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O come, and to this fairer Laura pay
A more impassion'd tear, a more pathetic lay !
Tell how each beauty of her mind and face
Was brighten'd by some sweet peculiar grace I
How eloquent in ev'ry look
Thro her expressive eyes her soul distinctly spoke !
Tell how her manners, by the world refin'd,
Left all the taint of modish vice behind,
And made each charm of polish'd courts agree
With candid Truth's fimplicity,
And uncorrupted Innocence !
Tell how to more than manly sense
She join'd the soft'ning influence
Of more than female tenderness : ,
How, in the thoughtless days of wealth and joy,
Which oft the care of others' good destroy,
Her kindly melting heart,
To every want, and every woe,
To Guilt itself when in distress,
The balm of pity would impart,
And all relief that bounty could befow!
E'en for the kid or lamb, that pour'd its life
Beneath the bloody knife,
Her gentle tears would fall;
Tears, from sweet Virtue's source, benevolent to all !
Not only good and kind,
But strong and elevated was her mind :
A spirit that with noble pride
Could look fuperior down
On Fortune's smile or frown ;
That could, without regret or pain,
To Virtue's loweft duty facrifice,
Or Interest or Ambition's highest prize;
That, injur'd or offended, never try'd
Its dignity by vengeance to maintain,
But by magnanimous disdain.
A wit, that, temperately bright,
With inoffensive light
All pleasing Ahone ; nor ever pass’d
The decent bounds that Wisdom's sober hand,
And fweet Benevolence's mild command,
And bashful Modesty, before it caft.
A prudence undeceiving, undeceiv'd,
That nor too little nor too much believ'd;
That scorn'd unjust Suspicion's coward fear,
And, without weakness, knew to be fincere.
Such Lucy was, when in her fairest days,
Amidst th' acclaim of universal praise.
In life's and glory's freshest bloom,
Death came remorseless on, and sunk her to the tombe
So, where the filent streams of Liris glide,
In the soft bosom of Campania's vale,
When now the wint'ry tempefts all are fled,
And genial summer breathes her gentle gale,
The verdant orange lifts its beauteous head;
From ev'ry branch the balmy flow'rets rise,
On ev'ry bough the golden fruits are seen ;
With odours sweet it fills the smiling skies,
The wood nymphs lend it, and th'Idalian queens
But, in the midst of all its blooming pride,
A sudden blaft from Appenninus blows,
Cold with perpetual snows;
The tender blighted plant Drinks up its leaves and diese
Arile, o Petrarch ! from th' Elysian bow'rs,
With never-fading myrtles twin'd,
And fragrant with ambrosial flow'rs,
Where to thy Laura thou again art join'd;
Arise, and hither bring the filver lyre,
Tun'd by thy skilful hand,
To the soft notes of elegant desire,
With which ofer many a land
Was spread the fame of thy disastrous love;
To me resign the vocal lell,
And teach my forrows to relate
Their melancholy tale fo well,
As may e'en things inanimate,
Rough mountain oaks, and desert rocks, to pity move.
What were, alas ! thy woes, compard to mine?
To thee thy mistress in the blissful band
Of Hymen never gave her hand;
The joys of wedded love were never thine.
In thy domestic care
She never bore a share,
Nor with endearing art
Would heal thy wounded heart
Of every secret grief that fester'd there :
Nor did her fond affection on the bed
Of sickness watch thee, and thy languid head
Whole nights on her unwearied arm sustain,
And charm away the sense of pain;
Nor did the crown your mutual flame With pledges dear, and with a father's tender name,
O best of wives ! O dearer far to me
Than when thy virgin charms
Were yielded to my arms ;
How can my soul endure the loss of thee?
How in the world, to me a desert grown,
Abandon'd and alone,
Without my sweet companion can I live ?
Without thy lovely smile,
The dear reward of ev'ry virtuous toil,
What pleasures now can pall'd Ambition give ?
E'en the delightful senfe of well-earn'd praise, Unshar'd by thee, no more my lifeless thoughts could raise.
For my dikracted mind
What succour can I find ;
On whom for confolation shall I call ?
Support me, ev'ry friend ;
Your kind assistance lend,
To bear the weight of this oppressive woe.
Alas! each friend of mine,
My dear departed love, so much was thine,
That none has any comfort to bestow.
My books, the best relief
In every other grief,
Are now with your idea fadden'd all :
Each fav’rite author we together read
My tortur'd mem'ry wounds, and speaks of Lucy deada
We were the happiest pair of human kind :
The rolling year its various course perform’d,
And ck return'd again ;
Another, and another frniling came,
And saw our happiness unchang'd remain.
Still ju her golden chain
Harmonious Concord did our wishes bind :
Our Audies, pleafures, taste the fame.
O fatal, fatal stroke!
That all this pleasing fabric Love had rais'd
Of rare felicity,
On which e'en wanton Vicc with envy gaz'd,
And ev'ry scheme of bliss our hearts had form'd,
With foothing hope for many a future day,
In one fad moment broke !
Yet, O my soul ! thy rifing murmurs stay;
Nor dare th' All-wife Disposer to arraign,
Or against His supreme decree
With impious grief complain. That all thy full-blown joys at once should fail, Was His moft righteous will--and be that will obey'd.
Would thy fond love His grace to her controui;
And, in these low abodes of fin and pain,
Unjustly, for thy partial good, eletain ?
No; rather ftrive thy groveling mind to raise
Up to that unclouded blaze,
That heavenly radiance of eternal light,
In which enthron'd lhe now with pity fees,
How frail, họw insecure, how light,
Even Love itself, if rising by degrees
Beyond the bounds of this iinperfect state,
Whose fleeting joys fo foon must end,
It does not to its fovereign good ascend.
Rise then, my soul, with hope elale,
And seek those regions of serene delight,