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AN ODE OF PETRARCH,

To the Fountain of Valchiusa.

(SIR W. JONES.]

Ye clear and sparkling streams!

(Warm’d by the sunny beams,) Through whose transparent crystal Laura play'd;

Ye boughs, that deck the grove,

Where Spring her chaplets wove, While Laura lay beneath the quivering shade;

Sweet herbs! and blushing flowers !

That crown yon vernal bowers, For ever fatal, yet for ever dear;

And ye, that heard my sighs

When first she charm'd my eyes,
Soft-breathing gales! my dying accents hear.
If heaven has fix'd

my doom, That Love must quite consume My bursting heart, and close my eyes in death ;

Ah! grant this slight request,

That, here, my urn may rest, When to its mansion flies my vital breath.

This pleasing hope will smooth

My anxious mind, and sooth The pangs of that inevitable hour:

My spirit will not grieve

Her mortal veil to leave In these calm shades, and this enchanting bow'r.

Haply the guilty maid

Through yon accustom'd glade
To my sad tomb will take her lonely way;

Where first her beauty's light

O'erpower'd my dazzled sight,
When Love on this fair border bade me stray:

There, sorrowing, shall she see,

Beneath an aged tree,
Her true, but hapless lover's lowly bier;

Too late, her tender sighs

Shall melt the pitying skies,
And her soft veil shall hide the gushing tear.

O! well-remember'd day,

When on yon bank she lay,
Meek in her pride, and in her rigour mild;

The young and blooming flowers,

Falling in fragrant showers,
Shone on her neck, and on her bosom smisd:

Some on her mantle hung,
Some in her locks were strung,

Like orient gems in rings of flaming gold;

Some, in a spicy cloud

Descending, call'd aloud, · Here Love and Youth the reins of empire hold.'

I view'd the heavenly maid:

And, rapt in wonder, said, • The groves of Eden gave this angel birth;'

Her look, her voice, her smile,

That might all heaven beguile, Wafted my soul above the realms of earth :

The star-bespangled skies

Were open'd to my eyes; Sighing I said, 'Whence rose this glittering scene?'

Since that auspicious hour,

This bank, and odorous bower, My morning couch, and evening haunt, have been.

Well mayst thou blush, my song,

To leave the rural throng,
And fly thus artless to my Laura's ear;

But, were thy poet's fire

Ardent as his desire, Thou wert a song that heaven might stoop to hear.

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LAURA;

AN

ELEGY FROM PETRARCH.

[IBID.]

In this fair season, when the whispering gales
Drop showers of fragrance o'er the bloomy vales,
From bow'r to bow'r the vernal warblers play ;
The skies are cloudless, and the meads are gay ;
The nightingale in many a melting strain
Sings to the groves, Here Mirth and Beauty reign.'
But me, for ever bath'd in gushing tears,
No mirth enlivens, and no beauty cheers :
The birds that warble, and the flowers that bloom,
Relieve no more this solitary gloom.
I see where late the verdant meadow smil'd,
A joyless desert, and a dreary wild:
For those dear eyes, that pierc'd my heart before,
Are clos'd in death, and charm the world no more:
Lost are those tresses that outshone the morn,
And pale those cheeks that might the skies adorn.

Ah, death! thy hand has crop'd the fairest flower,
That shed its smiling rays in beauty's bower;
Thy dart has lay'd on yonder sable bier
All my soul lov’d, and all the world held dear :
Celestial sweetness, love-inspiring youth,
Soft-ey'd benevolence, and white-rob'd truth.

Hard fate of man, on whom the heavens bestow A drop of pleasure for a sea of wo! Ah, life of care, in fears or hopes consum’d, Vain hopes, that wither ere they well have bloom'd! How oft, emerging from the shades of night, Laughs the gay morn, and spreads a purple light: But soon the gathering clouds o'ershade the skies, Red lightnings play, and thundering storms arise ! How oft a day, that fair and mild appears, Grows dark with fate, and mars the toil of years !

Not far remov’d, yet hid from distant eyes, Low in her secret grot, a Naiad lies. Steep arching rocks, with verdant moss o’ergrown, Form her rude diadem, and native throne: There, in a gloomy cave her waters sleep, Clear as a brook, but as an ocean deep. Yet, when the waking flowers of April blow, And warmer sunbeams melt the gather'd snow;

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