Page images

Or a fierce fever hurries him to Hell.

Where reason proves too weak, or void of wiles For, as the body through unnumber'd strings To cope with subtle or impetuous powers, Reverberates each vibration of the soul;

I would invoke new passions 10 your aid : As is the passion, such is still the pain

With indignation would extinguish fear; The body feels: or chronic, or acute.

With fear, or generous pity, vanquish rage; And oft a sudden storm at once o'erpowers And love with pride; and force to force oppose. The life, or gives your reason to the winds.

There is a charm, a power, that sways the breast Such fates attend the rash alarm of fear,

Bids every passion revel or be still; And sudden grief, and rage, and sudden joy. Inspires with rage, or all your cares dissolves ;

There are, meantime, to whom the boist'rous fit Can soothe distraction, and almost despair. Is health, and only fills the sails of life.

That power is music: far beyond the stretch For where the mind a torpid winter leads, or those unmeaning warblers on our stage; Wrapt in a body corpulent and cold,

Those clumsy heroes, those fat-headed gods, And each clogg'd function lazily moves on; Who move no passion justly but contempt: A generous sally spurns th' incumbent load, Who, like our dancers (light indeed and strong!) Unlocks the breast, and gives a cordial glow. Do wondrous feats, but never heard of grace. But if your wrathful blood is apt to boil,

The fault is ours; we bear those monstrous arts; Or are your nerves too irritably strung,

Good Heaven! we praise them: we, with loudest Waive all dispute ; be cautious, if you joke;

peals Keep Lent for ever, and forswear the bowl.

Applaud the fool that highest lifts his heels;
For one rash moment sends you to the shades, And with insipid show of rapture, die
Or shatters ev'ry hopeful scheme of life,

of idiot notes impertinently long.
And gives to horror all your days to come. But he the Muse's laurel justly shares,
Fate, arm'd with thunder, fire, and ev'ry plague, A poet he, and touchd with Heaven's own fire,
That ruins, tortures, or distracts mankind, Who, with bold rage or solemn pomp of sound,
And makes the happy wretched in an hour, Inflames, exalts, and ravishes the soul;
O'erwhelms you not with woes so horrible Now tender, plaintive, sweet almost to pain,
As your own wrath, nor gives more sudden blows. In love dissolves you ; now in sprightly strains

While choler works, good friend, you may be wrong. Breathes a gay rapture through your thrilling breasts Distrust yourself, and sleep before you fight. Or melts the hearts with airs divinely sad ; 'Tis not too late to-morrow to be brave;

Or wakes to horror the tremendous strings. If honor bids, to-morrow kill or die.

Such was the bard, whose heavenly strains of old But calm advice against a raging fit

Appeas'd the fiend of melancholy Saul. Avails too little; and it braves the power Such was, if old and heathen fame say true, or all that ever taught in prose or song,

The man who bade the Theban domes ascend,
To tame the fiend, that sleeps a gentle lamb, And tam'd the savage nations with his song;
And wakes a lion. Unprovok'd and calm, And such the Thracian, whose melodious lyre,
You reason well; see as you ought to see, Tun'd to soft woe, made all the mountains weep;
And wonder at the madness of mankind :

Sooth'd even th' inexorable powers of Hell,
Seiz'd with the common rage, you soon forget And half-redeem'd his lost Eurydice.
The speculations of your wiser hours.

Music exalts each joy, allays each grief,
Beset with furies of all deadly shapes,

Expels discases, softens every pain, Fierce and insidious, violent and slow :

Subdues the rage of poison and of plague, With all that urge or lure us on to fate :

And hence the wise of ancient days ador'd What resuge shall we seek ? what arms prepare? One power of physic melody, and song


JOSEPH Warton, D. D., born in 1722, was the Pope.” Scarcely any work of the kind has afforded eldest son of the Rev. Thomas Warton, poetry-pro- more entertainment, from the vivacity of its refessor at Oxford, and Vicar of Basingstoke. He marks, the taste displayed in its criticisms, and the received his early education under his father, and at various anecdotes of which it became the vehicle ; the age of fourteen was admitted on the foundation though some of the last were of a freer cast than at Winchester school. He was afterwards entered perfectly became his character. This reason, perof Oriel College, Oxford, where he assiduously cul- haps, caused the second volume to be kept back till tivated his literary taste, and composed some pieces twenty-six years after. In 1766 he was advanced of poetry, which were afterwards printed. Having to the post of head-master of Winchester school, on taken the degree of B. D., he became curate to his which occasion he visited Oxford, and took the defather at Basingstoke ; and in 1746 removed to a grees of bachelor and doctor of divinity. similar employment at Chelsea. In 1748 he was The remainder of his life was chiefly occupied by presented by the Duke of Bolton to the rectory schemes of publications, and by new preferments, of Winslade, soon after which he married. He ac- of the last of which he obtained a good share, though companied his patron in 1751 on a tour to the of moderate rank. In 1793 he closed his long lasouth of France; and after his return he completed bors at Winchester by a resignation of the masteran edition of Virgil, in Latin and English; of ship, upon which he retired to his rectory of Wickwhich the Eclogues and Georgics were his own ham. Still fond of literary employment, he ac. composition, the Eneid was the version of Pitt. cepted a proposal of the booksellers to superintend Warton also contributed notes on the whole, and an cdition of Pope's works, which was completed, added three preliminary essays, on pastoral, didac. in 1797, in nine vols. 8vo. Oiher engagements still tic, and epic poetry. When the Adventurer was pursued him, till his death, in his 78th year, Febundertaken by Dr. Hawkesworth, Warton, through ruary, 1800. The Wiccamists attested their regard the medium of Dr. Johnson, was invited to become to his niemory, by erecting an elegant monument i contributor, and his compliance with this request over his tomb in Winchester cathedral. produced twenty-four papers, of which the greater The poems of Dr. Warton consist of miscellapart were essays on critical topics.

neous and occasional pieces, displaying a cultivated In 1755 he was elected second master of Win- taste, and an exercised imagination, but without any chester school, with the accompanying advantage of claim to originality. His “Ode to Fancy,” first a boarding-house. In the following year there ap- published in Dodsley's collection, is perhaps that peared, but without his name, the first volume, which has been the most admired. 8vo., of his “ Essay on the Writings and Genius of


O PARENT of each lovely Muse,
Thy spirit o'er my soul diffuse,
O'er all my artless songs preside,
My footsteps to thy temple guide,
To offer at thy turf-built shrine,
In golden cups no costly wine,
No murder'd falling of the flock,
But flowers and honey from the rock.
O nymph with loosely-fowing hair,
With buskin'd leg, and bosom bare,
Thy waist with myrile-girdle bound,
Thy brows with Indian feathers crown'd,
Waving in thy snowy hand
An all-commanding magic wand,
of pow'r to bid fresh gardens blow,
'Mid cheerless Lapland's barren snow,
Whose rapid wings thy flight convey
Through air, and over earth and sea,
While the vast various landscape lies
Conspicuous to thy piercing eyes.
O lover of the desert, bail!
Say, in what deep and pathless vale,
Or on what hoary mountain's side,
'Mid fall of waters, you reside,
'Mid broken rocks, a rugged scene,
With green and grassy dales between,
'Mid forests dark of aged oak,
Ne'er echoing with the woodman's stroke,
Where never human art appear'd,
Nor ev'n one straw-roof'd cot was rear’d,
Where Nature seems to sit alone,
Majestic on a craggy throne ;
Tell me the path, sweet wand'rer, tell,
To thy unknown sequester'd cell,
Where woodbines cluster round the door,
Where shells and moss o'erlay the floor,
And on whose top an hawthorn blows,
Amid whose thickly-woven boughs
Some nightingale still builds her nest,
Each evening warbling thee to rest :
Then lay me by the haunted stream,
Rapt in some wild, poetic dream,
In converse while methinks I rove
With Spenser through a fairy grove ;
Till, suddenly awak'd, I hear
Strange whisper'd music in my ear,
And my glad soul in bliss is drown'd
By the sweetly-soothing sound !
Me, goddess, by the right hand lead
Sometimes through the yellow mead,
Where Joy and white-rob'd Peace resort,
And Venus keeps her festive court,
Where Mirth and Youth each evening mect,
And lightly trip with nimble feet,
Nodding their lily-crowned heads,
Where Laughter rose-lipp'd Hebe leads,
Where Echo walks steep hills among,
List’ning to the shepherd's song:
Yet not these flowery fields of joy
Can long my pensive mind employ.
Haste, Fancy, from the scenes of folly,
To meet the matron Melancholy,
Goddess of the tearful eye,
That loves to fold her arms, and sigh;
Let us with silent footsteps go
To charnels and the house of woe,

To Gothic churches, vaults, and tombs,
Where each sad night some virgin comes,
With throbbing breast, and faded cheek.
Her promis'd bridegroom's urn to seek;
Or to some abbey's mould'ring tow'rs,
Where, to avoid cold wintry show'rs,
The naked beggar shivering lies,
While whistling tempests round her rise,
And trembles lest the tottering wall
Should on her sleeping infants fall.

Now let us louder strike the lyre,
For my heart glows with martial fire,
I feel, I feel, with sudden heat,
My big tumultuous bosom beat;
The trumpet's clangors pierce my ear,
A thousand widows' shrieks I hear;
Give me another horse, I cry,
Lo! the base Gallic squadrons fly!
Whence is this rage ?—what spirit, say
To battle hurries me away?
'Tis Fancy, in her fiery car,
Transports me to the thickest war,
There whirls me o'er the hills of slain,
Where Tumult and Destruction reign;
Where, mad with pain, the wounded steed
Tramples the dying and the dead;
Where giant Terror stalks around,
With sullen joy surveys the ground,
And, pointing to th' ensanguin'd field,
Shakes his dreadful gorgon shield !
O guide me from this horrid scene,
To high-arch'd walks and alleys green,
Which lovely Laura seeks, to shun
The servors of the mid-day sun;
The pangs of absence, O remove!
For thou canst place me near my love,
Canst fold in visionary bliss,
And let me think I steal a kiss,
While her ruby lips dispense
Luscious nectar's quintessence!
When young-eyed Spring profusely throirs
From her green lap the pink and rose,
When the soft turtle of the dale
To summer tells her tender tale,
When Autumn cooling caverns seeks,
And stains with wine his jolly cheeks.
When Winter, like poor pilgrim old,
Shakes his silver beard with cold ;
At every season let my ear
Thy solemn whispers, Fancy, hear.
O warm, enthusiastic maid,
Without thy powerful, vital aid,
That breathes an energy divine,
That gives a soul to every line,
Ne'er may I strive with lips profane
To utter an unhallow'd strain,
Nor dare to touch the sacred string,
Save when with smiles thou bidd'st me sing
O hear our prayer, 0 hither come
From thy lamented Shakspeare's tomb,
On which thou lov'st to sit at eve,
Musing o'er thy darling's grave;
O queen of numbers, once again
Animate some chosen swain,
Who, filld with unexhausted fire,
May boldly smite the sounding lyre,
Who with some new unequal'd song,
May rise above the rhyming throng,
O'er all our list'ning passions reign,
O'erwhelm our souls with joy and pain,


[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »