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But vain the magic lay, the warbling lyre,
Imperious Death I from thy fell grasp to save; He knew, and told it with a Poet's fire,
• The paths of glory lead but to the grave.' And shall the Bard, whose sympathizing mind
Mourn'd o'er the simple rustic's turfy cell,
No village swain to ring one parting knell?
Green rushes culling thy dank grave to strew; With mountain flow'rs I'll deck the hallow'd place,
And fence it round with osiers mix'd with yew.
THE TEARS OF GENIUS :
By Mr. Taite.
On Cam's fair banks, where Learning's hallow'd fane
Majestic rises on the astonish'd sight,
And warm'd his soul with Heaven's inspiring light. Beneath the covert of the sylvan shade,
Where deadly cypress, mix'd with mournful yew, Far o'er the vale a gloomy stillness spread,
Celestial Genius burst upon the view. The bloom of youth, the majesty of years,
The soften'd aspect, innocent and kind, The sigh of sorrow, and the streaming tears,
Resistless all, their various pow'r combined. In her fair hand a silver harp she bore,
Whose magic notes, soft-warbling from the string, Give tranquil joy the breast ne'er knew before,
Or raise the soul on rapture's airy wing. By grief impell’d, I heard her heave a sigh, While thus the rapid strain resounded through the sky;
Haste, ye sister powers of song,
Hasten from the shady grove,
Sweetly to the voice of love.
Light you press the flow'ry green.
Cull the wreaths for Fancy's queen.
Floating on the fragrant breeze,
On the downy bed of ease.
That wakes the softest feelings of the soul;
Behold our fav rite Poet lies!
Far from his couch ungrateful flies.
So lately warm'd his peaceful breast,
In Transport's radiant garments drest,
The gaudy train, who wait on Spring, *
Tinged with the pomp of vernal pride,
And idly sport on Thames's side,
Ha! what forms, with port sublime,
Glide along in sullen mood,
They seize their harps, they strike the lyre
In pomp of state, behold they wait,
With arms outstretch'd, and aspects kind,
The child of Fancy left behind :
But ah! in vain they strive to soothe,
With gentle arts, the tort'ring hours ;
Her baleful gifts profusely pours.
Array'd in Horror's settled gloom;
And triumphs in th' infernal doom.
No more the soft Æolian flutet
Breathes through the heart the melting strain ; The powers of Harmony are mute,
And leave the once-delightful plain ; With heavy wing, I see them beat the air, Damp'd by the leaden hand of comfortless Despair.
Yet stay, O! stay, celestial pow'rs,
And with a hand of kind regard
Destructive on the fav'rite bard;
Hark! the Fatal Sisterst join,
And with Horror's mutt'ring sounds,
While the dreadful spell resounds.
* Hymn to Adversity.
• Hail, ye midnight sisters, hail !
Drive the shuttle swift along;
O'er the valiant and the strong.
O'er the innocent and gay,
Weave the fun'ral web of Gray.'
With ruthless fury and corrosive force, Racks every joint, and seizes every vein:
He sinks, he groans, he falls a lifeless corse. Thus fades the flow'r nipp'd by the frozen gale,
Though once so sweet, so lovely to the eye: Thus the tall oaks, when boist'rous storms assail,
Torn from the earth, a mighty ruin lie.
Now let the stream of fond affection flow;
With all the manly dignity of woe.
With solemn pause yon Church-yard's gloom survey, While Sorrow's sighs and tears of Pity tell
How just the moral of the Poet's lay.*
Oft let the pilgrim drop a silent tear:
Big with the sweets of each revolving year; Till prostrate Time adore his deathless name, Fix'd on the solid base of adamantine faine.
* Elegy in a Country Church-yard.