« PrécédentContinuer »
Love thee, mournful fober-fuited 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 depreffion funk, the enfeebled mind Will to the deaf, cold elements complain, And tell the embofom'd grief, however vain, To fullen furges, and the viewless wind. Though no repofe on thy dark breast I find, I ftill enjoy thee-cheerlefs as thou art; For in thy quiet gloom, the exhaufted heart Is calm, though wretched; hopeless, yet refign'd: While, to the winds and waves its forrows given, May reach-tho' loft on earth-the ear of Heaven!
THE ORIGIN OF FLATTERY,
WHEN Jove, in anger to the sons of earth,
Bid artful Vulcan give Pandora birth,
And fent the fatal gift, which spread below
O'er all the wretched race contagious woe,
Unhappy man, by vice and folly toft,
Found in the storms of life his quiet loft,
While Envy, Avarice, and Ambition, hurl'd
Difcord and Death around the warring world;
Then the bleft peafant left his fields and fold,.
And barter'd love and peace, for power and gold;
Left his calm cottage, and his native plain,
In fearch of wealth to tempt the faithless main;
Or, braving danger, in the battle stood,
And bath'd his savage hands in human blood:
No longer then, his woodland walks among,
The fhepherd lad his genuine paffion sung,
Or fought at early morn his foul's delight,
Or grav'd her name upon the bark at night;
To deck her flowing hair no more he wove
The fimple wreath, or with ambitious love
Bound his own brow with myrtle or with bay,
But broke his pipe, and threw his crook away.
The nymphs forfaken, other pleasures sought:
Then first for gold their venal hearts were bought,
And Nature's blush to fickly art gave place,
And Affectation feiz'd the feat of Grace:
No more Simplicity, by sense refin'd,
Or generous Sentiment, poffefs'd the mind;
No more they felt each other's joy and woe,
And Cupid filed, and hid his useless bow.
But with deep grief propitious Venus pin'd,
To fee the ills which threaten'd womankind;
Ills, that she knew her empire would difarm,
And rob her fubjects of their sweetest charm;
Good humour's potent influence deftroy,
And change for low'ring frowns, the fmile of joy.
Then deeply fighing at the mournful view,
She try'd at length what heavenly art could do
To bring back pleasure to her penfive train,
And vindicate the glories of her reign.
A thousand little loves attend the task,
And bear from Mars's head his radiant cafque,
The fair enchantrefs on its filver bound,
Wreath'd with soft spells her magic ceftus round.
Then fhaking from her hair ambrofial dew,
Infus'd fair hope, and expectation new,
And stifled wishes, and perfuafive fighs,
And fond belief, and "eloquence of eyes,"
And fault'ring accents, which explain so well
What ftudy'd fpeeches vainly try to tell,
And more pathetic filence, which imparts
Infectious tenderness to feeling hearts,
Soft tones of pity; fafcinating smiles;
And Maia's fon affifted her with wiles,
And brought gay dreams, fantastic vifions brought, And wav'd his wand o'er the feducing draught. Then Zephyr came: To him the goddess cry'd, "Go fetch from Flora all her flow'ry pride, "To fill my charm, each fcented bud that blows, "And bind my myrtles with her thornlefs rofe: "Then speed thy flight to Gallia's fmiling plain, "Where rolls the Loire, the Garonne, and the Seine: "Dip in their waters thy celestial wing, "And the foft dew to fill my chalice bring;
"But chiefly tell thy Flora, that to me
"She fend a bouquet of her fleurs de lis;
"That piognant spirit will complete my spell."
'Tis done the lovely forceress fays, 'tis well!
And now Apollo lends a ray of fire,
The cauldron bubbles, and the flames afpire;
The watchful Graces round the circle dance,
With arms entwin'd, to mark the work's advance;
And with full quiver fportive Cupid came,
Temp'ring his favourite arrows in the flame.
Then Venus fpeaks; the wavering flames retire,
And Zephyr's breath extinguishes the fire.
At length the Goddess in the helmet's round
A fweet and fubtile spirit duly found;
Mo foft than oil, than æther more refin'd,
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 fad brow of virgins in despair,
And fmooths the cruel traces left by care,
Bids palfy'd age with youthful spirit glow,
And hangs May's garlands on December's fnow.
Delicious effence! howfoe'er apply'd,
By what rude nature is thy charm deny'd ?
Some form feducing ftill thy whisper wears,
Stern Wisdom turns to thee her willing ears,
And Prudery liftens, and forgets her fears.
The ruftic nymph, whom rigid aunts restrain,
Condemn'd to drefs, and practise airs in vain,
At thy firft fummons finds her bofom fwell,
And bids her crabbed governantes farewel :
While, fir'd by thee, with fpirit not her own,
She grows a toaft, and rifes into ton.
The faded beauty, who, with fecret pain,
Sees younger charms ufurp her envy'd reign,
By thee affifted, can with fmiles behold
The record where her conquefts are enroll'd;
And dwelling yet on fcenes by memory nurs'd,
When George the Second reign'd, or George the First;
She fees the shades of ancient beaux arife,
Who fwear her eyes exceeded modern eyes,
When poets fung for her, and lovers bled,
And giddy fashion follow'd as the 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 difdain
The more fantastic tastes that now obtain,
She deems ungraceful, trifling and abfurd,
The gayer world that moves round George the Third.
Nor thy foft influence will the train refuse,
Who court in diftant fhades the modest Muse,
Tho' in a form more pure and more refin'd,
Thy foothing fpirit meets the letter'd mind.
Not death itself thine empire can destroy ;
Towards thee, e'en then, we turn the languid eye;
Still truft in thee to bid our memory bloom,
And scatter rofes round the filent tomb.
DIRGE IN CYMBELINE.
Sung by Guiderus and Arviragus over Fidele, supposed to be dead.
To fair Fidele's graffy tomb,
Soft maids and village hinds fhall bring Each opening fweet, of earliest bloom, And rifle all the breathing Spring.
No wailing ghost shall dare appear
To vex with fhrieks this quiet grove ;
But shepherd lads assemble here,
And melting virgins own their love.