Page images
[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Thy mimic soul, O nymph endear'd!
Can well recall what then it heard.
Where is thy native simple heart,
Devote to virtue, fancy, art ?
Arise, as in that elder time,
Warm, energetic, chaste, sublime !
Thy wonders in that godlike age
Fill thy recording sister's page-
'Tis said, and I believe the tale,
Thy bumblest reed could more prevail,
Had more of strength, diviner rage,
Than all which charms this laggard age ;
E’en all at once together found
Cecilia's mingled world of sound---
O, bid our vain endeavours cease,
Revive the just designs of Greece,
Return in all thy simple state,
Confirm the tales her sons relate!

If aught of oaten stop, or pastoral song,
May hope, chaste Eve, to soothe thy modest ear,

Like thy own solemn springs,

Thy springs, and dying gales;
O Nymph, reserv'd, while now the bright-hair'd sun
Sits on yon western tent, whose cloudy skirts,

With brede ethereal wove,

O’erhang his wavy bed :
Now air is hush’d, save where the weak-ey'd bat,
With short shrill shrieks flits by on leathern wing,

Or where the beetle winds

His small but sullen born,
As oft he rises midst the twilight path,
Against the pilgrim borne in heedless hum ;

Now teach me, maid compos’d,

To breathe some soften'd strain,
Whose numbers stealing through thy dark’ning vale
May not unseemly with its stillness suit,

As musing slow, I hail

Thy genial lov'd return !
For when thy folding star arising shows

plis paly circlet, at his warning lamp

The fragrant hours, and Elves

Who slept in flowers the day, And many a nymph who wreathes her brows with sedge, And sheds the fresh'ning dew; and, lovelier still,

The pensive pleasures sweet

Prepare thy shadowy car.
Then lead, calm vot’ress, where some sheety lake
Cheers the lone heath, or some time-hallow'd pile,

Or upland fallows gray,

Reflect its last cool gleam.
Or if chill blust'ring winds, or driving rain,
Prevent my willing feet, be mine the hut,

That from the mountain's side,

Views wilds, and swelling floods,
And hamlets brown, and dim-discover'd spires,
And hears their simple bell, and marks o'er all

Thy dewy fingers draw

The gradual dusky veil.
While Spring shall pour his show'rs, as oft he wont,
And bathe thy breathing tresses, meekest Eve!

While Summer loves to sport

Beneath thy ling’ring light;
While sallow Autumn fills thy lay with leaves ;
Or Winter, yelling through the troublous air,

Affrights thy shrinking train,

And rudely rends thy robes ;
So long regardful of thy quiet rule,
Shall Fancy, Friendship, Science, smiling Peace,

Thy gentlest influence own,
And love thy favrite name!

How sleep the brave, who sirk to rest,
By all their country's wishes blest !
When Spring, with dewy fingers cold,
Returns to deck their hallow'd mould,
She there shall dress a sweeter sod
Than fancy's feet have ever trod.
By fairy hands their knell is rung,
By forms unseen their dirge is sung,

There Honour comes, a pilgrim gray,
To bless the turf that wraps their clay,
And freedom shall awhile repair,
To dwell a weeping hermit there!

4. DIRGE IN CYMBELINE. To fair Fidele's


tomb Soft maids and village hinds shall bring Each opening sweet, of earliest bloom,

And rifle all the breathing spring. No wailing ghost shali dare appear

To vex with shrieks this quiet grove, But shepherd-lads assemble here,

And melting virgins own their love. No wither'd witch shall here be seen,

No goblins lead their nightly crew; The female fays shall haunt the green,

And dress thy grave with pearly dew. The red-breast oft at evening hours

Shall kindly lend his gentle aid, With hoary moss, and gather'd flowers,

To deck the ground where thou art laid. When howling winds and beating rain,

In tempests shake thy sylvan cell ; Or midst the chase on every plain,

The tender thought on thee shall dwell. Each lonely scene shall thee restore,

For thee the tear be duly shed ; Beloved, till life can charm no more,

And mourn'd till Pity's self be dead. CXC. JAMES MERRICK, 1720—1766.

Oft has it been my lot to mark
A proud, conceited, talking spark,

eyes that hardly served at most To guard their master 'gainst a post; Yet round the world the blade has been, To see whatever could be seen.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Returning from his finished tour,
Grown ten times perter than before ;
Whatever word you chance to drop,
The travelled fool your mouth will stop :

Sir, if my judgment you'll allow-
I've seen—and sure I ought to know.'-

So begs you'd pay a due submission,
And acquiesce in his decision.

Two travellers of such a cast,
As o'er Arabia's wilds they passed,
And on their way, in friendly chat,
Now talked of this, and then of that;
Discoursed awhile, 'mongst other matter,
Of the Chameleon's form and nature.
'A stranger animal,' cries one,

Sure never lived beneath the sun •
A lizard's body lean and long,
A fish's head, a serpent's tɔngue,
Its foot with triple claw disjoined ;
And what a length of tail behind !
How slow its pace! and then its hue-
Whoever saw so fine a blue ?'

Hold there,' the other quick replies,

green, I saw it with these eyes,
As late with open mouth it lay,
And warmed it in the sunny ray ;
Stretched at its ease the beast I viewed,
And saw it eat the air for food.'

'I've seen it, sir, as well as you,
And must again affirm it blue;
At leisure I the beast surveyed
Extended in the cooling shade.'


green, sir, I assure ye.'
Green !' cries the other in a fury :
Why, sir, d'ye think I've lost my eyes ?
' 'Twere no great loss,' the friend replies ;
· For if they always serve you thus,
You'll find them but of little use.'

So high at last the contest rose,
From words they almost came to blows •

[ocr errors]

When luckily came by a third ;
To him the question they referred :
And begged he'd tell them, if he knew,
Whether the thing was green or blue.

'Sirs,' cried the umpire, 'cease your pother ;
The creature's neither one nor t'other.
I caught the animal last night,
And viewed it o'er by candle-light:
I marked it well, 'twas black as jet-
You stare-but, sirs, I've got it yet,
And can produce it.' — Pray, sir, do ;
I'll lay my life the thing is blue.'
'And I'll be sworn, that when you've seen
The reptile, you'll pronounce him green.'

"Well, then, at once to ease the doubt,'
Replies the man, 'I'll turn him out:
And when before your eyes I've set him,

don't find him black, I'll eat him.' He said ; and full before their sight Produced the beast, and lo!-'twas white. Both stared, the man looked wondrous wisto ‘My children,' the Chameleon cries, (Then first the creature found a tongue) *You all are right, and all are wrong: When next you talk of what you view, Think others see as well as you : Nor wonder if you find that none Prefers your eye-sight to his own.'



Mourn, hapless Caledonia, mourn
Thy banish'd peace, thy laurels torn!
Thy sons, for valour long renown'd,
Lie slaughter'd on their native ground;
Thy hospitable roofs no more
Invite the stranger to the door ;
In smoky ruins sunk they lie,
The monuments of cruelty.

[ocr errors]
« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »