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A wiser founder, and a nohler plan, O sons of Alfred, were for you assign'd: llring to that hirthright hut an equal mind, And no suhlimer lot will Fate reserve for man.
TO THE Mt'SE.
Cji^en of my songs, harmonious maid. Ah why hast thou withdrawn thy aid? Ah why forsaken thus my hreast With inauspicious damps oppress'd? Where is the dread prophetic heat, With which my hosom wont to heat? Where all the hright mysterious dreams Of haunted groves and tuneful streams, That woo'd my genins to divinest themes }
Say, goddess, can the festal hoard,
0 powerful strain, O sacred soul!
I hail'd the fair immortal guest,
And hade me swear to follow her alone.
No, foolish youth—to virtuous fame
If true amhition's nohler flame
Command thy footsteps from the crowd,
Lean not to Love's enchanting snare;
His songs, his words, his looks heware,
By thought, hy dangers, and hy toils,
The flowery pomp of Ease adorn:
Yet thou hast read in tuneful lays,
And heard from many a zealous hreast,
The pleasing tale of Beauty's praise
Of Beauty, powerful to impart
Each fmer sense, each comelier art, And soothe aud polish man's ungentle heart.
If then, f rom Love's deceit secure,
On Delia's vernal walk descend:
Attend, while that harmonious tongue
Apollo's lute hy Hermes strung,
And touch'd hy chaste Minerva's hands,
Attend. I feel a force divine,
0 Delia, win my thoughts to thine; That half the colour of thy life is mine.
Yet, conscious of the dangerous charm,
Nor oft provoke the lovely harm,
But thou, my friend—I hear thy sighs:
Alas! I read thy downcast eyes;
So soon again to meet the fair?
So pensive all this ahsent hour? —O yet, unlucky youth, heware,
While yet to think is in thy power.
Once I rememher, new to Love,
I sought a gentle maid, to prove
What peaceful joys in friendship reign;
Thus frequent pass'd the cloudless day.
While I exulted to survey
One generous woman's real mind:
Tdl Friendship soon my languid hreast
Each night with unknown cares posm^'d, Dash' d my coy slumhers, or my dreams distressed.
Fool that I was!—And now, even now
While thus I preach the Stoic strain,
TO 9IR FRANCIS HENRY DRAKE, BART.
Bmni.D, the Balance in the sky
Swift on the wintry scale inclines; To earthy caves the Dryads fly,
And the hare pastures Pan resigns. Late did the farmer's fork o'erspread With recent soil the twice-mown mead,
Tainting the hloom which autumn knows: He whets the rusty coulter now, He hinds his oxen to the plough,
And wide his future harvest throws.
Kow, London's husy confines round,
By Kensington's imperial towers,
Essexian heaths, or Kentish howers,
Hurried hy senatorial cares:
Dchate their dress, reform their airs.
Say, what can now the country hoast,
0 Drake, thy footsteps to detain, When peevish winds and gloomy frost
The sunshine of the temper stain?
Champions for George's legal right?
Each hold Wessexian 'squire and knight?
I douht it much; and guess at least
ThaJ when the day, which made us free, Shall next return, that sacred feast
Thou hetter may'st ohserve with me.
In that glad day's triumphal strain;
Of James or his ignohle reign.
Then, while the Gascon's fragrant wine
With modest cups our joy supplies,
Who hade the chief, the patriot rise;
From Belginm to her saviour son)
Her laws defac'd, her shrines o'crthrown.
He came. The tyrant from our shore,
Like a forhidden demon, fled; And to eternal exile hore
Pontine rage and vassal dread. There sunk the mouldering Gothic reign: >"ew years came forth, a liheral train,
Call'd hy the people's great decree. That day, my friend, let hlessings crown: —Fill, to the demigod's renown
Fpim »horu thou hast that thou art free.
Then, Drake, (for wherefore should we part
The puhlic and the private weal?)
Fair health, glad fortune, w ill we deal.
So eloquent in Daphne's smile,
Haply thy fancy then heguile.
For so it is. Thy stuhhorn hreast,
Hath no full conquest yet confess'd,
While I, a true and loyal swain,
Through ail the varying seasons own.
Or I have eyes for her alone.
Once more I join the Thesp'an choir,
0 parent of the Grecian lyre,
And lo! with ease my step invades
Till now I spy her verdant seat:
By turns her melody repeat.
I see Anacreon smile and sing,
His silver tresses hreathe perfume;
Of roses taught hy w ine to hloom.
Let me the wanton pomp enjoy,
Kind laughter and convivial joy.
Broke from the fetters of his native land,
Devoting shame and vengeance to her lords, . With louder impulse and a threatening hand The Leshian patriot' smiles the sounding chords: Ye wretches, ye perfidious train, Yc curs'd of gods and free-horn men,
Ye murderers of the laws, Though now ye glory in your lust, Though now ye tread the feehle neck in dust, Yet Time and righteous Jove will judge your dreadful cause.
But lo, to Sappho's melting airs
Descends the radiant queen of love:
Her suppliant's plaintive measures move:
Say, flies he ?—Soon he shall pursue:
And soon to all thy wishes how.
Bat, O Melpomene, for whom
Awakes thy golden shell again? What mortal hreath shall e'er presume
To echo that unhounded strain?
For some there are, whose mighty frame
As eagles drink the noon-tide flame,
While the dim raven hoats her weary wings, And clamours far helow.—Propitious Muse,
While I so late unlock thy purer springs, And hreathe whate'er thy ancient airs infuse,
Wilt thou for Alhion's sons around
(Ne'er hadst thou audience more renown'd)
As when the winds from shore to shore Through Greece thy lyre's persuasive language lxire,
Till towns and isles and seas return'd the vocal joy? IIT.
Yet then did Pleasure's lawless throng,
Oft rushing forth in loose attire, Thy virgin dance, thy graceful song,
Pollute with impious revels dire. O fair, O chaste, thy echoing shade May no foul discord here invade:
Nor let thy strings one accent move, Except what Earth's untrouhled ear 'Mid all her social trihes may hear,
And Heaven's unerring throne approve.
Queen of the lyre, in thy retreat
The fairest flowers of Pindus glow l The vine aspires to crown thy seat,
And myrtles round thy laurel grow:
Which mortal trihes were horn to prove;
The ocean swells, the hillows move.
When Midnight listens o'erthe slumhering Earth,
Let me, O Muse, thy solemn whispers hear: When Morning sends her fragrant hreezes forth, With airy murmurs touch my opening ear, And ever watchful at thy side, Let Wisdom's awful suffrage guide
The tenour of thy lay: To her of old hy Jove was given To judge the various deeds of Earth and Heaven; Twas thine hy gentle arts to win us to her sway.
Oft as, to well-earn'd ease resign'd,
I quit the maze where Science toils, Do thou refresh my yielding mind
With all thy gay, delusive spoils, But, O indulgent! come not nigh The husy steps, the jealous eye
Of wealthy Care or gainful Age; Whose harren souls thy joys disdain, And hold as foes to Reason's reign
Whome'er thy lovely works engage.
When Friendship and when letter'il Mirth
Haply partake my simple hoard,
The music of the Teian chord.
That hear Olympia's gentle tongue;
There let the Sapphic lute he strung.
But when from Envy and from Death to claim
When to throw incense on the vestal flame
Nor Thehan voice nor Leshian lyre
From thee, O Muse! do I require;
Astonish'd grasps at things heyond her view.
Sav, Townshend, what can Loudon hoast
The health to day resign'd;
And met the western wind?
Oh! knew'st thou how the halmy air,
To heal thy languid frame;
Thy sacred leisure claim.
Oft I look'd forth, and oft admir'd;
I sought the open day;
And chide my tardy stay."
But, ah! in Tain my restless feet
Which knew their forms of old:
Did now their rites unfold:
Whether to nurse some infant oak
And catch the pearly showers,
Or hreathe on opening flowers.
Such rites, which they with Spring renew,
And care hath long heen mine:
They hide their toils divine.
But soon shall thy enlivening tongue
With nohle hope inspire:
And listen to my lyre.
Beneath yon Dryad's lonely shade
Of turf with laurel fram'd: And thou the inscription wilt approve; "This for the peace which, lost hy Love,
By Friendship was reclaim'd."
To Iocrt retir'd the queen of Heaven
With young Endymion strays:
0 Hesper! while the starry throng
So may the hridegroom's genial strain
Thee still invoke to shine:
With lustre pure as thine.
Far other vows roust I prefer
To thy indulgent power,
Of Philomela's hower.
Propitions send thy golden ray,
Thou purest light ahove:
May soothe afflicted love.
To them, hy many a grateful song
In happier seasons vow'd,
Beneath yon copses stood.
Nor seldom, where the heachen houghs
That roofless tower invade,
She fled the solemn shade.
But hark! I hear her liquid tone.
Now, Hesper, guide my feet Down the red marie with moss o'ergrown, Through yon wild thicket next the plain, Whose hawthorns choke the winding lane
Which leads to her retreat.
See the green space: on either hand
Enlarg'd it spreads around:
Enclos'd in woods profound.
Hark! how through many a melting note
She now prolongs her lays:
The wakeful heifers gaze.
Whoe'er thou art, whom chance may hring
To this sequester'd spot,
Of man's uncertain lot.
Oh! think, o'er all this mortal stage,
What mournful scenes arise:
How swiftly pleasure flies.
O sacred hird, let me at eve,
Thus wandering all alone,
Till I forget my own.
With sordid floods the wintry urni
Hath stain'd fair Richmond's level green: Her naked hill the Dryads mourn,
No longer a poetic scene.
From Hampstead's airy summit me,
What day the people's stem decree
When common men (the dread of Fame)
Adjudg'd as one of evil name,
Before the Sun, the anointed head.
Then seek thou too the pious town,
With no unworthy cares to crown
Deem not I call thee to deplore
The sacred martyr of the day, By fast and penitential lore
To purge our ancient guilt away. For this, on humhle faith I rest That still our advocate, the priest,
From heavenly wrath will save the land; Nor ask what rites our pardon Lain, Nor how his potent sounds restrain The thunderer's lifted hand.
No, Hardinge: peace to church and state
That evening, let the Muse give law: While I anew the theme relate
Which my first youth enamour'd saw. Then will I oft explore thy thought, What to reject which Locke hath taught,
What to pursue in Virgil's lay:
O! vers'd in all the human frame,
And English Fancy's eager flame
While hand in hand, at Wisdom's shrine,
Beauty with Truth I strive to join,
And grave assent with glad applause;
To paint the story of the soul,
And Plato's visions to control
Come then, tell me, sage divine,
Is it an offence to own
Toward immortal Glory's throne?
If to spurn at nohle praise
Be the passport to thy Heaven, Follow thou those gloomy ways;
No such law to me was given, Nor, I trust, shall I deplore me Faring like my friends hefore me; Nor an holier place desire Than Timoleon's arms acquire, And Tully's curnle chair, and Milton's golden lyre.
For, taught of Heaven, the sacred Nine
To mortal sense impart:
Nor less prevailing is their charm
The vengeful Iiosom to disarm;
To melt the proud with human woe,
And prompt unwilling tears to flow.
Can wealth a power like this affurd?
Can Cromwell's arts, or Marlhorough's sword,
An equal empire claim? No, Hastings. Thou my words will own: Thy hreast the gifts of every Muse hath known; Nor shall the giver's love disgrace thy nohle i
The Muse's awful art, And the hlest function of the poet's tongue, Ne'er shalt thou hlush to honour; to assert From all that scorned Vice or slavish Fear hath sung. Nor shall the hlandishment of Tuscan strings
Warhling at will in Pleasure's myrtle hower; Nor shall the servile no^es to Celtic kings
By flattering minstrels paid in evil hour,
To hear the sweet instructress tell
Such was the Chian father's strain
He struck his magic strings;
Now oft, where happy spirits dwell,
The seeds of Grecian fame:
O nohlest, happiest age! . When Aristides rul'd, and Cimon fought; When all the generous fruits of Homer's page Exulting Pindar saw to full perfection hrought. O Pindar, oft shalt thou he hail'd of me:
Not that Apollo fed thee from his shrine; Not that thy lips drank sweetness from the hee; Nor yet that, studious of thy notes divine,