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The setting sun's effulgence, not a strain
DAVID MALLETT. 1700–1765.
WILLIAM AND MARGARET.
'Twas at the silent, solemn hour
When night and morning meet; In glided Margaret's grimly ghost,
And stood at William's feet.
Her face was like an April morn,
Clad in a wintry cloud;
T'hat held her sable shroud.
So shall the fairest face appear,
When youth and years are flown: Such is the robe that kings must wear,
When Death has reft their crown.
Her bloom was like the springing flower,
That sips the silver dew;
Just opening to the view.
But love had, like the canker-worm,
Consumed her early prime :
She died before her time.
"Awake!” she cried, “thy true love calls,
Come from her midnight-grave;. Now let thy pity hear the maid
Thy love refused to save.
«« This is the dumb and dreary hour,
When injured ghosts complain; When yawning graves give up their dead,
To haunt the faithless swain.
"Bethink thee, William, of thy fault,
"Why did you promise love to me,
Why did you swear my eyes were bright,
"How could you say my face was fair,
How could you win my virgin heart,
"Why did you say my lip was sweet,
"That face, alas! no more is fair,
Dark are my eyes, now closed in death,
"The hungry-worm my sister is;
And cold and weary lasts our night,
"But, hark! the cock has warn'd me hence;
Come see, false man, how low she lies,
The lark sung loud; the morning smiled
Pale William quaked in every limb,
He hied him to the fatal place
Where Margaret's body lay,
That wrapp'd her breathless clay.
And thrice he wept full sore;
And word spoke never more !
WILLIAM SHENSTONE. 1714-1763.
ODE TO MEMORY.
On Memory! celestial maid !
Who glean’st the flowerets cropp'd by Time; And, suffering not a leaf to fade,
Preserv'st the blossoms of our prime; Bring, bring those moments to my mind When life was new, and Lesbia kind. And bring that garland to my sight
With which my favour'd crook she bound; And bring that wreath of roses bright
Which then my festive temples crown'd;
Where Isis rolls her silver tide;
That shines on Cherwell's verdant side ;
But sure, to sooth our youthful dreams, Those banks and streams appeard more bright
Than other banks, than other streams :
Or, by thy softening pencil shown,
When, all beneath the poplar bough, My spirits light, my soul serene,
I breathed in verse one cordial vow: That nothing should my soul inspire But friendship warm, and love entire. Dull to the sense of new delight,
On thee the drooping Muse attends; As some fond lover, robb’d of sight,
On thy expressive power depends ; Nor would exchange thy glowing lines, To live the lord of all that shines. But let me chase those vows away
Which at ambition's shrine I made; Nor ever let thy skill display
Those anxious moments, ill repaid: Oh! from my breast that season raze, And bring my childhood in its place. Bring me the bells, the rattle bring,
And bring the hobby I bestrode; When, pleased, in many a sportive ring,
Around the room I jovial rode :
Why did not those enjoyments last? How sweetly wasted I the day,
While innocence allow'd to waste !