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So said the Shepherd to his younger peer,
This glorious index of a heav'nly book, Not seldom, as in youthful years he stood,
Divinest Spenser would admiring look; And, framing thence high wit and pure desire, Imagin’d deeds, that set the world on fire!
May, queen of blossoms,
And fulfilling flowers, With what pretty music
Shall we charm the hours ? Wilt thou have pipe and reed, Blown in the open mead ? Or to the lute give heed
In the green bowers !
Or pipe or wire,
Ripen'd with fire;
With new desire.
How oft, O Moon, in thy most tragic face,
of mournful history, Some record of long-perish'd woe I trace,
Fetch'd from old kings' moth-eaten memory ; Which thou, perhaps, didst in its acting see,
The perturbation of its doleful birth, Then crawling on to sad maturity,
And it's last sleep in the forgetful earth : But if, in style proportion’d to its worth,
We raise it up, to shake the world again, To madness we shall turn heart-easing mirth,
With horror laying waste the minds of men: 0, marble is the flesh, unmov'd can be, When it beholds so fearful tragedy!
I grieve to think, so often as I muse,
Musing on sweet and bitter argument, How many souls posterity doth lose,
In that they leave behind no monument: Souls, that have fed upon divinest thought,
Yet lacking utt'rance of their music's store, To us, that breathe hereafter, are as nought,
Or question'd but as names, that dwelt before: Were it sad chance, that them of fame bereft,
Love, grief, or sickness, or resentful woe, Or abstinence of virtue made a theft
Of that, which virtue to itself doth owe; The cause unknown, their worth unwritten too, Let the world weep, for they are pity's due!
T'hou hast thy mighty herds,
Tame, and free livers; Doubt not, thy music too,
In the deep rivers; And the whole plumy flight, Warbling the day and night; Up at the gates of light,
See, the lark quivers ! When with the jacinth
Coy fountains are tressed ; And for the mournful bird
Green woods are dressed, That did for Tereus pine; Then shall our songs be tbine, To whom our hearts incline:
May, be thou blessed!
The nightingale is mute, and so art thou,
Whose voice is sweeter than the nightingale: While ev'ry idle scholar makes a vow,
Above thy worth and glory to prevail : Yet shall not envy to that level bring
The true precedence, which is born in thee; Thou art no less the prophet of the Spring,
Though in the woods thy voice now silent be: For silence may impair, but cannot kill
The music, that is native to thy soul;
Upon thy purest honour have controul:
ON BEHOLDING THE PORTRAITURE OF SIR PHILIP
SIDNEY, IN THE GALLERY AT PENSHURST.
The man that looks, sweet Sidney, in thy face,
Beholding there love's truest majesty, And the soft image of departed grace,
Shall fill his mind with magnanimity : There may he read unfeign'd humility,
And golden pity, born of heav'nly brood, Unsullied thoughts of immortality,
And musing virtue, prodigal of blood : Yes, in this map of what is fair and good,
The largest reign of silence yet bath sway
In beauty, which is music to the soul; The lily hath no voice, yet shames the day ;
Nay, the sweet air is liken'd in controul : The silver Moon, more paler than desire,
That with unvoiced wheel doth climb on high, In meditation's ear is as a quire,
That leads th' o'er-visioned Night along the sky: All silence in it's pleasure hath a voice,
If balanc'd in the fine esteem of thought;
TO THE MUSE.
W An Th
Then let dumb nature in that plea rejoice,
Of age have robb’d thee of thy warlike charms,
And plac'd thee here, an image in my rhyme; Thy purer gifts with glory shall augment.
The owl now haunts thee, and, oblivion's plant,
The creeping ivy, has o'er-veil'd thy towers; In Parian marble of divinest price,
And Rother, looking up with eye askant,
Recalling to his mind thy brighter hours,
Laments the time, when, fair and elegant,
Beauty first laugh'd from out thy joyous bowers!
THE TEMPLES OF VENUS AND MARS.
First, in the chapel of the Paphian queen,
Wrought on the wall, there may by you be seen Nor doth the eye of Jove survey a man,
A sight indeed full piteous to behold, Whose fortune can such boundless wealth afford,
The broken sleep; and the sighs deadly cold; E'er since the artificial world began :
The sacred tears; the wailings, a whole quire; Thy face, which faults Olympus, is to me
The fiery strokes of the unrein’d desire;
All, that love's servants in this world endure;
Pleasure; and hope; desire ; fool-hardiness ;
Beauty; and youth ; and purchas'd wantonness; The warbling Spring comes dancing from the gate
Gold; charms; and force; and lies; and flattery: Of Heaven, and, ripe in majesty and state,
And waste expense; bus'ness; and jealousy, Pours from her golden ewer the purpling flowers
Upon whose head a golden sun-flower bland, On mead, on mountain, on the hallow'd marge
And the false cuckoo sate upon her hand; Of sacred rivers; and the Mermaid chants
Feasts; instruments; and carols; and ripe dances; The seas into a calm; and the wood-haunts
Lust; and array; and all the circumstances Of coy Diana echo all at large
Of Love; that I may reckon, and reckon on With the smooth songs of Philomel : awake,
Till the mid-summer, and yet ne'er have done; Daughter of Heaven, and blameless memory;
All these were painted the fresh wall upon,
And more than I can tell to any one; Put on thy flowery sandals, and uptake
For Mount Cithæron was depicted there,
Where Venus hath her princely dwelling fair.
All the world glow'd with the delightful place,
The fount, eye, soul of passion and of grace ; TO A BIRD THAT HAUNTED THE WATERS OF LAKEN There was the garden, and the lustiness:
Be sure they not forgot the porter, Idleness ; O melancholy bird, a winter's day,
Nor fair Narcissus, that from love is gone;
Nor yet the folly of King Solomon ;
Nor Circe, nor Medea's charmed cup;
Nor Turnus, and his hard and fiery rage; And giv'n thyself a lesson to the fool
Nor golden Cræsus in the Persian cage: Unthrifty, to submit to moral rule,
By which it may be seen, that neither gold, And his unthinking course by thee to weigh. Nor stronger wisdom, nor the courage bold,
There need not schools, nor the professor's chair, Nor strength, nor art, nor beauty's powerful face, Though these be good, true wisdom to impart: Can hold with Venus any equal pace :
He, who has not enough for these to spare, What party in her realm have they, who rules Of time, or gold, may yet amend his heart,
The rolling world, and makes all people fools ;
And often cried, “ Alas!" and all for nought:
Ten thousands more may date from her their woe.
The froth-born Goddess, ravishing to see,
Was naked, fleeting in the ample sea;
By the green waves, as any crystal bright:
A citole in her right hand softly held ; And the grey ev'ning; thou hast had thy prime, And on her head, a type of summer swellid
And thy full vigour, and the eating harms And blush'd like fire, aad like all Eden smelld,
IN THE WINTER,
A garland of the rose; and a white pair
Every great pillar of this house of war
Was tun-great, of bright iron blazing far.
Of felony, and all the compassing ;
The cruel ire, as red as burning coal ;
The pick-purse; and pale fear, with ghastly soul; And now to tell you, on the westward side,
The smiler, with the knife under the cloke;
The treason of the murdering of the bed ;
The open war, whose wounds for ever bled;
Contest with bloody knife, and menace keen, Like to the inward of the grisly place,
And full of scritching cries the doleful scene; Call’d the great temple of the God in Thrace, The slayer of himself then saw I there, Where Mars his sovereign mansion still doth hold, His own heart-blood had bathed all his hair; In frosty regions and eternal cold.
The nail, too, driven in the skull at night;
The cold death with the gaping mouth upright;
Amidst of all the temple sate Mischance,
And saw I Madness, laughing in his ire ;
A thousand slain, and not of sickness dead;
The cook, too, scalded, maugre his long ladle;
The carter, over-ridden with his cart,
PROCESSION AND HYMN IN HONOUR
Leading the way, young damsels danced along, Bearing the burden of a shepherd song; Each having a white wicker over brimm'd With April's tender younglings: next, welltrimm'd, A crowd of shepherds with as sunburnt looks As may be read of in Arcadian books ; Such as sat listening round Apollo's pipe, When the great deity, for earth too ripe, Let his divinity o'erflowing die In music, through the vales of Thessaly: Some idly trail'd their sheep-hooks on the ground, And some kept up a shrilly-mellow sound With ebon-tipped flutes: close after these, Now coming from beneath the forest-trees, A venerable priest full soberly, Begirt with ministering looks: always his eye Stedfast upon the matted turf he kept, And after him his sacred vestments swept. From his right hand there swung a vase, milk-white, Of mingled wine, out-sparkling generous light; And in his left he held a basket full Of all sweet herbs that searching eye could cull: Wild thyme, and valley-lilies whiter still Than Leda's love, and cresses from the rill. His aged head, crowned with beechen wreath, Seem'd like a poll of ivy in the teeth Of winter hoar. Then came another crowd Of shepherds, lifting in due time aloud Their share of the ditty. After them appear’d, Up-follow'd by a multitude that rear'd Their voices to the clouds, a fair-wrought car, Easily rolling so as scarce to mar The freedom of three steeds of dapple brown: Who stood therein did seem of great renown Among the throng. His youth was fully blown, Shewing like Ganymede to manhood grown; And, for those simple times, his garments were A chieftain king's: beneath his breast, half bare, Was hung a silver bugle, and between His nervy knees there lay a boar-spear keen. A smile was on his countenance; he seem'd, To common lookers-on, like one who dream'd Of idleness in groves Elysian : But there were some who feelingly could scan A lurking trouble in his nether-lip, And see that oftentimes the reins would slip Through his forgotten hands : then would they sigh, And think of yellow leaves, of owlet's cry, Of logs piled solemnly.-Ah, well-a-day, Why should our young Endymion pine away!
Soon the assembly in a circle rang'd, Stood silent round the shrine: each look was changed To sudden veneration: women meek Beckon'd their sons to silence; while each cheek Of virgin-bloom paled gently for slight fear. Endymion too, without a forest peer, Stood, wan and pale, and with an unawed face, Among his brothers of the mountain-chase. In midst of all, the venerable priest Ey'd them with joy from greatest to the least, And, after lifting up his aged hands, Thus spake he: -“ Men of Latmos! shepherd
bands! Whose care it is to guard a thousand focks: Whether descended from beneath the rocks That overtop your mountains; whether come From vallies where the pipe is never dumb; Or from your swelling downs, where sweet airstin Blue hare-bells lightly, and where prickly farze Buds lavish gold; or ye, whose precious charga, Nibble their fill at ocean's very marge, Whose mellow reeds are touch'd with sounds forlorn By the dim echoes of old Triton's horu: Mothers and wives! who day by day prepare The scrip, with needments, for the mountain-zir; And all ye gentle girls who foster up Udderless lambs, and in a little cup Will put choice honey for a favoured youth: Yea, every one attend! for in good truth Our vows are wanting to our great god Pan. Are not our lowing heifers sleeker than Night-swollen mushrooms ? Are not our wide pains Speckled with countless fleeces? Have not falas Green'd over April's lap? No howling sad Sickens our fearful ewes; and we have had Great bounty from Endymion our lord. The earth is glad: the merry lark has pour'd His early song against yon breezy sky, That spreads so clear o'er our solemnity."
Thus ending, on the shrine he heap'd a spine Of teeming sweets, enkindling sacred tire; Anon he stain'd the thick and spongy sod With wine, in honour of the shepherd-god. Now while the earth was drinking it, and while Bay-leaves were crackling in the fragrant pile
, And gummy frankincense was sparkling bright ’Neath smothering parsley, and a bazy light Spread greyly eastward, thus a chorus sang:
“ O thou! whose mighty palace-roof doth hang From jagged trunks, and overshadoweth Eternal whispers, glooms, the birth, life, death
Of unseen flowers in heavy peacefulness ;
Be still the unimaginable lodge Who lov’st to see the hamadryads dress
For solitary thinkings; such as dodge Their ruffled locks where meeting hazels darken; Conception to the very bourne of heaven, And through whole solemn hours dost sit, and Then leave the naked brain: be still the leaven, hearken
That spreading in this dull and clodded earth The dreary melody of bedded reeds
Gives it a touch ethereal-a new birth:
A firmament reflected in a sea;
An element filling the space
between ; Chou wast to lose fair Syrinx-do thou now,
An unknown-but no more: we humbly screen By thy love's milky brow!
With uplift hands our foreheads lowly bending, By all the trembling mazes that she ran,
And giving out a shout most heaven-rending, lear us, great Pan !
Conjure thee to receive our humble Pæan,
Upon thy Mount Lycean!” “O thou, for whose soul-soothing quiet, turtles Passion their voices cooingly among myrtles, Ever while they brought the burden to a close, What time thou wanderest at eventide
A shout from the whole multitude arose, Chrough sunny meadows, that outskirt the side That lingered in the air like dying rolls :f thine enmossed realms: O thou, to whom Of abrupt thunder, when Ionian shoals froad leaved fig trees even now foredoom
Of dolphins bob their noses through the brine. Cheir ripen’d fruitage; yellow-girted bees
Meantime, on shady levels, mossy fine, Cheir golden honeycombs; our village-leas Young companies nimbly began dancing Cheir fairest blossom'd beans and poppied corn ; To the swift treble pipe, and humming string. "he chuckling linnet its five young unborn, Aye, those fair living forms swam heavenly lo sing for thee; low creeping strawberries To tunes forgotten-out of memory: [bred l'heir summer coolness; pent up butterflies Fair creatures! whose young children's children Cheir freckled wings; yea, the fresh budding year Thermopylæ its heroes not yet dead, All its completions—be quickly near,
But in old marbles ever beautiful. By every wind that nods the mountain-pine, -) forester divine !
By the feud
Eterne Apollo! that thy Sister fair
When thy gold breath is misting in the west, Bewilder'd shepherds to their path again;
She unobserved steals unto her throne, Or to tread breathless round the frothy main, And there she sits most meek and most alone; And gather up all fancifullest shells
As if she had not pomp subservient; For thee to tumble into Naiads' cells,
As if thine eye, high Poet! was not bent And, being hidden, laugh at their out-peeping ; Towards her with the Muses in thine heart; Or to delight thee with fantastic leaping,
As if the ministring stars kept not apart, The while they pelt each other on the crown Waiting for silver-footed messages. With silvery oak apples, and fir cones brown- O Moon! the oldest shades 'mong oldest trees By all the echoes that about thee ring,
Feel palpitations when thou lookest in: Hear us, O satyr king!
O Moon! old boughs lisp forth a holier din
The while they feel thine airy fellowship. “ O Hearkener to the loud-clapping shears, Thou dost bless every where with silver lip, While ever and anon to his shorn peers
Kissing dead things to life. The sleeping kine, A ram goes bleating : Winder of the horn,
Couched in thy brightness, dream of fields divine: When snouted wild boars routing tender corn Innumerable mountains rise, and rise, Anger our huntsmen : Breather round our farms, Ambitious for the hallowing of thine eyes; To keep off mildews, and all weather harms: And yet thy benediction passeth not Strange ministrant of undescribed sounds,
One obscure hiding place, one little spot That come a swooning over hollow grounds, Where pleasure may be sent: the nested wren And wither drearily on barren moors :
Has thy fair face within its tranquil ken, Dread opener of the mysterious doors
And from beneath a sheltering ivy-leaf Leading to universal knowledge-see,
Takes glimpses of thee; thou art a relief Great son of Dryope,
To the poor patient oyster, where it sleeps The many that are come to pay their vows
Within its pearly house.—The mighty deeps, With leaves about their brows!
The monstrous sea is thine-the myriad sea!