;

My soul depress’d—from human converse flies

To the lone shelter of your pathless bowers.

Lo!—where the Woodman, with his toil oppress’d,

His careless head on bark and moss reclined,

Lull’d by the song of birds, the murmuring wind,

Has sunk to calm tho’ momentary rest.

Ah! would ’twere mine in Spring’s green lap to find

Such transient respite from the ills I bear!

Would I could taste, like this unthinking hind,

“A sweet forgetfulness of human care,” Sonnet LIV.
Line 12. “A sweet forgetfulness of human care.” Pope.

Till the last sleep these weary eyes shall close,

And Death receive me to his long repose.

E4r 55

Sonnet LV.

The Return of the Nightingale.
Written in 1791-05May 1791.

Borne on the warm wing of the western gale,

How tremulously low is heard to float

Thro’ the green budding thorns that fringe the vale,

The early Nightingale’s prelusive note.

’Tis Hope’s instinctive power that thro’ the grove

Tells how benignant Heaven revives the earth;

’Tis the soft voice of young and timid love

That calls these melting sounds of sweetness forth.

With transport, once, sweet bird! I hail’d thy lay,

And bade thee welcome to our shades again,

To charm the wandering poet’s pensive way

And sooth the solitary lover’s pain;

But now!—such evils in my lot combine,

As shut my languid sense—to hope’s dear voice and
thine!

E4v 56

Sonnet LVI.

The Captive Escaped in the Wilds of America.
Addressed to the Hon. Mrs. O’Neill.

If, by his torturing, savage foes untraced,

The breathless Captive gain some trackless glade,

Yet hears the war-whoop howl along the waste,

And dreads the reptile-monsters of the shade;

The giant reeds that murmur round the flood,

Seem to conceal some hideous form beneath;

And every hollow blast that shakes the wood,

Speaks to his trembling heart of woe and death.

With horror fraught, and desolate dismay,

On such a wanderer falls the starless night;

But if, far streaming, a propitious ray

Leads to some amicable fort his sight,

He hails the beam benign that guides his way,

As I, my Harriet, bless thy friendship’s cheering light.

E5r 57

Sonnet LVII.

To Dependence.

Dependence! heavy, heavy are thy chains,

And happier they who from the dangerous sea,

Or the dark mine, procure with ceaseless pains

An hard-earn’d pittance—than who trust to thee!

More blest the hind, who from his bed of flock

Starts—when the birds of morn their summons give,

And waken’d by the lark—“the shepherd’s clock,” Sonnet LVII.
Line 7. “The lark—the shepherd’s clock.” Shakspeare.

Lives but to labour—labouring but to live.

More noble than the sycophant, whose art

Must heap with taudry flowers thy hated shrine;

I envy not the meed thou canst impart

To crown his service—while, tho’ Pride combine

With Fraud to crush me—my unfetter’d heart

Still to the Mountain Nymph Line 14. “The mountain goddess, Liberty.” Milton. may offer mine.

E5v 58

Sonnet LVIII.

The Glow-Worm.

When on some balmy-breathing night of Spring

The happy child, to whom the world is new,

Pursues the evening moth, of mealy wing,

Or from the heath-bell beats the sparkling dew;

He sees before his inexperienced eyes

The brilliant Glow-worm, like a meteor, shine

On the turf-bank;—amazed, and pleased, he cries,

“Star of the dewy grass!— Sonnet LVIII.
Line 8. “Star of the earth.” Dr. Darwin.
I make thee mine!”

Then, ere he sleep, collects “the moisten’d” Line 9. “The moisten’d blade—” Walcot’s beautiful Ode to the Glow-worm. flower,

And bids soft leaves his glittering prize enfold,

And dreams that Fairy-lamps illume his bower:

Yet with the morning shudders to behold

His lucid treasure, rayless as the dust!

—So turn the World’s bright joys to cold and blank
disgust.

E6r 59

Sonnet LIX.

Written 1791-09Sept. 1791, During a Remarkable
Thunder Storm, in Which the Moon Was
Perfectly Clear, While the Tempest
Gathered in Various Directions
Near the Earth.

What awful pageants crowd the evening sky!

The low horizon gathering vapours shroud,

Sudden, from many a deep-embattled cloud

Terrific thunders burst and lightnings fly—

While in serenest azure, beaming high,

Night’s regent, of her calm pavilion proud,

Gilds the dark shadows that beneath her lie,

Unvex’d by all their conflicts fierce and loud.

—So, in unsullied dignity elate,

A spirit conscious of superior worth,

In placid elevation firmly great,

Scorns the vain cares that give Contention birth;

And blest with peace above the shocks of Fate,

Smiles at the tumult of the troubled earth.

E6v 60

Ode to Despair.

From the Novel of Emmeline.

Thou spectre of terrific mein!

Lord of the hopeless heart and hollow eye,

In whose fierce train each form is seen

That drives sick Reason to insanity!

I woo thee with unusual prayer,

“Grim visaged, comfortless Despair:”

Approach; in me a willing victim find,

Who seeks thine iron sway—and calls thee kind!

Ah! hide for ever from my sight

The faithless flatterer Hope—whose pencil, gay,

Pourtrays some vision of delight,

Then bids the fairy tablet fade away;

While in dire contrast, to mine eyes,

Thy phantoms, yet more hideous, rise,

E7r 61

And Memory draws from Pleasure’s wither’d flower,

Corrosives for the heart—of fatal power!

I bid the traitor Love, adieu!

Who to this fond believing bosom came,

A guest insidious and untrue,

With Pity’s soothing voice—in Friendship’s name;

The wounds he gave, nor Time shall cure,

Nor Reason teach me to endure.

And to that breast mild Patience pleads in vain,

Which feels the curse—of meriting its pain.

Yet not to me, tremendous Power!

Thy worst of spirit-wounding pangs impart,

With which, in dark conviction’s hour,

Thou strikest the guilty unrepentant heart

But of illusion long the sport,

That dreary, tranquil gloom I court,

Where my past errors I may still deplore,

And dream of long-lost happiness no more!

E7v 62

To thee I give this tortured breast,

Where Hope arises but to foster pain;

Ah! lull its agonies to rest!

Ah! let me never be deceived again!

But callous, in thy deep repose,

Behold, in long array, the woes

Of the dread future, calm and undismay’d,

Till I may claim the hope—that shall not fade!

Plate 5

Elegy

A woman on her knees in a graveyard near the sea.

Corbould del.delineavit
Heath sculpt.sculptit

Publish’d 1789-01-01Jany. 1. 1789. by T. Cadell Strand.

E8r 63

Elegy. Elegy. This elegy is written on the supposition that an indigent
young woman had been addressed by the son of
a wealthy yeoman, who resenting his attachment, had
driven him from home, and compelled him to have
recourse for subsistence to the occupation of a pilot,
in which, in attempting to save a vessel in distress, he
perished.
The father dying, a tomb is supposed to be erected
to his memory in the church-yard mentioned in Sonnet
the 44th. And while a tempest is gathering, the I1r 105
unfortunate young woman comes thither; and courting
the same death as had robbed her of her lover, she
awaits its violence, and is at length overwhelmed by
the waves.

“Dark gathering clouds involve the threatening
skies,

The sea heaves conscious of the impending gloom,

Deep, hollow murmurs from the cliffs arise;

They come—the Spirits of the Tempest come!

Oh! may such terrors mark the approaching night

As reign’d on that these streaming eyes deplore!

Flash, ye red fires of heaven, with fatal light,

And with conflicting winds ye waters roar!

Loud and more loud, ye foaming billows, burst!

Ye warring elements, more fiercely rave!

Till the wide waves o’erwhelm the spot accurst

‘Where ruthless Avarice finds a quiet grave!’”

E8v 64

Thus with clasp’d hands, wild looks, and streaming hair,

While shrieks of horror broke her trembling speech,

A wretched maid—the victim of despair,

Survey’d the threatening storm and desart beech:

Then to the tomb where now the father slept

Whose rugged nature bade her sorrows flow,

Frantic she turn’d—and beat her breast and wept,

Invoking vengeance on the dust below.

“Lo! rising there above each humbler heap,

Yon cypher’d stones his name and wealth relate,

Who gave his son—remorseless—to the deep,

While I, his living victim, curse my fate.

Oh! my lost love! no tomb is placed for thee,

That may to strangers eyes thy worth impart;

Thou hast no grave but in the stormy sea,

And no memorial but this breaking heart.

F1r 65

Forth to the world, a widow’d wanderer driven,

I pour to winds and waves the unheeded tear,

Try with vain effort to submit to Heaven,

And fruitless call on him—‘who cannot hear.’ Verse 8. Line 4. “And fruitless call on him—‘who cannot hear’.” “I fruitless mourn to him who cannot hear, And weep the more because I weep in vain.” Gray’s exquisite Sonnet; in reading which it is impossible not to regret that he
wrote only one.

Oh! might I fondly clasp him once again,

While o’er my head the infuriate billows pour,

Forget in death this agonizing pain,

And feel his father’s cruelty no more!

Part, raging waters! part, and shew beneath,

In your dread caves, his pale and mangled form;

Now, while the demons of despair and death

Ride on the blast, and urge the howling storm!

Lo! by the lightning’s momentary blaze,

I see him rise the whitening waves above,

No longer such as when in happier days

He gave the enchanted hours—to me and love.

Vol. I F F1v 66

Such, as when daring the enchafed sea,

And courting dangerous toil, he often said

That every peril, one soft smile from me,

One sigh of speechless tenderness o’erpaid.

But dead, disfigured, while between the roar

Of the loud waves his accents pierce mine ear,

And seem to say—Ah, wretch! delay no more,

But come, unhappy mourner—meet me here.

Yet, powerful Fancy, bid the phantom stay,

Still let me hear him!—’Tis already past;

Along the waves his shadow glides away,

I lose his voice amid the deafening blast.

Ah! wild illusion, born of frantic pain!

He hears not, comes not from his watery bed;

My tears, my anguish, my despair are vain,

The insatiate Ocean gives not up its dead.

F2r 67

’Tis not his voice! Hark! the deep thunders roll;

Upheaves the ground; the rocky barriers fail;

Approach, ye horrors that delight my soul,

Despair, and Death, and Desolation, hail!”

The Ocean hears—The embodied waters come—

Rise o’er the land, and with resistless sweep

Tear from its base the proud aggressor’s tomb,

And bear the injured to eternal sleep!

F2v 68

Song.

From the French of Cardinal Bernis.

I.

Fruit of Aurora’s tears, fair rose,

On whose soft leaves fond Zephyrs play,

Oh! queen of flowers, thy buds disclose,

And give thy fragrance to the day;

Unveil thy transient charms:—ah, no!

A little be thy bloom delay’d,

Since the same hour that bids thee blow,

Shall see thee droop thy languid head.

II.

But go! and on Themira’s breast

Find, happy flower! thy throne and tomb;

While, jealous of a fate so blest,

How shall I envy thee thy doom!

F3r 69

Should some rude hand approach thee there,

Guard the sweet shrine thou wilt adorn;

Ah! punish those who rashly dare,

And for my rivals keep thy thorn.

III.

Love shall himself thy boughs compose,

And bid thy wanton leaves divide;

He’ll shew thee how, my lovely rose,

To deck her bosom, not to hide:

And thou shalt tell the cruel maid

How frail are youth and beauty’s charms,

And teach her, ere her own shall fade,

To give them to her lover’s arms.

F3v 70

The
Origin of Flattery. The Origin of Flattery. This little poem was written almost extempore on
occasion of a conversation where many pleasant things
were said on the subject of flattery; and some French
gentlemen who were of the party enquired for a synonime
in English to the French word “fleurette”. The I I1v 106
poem was inserted in the two first editions, and having
been asked for by very respectable subscribers to the
present, it is reprinted. The sonnets have been thought
too gloomy; and the author has been advised to insert
some of a more cheerful cast. This poem may by
others be thought too gay, and is indeed so little in
unison with the present sentiments and feelings of its
author, that it had been wholly omitted but for the
respectable approbation of those to whose judgment
she owed implicit deference.

When Jove, in anger to the sons of earth,

Bid artful Vulcan give Pandora birth,

And sent the fatal gift which spread below

O’er all the wretched race contagious woe,

Unhappy man, by vice and folly tost,

Found in the storms of life his quiet lost,

While Envy, Avarice, and Ambition, hurl’d

Discord and death around the warring world;

Then the blest peasant left his fields and fold,

And barter’d love and peace for power and gold;

Left his calm cottage and his native plain,

In search of wealth to tempt the faithless main;

Or, braving danger, in the battle stood,

And bathed his savage hands in human blood;

F4r 71

No longer then, his woodland walks among,

The shepherd lad his genuine passion sung,

Or sought at early morn his soul’s delight,

Or graved her name upon the bark at night;

To deck her flowing hair no more he wove

The simple wreath, or with ambitious love

Bound his own brow with myrtle or with bay,

But broke his pipe, or threw his crook away.

The nymphs forsaken, other pleasures sought;

Then first for gold their venal hearts were bought,

And nature’s blush to sickly art gave place,

And affectation seized the seat of grace:

No more simplicity by sense refined,

Or generous sentiment, possess’d the mind;

No more they felt each other’s joy and woe,

And Cupid fled, and hid his useless bow.

But with deep grief propitious Venus pined,

To see the ills which threaten’d womankind;

Ills that she knew her empire would disarm,

And rob her subjects of their sweetest charm;

F4v 72

Good humour’s potent influence destroy,

And change for lowering frowns the smile of joy.

Then deeply sighing at the mournful view,

She try’d at length what heavenly art could do

To bring back Pleasure to her pensive train,

And vindicate the glories of her reign.

A thousand little loves attend the task,

And bear from Mars’s head his radiant casque,

The fair enchantress on its silver bound

Weaved with soft spells her magic cestus round.

Then shaking from her hair ambrosial dew,

Infused fair hope, and expectation new,

And stifled wishes, and persuasive sighs,

And fond belief, and “eloquence of eyes,”

And falt’ring accents, which explain so well

What studied speeches vainly try to tell;

And more pathetic silence, which imparts

Infectious tenderness to feeling hearts;

Soft tones of pity; fascinating smiles;

And Maia’s son assisted her with wiles,

F5r 73

And brought gay dreams, fantastic visions brought,

And waved his wand o’er the seducing draught.

Then Zephyr came: to him the goddess cry’d,

“Go fetch from Flora all her flowery pride

To fill my charm, each scented bud that blows,

And bind my myrtles with her thornless rose;

Then speed thy flight to Gallia’s smiling plain,

Where rolls the Loire, the Garonne, and the Seine;

Dip in their waters thy celestial wing,

And the soft dew to fill my chalice bring;

But chiefly tell thy Flora, that to me

She send a bouquet of her fleurs de lys;

That poignant spirit will complete my spell.”

—’Tis done: the lovely sorceress says ’tis well.

And now Apollo lends a ray of fire,

The cauldron bubbles, and the flames aspire;

The watchful Graces round the circle dance,

With arms entwined to mark the work’s advance;

And with full quiver sportive Cupid came,

Temp’ring his favourite arrows in the flame.

F5v 74

Then Venus speaks, the wavering flames retire,

And Zephyr’s breath extinguishes the fire.

At length the goddess in the helmet’s round

A sweet and subtil spirit duly found,

More soft than oil, than æther more refined,

Of power to cure the woes of womankind,

And call’d it Flattery:—balm of female life,

It charms alike the widow, maid, and wife;

Clears the sad brow of virgins in despair,

And smooths the cruel traces left by care;

Bids palsied age with youthful spirit glow,

And hangs May’s garlands on December’s snow.

Delicious essence! howsoe’er apply’d,

By what rude nature is thy charm deny’d?

Some form seducing still thy whisper wears,

Stern Wisdom turns to thee her willing ears,

And Prudery listens and forgets her fears.

The rustic nymph whom rigid aunts restrain,

Condemn’d to dress, and practise airs in vain,

F6r 75

At thy first summons finds her bosom swell,

And bids her crabbed gouvernantes farewel;

While, fired by thee with spirit not her own,

She grows a toast, and rises into ton.

The faded beauty who with secret pain

Sees younger charms usurp her envied reign,

By thee assisted, can with smiles behold

The record where her conquests are enroll’d;

And dwelling yet on scenes by memory nursed,

When George the Second reign’d, or George the First;

She sees the shades of ancient beaux arise,

Who swear her eyes exceeded modern eyes,

When poets sung for her, and lovers bled,

And giddy fashion follow’d as she led.

Departed modes appear in long array,

The flowers and flounces of her happier day;

Again her locks the decent fillets bind,

The waving lappet flutters in the wind,

And then comparing with a proud disdain

The more fantastic tastes that now obtain,

F6v 76

She deems ungraceful, trifling and absurd,

The gayer world that moves round George the Third.

Nor thy soft influence will the train refuse,

Who court in distant shades the modest Muse,

Tho’ in a form more pure and more refined,

Thy soothing spirit meets the letter’d mind.

Not Death itself thine empire can destroy;

Tow’rds thee, even then, we turn the languid eye;

Still trust in thee to bid our memory bloom,

And scatter roses round the silent tomb.

F7r 77

The
Peasant of the Alps.

From the Novel of Celestina.

Where cliffs arise by winter crown’d,

And thro’ dark groves of pine around,

Down the deep chasms the snow-fed torrents foam,

Within some hollow, shelter’d from the storms,

The Peasant of the Alps his cottage forms,

And builds his humble, happy home.

Unenvied is the rich domain,

That far beneath him on the plain

Waves its wide harvests and its olive groves;

More dear to him his hut with plantain thatch’d,

Where long his unambitious heart attach’d,

Finds all he wishes, all he loves.

F7v 78

There dwells the mistress of his heart,

And Love, who teaches every art,

Has bid him dress the spot with fondest care;

When borrowing from the vale its fertile soil,

He climbs the precipice with patient toil,

To plant her favorite flowrets there.

With native shrubs, an hardy race,

There the green myrtle finds a place,

And roses there the dewy leaves decline;

While from the craggs abrupt, and tangled steeps,

With bloom and fruit the Alpine berry peeps,

And, blushing, mingles with the vine.

His garden’s simple produce stored,

Prepared for him by hands adored,

Is all the little luxury he knows.

And by the same dear hands are softly spread,

The Chamois’ velvet spoil that forms the bed,

Where in her arms he finds repose.

F8r 79

But absent from the calm abode,

Dark thunder gathers round his road,

Wild raves the wind, the arrowy lightnings flash,

Returning quick the murmuring rocks among,

His faint heart trembling as he winds along;

Alarm’d—he listens to the crash

Of rifted ice!—Oh, man of woe!

O’er his dear cot—a mass of snow,

By the storm sever’d from the cliff above,

Has fallen—and buried in its marble breast,

All that for him—lost wretch—the world possest,

His home, his happiness, his love!

Aghast the heart-struck mourner stands,

Glazed are his eyes—convulsed his hands,

O’erwhelming anguish checks his labouring breath;

Crush’d by despair’s intolerable weight,

Frantic he seeks the mountain’s giddiest height,

And headlong seeks relief in death.

F8v 80

A fate too similar is mine,

But I—in lingering pain repine,

And still my lost felicity deplore;

Cold, cold to me is that dear breast become

Where this poor heart had fondly fix’d its home,

And love and happiness are mine no more.

G1r 81

Song.

Does Pity give, tho’ Fate denies,

And to my wounds her balm impart?

O speak—with those expressive eyes!

Let one low sigh escape thine heart.

The gazing croud shall never guess

What anxious, watchful Love can see;

Nor know what those soft looks express,

Nor dream that sigh is meant for me.

Ah! words are useless, words are vain,

Thy generous sympathy to prove;

And well that sigh, those looks explain,

That Clara mourns my hapless love.

Vol. I. G G1v 82

Thirty-Eight.

Addressed to Mrs. H――y.

In early youth’s unclouded scene,

The brilliant morning of eighteen,

With health and sprightly joy elate

We gazed on life’s enchanting spring,

Nor thought how quickly time would bring

The mournful period――Thirty-eight.

Then the starch maid, or matron sage,

Already of that sober age,

We view’d with mingled scorn and hate;

In whose sharp words, or sharper face,

With thoughtless mirth we loved to trace

The sad effects of――Thirty-eight.

G2r 83

Till saddening, sickening at the view,

We learn’d to dread what Time might do;

And then preferr’d a prayer to Fate

To end our days ere that arrived;

When (power and pleasure long survived)

We met neglect and――Thirty-eight.

But Time, in spite of wishes flies,

And Fate our simple prayer denies,

And bids us Death’s own hour await:

The auburn locks are mix’d with grey,

The transient roses fade away,

But Reason comes at――Thirty-eight.

Her voice the anguish contradicts

That dying vanity inflicts;

Her hand new pleasures can create,

For us she opens to the view

Prospects less bright—but far more true,

And bids us smile at――Thirty-eight.

G2 G2v 84

No more shall Scandal’s breath destroy

The social converse we enjoy

With bard or critic tête à tête;—

O’er Youth’s bright blooms her blights shall pour,

But spare the improving friendly hour

That Science gives to――Thirty-eight.

Stripp’d of their gaudy hues by Truth,

We view the glitt’ring toys of youth,

And blush to think how poor the bait

For which to public scenes we ran

And scorn’d of sober Sense the plan

Which gives content at――Thirty-eight.

Tho’ Time’s inexorable sway

Has torn the myrtle bands away,

For other wreaths ’tis not too late,

The amaranth’s purple glow survives,

And still Minerva’s olive lives

On the calm brow of——Thirty-eight.

G3r 85

With eye more steady we engage

To contemplate approaching age,

And life more justly estimate;

With firmer souls, and stronger powers,

With reason, faith, and friendship ours,

We’ll not regret the stealing hours

That lead from Thirty――even to Forty-eight.

G3v 86

Verses

Intended to Have Been Prefixed to the Novel
of Emmeline, But Then Suppressed.

O’erwhelm’d with sorrow, and sustaining long

“The proud man’s contumely, th’ oppressor’s wrong,”

Languid despondency, and vain regret,

Must my exhausted spirit struggle yet?

Yes!—Robb’d myself of all that fortune gave,

Even of all hope—but shelter in the grave,

Still shall the plaintive lyre essay its powers

To dress the cave of Care with Fancy’s flowers,

Maternal Love the fiend Despair withstand,

Still animate the heart and guide the hand.

—May you, dear objects of my anxious care,

Escape the evils I was born to bear!

Round my devoted head while tempests roll,

Yet there, where I have treasured up my soul,

G4r 87

May the soft rays of dawning hope impart

Reviving Patience to my fainting heart;—

And when its sharp solicitudes shall cease,

May I be conscious in the realms of peace

That every tear which swells my children’s eyes,

From sorrows past, not present ills arise.

Then, with some friend who loves to share your pain,

For ’tis my boast that some such friends remain,

By filial grief, and fond remembrance prest,

You’ll seek the spot where all my sorrows rest;

Recal my hapless days in sad review,

The long calamities I bore for you,

And—with an happier fate—resolve to prove

How well you merited—your mother’s love.

G4v G5r

Quotations, Notes,
and Explanations.

Sonnet I.
Line 13. “Ah! then, how dear the Muse’s favours cost, If those paint sorrow best—who feel it most!” “The well-sung woes shall sooth my pensive ghost; He best can paint them who shall feel them most.” Pope’s Eloisa to Abelard, 366th line.
Sonnet II.
Line 3.
“Anemonies, that spangled every grove.” Anemony Nemeroso. The wood Anemony.
G5v 90 Sonnet III.
Line 1. The idea from the 43rd Sonnet of Petrarch. Secondo
parte.
“Quel rosigniuol, che si soave piagnepiange.”
Sonnet V.
Line 2. “Your turf, your flowers among.” “Whose turf, whose shades, whose flowers among.” Gray.
Line 9. “Aruna!” The river Arun. Sonnet VI.
Line 12. “For me the vernal garland blooms no more.” Pope’s Imit. 1st Ode 4th Book of Horace.
G6r 91 Line 13. “Misery’s Love.” Shakspeare’s King John. Sonnet VII.
Line 4. “On the Night’s dull ear.” Shakspeare.
Line 5. “Whether on Spring”— Alludes to the supposed
migration of the Nightingale.
Line 7. “The pensive Muse shall own thee for his mate.” “Whether the Muse or Love call thee his mate. Both them I serve, and of their train am I.” Milton’s First Sonnet. G6v 92 Sonnet VIII.
Line 14. “Have power to cure all sadness—but despair!” “To the heart inspires Vernal delight and joy, able to drive All sadness but despair.” Paradise Lost, Fourth Book.
Sonnet IX.
Line 10. “And laugh at tears themselves have forced to flow.” “And hard unkindness’ alter’d eye, That mocks the tear it forced to flow.” Gray.
Sonnet XI.
Line 4. “Float in light vision round my aching head.” “Float in light vision round the poet’s head.” Mason.
G7r 93 Line 7. “And the poor sea boy, in the rudest hour, Enjoys thee more than he who wears a crown.” “Wilt thou upon the high and giddy mast Seal up the ship boy’s eyes, and rock his brains In cradle of the rude impetuous surge?” &c. Shakspeare’s Henry IV. Sonnet XII.
Line 8. “And suits the mournful temper of my soul.” Young.
Sonnet XIII.
Line 1. “Pommi ove’l Sol, occide i fiori e l’erba.” Petrarch, Sonnetto 112. Parte primo.
G7v 94 Sonnet XIV.
Line 1. “Erano i capei d’oro all aura sparsi.” Sonnetto 69. Parte primo.
Sonnet XV.
Line 1. “Se lamentar augelli o verdi fronde.” Sonnetto 21. Parte secondo.
Sonnet XVI.
Line 1. “Valle che de lamenti miei se piena.” Sonnetto 33. Parte secondo.
Sonnet XVII.
Line 1. “Scrivo in te l’amato nome Di colei, per cui, mi moro.” G8r 95 This is not meant as a translation; the original is
much longer, and full of images, which could not be
introduced in a Sonnet.—And some of them, though
very beautiful in the Italian, would not appear to advantage
in an English dress.
Sonnet XXI.
Line 5. “Poor Maniac.” See the Story of the Lunatic. “Is this the destiny of man? Is he only happy
before he possesses his reason, or after he has lost it?—
Full of hope you go to gather flowers in Winter, and
are grieved not to find any—and do not know why
they cannot be found.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.
Line 8. “And drink delicious poison from thine eye.” Pope. G8v 96 Sonnet XXII.
Line 1. “I climb steep rocks, I break my way through
copses, among thorns and briars which tear me to
pieces, and I feel a little relief.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume First.
Sonnet XXIII.
Line 1. “The greater Bear, favourite of all the constellations;
for when I left you of an evening it used to
shine opposite your window.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.
Sonnet XXIV.
Line 1. “At the corner of the church-yard which looks
towards the fields, there are two lime trees—it is there
I wish to rest.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.
H1r 97 Sonnet XXV.
Line 1. “May my death remove every obstacle to your
happiness.—Be at peace, I intreat you be at peace.”
Sorrows of Werter. Volume Second.
Line 11. “When worms shall feed on this devoted heart, Where even thy image shall be found no more.” From a line in Rousseau’s Eloisa. Sonnet XXVI.
Line 5. “For with the infant Otway, lingering here.” Otway was born at Trotten, a village in Sussex. Of
Woolbeding, another village on the banks of the
Arun (which runs through them both), his father was
rector. Here it was therefore that he probably passed many of his early years. The Arun is here an inconsiderableVol. I H H1v 98
stream, winding in a channel deeply worn,
among meadow, heath, and wood.
Sonnet XXVII.
Line 4. “Content, and careless of to-morrow’s fare.” Thomson.
Sonnet XXVII.
Line 9. “Balmy hand to bind.” Collins.
Sonnet XXX.
Line 6. “Bindwith.” The plant Clematis, Bindwith, Virgin’s Bower,
or Traveller’s Joy, which towards the end of June
begins to cover the hedges and sides of rocky hollows
with its beautiful foliage, and flowers of a yellowish H2r 99
white of an agreeable fragrance; these are succeeded
by seed pods that bear some resemblance to feathers
or hair, whence it is sometimes called “Old Man’s
Beard.”
Line 9. “Banks! which inspired thy Otway’s plaintive strain! Wilds! whose lorn echoes learn’d the deeper tone Of Collins’ powerful shell!” Collins, as well as Otway, was a native of this
country, and probably at some period of his life an
inhabitant of this neighbourhood, since in his beautiful
Ode on the Death of Colonel Ross, he says, “The Muse shall still, with social aid, Her gentlest promise keep; E’en humble Harting’s cottaged vale Shall learn the sad repeated tale, And bid her shepherds weep.” H2 H2v 100
And in the Ode to Pity: “Wild Arun too has heard thy strains, And Echo, ’midst thy native plains, Been sooth’d with Pity’s lute.”
Sonnet XXXI.
Line 2. “Alpine flowers.” An infinite variety of plants are found on these
hills, particularly about this spot: many sorts of
Orchis and Cistus of singular beauty, with several
others.
Sonnet XXXIII.
Line 9. “Thy natives.” Otway, Collins, Hayley.
H3r 101 Sonnet XLII.
Line 8. “The shrieking night-jar sail on heavy wing.” The night-jar or night hawk, a dark bird not so big
as a rook, which is frequently seen of an evening on
the downs. It has a short heavy flight, then rests on
the ground, and again, uttering a mournful cry, flits
before the traveller, to whom its appearance is supposed
by the peasants to portend misfortune. As I
have never seen it dead, I know not to what species
it belongs.
Sonnet XLIV.
Line 7. Middleton is a village on the margin of the sea, in
Sussex, containing only two or three houses. There
were formerly several acres of ground between its small
church and the sea, which now, by its continual encroachments, H3v 102
approaches within a few feet of this
half ruined and humble edifice. The wall, which
once surrounded the church-yard, is entirely swept
away, many of the graves broken up, and the remains
of bodies interred washed into the sea: whence human
bones are found among the sand and shingles on the
shore.
Sonnet XLV.
Line 11. “The enthusiast of the lyre who wander’d here.” Collins.See note to Sonnet 30.
Sonnet XLVI.
Line 8. “But where now clamours the discordant hern.” In the park at Penshurst is an heronry. The house
is at present uninhabited, and the windows of the
galleries and other rooms, in which there are many
invaluable pictures, are never opened but when strangers
visit it.
H4r 103 Line 12. Algernon Sidney. Sonnet LI.
Line 4. “Ospray.” The sea-eagle.
Sonnet LIV.
Line 12. “A sweet forgetfulness of human care.” Pope.
Sonnet LVII.
Line 7. “The lark—the shepherd’s clock.” Shakspeare.
Line 14. “The mountain goddess, Liberty.” Milton. H4v 104 Sonnet LVIII.
Line 8. “Star of the earth.” Dr. Darwin.
Line 9. “The moisten’d blade—” Walcot’s beautiful Ode to the Glow-worm. Elegy. This elegy is written on the supposition that an indigent
young woman had been addressed by the son of
a wealthy yeoman, who resenting his attachment, had
driven him from home, and compelled him to have
recourse for subsistence to the occupation of a pilot,
in which, in attempting to save a vessel in distress, he
perished.
The father dying, a tomb is supposed to be erected
to his memory in the church-yard mentioned in Sonnet
the 44th. And while a tempest is gathering, the I1r 105
unfortunate young woman comes thither; and courting
the same death as had robbed her of her lover, she
awaits its violence, and is at length overwhelmed by
the waves.
Verse 8. Line 4. “And fruitless call on him—‘who cannot hear’.” “I fruitless mourn to him who cannot hear, And weep the more because I weep in vain.” Gray’s exquisite Sonnet; in reading which it is impossible not to regret that he
wrote only one.
The Origin of Flattery. This little poem was written almost extempore on
occasion of a conversation where many pleasant things
were said on the subject of flattery; and some French
gentlemen who were of the party enquired for a synonime
in English to the French word “fleurette”. The I I1v 106
poem was inserted in the two first editions, and having
been asked for by very respectable subscribers to the
present, it is reprinted. The sonnets have been thought
too gloomy; and the author has been advised to insert
some of a more cheerful cast. This poem may by
others be thought too gay, and is indeed so little in
unison with the present sentiments and feelings of its
author, that it had been wholly omitted but for the
respectable approbation of those to whose judgment
she owed implicit deference.

Finis.

A1r

Elegiac Sonnets,
and
Other Poems,

By Charlotte Smith.

Vol. II.

Second Edition.
“Non t’ appressar ove sia riso e canto Canzone mio, nò, ma pianto: Non fa per te di star con gente allegra Vedova sconsolata, in vesta nigra. ” Petrarcha.

London:
Printed for T. Cadell, Junior, and W. Davies
in The Strand; by R. Noble, Shire-Lane.
18001800.

A1v A2r
A4v B1r

Elegiac Sonnets.

Sonnet LX.

To an Amiable Girl.

Miranda! mark where shrinking from the gale,

Its silken leaves yet moist with early dew,

That fair faint flower, the Lily of the Vale,

Droops its meek head, and looks, methinks, like you!

Wrapp’d in a shadowy veil of tender green,

Its snowy bells a soft perfume dispense,

And bending as reluctant to be seen,

In simple loveliness it sooths the sense.

With bosom bared to meet the garish day,

The glaring Tulip, gaudy, undismay’d,

Offends the eye of taste; that turns away

To seek the Lily in her fragrant shade.

With such unconscious beauty, pensive, mild,

Miranda charms—Nature’s soft modest child.

Vol. II B B1v 2

Sonnet LXI.

Supposed to Have Been Written in America.

Ill-omen’d bird! whose cries portentous float Sonnet LXI.
Line 1. “Ill-omen’d bird! whose cries portentous float.” This Sonnet, first inserted in the Novel called the
Old Manor House, is founded on a superstition attributed
(vide Bertram’s Travels in America) to the Indians,
who believe that the cry of this night-hawk
Caprimulgus Americanus portends some evil, and
when they are at war, assert that it is never heard near
their tents or habitations but to announce the death of
some brave warrior of their tribe, or some other calamity.

O’er yon savannah with the mournful wind;

While, as the Indian hears your piercing note,

Dark dread of future evil fills his mind;

Wherefore with early lamentation break

The dear delusive visions of repose?

Why from so short felicity awake

My wounded senses to substantial woes?

O’er my sick soul thus rous’d from transient rest,

Pale Superstition sheds her influence drear,

And to my shuddering fancy would suggest

Thou com’st to speak of every woe I fear.

Ah! Reason little o’er the soul prevails,

When, from ideal ill, the enfeebled spirit fails!

B2r 3

Sonnet LXII. Sonnet LXII. First published in the same work.

Written on Passing by Moon-Light Through
a Village, While the Ground was
Covered with Snow.

While thus I wander, cheerless and unblest,

And find in change of place but change of pain;

In tranquil sleep the village labourers rest,

And taste that quiet I pursue in vain!

Hush’d is the hamlet now, and faintly gleam

The dying embers, from the casement low

Of the thatch’d cottage; while the Moon’s wan beam

Lends a new lustre to the dazzling snow.

O’er the cold waste, amid the freezing night,

Scarce heeding whither, desolate I stray;

For me, pale Eye of Evening, thy soft light

Leads to no happy home; my weary way

Ends but in sad vicissitudes of care:

I only fly from doubt—to meet despair!

B2 B2v 4

Sonnet LXIII.

The Gossamer.

O’er faded heath-flowers spun, or thorny furze, Sonnet LXIII.
Line 1. “O’er faded heath-flowers spun, or horny furze.” The web, charged with innumerable globules of
bright dew, that is frequently on heaths and commons
in autumnal mornings, can hardly have escaped the
observation of any lover of nature—The slender web
of the field spider is again alluded to in Sonnet lxxvii.

The filmy Gossamer is lightly spread;

Waving in every sighing air that stirs,

As Fairy fingers had entwined the thread:

A thousand trembling orbs of lucid dew

Spangle the texture of the fairy loom,

As if soft Sylphs, lamenting as they flew,

Had wept departed Summer’s transient bloom:

But the wind rises, and the turf receives

The glittering web:—So, evanescent, fade

Bright views that Youth with sanguine heart believes:

So vanish schemes of bliss, by Fancy made;

Which, fragile as the fleeting dews of morn,

Leave but the wither’d heath, and barren thorn!

B3r 5

Sonnet LXIV. Sonnet LXIV. First printed in the Novel of The Banished Man.

Written at Bristol in the Summer of 17941794.

Here from the restless bed of lingering pain

The languid sufferer seeks the tepid wave,

And feels returning health and hope again

Disperse “the gathering shadows of the grave!”

And here romantic rocks that boldly swell,

Fringed with green woods, or stain’d with veins of ore,

Call’d native Genius forth, whose Heav’n-taught skill

Charm’d the deep echos of the rifted shore.

But tepid waves, wild scenes, or summer air,

Restore they palsied Fancy, woe-deprest?

Check they the torpid influence of Despair,

Or bid warm Health re-animate the breast;

Where Hope’s soft visions have no longer part,

And whose sad inmate is—a broken heart?

B3v 6

Sonnet LXV. Sonnet LXV. To the excellent friend and Physician to whom
these lines are addressed, I was obliged for the kindest I1r 113
attention, and for the recovery from one dangerous
illness of that beloved child whom a few months afterwards
his skill and most unremitted and disinterested
exertions could not save!

To Dr. Parry of Bath, With Some Botanic
Drawings Which Had Been Made Some
Years.

In happier hours, ere yet so keenly blew

Adversity’s cold blight, and bitter storms,

Luxuriant Summer’s evanescent forms,

And spring’s soft blooms with pencil light I drew:

But as the lovely family of flowers

Shrink from the bleakness of the Northern blast,

So fail from present care and sorrow past

The slight botanic pencil’s mimic powers—

Nor will kind Fancy even by Memory’s aid,

Her visionary garlands now entwine;

Yet while the wreaths of Hope and Pleasure fade,

Still is one flower of deathless blossom mine,

That dares the lapse of Time, and Tempest rude,

The unfading Amaranth of Gratitude.

B4r 7

Sonnet LXVI. Sonnet LXVI. Written on the coast of Sussex during very tempestuous
weather in 1791-12December 1791, but first published
in the Novel of Montalbert.

Written in a Tempestuous Night, on the
Coast of Sussex.

The night-flood rakes upon the stony shore;

Along the rugged cliffs and chalky caves

Mourns the hoarse Ocean, seeming to deplore

All that are buried in his restless waves—

Mined by corrosive tides, the hollow rock

Falls prone, and rushing from its turfy height,

Shakes the broad beach with long-resounding shock,

Loud thundering on the ear of sullen Night;

Above the desolate and stormy deep,

Gleams the wan Moon, by floating mist opprest;

Yet here while youth, and health, and labour sleep,

Alone I wander—Calm untroubled rest,

“Nature’s soft nurse,” deserts the sigh-swoln breast,

And shuns the eyes, that only wake to weep!

B4v 8

Sonnet LXVII. Sonnet LXVII. Printed in the same work.

On Passing Over a Dreary Tract of Country,
and Near the Ruins of a Deserted
Chapel, During a Tempest.

Swift fleet the billowy clouds along the sky,

Earth seems to shudder at the storm aghast;

While only beings as forlorn as I,

Court the chill horrors of the howling blast.

Even round yon crumbling walls, in search of food,

The ravenous Owl foregoes his evening flight,

And in his cave, within the deepest wood,

The Fox eludes the tempest of the night.

But to my heart congenial is the gloom

Which hides me from a World I wish to shun;

That scene where Ruin saps the mouldering tomb,

Suits with the sadness of a wretch undone.

Nor is the deepest shade, the keenest air,

Black as my fate, or cold as my despair.

B5r 9

Sonnet LXVIII.

Written at Exmouth, 1795-06-24Midsummer, 1795.

Fall, dews of Heaven, upon my burning breast,

Bathe with cool drops these ever-streaming eyes;

Ye gentle Winds, that fan the balmy West,

With the soft rippling tide of morning rise,

And calm my bursting heart, as here I keep

The vigil of the wretched!—Now away

Fade the pale stars, as wavering o’er the deep

Soft rosy tints announce another day,

The day of --06-24Middle Summer!—Ah! in vain

To those who mourn like me, does radiant June

Lead on her fragrant hours; for hopeless pain

Darkens with sullen clouds the Sun of Noon,

And veil’d in shadows Nature’s face appears

To hearts o’erwhelm’d with grief, to eyes suffused with
tears.

B5v 10

Sonnet LXIX.

Written at the Same Place, On Seeing a
Seaman Return Who Had Been
Imprisoned at Rochfort.

Clouds, gold and purple, o’er the westering ray

Threw a bright veil, and catching lights between,

Fell on the glancing sail, that we had seen

With soft, but adverse winds, throughout the day

Contending vainly: as the vessel nears,

Encreasing numbers hail it from the shore;

Lo! on the deck a pallid form appears,

Half wondering to behold himself once more

Approach his home—And now he can discern

His cottage thatch amid surrounding trees;

Yet, trembling, dreads lest sorrow or disease

Await him there, embittering his return:

But all he loves are safe; with heart elate,

Tho’ poor and plunder’d, he absolves his fate!

A lunatic and the poet standing on the edge of a cliff.

R. Corbould del.delineavit
J. Heath R. A. sculp.sculptit

“In moody Sadness on the giddy Brink
I view him more with Envy than with Fear.”

Published 1797-05-15May 15th. 1797 by Cadell and Davies Strand.

B6r 11

Sonnet LXX.

On Being Cautioned Against Walking on an
Headland Overlooking the Sea, Because
it Was Frequented by a Lunatic.

Is there a solitary wretch who hies

To the tall cliff, with starting pace or slow,

And, measuring, views with wild and hollow eyes

Its distance from the waves that chide below;

Who, as the sea-born gale with frequent sighs

Chills his cold bed upon the mountain turf,

With hoarse, half-utter’d lamentation, lies

Murmuring responses to the dashing surf?

In moody sadness, on the giddy brink,

I see him more with envy than with fear;

He has no “nice felicities” that shrink Sonnet LXX.
Line 11. “He has ‘no nice felicities that shrink.’” “’Tis delicate felicity that shrinks When rocking winds are loud.” Walpole.

From giant horrors; wildly wandering here,

He seems (uncursed with reason) not to know

The depth or the duration of his woe.

B6v 12

Sonnet LXXI.

Written at Weymouth in Winter.

The chill waves whiten in the sharp North-east;

Cold, cold the night-blast comes, with sullen sound;

And black and gloomy, like my cheerless breast,

Frowns the dark pier and lonely sea-view round.

Yet a few months—and on the peopled strand

Pleasure shall all her varied forms display;

Nymphs lightly tread the bright reflecting sand,

And proud sails whiten all the summer bay:

Then, for these winds that whistle keen and bleak,

Music’s delightful melodies shall float

O’er the blue waters; but ’tis mine to seek

Rather, some unfrequented shade, remote

From sights and sounds of gaiety――I mourn

All that gave me delight――Ah! never to return!

B7r 13

Sonnet LXXII.

To the Morning Star.
Written Near the Sea.

Thee! lucid “arbiter ’twixt day and night,” Sonnet LXXII.
Line 1. “Thee! ‘lucid arbiter ’twixt day and night.’” Milton.

The Seaman greets, as on the Ocean stream

Reflected, thy precursive friendly beam

Points out the long-sought haven to his sight.

Watching for thee, the lover’s ardent eyes

Turn to the eastern hills; and as above

Thy brilliance trembles, hails the lights that rise

To guide his footsteps to expecting love!

I mark thee too, as night’s dark clouds retire,

And thy bright radiance glances on the sea;

But never more shall thy heraldic fire

Speak of approaching morn with joy to me!

Quench’d in the gloom of death that heavenly ray

Once lent to light me on my thorny way!

B7v 14

Sonnet LXXIII.

To a Querulous Acquaintance.

Thou! whom Prosperity has always led

O’er level paths, with moss and flow’rets strewn;

For whom she still prepares a downy bed

With roses scatter’d, and to thorns unknown,

Wilt thou yet murmur at a mis-placed leaf? Sonnet LXXIII.
Line 5. “Wilt thou yet murmur at a misplaced leaf?” From a story (I know not where told) of a fastidious
being, who on a bed of rose leaves complained that his
or her rest was destroyed because one of those leaves
was doubled.

Think, ere thy irritable nerves repine,

How many, born with feelings keen as thine,

Taste all the sad vicissitudes of grief;

How many steep in tears their scanty bread;

Or, lost to reason, Sorrow’s victims! rave:

How many know not where to lay their head;

While some are driven by anguish to the grave!

Think; nor impatient at a feather’s weight,

Mar the uncommon blessings of thy fate!

B8r 15

Sonnet LXXIV.

The Winter Night.

“Sleep,that knits up the ravell’d sleeve of care,” Sonnet LXXIV.
Line 1. “Sleep, that knits up the ravell’d sleeve of care.” Shakespeare

Forsakes me, while the chill and sullen blast,

As my sad soul recalls its sorrows past,

Seems like a summons, bidding me prepare

For the last sleep of death—Murmuring I hear Line 5. “Murmuring I hear The hollow wind around the ancient towers.” These lines were written in a residence among ancient public buildings.

The hollow wind around the ancient towers, Line 5. “Murmuring I hear The hollow wind around the ancient towers.” These lines were written in a residence among ancient public buildings.

While night and silence reign; and cold and drear

The darkest gloom of Middle Winter lours;

But wherefore fear existence such as mine,

To change for long and undisturb’d repose?

Ah! when this suffering being I resign,

And o’er my miseries the tomb shall close,

By her, whose loss in anguish I deplore,

I shall be laid, and feel that loss no more!

B8v 16

Sonnet LXXV. Sonnet LXXV. First published in the Novel of Marchmont.

Where the wild woods and pathless forests frown,

The darkling Pilgrim seeks his unknown way,

Till on the grass he throws him weary down,

To wait in broken sleep the dawn of day:

Thro’ boughs just waving in the silent air,

With pale capricious light the Summer Moon

Chequers his humid couch; while Fancy there,

That loves to wanton in the Night’s deep noon,

Calls from the mossy roots and fountain edge

Fair visionary Nymphs that haunt the shade,

Or Naiads rising from the whispering sedge;

And, ’mid the beauteous group, his dear loved maid

Seems beckoning him with smiles to join the train:

Then, starting from his dream, he feels his woes again!

C1r 17

Sonnet LXXVI.

To a Young Man Entering the World.

Go now, ingenuous Youth!—The trying hour

Is come: The World demands that thou shouldst go

To active life: There titles, wealth and power

May all be purchas’d—Yet I joy to know

Thou wilt not pay their price. The base controul Sonnet LXXVI.
Line 5. “The base controul Of petty despots in their pedant reign Already hast thou felt;—” This was not addressed to my son, who suffered with
many others in an event which will long be remembered
by those parents who had sons at a certain public
school, in 17931793, but to another young man, not compelled
as he was, in consequence of that dismission, to
abandon the fairest prospects of his future life.

Of petty despots in their pedant reign Sonnet LXXVI.
Line 5. “The base controul Of petty despots in their pedant reign Already hast thou felt;—” This was not addressed to my son, who suffered with
many others in an event which will long be remembered
by those parents who had sons at a certain public
school, in 17931793, but to another young man, not compelled
as he was, in consequence of that dismission, to
abandon the fairest prospects of his future life.

Already hast thou felt; Sonnet LXXVI.
Line 5. “The base controul Of petty despots in their pedant reign Already hast thou felt;—” This was not addressed to my son, who suffered with
many others in an event which will long be remembered
by those parents who had sons at a certain public
school, in 17931793, but to another young man, not compelled
as he was, in consequence of that dismission, to
abandon the fairest prospects of his future life.
—and high disdain

Of Tyrants is imprinted on thy soul—

Not, where mistaken Glory, in the field

Rears her red banner, be thou ever found;

But, against proud Oppression raise the shield

Of Patriot daring――So shalt thou renown’d

For the best virtues live; or that denied

May’st die, as Hampden or as Sydney died!

Vol. II C C1v 18

Sonnet LXXVII.

To the Insect of the Gossamer.

Small, viewless Æronaut, that by the line Sonnet LXXVII.
Line 1. “Small viewless æronaut,&c. &c.” The almost imperceptible threads floating in the air,
towards the end of Summer or Autumn, in a still evening,
sometimes are so numerous as to be felt on the
face and hands. It is on these that a minute species
of spider convey themselves from place to place; sometimes
rising with the wind to a great height in the air.
Dr. Lister, among other naturalists, remarked these insects.
“To fly they cannot strictly be said, they being
carried into the air by external force; but they can,
in case the wind suffer them, steer their course, perhaps
mount and descend at pleasure: and to the
purpose of rowing themselves along in the air, it is
observable that they ever take their flight backwards,
that is, their head looking a contrary way like a sculler
upon the Thames. It is scarcely credible to what
height they will mount; which is yet precisely true, I3r 117
and a thing easily to be observed by one that shall
fix his eye some time on any part of the heavens,
the white web, at a vast distance, very distinctly
appearing from the azure sky—But this is in Autumn
only, and that in very fair and calm weather.”
From the Encyclop. Brit.
Dr. Darwin, whose imagination so happily applies
every object of Natural History to the purposes of
Poetry, makes the Goddess of Botany thus direct her
Sylphs— “Thin clouds of Gossamer in air display, And hide the vale’s chaste lily from the ray.”
These filmy threads form a part of the equipage of
Mab: “Her waggon spokes are made of spiders legs, The cover of the wings of grasshoppers, The traces of the smallest spider’s web.”
I3v 118 Juliet, too, in anxiously waiting for the silent arrival
of her lover, exclaims,
“――Oh! so light of foot Will ne’er wear out the everlasting flint; A lover may bestride the Gossamer That idles in the wanton Summer air, And yet not fall—”

Of Gossamer suspended, in mid air

Float’st on a sun beam—Living Atom, where

Ends thy breeze-guided voyage;—with what design

In Æther dost thou launch thy form minute,

Mocking the eye?—Alas! before the veil

Of denser clouds shall hide thee, the pursuit

Of the keen Swift may end thy fairy sail!—

Thus on the golden thread that Fancy weaves

Buoyant, as Hope’s illusive flattery breathes,

The young and visionary Poet leaves

Life’s dull realities, while sevenfold wreaths

Of rainbow-light around his head revolve.

Ah! soon at Sorrow’s touch the radiant dreams
dissolve!

C2r 19

Sonnet LXXVIII.

Snowdrops.

Wan Heralds of the Sun and Summer gale!

That seem just fallen from infant Zephyrs’ wing;

Not now, as once, with heart revived I hail

Your modest buds, that for the brow of Spring

Form the first simple garland—Now no more

Escaping for a moment all my cares,

Shall I, with pensive, silent step, explore

The woods yet leafless; where to chilling airs

Your green and pencil’d blossoms, trembling, wave.

Ah! ye soft, transient children of the ground,

More fair was she on whose untimely grave

Flow my unceasing tears! Their varied round

The Seasons go; while I through all repine:

For fixt regret, and hopeless grief are mine.

C2 C2v 20

Sonnet LXXIX.

To the Goddess of Botany. Sonnet LXXIX.
To The Goddess of Botany.
“Rightly to spell,” as Milton wishes, in Il Penseroso,
“Of every herb that sips the dew,”
seems to be a resource for the sick at heart—for those
who from sorrow or disgust may without affectation say
“‘Society is nothing to one not sociable!’”
and whose wearied eyes and languid spirits find relief
and repose amid the shades of vegetable nature.— I4r 119
I cannot now turn to any other pursuit that for a moment
sooths my wounded mind.
“Je pris gout a cette récreation des yeux, qui dans
l’infortune, repose, amuse, distrait l’esprit, et suspend
le sentiment des peines.”
Thus speaks the singular, the unhappy Rousseau,
when in his Promenades he enumerates the causes
that drove him from the society of men, and occasioned
his pursuing with renewed avidity the study of Botany.
“I was,” says he, “Forcé de m’abstenir de penser, de
peur de penser a mes malheurs malgré moi; forcé
de contenir les restes d’une imagination riante, mais
languissante, que tant d’angoisses pourroient effaroucher
a la fin—”
Without any pretensions to those talents which
were in him so heavily taxed with that excessive irritability,
too often if not always the attendant on I4v 120
genius, it has been my misfortune to have endured
real calamities that have disqualified me for finding
any enjoyment in the pleasures and pursuits which
occupy the generality of the world. I have been engaged
in contending with persons whose cruelty has
left so painful an impression on my mind, that I may
well say
“Brillantes fleurs, émail des prés ombrages frais,
bosquets, verdure, venez purifier mon imagination
de tous ces hideux objets!”
Perhaps, if any situation is more pitiable than that
which compels us to wish to escape from the common
business and forms of life, it is that where the sentiment
is forcibly felt, while it cannot be indulged; and
where the sufferer, chained down to the discharge of
duties from which the wearied spirit recoils, feels like
the wretched Lear, when Shakspeare makes him exclaim
I5r 121 “Oh! I am bound upon a wheel of fire, Which my own tears do scald like melted lead.”

O f Folly weary, shrinking from the view

Of Violence and Fraud, allow’d to take

All peace from humble life; I would forsake

Their haunts for ever, and, sweet Nymph! with you

Find shelter; where my tired, and tear-swoln eyes,

Among your silent shades of soothing hue,

Your “bells and florets of unnumber’d dyes”

Might rest—And learn the bright varieties

That from your lovely hands are fed with dew;

And every veined leaf, that trembling sighs

In mead or woodland; or in wilds remote,

Or lurk with mosses in the humid caves,

Mantle the cliffs, on dimpling rivers float,

Or stream from coral rocks beneath the Ocean waves.

C3r 21

Sonnet LXXX.

To the Invisible Moon. Sonnet LXXX.
To the Invisible Moon.
I know not whether this is correctly expressed—
I suspect that it is not—What I mean, however, will
surely be understood—I address the Moon when not
visible at night in our hemisphere. “The Sun to me is dark, And silent as the Moon When she deserts the night, Hid in her secret interlunar cave.” Milton. Samps. Agon.Samson Agonistes.

Dark and conceal’d art thou, soft Evening’s Queen,

And Melancholy’s votaries that delight

To watch thee, gliding thro’ the blue serene,

Now vainly seek thee on the brow of night—

Mild Sorrow, such as Hope has not forsook,

May love to muse beneath thy silent reign;

But I prefer from some steep rock to look

On the obscure and fluctuating main,

What time the martial star with lurid glare,

Portentous, gleams above the troubled deep;

Or the red comet shakes his blazing hair;

Or on the fire-ting’d waves the lightnings leap;

While thy fair beams illume another sky,

And shine for beings less accurst than I.

C3v 22

Sonnet LXXXI. Sonnet LXXXI. First printed in a Publication for the use of Young
Persons, called Rambles Farther.

He may be envied, who with tranquil breast

Can wander in the wild and woodland scene,

When Summer’s glowing hands have newly drest

The shadowy forests, and the copses green;

Who, unpursued by care, can pass his hours

Where briony and woodbine fringe the trees, Line 6. “Where briony and woodbine fringe the trees.” Briony, Bryonia dioica, foliis palmatis, &c. White
Briony, growing plentifully in woods and hedges, and
twisting around taller plants.

On thymy banks reposing, while the bees

Murmur “their fairy tunes in praise of flowers;” Line 8. “Murmur their fairy tunes in praise of flowers,” A line taken, I believe, from a Poem called Vacuna,
printed in Dodsley’s collection.

Or on the rock with ivy clad, and fern

That overhangs the osier-whispering bed

Of some clear current, bid his wishes turn

From this bad world; and by calm reason led,

Knows, in refined retirement, to possess

By friendship hallow’d—rural happiness!

C4r 23

Sonnet LXXXII. Sonnet LXXXII.
To the Shade of Burns.
Whoever has tasted the charm of original genius so
evident in the composition of this genuine Poet,
A Poet “of nature’s own creation,”
cannot surely fail to lament his unhappy life, (latterly
passed, as I have understood, in an employment to
which such a mind as his must have been averse,) nor I6r 123
his premature death. For one, herself made the object
of subscription, is it proper to add, that whoever has
thus been delighted with the wild notes of the Scottish
bard, must have a melancholy pleasure in relieving
by their benevolence the unfortunate family he has
left?

To the Shade of Burns.

Mute is thy wild harp, now, O Bard sublime!

Who, amid Scotia’s mountain solitude,

Great Nature taught to “build the lofty rhyme,”

And even beneath the daily pressure, rude,

Of labouring Poverty, thy generous blood,

Fired with the love of freedom—Not subdued

Wert thou by thy low fortune: But a time

Like this we live in, when the abject chime

Of echoing Parasite is best approved,

Was not for thee—Indignantly is fled

Thy noble Spirit; and no longer moved

By all the ills o’er which thine heart has bled,

Associate worthy of the illustrious dead,

Enjoys with them “the Liberty it loved.” Line 14. “Enjoys the liberty it loved—” Pope.

C4v 24

Sonnet LXXXIII.

The Sea View.

The upland Shepherd, as reclined he lies Sonnet LXXXIII.
Line 1. “The upland shepherd, as reclined he lies.” Suggested by the recollection of having seen, some
years since, on a beautiful evening of Summer, an
engagement between two armed ships, from the high
down called the Beacon Hill, near Brighthelmstone.

On the soft turf that clothes the mountain brow,

Marks the bright Sea-line mingling with the skies;

Or from his course celestial, sinking slow,

The Summer-Sun in purple radiance low,

Blaze on the western waters; the wide scene

Magnificent, and tranquil, seems to spread

Even o’er the Rustic’s breast a joy serene,

When, like dark plague-spots by the Demons shed,

Charged deep with death, upon the waves, far seen,

Move the war-freighted ships; and fierce and red,

Flash their destructive fires—The mangled dead

And dying victims then pollute the flood.

Ah! thus man spoils Heaven’s glorious works with blood!

C5r 25

Sonnet LXXXIV.

To the Muse.

Wilt thou forsake me who in life’s bright May

Lent warmer lustre to the radiant morn;

And even o’er Summer scenes by tempests torn,

Shed with illusive light the dewy ray

Of pensive pleasure?—Wilt thou, while the day

Of saddening Autumn closes, as I mourn

In languid, hopeless sorrow, far away

Bend thy soft step, and never more return?—

Crush’d to the earth, by bitterest anguish prest,

From my faint eyes thy graceful form recedes;

Thou canst not heal an heart like mine that bleeds;

But, when in quiet earth that heart shall rest,

Haply may’st thou one sorrowing vigil keep, Sonnet LXXXIV.
Line 13. “Haply may’st thou one sorrowing vigil keep, Where Pity and Remembrance bend and weep.” “Where melancholy friendship bends and weeps.” Gray.

Where Pity and Remembrance bend and weep! Sonnet LXXXIV.
Line 13. “Haply may’st thou one sorrowing vigil keep, Where Pity and Remembrance bend and weep.” “Where melancholy friendship bends and weeps.” Gray.

C5v 26

Sonnet LXXXV. Sonnets LXXXV, LXXXVI,
LXXXVII.
First printed in a novel called The Young Philosopher.

The fairest flowers are gone! for tempests fell,

And with wild wing swept some unblown away,

While on the upland lawn or rocky dell

More faded in the day-star’s ardent ray;

And scarce the copse, or hedge-row shade beneath,

Or by the runnel’s grassy course, appear

Some lingering blossoms of the earlier year,

Mingling bright florets, in the yellow wreath

That Autumn with his poppies and his corn

Binds on his tawny temples――So the schemes

Rais’d by fond Hope in youth’s unclouded morn,

While sanguine youth enjoys delusive dreams,

Experience withers; till scarce one remains

Flattering the languid heart, where only Reason reigns!

C6r 27

Sonnet LXXXVI.

Written Near a Port on a Dark Evening.

Huge vapours brood above the clifted shore,

Night on the Ocean settles, dark and mute,

Save where is heard the repercussive roar

Of drowsy billows, on the rugged foot

Of rocks remote; or still more distant tone

Of seamen in the anchor’d bark that tell

The watch reliev’d; or one deep voice alone

Singing the hour, and bidding “Strike the bell,”

All is black shadow, but the lucid line

Mark’d by the light surf on the level sand,

Or where afar the ship-lights faintly shine

Like wandering fairy fires, that oft on land

Mislead the Pilgrim――Such the dubious ray

That wavering Reason lends, in life’s long darkling way.

C6v 28

Sonnet LXXXVII.

Written in October.

The blasts of Autumn as they scatter round

The faded foliage of another year,

And muttering many a sad and solemn sound,

Drive the pale fragments o’er the stubble sere,

Are well attuned to my dejected mood;

(Ah! better far than airs that breathe of Spring!)

While the high rooks, that hoarsely clamouring

Seek in black phalanx the half-leafless wood,

I rather hear, than that enraptured lay

Harmonious, and of Love and Pleasure born,

Which from the golden furze, or flowering thorn

Awakes the Shepherd in the ides of May;

Nature delights me most when most she mourns,

For never more to me the Spring of Hope returns!

C7r 29

Sonnet LXXXVIII.

Nepenthe. Sonnet LXXXVIII
Nepenthe.
Of what nature this Nepenthe was, has ever been a
matter of doubt and dispute. See Wakefield’s note to
Pope’s Odyssey, Book iv, verse 302.
But the passage here alluded to runs thus: “Meanwhile with genial joy to warm the soul Bright Helen mix’d a mirth-inspiring bowl, I7r 125 Temper’d with drugs, of sovereign use t’assuage The boiling bosom of tumultuous rage; To clear the cloudy front of wrinkled care, And dry the tearful sluices of despair; Charm’d with that virtuous draught, th’ exalted mind All sense of woe delivers to the wind. Tho’ on the blazing pile his father lay, Or a loved brother groan’d his life away, Or darling son, oppress’d by ruffian force, Fell breathless at his feet a mangled corse, From morn to eve, impassive and serene, The man entranced would view the deathful scene: These drugs so friendly to the joys of life, Bright Helen learn’d from Thone’s imperial wife.” Milton thus speaks of it in Comus: “Behold this cordial julep here, That flames and dances in his crystal bounds! Not that Nepenthe, which the wife of Thone In Egypt gave to Jove-born Helena, Is of such power as this to stir up joy, To life so friendly, or so cool to thirst.”

Oh! for imperial Polydamna’s art,

Which to bright Helen was in Egypt taught,

To mix with magic power the oblivious draught

Of force to staunch the bleeding of the heart,

And to Care’s wan and hollow cheek impart

The smile of happy youth, uncursed with thought.

Potent indeed the charm that could appease

Affection’s ceaseless anguish, doom’d to weep

O’er the cold grave; or yield even transient ease

By soothing busy Memory to sleep!

—Around me those who surely must have tried

Some charm of equal power, I daily see,

But still to me Oblivion is denied,

There’s no Nepenthe, now, on earth for me.

C7v 30

Sonnet LXXXIX. Sonnet LXXXIX. “I woke, she fled, and day brought back my night.” Milton.

To the Sun.

Whether awaken’d from unquiet rest

I watch “the opening eyelids of the Morn,”

When thou, O Sun! from Ocean’s silver’d breast

Emerging, bidst another day be born—

Or whether in thy path of cloudless blue,

Thy noontide fires I mark with dazzled eyes;

Or to the West thy radiant course pursue,

Veil’d in the gorgeous broidery of the skies,

Celestial lamp! thy influence bright and warm

That renovates the world with life and light

Shines not for me—for never more the form

I loved—so fondly loved, shall bless my sight;

And nought thy rays illumine, now can charm

My misery, or to day convert my night!

C8r 31

Sonnet XC. Sonnet XC. “See misery living, hope and pleasure dead.” Sir Brook Boothby. “Death seems prepared, yet still delays to strike.” Thomas Warton.

To Oblivion.

Forgetfulness! I would thy hand could close

These eyes that turn reluctant from the day;

So might this painful consciousness decay,

And, with my memory, end my cureless woes.

Sister of Chaos and eternal Night!

Oblivion! take me to thy quiet reign,

Since robb’d of all that gave my soul delight,

I only ask exemption from the pain

Of knowing such things were”—and are no more;

Of dwelling on the hours for ever fled,

And heartless, helpless, hopeless to deplore

“Pale misery living, joy and pleasure dead:”

While dragging thus unwish’d a length of days,

“Death seems prepared to strike, yet still delays.”

C8v 32

Sonnet XCI.

Reflections on Some Drawings of Plants.

I can in groups these mimic flowers compose,

These bells and golden eyes, embathed in dew;

Catch the soft blush that warms the early Rose,

Or the pale Iris cloud with veins of blue;

Copy the scallop’d leaves, and downy stems,

And bid the pencil’s varied shades arrest

Spring’s humid buds, and Summer’s mussy gems:

But, save the portrait on my bleeding breast,

I have no semblance of that form adored,

That form, expressive of a soul divine,

So early blighted; and while life is mine,

With fond regret, and ceaseless grief deplored—

That grief, my angel! with too faithful art

Enshrines thy image in thy Mother’s heart.

D1r 33

Sonnet XCII.

Written at Bignor Park in Sussex,
in 1799-08August, 1799.

Low murmurs creep along the woody vale,

The tremulous Aspens shudder in the breeze,

Slow o’er the downs the leaden vapours sail,

While I, beneath these old paternal trees,

Mark the dark shadows of the threaten’d storm,

As gathering clouds o’erveil the morning sun;

They pass!—But oh! ye visions bright and warm

With which even here my sanguine youth begun,

Ye are obscured for ever!—And too late

The poor Slave shakes the unworthy bonds away

Which crush’d her!—Lo! the radiant star of day

Lights up this lovely scene anew—My fate

Nor hope nor joy illumines—Nor for me

Return those rosy hours which here I used to see!

Vol. II. D D1v 34

The Dead Beggar. The Dead Beggar I have been told that I have incurred blame for
having used in this short composition, terms that have
become obnoxious to certain persons. Such remarks
are hardly worth notice; and it is very little my ambition
to obtain the suffrage of those who suffer party
prejudice to influence their taste; or of those who desire
that because they have themselves done it, every
one else should be willing to sell their best birth-rights,
the liberty of thought, and of expressing thought, for
the promise of a mess of pottage.
I8r 127 It is surely not too much to say, that in a country
like ours, where such immense sums are annually raised
for the poor, there ought to be some regulation which
should prevent any miserable deserted being from perishing
through want, as too often happens to such
objects as that on whose interment these stanzas were
written.
It is somewhat remarkable that a circumstance exactly
similar is the subject of a short poem called the
Pauper’s Funeral
, in a volume lately published by
Mr. Southey.

An Elegy,

Addressed to a Lady, who was affected at seeing the Funeral of a
nameless Pauper, buried at the Expence of the Parish, in the
Church-Yard at Brighthelmstone, in 1792-11November 1792.

Swells then thy feeling heart, and streams thine eye

O’er the deserted being, poor and old,

Whom cold, reluctant, Parish Charity

Consigns to mingle with his kindred mold?

Mourn’st thou, that here the time-worn sufferer ends

Those evil days still threatening woes to come;

Here, where the friendless feel no want of friends,

Where even the houseless wanderer finds an home?

D2r 35

What tho’ no kindred croud in sable forth,

And sigh, or seem to sigh, around his bier;

Tho’ o’er his coffin with the humid earth

No children drop the unavailing tear?

Rather rejoice that here his sorrows cease,

Whom sickness, age, and poverty oppress’d;

Where Death, the Leveller, restores to peace

The wretch who living knew not where to rest.

Rejoice, that tho’ an outcast spurn’d by Fate,

Thro’ penury’s rugged path his race he ran;

In earth’s cold bosom, equall’d with the great,

Death vindicates the insulted rights of Man.

D2 D2v 36

Rejoice, that tho’ severe his earthly doom,

And rude, and sown with thorns the way he trod,

Now, (where unfeeling Fortune cannot come)

He rests upon the mercies of his God.

D3r 37

The Female Exile. The Female Exile. This little Poem, of which a sketch first appeared in
blank verse in a Poem called The Emigrants, was
suggested by the sight of the group it attempts to
describe—a French lady and her children. The drawing
from which the print is taken I owe to the taste I8v 128
and talents of a lady, whose pencil has bestowed the
highest honor this little book can boast.

Written at Brighthelmstone in 1792-11Nov. 1792.

November’s chill blast on the rough beach is howling,

The surge breaks afar, and then foams to the shore,

Dark clouds o’er the sea gather heavy and scowling,

And the white cliffs re-echo the wild wintry roar.

Beneath that chalk rock, a fair stranger reclining,

Has found on damp sea-weed a cold lonely seat;

Her eyes fill’d with tears, and her heart with repining,

She starts at the billows that burst at her feet.

D3v 38

There, day after day, with an anxious heart heaving,

She watches the waves where they mingle with air;

For the sail which, alas! all her fond hopes deceiving,

May bring only tidings to add to her care.

Loose stream to wild winds those fair flowing tresses,

Once woven with garlands of gay Summer flowers;

Her dress unregarded, bespeaks her distresses,

And beauty is blighted by grief’s heavy hours.

Her innocent children, unconscious of sorrow,

To seek the gloss’d shell, or the crimson weed stray;

Amused with the present, they heed not to-morrow,

Nor think of the storm that is gathering to day.

A woman sitting in a cave by the sea, looking at three children playing with a toy boat.

Engraved by J. Neagle from a Drawing by the Right Hon. the Countess of Besborough.

“The gilt fairy Ship with its ribbon sail spreading,
They launch on the salt Pool the tide left behind,
Ah, Victims for whom their sad Mother is dreading
The multiplied Miseries that wait on Mankind.”

Published 1797-05-15May 15th. 1797 by Cadell and Davies Strand

D4r 39

The gilt, fairy ship, with its ribbon-sail spreading,

They launch on the salt pool the tide left behind;

Ah! victims—for whom their sad mother is dreading

The multiplied miseries that wait on mankind!

To fair fortune born, she beholds them with anguish,

Now wanderers with her on a once hostile soil,

Perhaps doom’d for life in chill penury to languish,

Or abject dependance, or soul-crushing toil.

But the sea-boat, her hopes and her terrors renewing,

O’er the dim grey horizon now faintly appears;

She flies to the quay, dreading tidings of ruin,

All breathless with haste, half expiring with fears.

D4v 40

Poor mourner!—I would that my fortune had left me

The means to alleviate the woes I deplore;

But like thine my hard fate has of affluence bereft me,

I can warm the cold heart of the wretched no more!

D5r 41

Written for the Benefit of a Distressed
Player, Detained at Brighthelmstone
for Debt, 1792-11November 1792.

When in a thousand swarms, the Summer o’er,

The birds of passage quit our English shore,

By various routs the feather’d myriad moves;

The Becca-fica seeks Italian groves, Occasional Address.
Written for a Player.

Line 4. “The Becca-fica seeks Italian groves, No more a Wheat-ear—” From an idea that the Wheat-ear is the Becca-fica
of Italy, which I doubt.

No more a Wheat-ear; Occasional Address.
Written for a Player.

Line 4. “The Becca-fica seeks Italian groves, No more a Wheat-ear—” From an idea that the Wheat-ear is the Becca-fica
of Italy, which I doubt.
while the soaring files

Of sea-fowl gather round the Hebrid-isles.

But if by bird-lime touch’d, unplum’d, confined,

Some poor ill-fated straggler stays behind,

Driven from his transient perch, beneath your eaves

On his unshelter’d head the tempest raves,

While drooping round, redoubling every pain,

His Mate and Nestlings ask his help in vain.

D5v 42

So we, the buskin and the sock who wear,

And strut and fret,” our little season here,

Dismiss’d at length, as Fortune bids divide—

Some (lucky rogues!) sit down on Thames’s side;

Others to Liffy’s western banks proceed,

And some—driven far a-field, across the Tweed:

But pinion’d here, alas! I cannot fly:

The hapless, unplumed, lingering straggler I!

Unless the healing pity you bestow,

Shall imp my shatter’d wings—and let me go.

Hard is his fate, whom evil stars have led

To seek in scenic art precarious bread,

While still, thro’ wild vicissitudes afloat,

An Hero now, and now a Sans Culotte! Page 3442. Line 14. “An hero now, and now a sans culotte.” At that time little else was talked of.

That eleemosinary bread he gains

Mingling—with real distresses—mimic pains.

D6r 43

See in our group, a pale, lank Falstaff stare!

Much needs he stuffing:—while young Ammon there

Rehearses—in a garret—ten feet square!

And as his soft Statira sighs consent,

Roxana comes not—but a dun for rent!

Here shivering Edgar, in his blanket roll’d,

Exclaims—with too much reason, “‘Tom’s a-cold!’”

And vainly tries his sorrows to divert,

While Goneril or Regan—wash his shirt!

Lo! fresh from Calais, Edward! mighty king!

Revolves—a mutton chop upon a string!

And Hotspur, plucking “honour from the moon,”

Feeds a sick infant with a pewter spoon!

More blest the Fisher, who undaunted braves

In his small bark, the impetuous winds and waves;

D6v 44

For though he plough the sea when others sleep, Page 3644. Line 1. “For tho’ he plough the sea when others sleep, He draws like Glendower spirits from the deep.” K1r 129 “Glen. I can call spirits from the vasty deep. Hotsp. But will they come when you do call for
them?”
Shakspeare.
The spirits” that animate the night voyages of the
Sussex fishermen are often sunk in their kegs on any
alarm from the Custom-House officers; and being
attached to a buoy, the adventurers go out when the
danger of detection is over, and draw them up. A
coarse sort of white brandy which they call “moonshine”,
is a principal article of this illegal commerce.

He draws, like Glendower, spirits from the deep! Page 3644. Line 1. “For tho’ he plough the sea when others sleep, He draws like Glendower spirits from the deep.” K1r 129 “Glen. I can call spirits from the vasty deep. Hotsp. But will they come when you do call for
them?”
Shakspeare.
The spirits” that animate the night voyages of the
Sussex fishermen are often sunk in their kegs on any
alarm from the Custom-House officers; and being
attached to a buoy, the adventurers go out when the
danger of detection is over, and draw them up. A
coarse sort of white brandy which they call “moonshine”,
is a principal article of this illegal commerce.

And while the storm howls round, amidst his trouble,

Bright moonshine still illuminates the cobble!

Pale with her fears for him, some fair Poissarde,

Watches his nearing boat; with fond regard

Smiles when she sees his little canvas handing,

And clasps her dripping lover on his landing.

More blest the Peasant, who, with nervous toil

Hews the rough oak, or breaks the stubborn soil:

Weary, indeed, he sees the evening come,

But then, the rude, yet tranquil hut, his home,

Receives its rustic inmate; then are his,

Secure repose, and dear domestic bliss!

The orchard’s blushing fruit, the garden’s store,

The pendant hop, that mantles round the door,

D7r 45

Are his:—and while the cheerful faggots burn,

His lisping children hail their sire’s return! Page 45. Line 2. “His lisping children hail their sire’s return.” “No children run to lisp their sire’s return.” Gray.

But wandering Players, “unhousel’d, unanneal’d,”

And unappointed, scour life’s common field,

A flying squadron!—disappointments cross ’em,

And the campaign concludes, perhaps, at Horsham! Page 45. Line 6. “And the campaign concludes, perhaps, at Horsham!” At Horsham is the county jail.

Oh! ye, whose timely bounty deigns to shed

Compassion’s balm upon my luckless head,

Benevolence, with warm and glowing breast,

And soft, celestial mercy, doubly blest! Page 45. Line 10. “And soft, celestial mercy, doubly blest.” “It is twice blessed, It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.” Shakspeare

Smile on the generous act!—where means are given,

To aid the wretched is—to merit Heaven.

D7v 46

Inscription

On a Stone, in the Church-Yard at Boreham, in Essex; raised by
the Honourable Elizabeth Olmius, to the Memory of Ann
Gardner
, who died at New Hall, after a faithful Service of
Forty Years.

Whate’er of praise, and of regret attend

The grateful Servant, and the humble friend,

Where strict integrity and worth unite

To raise the lowly in their Maker’s sight,

Are her’s; whose faithful service, long approved,

Wept by the Mistress whom thro’ life she loved.

Here ends her earthly task; in joyful trust

To share the eternal triumph of the Just.

D8r 47

A
Descriptive Ode, Descriptive Ode. The singular scenery here attempted to be described,
is almost the only part of this rock of stones worth
seeing. On an high broken cliff hang the ruins of
some very ancient building, which the people of the
island call Bow and Arrow Castle, or Rufus’ Castle.
Beneath, but still high above the sea, are the half-fallen
arches and pillars of an old church, and around are
scattered the remains of tomb-stones, and almost obliterated
memorials of the dead. These verses were
written for, and first inserted in, a Novel, called
Marchmont; and the close alludes to the circumstance
of the story related in the Novel.

Supposed to have been written under the Ruins of Rufus’s Castle,
among the remains of the ancient Church on the Isle of
Portland
.

Chaotic pile of barren stone,

That Nature’s hurrying hand has thrown,

Half-finish’d, from the troubled waves;

On whose rude brow the rifted tower

Has frown’d, thro’ many a stormy hour,

On this drear site of tempest-beaten graves.

D8v 48

Sure Desolation loves to shroud

His giant form within the cloud

That hovers round thy rugged head;

And as thro’ broken vaults beneath,

The future storms low-muttering breathe,

Hears the complaining voices of the dead.

Here marks the Fiend with eager eyes,

Far out at sea the fogs arise

That dimly shade the beacon’d strand,

And listens the portentous roar

Of sullen waves, as on the shore,

Monotonous, they burst, and tell the storm at hand.

E1r 49

Northward the Demon’s eyes are cast

O’er yonder bare and sterile waste,

Where, born to hew and heave the block,

Man, lost in ignorance and toil,

Becomes associate to the soil,

And his heart hardens like his native rock.

On the bleak hills, with flint o’erspread,

No blossoms rear the purple head;

No shrub perfumes the Zephyrs’ breath,

But o’er the cold and cheerless down

Grim Desolation seems to frown,

Blasting the ungrateful soil with partial death.

Vol. II. E Ev 50

Here the scathed trees with leaves half-drest,

Shade no soft songster’s secret nest,

Whose spring-notes soothe the pensive ear;

But high the croaking cormorant flies,

And mews and awks with clamorous cries

Tire the lone echos of these caverns drear.

Perchance among the ruins grey

Some widow’d mourner loves to stray,

Marking the melancholy main

Where once, afar she could discern

O’er the white waves his sail return

Who never, never now, returns again!

E2r 51

On these lone tombs, by storms up-torn,

The hopeless wretch may lingering mourn,

Till from the ocean, rising red,

The misty Moon with lurid ray

Lights her, reluctant, on her way,

To steep in tears her solitary bed.

Hence the dire Spirit oft surveys

The ship, that to the western bays

With favouring gales pursues its course;

Then calls the vapour dark that blinds

The pilot—calls the felon winds

That heave the billows with resistless force.

E2 E2v 52

Commixing with the blotted skies,

High and more high the wild waves rise,

Till, as impetuous torrents urge,

Driven on yon fatal bank accurst,

The vessel’s massy timbers burst,

And the crew sinks beneath the infuriate surge.

There find the weak an early grave,

While youthful strength the whelming wave

Repels; and labouring for the land,

With shorten’d breath and upturn’d eyes,

Sees the rough shore above him rise,

Nor dreams that rapine meets him on the strand.

E3r 53

And are there then in human form

Monsters more savage than the storm,

Who from the gasping sufferer tear

The dripping weed?—who dare to reap

The inhuman harvest of the deep,

From half-drown’d victims whom the tempests spare?

Ah! yes! by avarice once possest,

No pity moves the rustic breast;

Callous he proves—as those who haply wait

Till I (a pilgrim weary worn)

To my own native land return,

With legal toils to drag me to my fate!

E3v 54

Verses Verses
Supposed to have been written in the New Forest,
in early Spring.
These are from the Novel of Marchmont.

Supposed to Have Been Written in the
New Forest, in Early Spring.

As in the woods, where leathery lichen weaves Line 1. “As in the woods, where leathery lichen weaves Its wint’ry web among the sallow leaves,” Mosses and lichens are the first efforts of Nature to
clothe the earth: as they decay, they form an earth
that affords nourishment to the larger and more succulent
vegetables: several species of lichen are found in
the woods, springing up among the dead leaves, under
the drip of forest trees: these, and the withered foliage
of preceding years, afford shelter to the earliest wild
flowers about the skirts of woods, and in hedge-rows
and copses.
The Pile-wort Ranuncula Ficaria and the Wood
Anemone Anemone Nemerosa or Wind-flower, blow K2 K2v 132
in the woods and copses. Of this latter beautiful species
there is in Oxfordshire a blue one, growing wild,
(“Anemone pratensis pedunculo involucrato, petalis
apice reflexis foliis bipinnatis”
Lin. Sp. Pl. 760.)
It is found in Whichwood Forest, near Cornbury
quarry. (Vide Flora Oxoniensis). I do not mention
this by way of exhibiting botanical knowledge (so easy
to possess in appearance) but because I never saw the
Blue Anemone wild in any other place, and it is a
flower of singular beauty and elegance.

Its wint’ry web among the sallow leaves, Line 1. “As in the woods, where leathery lichen weaves Its wint’ry web among the sallow leaves,” Mosses and lichens are the first efforts of Nature to
clothe the earth: as they decay, they form an earth
that affords nourishment to the larger and more succulent
vegetables: several species of lichen are found in
the woods, springing up among the dead leaves, under
the drip of forest trees: these, and the withered foliage
of preceding years, afford shelter to the earliest wild
flowers about the skirts of woods, and in hedge-rows
and copses.
The Pile-wort Ranuncula Ficaria and the Wood
Anemone Anemone Nemerosa or Wind-flower, blow K2 K2v 132
in the woods and copses. Of this latter beautiful species
there is in Oxfordshire a blue one, growing wild,
(“Anemone pratensis pedunculo involucrato, petalis
apice reflexis foliis bipinnatis”
Lin. Sp. Pl. 760.)
It is found in Whichwood Forest, near Cornbury
quarry. (Vide Flora Oxoniensis). I do not mention
this by way of exhibiting botanical knowledge (so easy
to possess in appearance) but because I never saw the
Blue Anemone wild in any other place, and it is a
flower of singular beauty and elegance.

Which (thro’ cold months in whirling eddies blown)

Decay beneath the branches once their own,

From the brown shelter of their foliage sear,

Spring the young blooms that lead the floral year:

When, waked by vernal suns, the Pilewort dares

Expand her spotted leaves, and shining stars;

And (veins empurpling all her tassels pale)

Bends the soft Wind-flower in the tepid gale;

Uncultured bells of azure Jacinths blow, Line 11. “Uncultured bells of azure Jacynths blow.” Hyacinthus non scriptus—a Hare-bell.

And the breeze-scenting Violet lurks below; Line 12. “And the breeze-scenting Violet lurks below.” To the Violet there needs no note, it being like the
Nightingale and the Rose, in constant requisition by
the poets.

E4r 55

So views the wanderer, with delighted eyes,

Reviving hopes from black despondence rise,

When, blighted by Adversity’s chill breath,

Those hopes had felt a temporary death;

Then with gay heart he looks to future hours,

When Love shall dress for him the Summer bowers!

And, as delicious dreams enchant his mind,

Forgets his sorrows past, or gives them to the wind.

E4v 56

Song. Song.
From the French.
A free translation of a favourite French song. “Un jour me demandoit Hortense Ou se trouve le tendre amour?”

From the French.

I.

“Ah! say, the fair Louisa cried,

Say where the abode of Love is found?”

“Pervading Nature”, I replied,

“His influence spreads the world around.

When Morning’s arrowy beams arise,

He sparkles in the enlivening ray,

And blushes in the glowing skies

When rosy Evening fades away.

II.

The Summer winds that gently blow,

The flocks that bleat along the glades,

The nightingale, that soft and low,

With music fills the listening shades:

E5r 57

The murmurs of the silver surf

All echo Love’s enchanting notes,

From Violets lurking in the turf,

His balmy breath thro’ æther floats.

III.

From perfumed flowers and dewy leaves

Delicious scents he bids exhale,

He smiles amid Autumnal sheaves,

And clothes with green the grassy vale;

But when that throne the God assumes

Where his most powerful influence lies,

’Tis on Louisa’s cheek he blooms,

And lightens from her radiant eyes!”

E5v 58

Apostrophe
to
An Old Tree. Apostrophe
To an Old Tree.
The philosophy of these few lines may not be very
correct, since mosses are known to injure the stems
and branches of trees to which they adhere; but the
images of Poetry cannot always be exactly adjusted to
objects of Natural History.

Where thy broad branches brave the bitter North,

Like rugged, indigent, unheeded, worth,

Lo! Vegetation’s guardian hands emboss

Each giant limb with fronds of studded moss, Line 4. “――fronds of studded moss.” The foliage, if it may be so called, of this race of
plants, is termed fronds; and their flowers, or fructification, K3v 134
assume the shapes of cups and shields; of those
of this description, more particularly adhering to trees,
is Lichen Pulmonarius, Lungwort Lichen, with shields;
the Lichen Caperatus, with red cups; and many others
which it would look like pedantry to enumerate.

Clothing the bark with many a fringed fold

Begemm’d with scarlet shields and cups of gold,

Which, to the wildest winds their webs oppose,

And mock the arrowy sleet, or weltering snows.

—But to the warmer West the Woodbine fair Line 9. The Woodbine and the Clematis are well known
plants, ornamenting our hedge-rows in Summer with
fragrant flowers.

With tassels that perfumed the Summer air,

E6r 59

The mantling Clematis, whose feathery bowers

Waved in festoons with Nightshade’s purple flowers, Line 12. Nightshade, Solanum Lignosum Woody Nightshade,
is one of the most beautiful of its tribe.

The silver weed, whose corded fillets wove Page 59. Line 1. “The silver weed, whose corded fillets wove.” The silver weed, Convolvulus Major Raii Syn. 275
or greater Bind-weed, which, however the beauty of
the flowers may enliven the garden or the wilds, is
so prejudicial to the gardener and farmer, that it is K4r 135
seen by them with dislike equal to the difficulty of extirpating
it from the soil. Its cord-like stalks, plaited
together, can hardly be forced from the branches round which they
have twined themselves.

Round thy pale rind, even as deceitful love

Of mercenary beauty would engage

The dotard fondness of decrepit age;

All these, that during Summer’s halcyon days

With their green canopies conceal’d thy sprays,

Are gone for ever; or disfigured, trail

Their sallow relics in the Autumnal gale;

Or o’er thy roots, in faded fragments tost,

But tell of happier hours, and sweetness lost!

—Thus in Fate’s trying hour, when furious storms

Strip social life of Pleasure’s fragile forms,

E6v 60

And aweful Justice, as his rightful prey

Tears Luxury’s silk, and jewel’d robe, away,

While reads Adversity her lesson stern,

And Fortune’s minions tremble as they learn;

The crouds around her gilded car that hung,

Bent the lithe knee, and troul’d the honey’d tongue,

Desponding fall, or fly in pale despair;

And Scorn alone remembers that they were.

Not so Integrity; unchanged he lives

In the rude armour conscious Honor gives,

And dares with hardy front the troubled sky,

In Honesty’s uninjured panoply.

Ne’er on Prosperity’s enfeebling bed

Or rosy pillows, he reposed his head,

E7r 61

But given to useful arts, his ardent mind

Has sought the general welfare of mankind;

To mitigate their ills his greatest bliss,

While studying them, has taught him what he is;

He, when the human tempest rages worst,

And the earth shudders as the thunders burst,

Firm, as thy northern branch, is rooted fast,

And if he can’t avert, endures the blast.

E7v 62

The
Forest Boy. The Forest Boy. Late circumstances have given rise to many mournful
histories like this, which may well be said to be
founded in truth!—I, who have been so sad a sufferer
in this miserable contest, may well endeavour to
associate myself with those who apply what powers
they have to deprecate the horrors of war. Gracious
God! will mankind never be reasonable enough to
understand that all the miseries which our condition
subjects us to, are light in comparison of what we bring
upon ourselves by indulging the folly and wickedness
of those who make nations destroy each other for
their diversion, or to administer to their senseless ambition.
K4v 136 “――If the stroke of war Fell certain on the guilty head, none else—If they that make the cause might taste th’effect, And drink themselves the bitter cup they mix; Then might the Bard (the child of peace) delight To twine fresh wreaths around the conqueror’s brow; Or haply strike his high-toned harp, to swell The trumpet’s martial sound, and bid them on When Justice arms for vengeance; but, alas! That undistinguishing and deathful storm Beats heaviest on the exposed and innocent; And they that stir its fury, while it raves, Safe and at distance send their mandates forth Unto the mortal ministers that wait To do their bidding!——” Crowe.
I have in these stanzas, entitled the Forest Boy, attempted
the measure so successfully adopted in one of
the poems of a popular novel, and so happily imitated
by Mr. Southey in Poor Mary.

The trees have now hid at the edge of the hurst

The spot where the ruins decay

Of the cottage, where Will of the Woodlands was nursed

And lived so beloved, till the moment accurst

When he went from the woodland away.

Among all the lads of the plough or the fold,

Best esteem’d by the sober and good,

Was Will of the Woodlands; and often the old

Would tell of his frolics, for active and bold

Was William the Boy of the wood.

E8r 63

Yet gentle was he, as the breath of the May,

And when sick and declining was laid

The Woodman his father, young William away

Would go to the forest to labour all day,

And perform his hard task in his stead.

And when his poor father the forester died,

And his mother was sad, and alone,

He toil’d from the dawn, and at evening he hied

In storm or in snow, or whate’er might betide,

To supply all her wants from the town.

E8v 64

One neighbour they had on the heath to the west,

And no other the cottage was near,

But she would send Phœbe, the child she loved best,

To stay with the widow, thus sad and distrest,

Her hours of dejection to cheer.

As the buds of wild roses, the cheeks of the maid

Were just tinted with youth’s lovely hue,

Her form like the aspen, soft graces display’d,

And the eyes, over which her luxuriant locks stray’d,

As the skies of the Summer were blue!

Fr 65

Still labouring to live, yet reflecting the while,

Young William consider’d his lot;

’Twas hard, yet ’twas honest; and one tender smile

From Phœbe at night overpaid ev’ry toil,

And then all his fatigues were forgot.

By the brook where it glides thro’ the copse of Arbeal,

When to eat his cold fare he reclined,

Then soft from her home his sweet Phœbe would steal

And bring him wood-strawberries to finish his meal,

And would sit by his side while he dined.

Vol. II F Fv 66

And tho’ when employ’d in the deep forest glade,

His days have seem’d slowly to move,

Yet Phœbe going home, thro’ the wood-walk has stray’d

To bid him good night!—and whatever she said

Was more sweet than the voice of the dove.

Fair Hope, that the lover so fondly believes,

Then repeated each soul-soothing speech,

And touch’d with illusion, that often deceives

The future with light; as the sun thro’ the leaves

Illumines the boughs of the beech.

F2r 67

But once more the tempests of chill Winter blow,

To depress and disfigure the earth;

And now ere the dawn, the young Woodman must go

To his work in the forest, half buried in snow,

And at night bring home wood for the hearth.

The bridge on the heath by the flood was wash’d down,

And fast, fast fell the sleet and the rain,

The stream to a wild rapid river was grown,

And long might the widow sit sighing alone

Ere sweet Phœbe could see her again.

F2 F2v 68

At the town was a market—and now for supplies

Such as needed their humble abode,

Young William went forth; and his mother with sighs

Watch’d long at the window, with tears in her eyes,

Till he turn’d thro’ the fields, to the road.

Then darkness came on; and she heard with affright

The wind rise every moment more high;

She look’d from the door; not a star lent its light,

But the tempest redoubled the gloom of the night,

And the rain fell in floods from the sky.

F3r 69

The clock in her cottage now mournfully told

The hours that went heavily on;

’Twas midnight; her spirits sunk hopeless and cold,

For the wind seem’d to say as in loud gusts it roll’d,

That long, long would her William be gone.

Then heart-sick and faint to her sad bed she crept,

Yet first made up the fire in the room

To guide his dark steps; but she listen’d and wept,

Or if for a moment forgetful she slept,

She soon started!—and thought he was come.

F3v 70

’Twas morn; and the wind with an hoarse sullen moan

Now seem’d dying away in the wood,

When the poor wretched mother still drooping, alone,

Beheld on the threshold a figure unknown,

In gorgeous apparel who stood.

“Your son is a soldier,” abruptly cried he,

“And a place in our corps has obtain’d,

Nay, be not cast down; you perhaps may soon see

Your William a captain! he now sends by me

The purse he already has gain’d.”

F4r 71

So William entrapp’d ’twixt persuasion and force,

Is embark’d for the isles of the West,

But he seem’d to begin with ill omens his course,

And felt recollection, regret, and remorse

Continually weigh on his breast.

With useless repentance he eagerly eyed

The high coast as it faded from view,

And saw the green hills, on whose northernmost side

Was his own sylvan home: and he falter’d and cried

“Adieu! ah! for ever adieu!

F4v 72

Who now, my poor mother, thy life shall sustain,

Since thy son has thus left thee forlorn?

Ah! canst thou forgive me? And not in the pain

Of this cruel desertion, of William complain,

And lament that he ever was born?

Sweet Phœbe!—if ever thy lover was dear,

Now forsake not the cottage of woe,

But comfort my mother; and quiet her fear,

And help her to dry up the vain fruitless tear

That too long for my absence will flow.

F5r 73

Yet what if my Phœbe another should wed,

And lament her lost William no more?”

The thought was too cruel; and anguish soon sped

The dart of disease——With the brave numerous dead

He has fall’n on the plague-tainted shore.

In the lone village church-yard, the chancel-wall near,

The high grass now waves over the spot

Where the mother of William, unable to bear

His loss, who to her widow’d heart was so dear,

Has both him and her sorrows forgot.

F5v 74

By the brook where it winds thro’ the wood of Arbeal,

Or amid the deep forest, to moan,

The poor wandering Phœbe will silently steal;

The pain of her bosom no reason can heal,

And she loves to indulge it alone.

Her senses are injured; her eyes dim with tears;

By the river she ponders; and weaves

Reed garlands, against her dear William appears,

Then breathlessly listens, and fancies she hears

His light step in the half-wither’d leaves.

A girl against a rock, looking at the brook

R. Corbould del.delineavit
J. Heath RA sculp.sculptit

By the Brook where it winds thro’ the wood of Arbeal,
Or amid the deep Forest to moan,
The poor wandering Phœbe will silently steal;


Published 1797-05-15May 15th. 1797. by Cadell and Davies Strand.

F6r 75

Ah! such are the miseries to which ye give birth,

Ye cold statesmen! unknowing a scar;

Who from pictured saloon, or the bright sculptured hearth,

Disperse desolation and death thro’ the earth,

When ye let loose the demons of war.

F6v 76

Ode
to the Poppy. Ode to the Poppy. This and the following Poem were written (the first
of them at my request, for a Novel) by a lady whose
death in her thirty-sixth year was a subject of the
deepest concern to all who knew her.
Would to God the last line which my regret on that
loss drew from me, had been prophetic—and that my
heart had indeed been cold, instead of having suffered
within the next twelve months after that line was
written, a deprivation which has rendered my life a
living death.

Written by a Deceased Friend.

Not for the promise of the labour’d field,

Not for the good the yellow harvests yield,

I bend at Ceres’ shrine;

For dull, to humid eyes, appear

The golden glories of the year,

A far more melancholy worship’s mine.

F7r 77

I hail the goddess for her scarlet flower!

Thou brilliant weed,

That dost so far exceed

The richest gifts gay Flora can bestow:

Heedless I pass’d thee in life’s morning hour,

(Thou comforter of woe)

Till sorrow taught me to confess thy power.

In early days, when Fancy cheats,

A varied wreath I wove

Of laughing Spring’s luxuriant sweets,

To deck ungrateful Love:

The rose, or thorn, my labours crown’d,

As Venus smiled, or Venus frown’d;

F7v 78

But Love, and Joy, and all their train, are flown;

E’en languid Hope no more is mine,

And I will sing of thee alone,

Unless, perchance, the attributes of Grief,

The cypress bud, and willow leaf,

Their pale funereal foliage blend with thine.

Hail, lovely blossom!—thou canst ease

The wretched victims of Disease;

Canst close those weary eyes in gentle sleep,

Which never open but to weep;

For, oh! thy potent charm

Can agonizing Pain disarm;

Expel imperious Memory from her seat,

And bid the throbbing heart forget to beat.

A woman sitting on some steps holding a pen and with paper on her lap looking at a poppy.

R. Corbould del.delineavit
J. Neagle sculp.sculptit

“Hail, lovely Blossom! — thou can’st ease,
The wretched Victim of Disease;
Can’st close those weary Eyes in gentle sleep,
Which never open but to weep;”

Published 1797-05-15May 15th. 1797. by Cadell and Davies Strand.

F8r 79

Soul-soothing plant! that can such blessings give,

By thee the mourner bears to live!

By thee the hopeless die!

Oh! ever “friendly to despair,”

Might Sorrow’s pallid votary dare,

Without a crime, that remedy implore,

Which bids the spirit from its bondage fly,

I’d court thy palliative aid no more;

No more I’d sue that thou should’st shed

A transient calm upon my aching head,

But rather would conjure thee to impart

Thy sovereign balsam for a broken heart;

And by thy dear Lethean power,

(Inestimable flower)

Burst these terrestrial bonds, and other regions try.

F8v 80

Written by the Same Lady On Seeing Her
Two Sons at Play.

Sweet age of blest delusion! blooming boys,

Ah! revel long in childhood’s thoughtless joys,

With light and pliant spirits that can stoop

To follow, sportively, the rolling hoop;

To watch the sleeping top with gay delight,

Or mark, with raptured gaze, the sailing kite;

Or eagerly pursuing Pleasure’s call,

Can find it center’d in the bounding ball!

Alas! the day will come, when sports like these

Must lose their magic, and their power to please;

Too swiftly fled, the rosy hours of youth

Shall yield their fairy-charms to mournful Truth;

G1r 81

Even now, a mother’s fond prophetic fear

Sees the dark train of human ills appear;

Views various fortune for each lovely child,

Storms for the bold, and anguish for the mild;

Beholds already those expressive eyes

Beam a sad certainty of future sighs;

And dreads each suffering those dear breasts may know

In their long passage through a world of woe;

Perchance predestined every pang to prove,

That treacherous friends inflict, or faithless love;

For, ah! how few have found existence sweet,

Where grief is sure, but happiness deceit!

Vol. II G G1v 82

Verses,

On the Death of the Same Lady, Written
in 1794-09September, 1794.

Like a poor ghost the night I seek;

Its hollow winds repeat my sighs;

The cold dews mingle on my cheek

With tears that wander from mine eyes.

The thorns that still my couch molest,

Have robb’d these heavy eyes of sleep;

But tho’ deprived of tranquil rest,

I here at least am free to weep.

G2r 83

Twelve times the moon, that rises red

O’er yon tall wood of shadowy pine,

Has fill’d her orb, since low was laid

My Harriet! that sweet form of thine!

While each sad month, as slow it past,

Brought some new sorrow to deplore;

Some grief more poignant than the last,

But thou canst calm those griefs no more.

No more thy friendship sooths to rest

This wearied spirit tempest-tost;

The cares that weigh upon my breast

Are doubly felt since thou art lost.

G2 G2v 84

Bright visions of ideal grace

That the young poet’s dreams inflame,

Were not more lovely than thy face;

Were not more perfect than thy frame.

Wit, that no sufferings could impair,

Was thine, and thine those mental powers

Of force to chase the fiends that tear

From Fancy’s hands her budding flowers.

O’er what, my angel friend, thou wert,

Dejected Memory loves to mourn;

Regretting still that tender heart,

Now withering in a distant urn!

G3r 85

But ere that wood of shadowy pine

Twelve times shall yon full orb behold,

This sickening heart, that bleeds for thine,

My Harriet!—may like thine be cold!

G3v 86

Fragment,

Descriptive of the Miseries of War; From
a Poem Called The Emigrants,
Printed in 17931793.

To a wild mountain, whose bare summit hides

Its broken eminence in clouds; whose steeps

Are dark with woods; where the receding rocks

Are worn with torrents of dissolving snow;

A wretched woman, pale and breathless, flies,

And, gazing round her, listens to the sound

Of hostile footsteps:—No! they die away—

Nor noise remains, but of the cataract,

Or surly breeze of night, that mutters low

Among the thickets, where she trembling seeks

A temporary shelter—Clasping close

To her quick throbbing heart her sleeping child,

G4r 87

All she could rescue of the innocent group

That yesterday surrounded her—Escaped

Almost by miracle!—Fear, frantic Fear,

Wing’d her weak feet; yet, half repenting now

Her headlong haste, she wishes she had staid

To die with those affrighted Fancy paints

The lawless soldiers’ victims—Hark! again

The driving tempest bears the cry of Death;

And with deep, sudden thunder, the dread sound

Of cannon vibrates on the tremulous earth;

While, bursting in the air, the murderous bomb

Glares o’er her mansion—Where the splinters fall

Like scatter’d comets, its destructive path

Is mark’d by wreaths of flame!—Then, overwhelm’d

G4v 88

Beneath accumulated horror, sinks

The desolate mourner!


* * * * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * * * *

The feudal Chief, whose Gothic battlements

Frown on the plain beneath, returning home

From distant lands, alone, and in disguise,

Gains at the fall of night his castle walls;

But, at the silent gate no porter sits

To wait his lord’s admittance!—In the courts

All is drear stillness!—Guessing but too well

The fatal truth, he shudders as he goes

Thro’ the mute hall; where, by the blunted light

G5r 89

That the dim Moon thro’ painted casement lends,

He sees that devastation has been there;

Then, while each hideous image to his mind

Rises terrific, o’er a bleeding corse

Stumbling he falls; another intercepts

His staggering feet—All! all who used to rush

With joy to meet him, all his family

Lie murder’d in his way!—And the day dawns

On a wild raving Maniac, whom a fate

So sudden and calamitous has robb’d

Of reason; and who round his vacant walls

Screams unregarded, and reproaches Heaven!

G5v 90

April.

Green o’er the copses Spring’s soft hues are
spreading,

High wave the Reeds in the transparent floods,

The Oak its sear and sallow foliage shedding,

From their moss’d cradles start its infant buds. April.
Line 4. “From their moss’d cradles, &c.” The Oak, and, in sheltered situations, the Beech,
retain the leaves of the preceding year till the new
foliage appears.
K5v 138 The return of the Spring, which awakens many to
new sentiments of pleasure, now serves only to remind
me of past misery.
This sensation is common to the wretched—and too
many Poets have felt it in all its force.
“Zefiro torno, e’l bel tempo rimena, E i fiori, e l’erbe, sua dolce famiglia; &c. &c. —Ma per me lasso!” Petrarch on the Death of Laura. And these lines of Guarini have always been celebrated.
“O primavera gioventù dell’anno, Bella madre di fiori D’erbe novelle e di novelli amori; Tu torni ben, ma teco Non tornano i sereni E fortunati di, delle mie gioje; K6r 139 Tu torni ben, tu torni, Ma teco altro non torna Che del perduto mio caro tesoro, La rimembranza misera e dolente.”

Pale as the tranquil tide of Summer’s ocean,

The Willow now its slender leaf unveils;

And thro’ the sky with swiftly fleeting motion,

Driven by the wind, the rack of April sails.

G6r 91

Then, as the gust declines, the stealing showers

Fall fresh and noiseless; while at closing day

The low Sun gleams on moist and half-blown flowers

That promise garlands for approaching May.

Blest are yon peasant children, simply singing,

Who thro’ the new-sprung grass rejoicing rove;

More blest! to whom the Time, fond thought is bringing,

Of friends expected, or returning love.

The pensive wanderer blest, to whom reflection

Points out some future views that sooth his mind;

Me how unlike!—whom cruel recollection

But tells of comfort I shall never find!

G6v 92

Hope, that on Nature’s youth is still attending,

No more to me her syren song shall sing;

Never to me her influence extending,

Shall I again enjoy the days of Spring!

Yet, how I loved them once these scenes remind me,

When light of heart, in childhood’s thoughtless mirth,

I reck’d not that the cruel lot assign’d me

Should make me curse the hour that gave me birth!

Then, from thy wild-wood banks, Aruna! roving,

Thy thymy downs with sportive steps I sought,

And Nature’s charms, with artless transport loving,

Sung like the birds, unheeded and untaught.

G7r 93

But now the Springtide’s pleasant hours returning,

Serve to awaken me to sharper pain;

Recalling scenes of agony and mourning,

Of baffled hope and prayers preferr’d in vain.

Thus shone the Sun, his vernal rays displaying,

Thus did the woods in early verdure wave,

While dire Disease on all I loved was preying,

And flowers seem’d rising but to strew her grave!

Now, ’mid reviving blooms, I coldly languish,

Spring seems devoid of joy to me alone;

Each sound of pleasure aggravates my anguish,

And speaks of beauty, youth, and sweetness gone!

G7v 94

Yet, as stern Duty bids, with faint endeavour

I drag on life, contending with my woe,

Tho’ conscious Misery still repeats, that never

My soul one pleasureable hour shall know.

Lost in the tomb, when Hope no more appeases

The fester’d wounds that prompt the eternal sigh,

Grief, the most fatal of the heart’s diseases,

Soon teaches, whom it fastens on, to die.

The wretch undone, for pain alone existing,

The abject dread of Death shall sure subdue,

And far from his decisive hand resisting,

Rejoice to bid a world like this adieu!

G8r 95

Ode to Death. Ode to Death. From the following sentence in Lord Bacon’s
Essays. “Death is no such formidable enemy, since a man
has so many champions about him that can win the
combat of him—Revenge triumphs over Death;
Love slights it; Honour courts it; Dread of Disgrace
chooses it; Grief flies to it; Fear anticipates
it.”

Friend of the wretched! wherefore should the eye

Of blank Despair, whence tears have ceased to flow,

Be turn’d from thee?—Ah! wherefore fears to die

He, who compell’d each poignant grief to know,

Drains to its lowest dregs the cup of woe?

Would Cowardice postpone thy calm embrace,

To linger out long years in torturing pain?

Or not prefer thee to the ills that chase

Him, who too much impoverish’d to obtain

From British Themis right, implores her aid in
vain!

G8v 96

Sharp goading Indigence who would not fly,

That urges toil the exhausted strength above?

Or shun the once fond friend’s averted eye?

Or who to thy asylum not remove,

To lose the wasting pain of unrequited love?

Can then the wounded wretch who must deplore

What most she loved, to thy cold arms consign’d,

Who hears the voice that sooth’d her soul no more,

Fear thee, O Death!—Or hug the chains that bind

To joyless, cheerless life, her sick, reluctant mind?

H1r 97

Oh! Misery’s Cure; who e’er in pale dismay

Has watch’d the angel form they could not save,

And seen their dearest blessing torn away,

May well the terrors of thy triumph brave,

Nor pause in fearful dread before the opening grave!

Vol. II H H1v 98

Stanzas

From the Novel Called
The Young Philosopher.

Ah! think’st thou, Laura, then, that wealth

Should make me thus my youth, and health,

And freedom and repose resign?—

Ah, no!—I toil to gain by stealth

One look, one tender glance of thine.

Born where huge hills on hills are piled,

In Caledonia’s distant wild,

Unbounded Liberty was mine:

But thou upon my hopes hast smiled,

And bade me be a slave of thine!

Amid these gloomy haunts of gain,

Of weary hours I not complain,

While Hope forbids me to repine,

And whispering tells me I obtain

Pity from that soft heart of thine.

H2r 99

Tho’ far capricious Fortune flies,

Yet Love will bless the sacrifice,

And all his purer joys combine;

While I my little world comprise

In that fair form, and fairer soul of thine.

H2 H2v 100

To the Winds.

First Printed In The Young Philosopher.

Ye vagrant Winds! yon clouds that bear

Thro’ the blue desart of the air,

Soft sailing in the Summer sky,

Do e’er your wandering breezes meet

A wretch in misery so complete,

So lost as I?

And yet, where’er your pinions wave

O’er some lost friend’s—some lover’s grave,

Surviving sufferers still complain;

Some parent of his hopes deprived,

Some wretch who has himself survived,

Lament in vain.

H3r 101

Blow where ye list on this sad earth,

Some soul-corroding care has birth,

And Grief in all her accents speaks;

Here dark Dejection groans, and there

Wild Phrenzy, daughter of Despair,

Unconscious shrieks.

Ah! were it Death had torn apart

The tie that bound him to my heart,

Tho’ fatal still the pang would prove;

Yet had it soothed this bleeding breast

To know, I had till then possest

Hillario’s love.

And where his dear, dear ashes slept,

Long nights and days I then had wept,

Till by slow-mining Grief opprest

As Memory fail’d, its vital heat

This wayward heart had lost, and beat

Itself to rest.

H3v 102

But still Hillario lives, to prove

To some more happy maid his love!

Hillario at her feet I see!

His voice still murmurs fond desire,

Still beam his eyes with lambent fire,

But not for me!

Ah! words, my bosom’s peace that stole,

Ah! looks, that won my melting soul;

Who dares your dear delusion try,

In dreams may all Elysium see,

Then undeceiv’d, awake, like me,

Awake and die.

Like me, who now abandon’d, lost,

Roam wildly on the rocky coast,

With eager eyes the sea explore;

But hopeless watch and vainly rave,

Hillario o’er the western wave

Returns no more!

H4r 103

Yet, go forgiven, Hillario go,

Such anguish may you never know

As that which checks my labouring breath;

Pain so severe not long endures,

And I have still my choice of cures,

Madness or death.

H4v 104

To Vesper.

From the Same.

Thou! who behold’st with dewy eye

The sleeping leaves and folded flowers,

And hear’st the night-wind lingering sigh

Thro’ shadowy woods and twilight bowers;

Thou wast the signal once that seem’d to say,

Hillario’s beating heart reproved my long delay.

I see thy emerald lustre stream

O’er these rude cliffs and cavern’d shore;

But here, orisons to thy beam

The woodland chantress pours no more;

Nor I, as once, thy lamp propitious hail,

Seen indistinct thro’ tears; confus’d, and dim, and pale.

H5r 105

Soon shall thy arrowy radiance shine

On the broad ocean’s restless wave,

Where this poor cold swoln form of mine

Shall shelter in its billowy grave,

Safe from the scorn the World’s sad outcasts prove,

Unconscious of the pain of ill-requited Love.

H5v 106

Lydia. Lydia. The Juniper and the Yew are almost the only trees
that grow spontaneously on the highest chalky hills,
and they are often ragged and stunted by the violence
of the wind.
K6v 140 Some of the most elevated mounds of earth on these
hills are sea-marks, and have formerly surrounded beacons;
others are considered as memorials of the dead,
and are called Saxon, Danish, or Roman, according to
the systems of different observers.

O’er the high down the night-wind blew,

And as it chill and howling past,

The Juniper and scathed Yew

Shrunk from the bitter blast.

Yet on the sea-mark’s chalky height,

The rude memorial of the Dane,

Thro’ many a drear and stormy night

Had hapless Lydia lain.

When I a lonely wanderer too,

Who loved to climb and gaze around,

Even as the Autumnal Sun withdrew,

The poor forlorn one found.

H6r 107

“Ah! wherefore, maiden, sit you so,

The cold wind raving round your breast,

While in the villages below

All are retired to rest?

The fires are out, no lights appear

But the red flames of burning lime, Page 107. Line 6. “But the red flames of burning lime.” From eminences in those countries where lime is
burnt as a manure, a chain of lime kilns for many
miles may be sometimes seen, which blazing amid the
doubtful darkness of an extensive landscape, have a
fine effect.

None but the Horseman’s ghost is here Page 107. Line 7. “The Horseman’s ghost.” Some years ago a strange notion prevailed among
the people occasionally passing over one of the highest
of the South Downs, that a man on horseback was
often seen coming towards those who were returning
from market on Saturday evening. This appearance, K7r 141
the noise of whose horse’s feet they distinctly heard,
vanished as soon as it came within an hundred yards
of the passengers who often tried to meet it. At other
times it was seen following them. They have stopped
to let it approach, but it always melted into air. I
have been present when a farmer not otherwise particularly
weak or ignorant, said, that he had seen it, and
distinctly heard the horse galloping towards him.

At this pale evening time.”

With wild yet vacant eye, the maid

Gazed on me, and a mournful smile

On her wan sunken features play’d

As thus she spoke the while:

“Yes, to their beds my friends are gone,

They have no grief; they slumber soon;

But ’tis for me to wait alone

To meet the midnight Moon.

H6v 108

The Moon will rise anon, and trace

Her silver pathway on the sea; Page 108. Line 2. “Her silver pathway on the sea.” The bright lustre of the moon reflected from
the sea, is almost as distinctly visible from the Downs as
the moon itself; forming a long line of radiance from
the horizon to the shore.

I saw it from this very place,

When Edward went from me.

Tho’ like a mist the Horseman’s ghost

From yon deep dell I often see,

Glide o’er the mountain to the coast,

It gives no fear to me.

I rather dread the clouds that rise

Like towers and turrets from afar,

And swelling high, obscure the skies,

And every shining star.

For then I can no longer trace

That long bright pathway in the sea,

Where Edward bade me mark the place

When last he went from me!

H7r 109

’Twas here, when loth to go, he gave

To his poor Girl his last adieu;

He mark’d the moonlight on the wave,

And bade me mark it too.

‘And, Lydia!’—then he sighing cried,

‘When the tenth time that light so clear

Shine on the Sea—whate’er betide,

Thy Edward will be here.’

Since then I watch with eager eyes,

(Nor feel I cold, or wind or rain,)

Till the tenth blessed moon arise,

And Edward comes again.”

“Ah, wretched Girl!” I would have cried,

“But why awaken her to pain?

Long since thy wandering Lover died,

The moon returns in vain!

H7v 110

Tho’ with her wane, thy visions fade,

Yet hopest thou, till again she shine?”

――The hopes of half the World, poor Maid!

Are not more rational than thine!

H8r 111

Quotations, Notes,
and Explanations.

Sonnet LXI.
Line 1. “Ill-omen’d bird! whose cries portentous float.” This Sonnet, first inserted in the Novel called the
Old Manor House, is founded on a superstition attributed
(vide Bertram’s Travels in America) to the Indians,
who believe that the cry of this night-hawk
Caprimulgus Americanus portends some evil, and
when they are at war, assert that it is never heard near
their tents or habitations but to announce the death of
some brave warrior of their tribe, or some other calamity.
H8v 112 Sonnet LXII. First published in the same work. Sonnet LXIII.
Line 1. “O’er faded heath-flowers spun, or horny furze.” The web, charged with innumerable globules of
bright dew, that is frequently on heaths and commons
in autumnal mornings, can hardly have escaped the
observation of any lover of nature—The slender web
of the field spider is again alluded to in Sonnet lxxvii.
Sonnet LXIV. First printed in the Novel of The Banished Man. Sonnet LXV. To the excellent friend and Physician to whom
these lines are addressed, I was obliged for the kindest I1r 113
attention, and for the recovery from one dangerous
illness of that beloved child whom a few months afterwards
his skill and most unremitted and disinterested
exertions could not save!
Sonnet LXVI. Written on the coast of Sussex during very tempestuous
weather in 1791-12December 1791, but first published
in the Novel of Montalbert.
Sonnet LXVII. Printed in the same work. Sonnet LXX.
Line 11. “He has ‘no nice felicities that shrink.’” “’Tis delicate felicity that shrinks When rocking winds are loud.” Walpole.
Vol. II I I1v 114 Sonnet LXXII.
Line 1. “Thee! ‘lucid arbiter ’twixt day and night.’” Milton.
Sonnet LXXIII.
Line 5. “Wilt thou yet murmur at a misplaced leaf?” From a story (I know not where told) of a fastidious
being, who on a bed of rose leaves complained that his
or her rest was destroyed because one of those leaves
was doubled.
Sonnet LXXIV.
Line 1. “Sleep, that knits up the ravell’d sleeve of care.” Shakespeare
I2r 115 Line 5. “Murmuring I hear The hollow wind around the ancient towers.” These lines were written in a residence among ancient public buildings. Sonnet LXXV. First published in the Novel of Marchmont. Sonnet LXXVI.
Line 5. “The base controul Of petty despots in their pedant reign Already hast thou felt;—” This was not addressed to my son, who suffered with
many others in an event which will long be remembered
by those parents who had sons at a certain public
school, in 17931793, but to another young man, not compelled
as he was, in consequence of that dismission, to
abandon the fairest prospects of his future life.
I2 I2v 116 Sonnet LXXVII.
Line 1. “Small viewless æronaut,&c. &c.” The almost imperceptible threads floating in the air,
towards the end of Summer or Autumn, in a still evening,
sometimes are so numerous as to be felt on the
face and hands. It is on these that a minute species
of spider convey themselves from place to place; sometimes
rising with the wind to a great height in the air.
Dr. Lister, among other naturalists, remarked these insects.
“To fly they cannot strictly be said, they being
carried into the air by external force; but they can,
in case the wind suffer them, steer their course, perhaps
mount and descend at pleasure: and to the
purpose of rowing themselves along in the air, it is
observable that they ever take their flight backwards,
that is, their head looking a contrary way like a sculler
upon the Thames. It is scarcely credible to what
height they will mount; which is yet precisely true, I3r 117
and a thing easily to be observed by one that shall
fix his eye some time on any part of the heavens,
the white web, at a vast distance, very distinctly
appearing from the azure sky—But this is in Autumn
only, and that in very fair and calm weather.”
From the Encyclop. Brit.
Dr. Darwin, whose imagination so happily applies
every object of Natural History to the purposes of
Poetry, makes the Goddess of Botany thus direct her
Sylphs— “Thin clouds of Gossamer in air display, And hide the vale’s chaste lily from the ray.”
These filmy threads form a part of the equipage of
Mab: “Her waggon spokes are made of spiders legs, The cover of the wings of grasshoppers, The traces of the smallest spider’s web.”
I3v 118 Juliet, too, in anxiously waiting for the silent arrival
of her lover, exclaims,
“――Oh! so light of foot Will ne’er wear out the everlasting flint; A lover may bestride the Gossamer That idles in the wanton Summer air, And yet not fall—”
Sonnet LXXIX.
To The Goddess of Botany.
“Rightly to spell,” as Milton wishes, in Il Penseroso,
“Of every herb that sips the dew,”
seems to be a resource for the sick at heart—for those
who from sorrow or disgust may without affectation say
“‘Society is nothing to one not sociable!’”
and whose wearied eyes and languid spirits find relief
and repose amid the shades of vegetable nature.— I4r 119
I cannot now turn to any other pursuit that for a moment
sooths my wounded mind.
“Je pris gout a cette récreation des yeux, qui dans
l’infortune, repose, amuse, distrait l’esprit, et suspend
le sentiment des peines.”
Thus speaks the singular, the unhappy Rousseau,
when in his Promenades he enumerates the causes
that drove him from the society of men, and occasioned
his pursuing with renewed avidity the study of Botany.
“I was,” says he, “Forcé de m’abstenir de penser, de
peur de penser a mes malheurs malgré moi; forcé
de contenir les restes d’une imagination riante, mais
languissante, que tant d’angoisses pourroient effaroucher
a la fin—”
Without any pretensions to those talents which
were in him so heavily taxed with that excessive irritability,
too often if not always the attendant on I4v 120
genius, it has been my misfortune to have endured
real calamities that have disqualified me for finding
any enjoyment in the pleasures and pursuits which
occupy the generality of the world. I have been engaged
in contending with persons whose cruelty has
left so painful an impression on my mind, that I may
well say
“Brillantes fleurs, émail des prés ombrages frais,
bosquets, verdure, venez purifier mon imagination
de tous ces hideux objets!”
Perhaps, if any situation is more pitiable than that
which compels us to wish to escape from the common
business and forms of life, it is that where the sentiment
is forcibly felt, while it cannot be indulged; and
where the sufferer, chained down to the discharge of
duties from which the wearied spirit recoils, feels like
the wretched Lear, when Shakspeare makes him exclaim
I5r 121 “Oh! I am bound upon a wheel of fire, Which my own tears do scald like melted lead.”
Sonnet LXXX.
To the Invisible Moon.
I know not whether this is correctly expressed—
I suspect that it is not—What I mean, however, will
surely be understood—I address the Moon when not
visible at night in our hemisphere. “The Sun to me is dark, And silent as the Moon When she deserts the night, Hid in her secret interlunar cave.” Milton. Samps. Agon.Samson Agonistes.
Sonnet LXXXI. First printed in a Publication for the use of Young
Persons, called Rambles Farther.
I5v 122 Line 6. “Where briony and woodbine fringe the trees.” Briony, Bryonia dioica, foliis palmatis, &c. White
Briony, growing plentifully in woods and hedges, and
twisting around taller plants.
Line 8. “Murmur their fairy tunes in praise of flowers,” A line taken, I believe, from a Poem called Vacuna,
printed in Dodsley’s collection.
Sonnet LXXXII.
To the Shade of Burns.
Whoever has tasted the charm of original genius so
evident in the composition of this genuine Poet,
A Poet “of nature’s own creation,”
cannot surely fail to lament his unhappy life, (latterly
passed, as I have understood, in an employment to
which such a mind as his must have been averse,) nor I6r 123
his premature death. For one, herself made the object
of subscription, is it proper to add, that whoever has
thus been delighted with the wild notes of the Scottish
bard, must have a melancholy pleasure in relieving
by their benevolence the unfortunate family he has
left?
Line 14. “Enjoys the liberty it loved—” Pope. Sonnet LXXXIII.
Line 1. “The upland shepherd, as reclined he lies.” Suggested by the recollection of having seen, some
years since, on a beautiful evening of Summer, an
engagement between two armed ships, from the high
down called the Beacon Hill, near Brighthelmstone.
I6v 124 Sonnet LXXXIV.
Line 13. “Haply may’st thou one sorrowing vigil keep, Where Pity and Remembrance bend and weep.” “Where melancholy friendship bends and weeps.” Gray.
Sonnets LXXXV, LXXXVI,
LXXXVII.
First printed in a novel called The Young Philosopher.
Sonnet LXXXVIII
Nepenthe.
Of what nature this Nepenthe was, has ever been a
matter of doubt and dispute. See Wakefield’s note to
Pope’s Odyssey, Book iv, verse 302.
But the passage here alluded to runs thus: “Meanwhile with genial joy to warm the soul Bright Helen mix’d a mirth-inspiring bowl, I7r 125 Temper’d with drugs, of sovereign use t’assuage The boiling bosom of tumultuous rage; To clear the cloudy front of wrinkled care, And dry the tearful sluices of despair; Charm’d with that virtuous draught, th’ exalted mind All sense of woe delivers to the wind. Tho’ on the blazing pile his father lay, Or a loved brother groan’d his life away, Or darling son, oppress’d by ruffian force, Fell breathless at his feet a mangled corse, From morn to eve, impassive and serene, The man entranced would view the deathful scene: These drugs so friendly to the joys of life, Bright Helen learn’d from Thone’s imperial wife.” Milton thus speaks of it in Comus: “Behold this cordial julep here, That flames and dances in his crystal bounds! Not that Nepenthe, which the wife of Thone In Egypt gave to Jove-born Helena, Is of such power as this to stir up joy, To life so friendly, or so cool to thirst.”
I7v 126 Sonnet LXXXIX. “I woke, she fled, and day brought back my night.” Milton. Sonnet XC. “See misery living, hope and pleasure dead.” Sir Brook Boothby. “Death seems prepared, yet still delays to strike.” Thomas Warton. The Dead Beggar I have been told that I have incurred blame for
having used in this short composition, terms that have
become obnoxious to certain persons. Such remarks
are hardly worth notice; and it is very little my ambition
to obtain the suffrage of those who suffer party
prejudice to influence their taste; or of those who desire
that because they have themselves done it, every
one else should be willing to sell their best birth-rights,
the liberty of thought, and of expressing thought, for
the promise of a mess of pottage.
I8r 127 It is surely not too much to say, that in a country
like ours, where such immense sums are annually raised
for the poor, there ought to be some regulation which
should prevent any miserable deserted being from perishing
through want, as too often happens to such
objects as that on whose interment these stanzas were
written.
It is somewhat remarkable that a circumstance exactly
similar is the subject of a short poem called the
Pauper’s Funeral
, in a volume lately published by
Mr. Southey.
The Female Exile. This little Poem, of which a sketch first appeared in
blank verse in a Poem called The Emigrants, was
suggested by the sight of the group it attempts to
describe—a French lady and her children. The drawing
from which the print is taken I owe to the taste I8v 128
and talents of a lady, whose pencil has bestowed the
highest honor this little book can boast.
Occasional Address.
Written for a Player.

Line 4. “The Becca-fica seeks Italian groves, No more a Wheat-ear—” From an idea that the Wheat-ear is the Becca-fica
of Italy, which I doubt.
Page 3442. Line 14. “An hero now, and now a sans culotte.” At that time little else was talked of. Page 3644. Line 1. “For tho’ he plough the sea when others sleep, He draws like Glendower spirits from the deep.” K1r 129 “Glen. I can call spirits from the vasty deep. Hotsp. But will they come when you do call for
them?”
Shakspeare.
The spirits” that animate the night voyages of the
Sussex fishermen are often sunk in their kegs on any
alarm from the Custom-House officers; and being
attached to a buoy, the adventurers go out when the
danger of detection is over, and draw them up. A
coarse sort of white brandy which they call “moonshine”,
is a principal article of this illegal commerce.
Page 45. Line 2. “His lisping children hail their sire’s return.” “No children run to lisp their sire’s return.” Gray. Page 45. Line 6. “And the campaign concludes, perhaps, at Horsham!” At Horsham is the county jail. Vol. II K K1v 130" Page 45. Line 10. “And soft, celestial mercy, doubly blest.” “It is twice blessed, It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.” Shakspeare Descriptive Ode. The singular scenery here attempted to be described,
is almost the only part of this rock of stones worth
seeing. On an high broken cliff hang the ruins of
some very ancient building, which the people of the
island call Bow and Arrow Castle, or Rufus’ Castle.
Beneath, but still high above the sea, are the half-fallen
arches and pillars of an old church, and around are
scattered the remains of tomb-stones, and almost obliterated
memorials of the dead. These verses were
written for, and first inserted in, a Novel, called
Marchmont; and the close alludes to the circumstance
of the story related in the Novel.
K2r 131 Verses
Supposed to have been written in the New Forest,
in early Spring.
These are from the Novel of Marchmont.
Line 1. “As in the woods, where leathery lichen weaves Its wint’ry web among the sallow leaves,” Mosses and lichens are the first efforts of Nature to
clothe the earth: as they decay, they form an earth
that affords nourishment to the larger and more succulent
vegetables: several species of lichen are found in
the woods, springing up among the dead leaves, under
the drip of forest trees: these, and the withered foliage
of preceding years, afford shelter to the earliest wild
flowers about the skirts of woods, and in hedge-rows
and copses.
The Pile-wort Ranuncula Ficaria and the Wood
Anemone Anemone Nemerosa or Wind-flower, blow K2 K2v 132
in the woods and copses. Of this latter beautiful species
there is in Oxfordshire a blue one, growing wild,
(“Anemone pratensis pedunculo involucrato, petalis
apice reflexis foliis bipinnatis”
Lin. Sp. Pl. 760.)
It is found in Whichwood Forest, near Cornbury
quarry. (Vide Flora Oxoniensis). I do not mention
this by way of exhibiting botanical knowledge (so easy
to possess in appearance) but because I never saw the
Blue Anemone wild in any other place, and it is a
flower of singular beauty and elegance.
Line 11. “Uncultured bells of azure Jacynths blow.” Hyacinthus non scriptus—a Hare-bell. Line 12. “And the breeze-scenting Violet lurks below.” To the Violet there needs no note, it being like the
Nightingale and the Rose, in constant requisition by
the poets.
K3r 133 Song.
From the French.
A free translation of a favourite French song. “Un jour me demandoit Hortense Ou se trouve le tendre amour?”
Apostrophe
To an Old Tree.
The philosophy of these few lines may not be very
correct, since mosses are known to injure the stems
and branches of trees to which they adhere; but the
images of Poetry cannot always be exactly adjusted to
objects of Natural History.
Line 4. “――fronds of studded moss.” The foliage, if it may be so called, of this race of
plants, is termed fronds; and their flowers, or fructification, K3v 134
assume the shapes of cups and shields; of those
of this description, more particularly adhering to trees,
is Lichen Pulmonarius, Lungwort Lichen, with shields;
the Lichen Caperatus, with red cups; and many others
which it would look like pedantry to enumerate.
Line 9. The Woodbine and the Clematis are well known
plants, ornamenting our hedge-rows in Summer with
fragrant flowers.
Line 12. Nightshade, Solanum Lignosum Woody Nightshade,
is one of the most beautiful of its tribe.
Page 59. Line 1. “The silver weed, whose corded fillets wove.” The silver weed, Convolvulus Major Raii Syn. 275
or greater Bind-weed, which, however the beauty of
the flowers may enliven the garden or the wilds, is
so prejudicial to the gardener and farmer, that it is K4r 135
seen by them with dislike equal to the difficulty of extirpating
it from the soil. Its cord-like stalks, plaited
together, can hardly be forced from the branches round which they
have twined themselves.
The Forest Boy. Late circumstances have given rise to many mournful
histories like this, which may well be said to be
founded in truth!—I, who have been so sad a sufferer
in this miserable contest, may well endeavour to
associate myself with those who apply what powers
they have to deprecate the horrors of war. Gracious
God! will mankind never be reasonable enough to
understand that all the miseries which our condition
subjects us to, are light in comparison of what we bring
upon ourselves by indulging the folly and wickedness
of those who make nations destroy each other for
their diversion, or to administer to their senseless ambition.
K4v 136 “――If the stroke of war Fell certain on the guilty head, none else—If they that make the cause might taste th’effect, And drink themselves the bitter cup they mix; Then might the Bard (the child of peace) delight To twine fresh wreaths around the conqueror’s brow; Or haply strike his high-toned harp, to swell The trumpet’s martial sound, and bid them on When Justice arms for vengeance; but, alas! That undistinguishing and deathful storm Beats heaviest on the exposed and innocent; And they that stir its fury, while it raves, Safe and at distance send their mandates forth Unto the mortal ministers that wait To do their bidding!——” Crowe.
I have in these stanzas, entitled the Forest Boy, attempted
the measure so successfully adopted in one of
the poems of a popular novel, and so happily imitated
by Mr. Southey in Poor Mary.
K5r 137 Ode to the Poppy. This and the following Poem were written (the first
of them at my request, for a Novel) by a lady whose
death in her thirty-sixth year was a subject of the
deepest concern to all who knew her.
Would to God the last line which my regret on that
loss drew from me, had been prophetic—and that my
heart had indeed been cold, instead of having suffered
within the next twelve months after that line was
written, a deprivation which has rendered my life a
living death.
April.
Line 4. “From their moss’d cradles, &c.” The Oak, and, in sheltered situations, the Beech,
retain the leaves of the preceding year till the new
foliage appears.
K5v 138 The return of the Spring, which awakens many to
new sentiments of pleasure, now serves only to remind
me of past misery.
This sensation is common to the wretched—and too
many Poets have felt it in all its force.
“Zefiro torno, e’l bel tempo rimena, E i fiori, e l’erbe, sua dolce famiglia; &c. &c. —Ma per me lasso!” Petrarch on the Death of Laura. And these lines of Guarini have always been celebrated.
“O primavera gioventù dell’anno, Bella madre di fiori D’erbe novelle e di novelli amori; Tu torni ben, ma teco Non tornano i sereni E fortunati di, delle mie gioje; K6r 139 Tu torni ben, tu torni, Ma teco altro non torna Che del perduto mio caro tesoro, La rimembranza misera e dolente.”
Ode to Death. From the following sentence in Lord Bacon’s
Essays. “Death is no such formidable enemy, since a man
has so many champions about him that can win the
combat of him—Revenge triumphs over Death;
Love slights it; Honour courts it; Dread of Disgrace
chooses it; Grief flies to it; Fear anticipates
it.”
Lydia. The Juniper and the Yew are almost the only trees
that grow spontaneously on the highest chalky hills,
and they are often ragged and stunted by the violence
of the wind.
K6v 140 Some of the most elevated mounds of earth on these
hills are sea-marks, and have formerly surrounded beacons;
others are considered as memorials of the dead,
and are called Saxon, Danish, or Roman, according to
the systems of different observers.
Page 107. Line 6. “But the red flames of burning lime.” From eminences in those countries where lime is
burnt as a manure, a chain of lime kilns for many
miles may be sometimes seen, which blazing amid the
doubtful darkness of an extensive landscape, have a
fine effect.
Page 107. Line 7. “The Horseman’s ghost.” Some years ago a strange notion prevailed among
the people occasionally passing over one of the highest
of the South Downs, that a man on horseback was
often seen coming towards those who were returning
from market on Saturday evening. This appearance, K7r 141
the noise of whose horse’s feet they distinctly heard,
vanished as soon as it came within an hundred yards
of the passengers who often tried to meet it. At other
times it was seen following them. They have stopped
to let it approach, but it always melted into air. I
have been present when a farmer not otherwise particularly
weak or ignorant, said, that he had seen it, and
distinctly heard the horse galloping towards him.
Page 108. Line 2. “Her silver pathway on the sea.” The bright lustre of the moon reflected from
the sea, is almost as distinctly visible from the Downs as
the moon itself; forming a long line of radiance from
the horizon to the shore.

The End.

Printed by R. Noble,
Shire-Lane.