Imágenes de páginas

Unnumber'd pillars all around were placed,
Their capitals with artful sculpture graced.
Wide round the roof a fictious sky was raised,
A glorious sun in the meridian blazed,
On the rich columns played his dazzling ray,
And all around diffused immortal day ;
A shining phenix on the effusive rays
Fix'd his aspiring eye with steady gaze.
Beneath appear'd a chequer'd pavement, bright
With sparkling jaspanyx and chrysolite.
Round, by creating Fiction's hand renew'd
Gay visionary scenes in order stood ;
The obedient figures at her touch disclosed,
And various tales the glowing walls composed.

Here mighty Jove, amidst assembled gods, Raised on his starry throne, majestic nods ; On his right hand the dreadful fates are seen, And on his left is placed his haughty queen. There the pale tyrant of the dreary coasts Sways with his powerful sceptre fleeting ghosts. Blue Neptune scours along his wat’ry reign, Now lifts the waves aloft, now stills the raging main. Perch'd on a lofty rock Æolus stands, And holds the winds in strong coercive bands. Here the bright queen of beauty stands confess’d, There angry Mars in martial honors dress'd. Alcides here appears with warrior pride, The lion's spoil descending o'er his side, The watchful dragon his feet is lain, The Lernean Hydra and dire Centaurs slain. Here glows Diana, eager in the chace, And there Minerva shows with sober grace. There with the maddening rout close at his heels, Young Bacchus, jolly god,

triumphant reels. Gay Maia's son, high mounted on the wind, Cuts through the air and leaves the clouds behind,

Toward the rosy east, great Mithra shone,
Bright in the glories of a rising sun.
Beneath, in solemn pomp, with hands upreard,
In flowing robes the Magi all appear'd;
Here the sage* Bactrian poised his magic wand,
Obedient Genii waited his command,

* Zoroaster,

There Thammuz lay, while from the gaping wound
Pour'd the rich stream, and sanguined all the ground.
Amidst his impious votaries Chemos stood,
And horrid Moloch, smear'd with infant blood.

Northward fierce Woden stood, with terrors crown'd, And angry Thor threw heedless thunder round. Fair Friga with her lovely train was seen, The beauteous rival of the Paphian queen. Old Merlin struck the lyre, the wond'ring throng Attended round to his prophetic song.

Southward disorder'd figures struck my eyes,
Monkeys and serpents raised to deities;
Mad, superstitious Egypt these revered,
And to the hideous tribe their prayers preferr’d.
Maim'd Memnon there seem'd on his harp to play,
And hail Osiris bringing on the day:
Pale Isis' crescent faintly glimmer'd here,
And barking Anubis display'd the year.

Gay sportive fawns adorn’d the distant scene,
In antic measures skipping o'er the green.
There sea nymphs wanton'd on the wat’ry gleam,
Rode on the waves, or cleaved the yielding stream.
Here the pale Sybils ranged their mystic leaves,
And Ætna with the laboring Cyclops heaves.
There craggy rocks the sons of Titan tore,
And mountains shaggy roots tremendous bore,
And threaten'd Jove with the promiscuous war.

Bold Phaeton here urged his mad request, Ambitious joy swell’d his presumptuous breast; Elate he mounted in the flaming car, The sire attended with a fix'd despair; Nor could the parent's tears the youth restrain, He laugh'd at fear, and daring took the rein. The fiery steeds his feeble hand despise, And stretch'd with glowing ardor through the skies ; Now thunders rolld, pale lightning play'd around, And the rash boy soon felt the burning wound.

Pygmalion there the statue seem'd to move,
Assisted by the powerful queen of love;
With rapture fired, to his exulting breast
The animated stone he fondly press'd;

Transported on each shining feature gazed,
Now soften'd into life, and saw amazed,
Awaken'd into sense, her eye-balls roll,
And heaving breasts 'bespoke the entering soul ;
Saw on her cheek the rosy tincture burn,
And felt her lips the ravish'd kiss return.

Famed Dædalus here wing'd the midway air,
And sighing, saw his son disdain his care.
Young Icarus on spreading pinions rose,
And scorn'd the path his weary sire had chose:
For heaven the aspiring boy his flight begun,
But felt the ardor of too near a sun;
The temper'd wax before the scorching ray
Melted, and lo! the loosen'd wings gave way ;
And while his father's name his accents gave,
Fell from the height, and sunk beneath the wave.


rage there hapless Acteon feels, And saw his hounds pursuing at his heels; Changed to a stag, he swept along the plain, In vain his speed, he flew from death in vain.

Elysium next disclosed its blissful bowers, With heavenly fruitage deck’d, and radiant flowers; Celestial Amaranth eternal bloom’d, And the bright plains with odorous scents perfumed ; Through the gay meads an amber current roll’d, O’er sands resplendent as Arabia's gold, On whose green banks the happy shades reclined, Quaff’d its sweet stream, and left their cares behind.

What ever dreamer dreamt, or poet sung,
Or lying fable with her double tongue
Told the believing world, now did appear
Delusions all, for when approaching near,
They shunn'd the view, and shrunk to empty air.

High in the midst, raised on her rolling throne,
Sublimely eminent, bright Fancy shone.
A glitt'ring* tiara her temples bound,
Rich set with sparkling rubies all around;

* This conceit is occasioned, by the tiara's being a badge of royalty used in the east, and the oriental writers abounding much in pieces of imagination.

Her azure eyes rolld with majestic grace,
And youth eternal bloom'd upon her face,
A radiant bough, ensign of her command,
Of polish'd gold, waved in her lily hand ;
The same the sybil to Æneas gave,
When the bold Trojan cross'd the Stygian wave.
In silver traces fix'd unto her car,
Four snowy swans, proud of the imperial fair,
Wing'd lightly on, each in gay beauty dress'd,
Smooth'd the soft plumage that adorn’d her breast.
Sacred to her the lucent chariot drew,
Or whether wildly through the air she flew,
Or whether to the dreary shades of night,
Oppress'd with gloom she downward bent her flight,
Or proud aspiring sought the bless'd abodes,
And boldly shot among the assembled gods.

On her right hand appear'd the joyful nine,
And on her left the graces all divine ;
Young infant love soft on her breast reclined,
And with his mother's glowing beauty shined.
Her favorite sons were ranged in order round;
In three bright bands with deathless laurels crown'd ;
Great Homer here enjoy'd superior day,
Illuminated by bright fancy's ray;
Apelles there, whose magic hand could give
Form to the mass, and bid the fiction live;
Timotheus next, whose animated lyre
Cold grief could charm, and thoughtless rage inspire.

Close at her feet a bard in raptures lost,
Was placed, and wildly round his eyeballs toss'd ;
Great Fancy was the theme! the soothing train
In floods of pleasure thrill'd through every vein.
Thus, while the trembling notes ascend on high,
He sung; “Indulgent queen of every joy,
What rapture fills the breast thou dost inspire,
The lover's transport, and the poet's fire !
At thy command obedient pleasure bends,
And rosy beauty to thy call attends;
The fanning gales shall swelling spread thy fame,
And echoing groves well pleased resound thy name !"

While thus around my eyes I wildly threw,
From charm to charm, and did each wonder view,
Pleased on the heavenly ravishment to gaze,
Rose with the strain, or wanton'd in the blaze!

Her awful silence the bright goddess broke,
And frowning, thus in angry mood she spoke :
“ Com'st thou, vain mortal, here with searching eye,
Into the secrets of our court to pry?
What rash presumption swells thy youthful breas
That in our presence thus you've rudely press'd ?”

Trembling I kneeld, with fear my tongue was tied
A space, when speech regain’d, I thus replied:
“ With lowly reverence I hither came,
Not to deride, but to adore thy name;
To thee I ever dedicate my song,
To hail thy glories ’midst this suppliant throng."

Then from her shining seat, the heavenly maid
In beautiful arrision, answering said ;
" Then have thy wish-here, mortal, take this lyre,
Strike bold the strings, and sing as I inspire.
Humbly I bow'd, her mild commands obey'd,
And careless o'er the lyre my fingers laid,
And soon with wild poetic rage possess'd,
All my frame shook, and laboring heaved my breast.
By Fancy fired, enraptured thus I sung,
Whilst all around redoubling echoes rung.

“ Zephyr attend, or whether through the grove
Soft whisp'ring, you the leafy branches move,
Or, shaking dulcet dew-drops from each flower,
Wide through the plain you spread the fragrant shower,
Or whether Sylvia, panting in some shade,
In tender accents woos thee to her aid !
No more in amorous sporting spend the day,
No longer wanton on her bosom play;
Fancy commands ! obey the regal fair,
Fancy commands ! quick all your wings prepare !
From the sun's early dawn till where again
He sets his glories in the azure main;
Through every clime her royal mandate bear,
And bid mankind to her bright court repair.
Hear, earth's inhabitants! ye mortals, hear!
And let attentive wonder fix each ear.
Fancy invites ! nor let her ask in vain,
Come, taste her heavenly sweets, and hail her reign!”

Zephyr, obedient, on his wings convey'd
The joyful summons warbling through the glade ;



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