Page images

By Nature modell’d, by experience taught, Tco soon they were; and every dart,
To know and pity every female fault :

Dipt in the Muse's mystic spring,
Pleas'd e'en to hear her sex's virtues shown, Acquir'd new force to wound the heart,
And blind to none's perfections but her own :

And taught at once to love and sing.
Whilst, humble fair! of these too few she knows, Then farewell, ye Pierian quire,
Yet owns too many for the world's repose:

For who will now your altars throng?
From Wit's wild petulance serenely free,

From Jove we learn to swell the lyre,
Yet blest in all that Nature can decree.

And Echo asks no sweeter song.
Not like a fire, which, whilst it burns, alarms;
A modest flame, that genily shines and warms:
Whose mind, in every light, can charms display,
With Wisdom serious, and with Humour gay:

Just as her eyes in each bright posture warm,

And fiercely strike, or languishingly charm :
Such are your honours-mention'd to your cost,

Urit spes animi credula mutui. HOR, Those least

tan hear them, who deserve them most: ’T was not by Beauty's aid alone, Yet ah! forgive the less inventive Muse,

That Love usurp'd his airy throne,
If e'er she sing, a copious theme must choose.

His boasted power display'd;
'Tis Kindness that secures his aim,

'Tis Hope that feeds the kindling flame, TRITTEN IN A FLOWER-BOOK OF MY OWN COLOURING,

Wbich Beauty first convey'd. DESIGNED FOR LADY PLYMOUTH. 1753-4. In Clara's eyes, the lightnings view; Debitæ nymphis opifex coronæ. Hor.

Her lips with all the rose's hne

Hare all its sweets combin’d; Bring, Flora, bring thy treasures here,

Yet vain the blush, and faint the fire, The pride of all the blooming year;

Till lips at once, and eyes conspire
And let me, thence, a garland frame,

To prove the charmer kind
To crown this fair, this peerless dame!
But ah ! since envious Winter lours,

Though Wit might gild the tempting snare,
And Hewell meads resign their flowers,

With softest accent, sweetest air, Let art and friendship joint essay

By Envy's self admir'd; Diffuse their flowerets in her way.

If Lesbia's wit betray'd her scorn, Not Nature can herself prepare

In vain might every Grace adorn
A worthy wreath for Lesbia's Lair,

What every Muse inspir'd.
Whose temper, like her forehead, smooth, Thus airy Strephon tun'd his lyre--
Whose thoughts and accents form’d to sooth, He scorn'd the pangs of wild desire,
Whose pleasing mien, and make refin'd,

Which love-sick swains endure:
Whose artless breast, and polish'd mind,

Resolv'd to brave the keenest dart, From all the nymphs of plain or grove,

Since frowns could never wound his heart,
Deserv'd and won my Plymouth's love.

And smiles--must ever cure.
But ah! how false these maxims prore,

How frajl security from Love,

Experience hourly shows ! 'Twas in a cool Aonian glade,

Love can imagin'd smiles supply, The wanton Cupid, spent with toil,

On every charming lip and eye

Eternal sweets bestows.
Had songht refreshment from the shade,
And stretch'd him on the mossy soil.

In vain we trust the fair-one's eyes,

In vain the sage explores the skies, A vagrant Muse drew nigh, and found

To learn from stars his fate: The subtle traitor fast asleep ; “ And is it thine to snore profound,"

Till, led by Fancy wide astray,

He finds no planet mark his way; She said, “yet leave the world to weep?

Convinc'd and wise--too late. “ But lush--from this auspicious bour, The world, I ween, may rest in peace;

As partial to their words we prove; And, robb'd of darts, and stripp'd of power,

Then boldly join the lists of love,

With towering hopes supplied : Thy peevish petulance decrease.

See beroes, taught by doubtful shrines, “ Sleep on, poor child! whilst I withdraw, Mistook their deity's designs; And this thy vile artillery hide"

Then took the field and died. When the Castalian fount she saw,

And plung'd his arrows in the tide.
That magic fount--ill-judging maid !

Shall cause you soon to curse the day
You dar'd the shafts of Love invade,

Optima quæque dies miseris mortalibus ævi And gave bis arms redoubled sway,

Prima fugit

VIRG. For in a stream so wondrous clear,

A Tear bedews my Delia's eye, When angry Cupid searches round,

To think yon playful kid must die; Will not the radiant points appear?

From crystal spring, and flowery mead, Will not the furtive spoils be found ?

Must, in his prime of life, recede ! VOL. XII.

[ocr errors]

Erewhile, in sportive circles round

Go shear your flocks, ye jovial swains, She saw him wheel, and frisk, and bound; Go reap the plenty of your plains ; From rock to rock pursue his way,

Despoild of all which you revere,
And on the fearful margin play.

I know my Flavia's love sincere.
Pleas'd on his various freaks to dwell,
She saw him climb my rustic cell;
Thence eye my lawns with verdure bright,

And seem all ravish'd at the sight.

THE LANDSCAPE. She tells with what delight he stood To trace his features in the flood;

How pleas'd within my native bowers Then skipp'd aloof with quaint amaze,

Erewbile I pass'd the day! And then drew near again to gaze.

Was ever scene so deck'd with flowers ?

Were ever flowers so gay?
She tells me how with eager speed
He flew to hear my vocal reed;

How sweetly smild the hill, the vale, And how with critic face profound,

And all the landscape round! And steadfast ear, devour'd the sound.

The river gliding down the dale!

The hill with beeches crown'd?
His every frolic, light as air,
Deserves the gentle Delia's care;

But now, when urg'd by tender woes
And tears bedew her tender eye,

1 speed to meet my dear,

That hill and stream my zeal oppose, To think the playful kid must die.

And check my fond career. But knows my Delia, timely wise,

No more, since Daphne was my theme, How soon this blameless era flies ?

Their wonted charms I see: While violence and craft succeed;

That verdant hill, and silver stream, Unfair design, and ruthless deed!

Divide my love and me.
Soon would the vine his wounds deplore,
And yield her purple gifts no more ;
Ah soon, eras'd from every grove
Were Delia's name, and Strephon's love.

No more those bowers might Strephon see,

Ye gentle nymphs and generous dames, Where first he fondly gaz'd on thee;

That rule o'er every British mind; No more those beds of flowerets find,

Be sure ye sooth their amorous flames, Which for thy charming brows he twin'd.

Be sure your laws are not unkind. Each wayward passion soon would tear

For hard it is to wear their bloom His bosom, now so void of care;

In unremitting sighs away: And, when they left his ebbing vein,

To mourn the night's oppressive gloom, What, but insipid age, remain ?

And faintly bless the rising day. Then mourn not the decrees of Fate,

And cruel 't were a frec-born swain, That gave his life so short a date;

A British youth, should vainly moan; And I will join thy tenderest sighs,

Who, scornful of a tyrant's chain, To think that youth so swiftly flies !

Submits to yours, and yours alone. Nor pointed spear, nor links of steel,

Could e'er those gallant minds subdue, Who Beauty's wounds with pleasure feel,

And boast the fetters wrought by you.
Written chiefly between the years 1737 and 1742.


I TOLD my nymphs, I told her true,

Go, tuneful bird, that gladd'st the skies, My fields were small, my flocks were few;

To Daphne's window speed thy way; While faltering accents spoke my fear,

And there on quivering pinions rise, That Flavia might not prove sincere.

And thửre thy vocal art display. Of crops destroy'd bv vernal cold,

And if she deign thy notes to hear, And vagrant sheep that left my fold:

And if she praise tby matin song, Of these she heard, yet bore to hear;

'Tell her, the sounds that sooth her ear, And is not Flavia then sincere ?

To Damon's native plains belong. How chang'd by Fortune's fickle wind,

Tell her, in livelier plumes array'd, The friends I lov'd became unkind,

The bird from Indian groves may shine; She heard, and shed a generous tear;

But ask the lovely partial maid, And is not Flavia then sincere?

What are his notes compar'd to thine ? How, if she deign my love to bless,

Then bid her treat yon witless beau My Flavia must not hope for dress;

And all his flaunting race with scorn; This too she heard, and smil'd to hear;

And lend an ear to Damon's woe, And Flavia sure must be sincere,

Who sings her praise, and sings forlorn


The sprightly birds, that droop'd no less Ah! ego non aliter tristes evincere morbos Beneath the power of rain and wind,

Optarem, quam te sic quoque velle putem. In every raptur'd note express On every tree, in every plain,

The joy I feel —when thou art kind.
I trace the jovial Spring in vain;
A sickly languor veils mine eyes,
And fast my waning vigour flies.

SONG VIII. 1742.
Nor flowery plain, nor budding tree,
That smile on others, smile on me;

Wye Bright Roxana treads the green, Mine eyes from Death shall court repose,

In all the pride of dress and mien; Nor shed a tear before they close.

Averse to freedom, love, and play,

The dazzling rival of the day: What bliss to me can seasons bring?

None other beauty strikes mine eye, Or what the needless pride of Spring?

The lilies droop, the roses die.
The cypress bough, that suits the bier,
Retains its verdure all the year.

But when, disclaiming art, the fair

Assumes a soft engaging air; 'T is true, my vine so fresh and fair

Mild as the opening morn of May, Might claim a while my wonted care;

Familiar, friendly, free, and gay; My rural store some pleasure yield;

The scene improves, where'er she goes, So white a flock, so green a field !

More sweetly smile the pink and rose, My friends, that each in kindness vie,

() lovely maid! propitious hear, Might well expect one parting sigh;

Nor deem thy shepherd insincere; Might well demand one tender tear;

Pity a wild illusive flame, For when was Damon unsincere?

That varies objects still the same; But ere I ask once more to view

And let their very changes prove
Yon setting Sun his race renew,

The never-varied force of love.
Inform me, swains ; my friends, declare,
Will pitying Delia join the prayer?

SONG IX. 1743.


Tis said that under distant skies,

Nor you the fact deny,
Yzs; Fulvia is like Venus fair;

What first attracts an Indian's eyes Has all her bloom, and shape, and air:

Becomes his deity. But still, to perfect every grace,

Perhaps a lily, or a rose, She wants—the smile upon her face.

That shares the morning's ray, The crown majestic Juno wore,

May to the waking swain disclose And Cynthia's brow the crescent bore,

The regent of the day. A helmet mark'd Minerva's mien,

Perhaps a plant in yonder grove, But smiles distinguish'd Beauty's queen.

Enrich'd with fragrant power, Her train was form’d of Smiles and Loves,

May tempt his vagrant eyes to move Her chariot drawn by gentlest doves;

Where blooms the sovereign flower. And from her zone the nymph may find,

Perch'd on the cedar's topmost bough, 'T is Beauty's province to be kind.

And gay with gilded wings, Then smile, my fair; and all whose aim

Perchance, the patron of his vow, Aspires to paint the Cyprian dame,

Some artless linnet sings. Or bid her breathe in living stone,

The swain surveys her pleas'd, afraid, Shall take their forins from you alone.

Then low to earth he bends;
And owns, upon her friendly aid,

His health, his life, depends.
SONG VII. 1744.

Vain futile idols, bird or flower,

To tempt a votary's prayer ! The lovely Delia smiles again;

How would his humble homage tower, That killing frown has left her brow:

Should he behold my fair! Can she forgive my jealous pain,

Yes-might the Pagan's waking eyes And give me back my angry vow ?

O'er Flavia's beauty range, Love is an April's doubtful day :

He there would fix his lasting choice,
A while we see the tempest lower ;
Anon the radiant heaven survey,

Nur dare, nor wish to change.
And quite forget the fitting shower.
The flowers, that hung their languid head,

SONG X. 1743.
Are burnish'd by the transient rains;
The vines their wonted tendrils spread,

The fatal hours are wondrous near, And double verdure gilds the plains,

That from these fountains bear my dear; A little space is given; in vain :

Unmov’d, should Eastern kinga advance, She robs my sight, and shuns the plain.

Could I the pageant see: A little space, for me to prove

Splendour might catch one scornful glance,

Not steal one thought from thee.
My boundless flame, my endless love;
And, like the train of vulgar hours,
Invidious Time that space devours.
Near yonder beech is Delia's way,

On that I gaze the livelong day;

THE SCHOLAR'S RELAPSE. No Fastern monarch's dazzling pride

By the side of a grove, at the foot of a hill, Shall draw my longing eyes aside.

Where whisper'd the beech, and where murmur'd The chief that knows of succours nigh,

the rill; And sees his mangled legions die,

I vow'd to the Muses my time and my care, Casts not a more impatient glance,

Since neither could win me the smile of my fair. To see the loitering aids advance.

Free I rang'd like the birds, like the birds free I sung,

(tongue; Not more, the school-boy that expires Far from bis native home, requires

And Delia's lor'd name scarce escap'd from my To see some friend's familiar face,

But if once a smooth accent delighted my ear, Or meet a parent's last embrace

I should wish, unawares, that my Delia might hear,

With fairest ideas my bosom I stor'd,
She comes—but ah ! what crowds of beaux Allusive to none but the nymph I ador'd;
In radiant bands my fair enclose!

And the more I with study my fancy refin'd,
Oh! better hadst thou shunn'd the green,

The deeper impressions she made on my mind. Oh, Delia ! better far unseen.

So long as of Nature the charms I pursue, Methinks, by all my tender fears,

I still must my Delia's dear image renew : By all my sighs, by all my tears,

The Graces have yielded with Delia to rove, I might from torture now be free

And the Muses are all in alliance with Love. 'I is more than death to part from thee !

SONG XI. 1744.
Perhaps it is not love, said I,
That melts my soul when Flavia 's nigh;
Wbere wit and sense like hers agree,
One may be pleas’d, and yet be free.
The beauties of her polish'd mind,
It needs no lover's eye to find;
The hermit, freezing in his cell,
Might wish the gentle Flavia well.
It is not love-averse to bear
The servile chain that lovers wear;
Let, let me all my fears remove,
My doubts dispel-it is not love
Oh! when did wit so brightly shine
In any form less fair than thine?
It is-it is love's subtle fire,
And under Friendship lurks Desire.


See, Daphne, see," Florelio cried,
“ And learn the sad effects of pride ;
Yon shelter'd rose, how safe conceal'd!
How quickly blasted, when reveald!
“ The Sun with warm attractive rays
Tempts it to wanton in the blaze:
A gale succeeds from eastern skies,
And all its blushing radiance dies.
“So you, my fair, of charms divine,
Will quit the plains, too fond to shine,
Where Fame's transporting rays allure,
Though here more happy, more secure.
“ The breath of some neglected maid
Shall make you sigh you left the shade;
A breath to Beauty's bloom unkind,
As, to the rose, an eastern wind.”
The nymph replied—“ You first, my swain,
Confine your sonnets to the plain;
One envious tongue alike disarms,
You of your wit, me of my charms.
“What is, unkn ən, the poet's skill?
Or what, unheard, the tuneful thrill?
What, unadmir'd, a charming mien,
Or what the rose's blush, unseen?”

SONG XII. 1744.
O’er desert plains, and rushy meers,

And wither'd heaths, I rove;
Where tree, nor spire, nor cot appears,

I pass to meet my love.
But though my path were damask'd o'er

With beauties e'er so fine;
My busy thoughts would fly before,

To fix alone-on thine,
No fir-crown'd hills could give delight,

No palace please mine eye:
No pyramid's aërial height,

Where wouldering monarchs lie.


WINTER. 1746.
No more, ye warbling birds, rejoice :

Of all that cheer'd the plain,
Echo alone preserves her voice,

And she-repeats my pain.

Where'er my love-sick limbs 1 lay,

Averse to freedom, mirth, and play, TO shun the rushing wind,

The lofty rival of the day; Its busy murmurs seem to say,

Methinks, to my enchanted eye, “ She never will be kind !”

The lilies droop, the roses die. The Naiads, o'er their frozen urns,

But when, disdaining art, the fair In icy chains repine;

Assumes a soft engaging air; And each in sullen silence mourns

Mild as the opening morn of May, Her freedom lost, like mine!

And as the feather'd warblers gay: Soon will the Sun's returning rays

The scene improves where'er she goes, The cheerless frost control;

More sweetly smile the pink and rose. When will relenting Delia chase

O lovely maid ! propitions hear,
The winter of my soul ?

Nor think thy Damon insincere.
Pity my wild delusive flame:
For though the flowers are still the same,

To me they languish, or improve,

And plainly tell me that I love.
Ye birds! for whom I reard the grove,
With melting lay salute my love:

My Daphne with your notes detain:

IMITATED FROM THE FRENCH. Or I have reard my grove in vain.

Yes, these are the scenes where with Iris I stray'd, Ye flowers! before her footsteps rise;

But short was her sway for so lovely a maid ! Display at once your brightest dyes ;

In the bloom of her youth to a cloister she run; That she your opening charms may see :

In the bloom of her graces too fair for a nun! Or what were all your charms to me?

Ill-grounded, no doubt, a devotion must prove Kind Zephyr! brush each fragrant flower, So fatal to beauty, so killing to love ! And shed its odours round my bower:

Yes, these are the meadows, the shrubs, and the Or never more, O gentle wind,


[pains; Shall I, from thee, refreshment find.

Once the scene of my pleasures, the scene of my Ye streams' if e'er your banks I lov'd,

How many soft inoments I spent in this grove ! If e'er your native sounds improv'd,

How fair was mynymph, and how fervent my love! May each soft murmar sooth my fair !

Be still though, my heart! thine emotion give o'er; Or, oh! 't will deepen my despair.

Remember, the season of love is no more. And thou, my grot! whose lonely bounds With her how 1 stray'd amid fountains and bowers, The melancholy pine surrounds,

Or loiter'd behind and collected the flowers; May Daphné praise thy peaceful gloom !

Then breathless with ardour my fair one pursu'd, Or thou shalt prove her Damon's tomb.

And to think with what kindness my garland she

view'd! But be still, my fond heart! this emotion give o'er,

Fain wouldst thou forget thou must love her no more.

Adieu, ye jovial youths, who join
To plunge old Care in floods of wine ;

When firs', Philander, first I came
And, as your dazzled eye-balls roll,

Where Avon rolls his winding stream, Discern him struggling in the bowl.

The nymphs-how brisk! the swains how gay! Not yet is Hope so wholly flown,

To see Asteria, queen of May! Not yet is Thought so tedious grown,

The parsons round, her praises súng !

The steeples, with her praises rung !But limpid stream and shady tree

I thought--no sight that e'er was seen,
Retain, as yet, some sweets for me.

Could match the sight of Barel's green
And see through yonder silent grove,
See yonder does my Daphne rove;

But now, since old Eugenio died-
With pride her footsteps I pursue,

The chief of poets, and the prideAnd bid her frantic joys adieu.

Now, meaner bards in vain aspire

To raise their voice, to tune their lyre! The sole confusion I admire,

Their lovely season, now, is o'er! Is that my Daphne's eyes inspire:

Thy notes, Florelio, please no more! I scorn the madness you approve,

No more Asteria's smiles are seen! And value reason next to love.

Adieu the sweets of Barel's green!

When bright Ophelia treads the green,
In all the pride of dress and mien;

Why o'er the verdant banks of Ooze
Does yonder halcyon speed so fast?

« PreviousContinue »