Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

SONNET,

TO NIGHT.
I

Love thee, mournful sober-suited night,

When the faint moon, yet lingering in her wane,
And veil'd in clouds, with pale uncertain light,

Hangs o'er the waters of the restless main.
In deep depression sunk, the enfeebled mind

Will to the deaf, cold elements complain,

And tell the embofom'd grief, however vain,
To sullen surges, and the viewless wind.
Though no repose on thy dark breast I find,

I still enjoy thee-cheerless as thou art;

For in thy quiet gloom, the exhausted heart
Is calm, though wretched; hopeless, yet resign’d:
While, to the winds and waves its sorrows given,
May reach-cho' loft on earth-the ear of Heaven!

THE ORIGIN OF FLATTERY,
WHEN Jove, in anger to the fons of earth,
Bid artful Vulcan give Pandora birth,
And sent the fatal gift, which spread below
O'er all the wretched race contagious woe,
Unhappy man, by vice and folly tost,
Found in the storms of life his quiet loft,
While Envy, Avarice, and Ambition, hurl's
Discord and Death around the warring world ;
Then the blest peasant left his fields and fold, .
And barter'd love and peace, for power and gold;

Left his calm cottage, and his native plain,
In search of wealth to tempt the faithless main;
Or, braving danger, in the battle stood,
And bath'd his savage hands in human blood :
No longer then, his woodland walks among,
The shepherd lad his genuine passion fung,
Or fought at early morn his soul's delight,
Or grav'd her name upon the bark at night,
To deck her flowing hair no more he wove
The simple wreath, or with ambitious love
Bound his own brow with myrtle or with bay,
But broke his pipe, and threw his crook away.
The nymphs forsaken, other pleasures fought :
Then first for gold their venal hearts were bought,
And Nature's blush to Gickly art gave place,
And Affectation seiz'd the seat of Grace :
No more Simplicity, by sense refin'd,
Or generous Sentiment, poffess'd the mind;
No more they felt each other's joy and woe,
And Cupid Acd, and bid his useless bow.
But with deep grief propitious Venus pin'd,
To see the ills which threaten'd womankind;
Ills, that she knew her empire would disarm,
And rob her subjects of their sweetest charm;
Good humour's potent influence deftroy,
And change for low'ring frowns, the smile of joy.
Then deeply fighing at the mournful view,
She try'd at length what heavenly art could do
To bring back pleasure to her pensive train,
And vindicate the glories of her reign.
A thousand little loves attend the task,
And bear from Mars's head his radiant casque,

[ocr errors]

The fair enchantress on its silver bound, Wreath'd with soft spells her magic ceftus round. Then shaking from her hair ambrosial dew, Iafus'd fair hope, and expectation new, And stined wilhes, and persuasive fighs, And fond belief, and “ eloquence of eyes," And fault'ring accents, which explain so well What study'd speeches vainly try to tell, And more pathetic filence, which imparts Infectious tenderness to feeling hearts, Soft tones of pity ; fascinating smiles ; And Maia's son assisted her with wiles, And brought gay dreams, fantastic visions brought, And wav'd his wand o'er the seducing draught. Then Zephyr came : To him the goddess cry'd, - Go fetch from Flora all her Aow'ry pride, To fill my charm, each scented bud that blows, And bind my myrtles with her thornless rose : “ Then speed thy flight to Gallia's smiling plain, Where rolls the Loire, the Garonne, and the Seine : “ Dip in their waters thy celestial wing, " And the soft dew to fill my chalice bring; “ But chiefly tell thy Flora, that to me “ She fend a bouquet of her fleurs de lis ; “ That piognant spirit will complete my spell." 'Tis done : the lovely sorceress says, 'tis well! And now Apollo lends a ray of fire, The cauldron bubbles, and the flames aspire ; The watchful Graces round the circle dance, With arms entwin'd, to mark the work's advance ; And with full quiver sportive Cupid came, Temp'ring his favourite arrows in the fame.

Then Venus speaks ; the wavering flames retire,
And Zephyr's breath extinguishes the fire.
At length the Goddess in the helmet's round
A sweet and subtile spirit duly found;
Mo foift than oil, than æther more refin'd,
Of power to cure the woes of womankind,
Anu Can'd it FLATTERY :-balm of female life!
It charms alike che widow, maid, and wife;
Clears the sad brow of virgins in despair,
And smooths the cruel traces left by care,
Bids pally'd age with youthful spirit glow,
And hangs May's garlands on December's snow.
Delicious effence! howsoe'er apply'd,
By what rude nature is thy charm deny'd ?
Some form seducing still thy whisper wears,
Stern Wisdom turns to thee her willing ears,
And Prudery listens, and forgets her fears.
The rustic nymph, whom rigid aunts restrain,
Condemn'd to dress, and practise airs in vain,
At thy first summons finds her bofom (well,
And bids her crabbed governantes farewel :
While, fir’d by thee, with spirit not her own,
She grows a toast, and rises into ton.
The faded beauty, who, with secret pain,
Sees younger charms usurp her envy'd reign,
By thee aflited, can with smiles behold
The record where her conquests are enroll'd;
And dwelling yet on scenes by memory nurs'd,
When George the Second reign'd, or George the First;
She sees the shades of ancient beaux arise,
Who swear her eyes exceeded modern eyes,
When poets sung for her, and lovers bled,
And giddy fashion follow'd as she led.

[ocr errors]

Departed modes appear in long array,
The Aowers and founces of her happier day,
Again her locks the decent fillets bind,
The waving lappet Autters in the wind,
And then comparing with a proud disdain
The more fantastic tastes that now obtain,
She deems ungraceful, trifling and absurd,
The gayer world that moves round George the Third.
Nor thy soft influence will the train refuse,
Who court in distant shades the modest Muse,
Tho' in a form more pure and more refin's,
Thy soothing fpirit meets the letter'd mind.
Not death itself thine empire can destroy ;
Towards thee, e'en then, we turn the languid eye;
Still trust in thee to bid our memory bloom,
And scatter roses round the filent tomb.

COLLINS,

DIRGE IN CYMBELINE. Sung by Guiderus and Arviragus over Fidele, supposed to be

dead. To fair Fidele's graffy tomb,

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

And rifle all the breathing Spring.
No wailing ghost shall dare appear

To vex with shrieks this quiet grove ;
But thepherd lads assemble here,
And melting virgins own their love.

« AnteriorContinuar »