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And when the names Sir Proteus said ·
Of Murray, Kerr, and Scott;
The sound went crashing through his head,
Like Van Tromp's famous shot, *
Which, like some adamantine rock,
By Hector thrown in sport,
Plumped headlong into Sheerness dock,
And battered down a fort.
Like one astound, John stared around,
And watched his time to fly;
And quickly spied, amid the tide,
A dolphin sailing by ;-
And jumped upon him in a crack,
And touched him in the fin,
And rose triumphant, on his back,
Through ocean's roaring din :
While Proteus, on his fiddle bent
Still scraped his feudal jig;
Nor marked, as on his ballad went,
His bird had hopped the twig.
So Johnny rose 'mid ocean's roar,
And landed was full soon,
Upon a wild and lonely shore,
Beneath the wauing moon.
Mæonium qui jam soliti contemnere carmen,
Judaicos discunt numeros servantque, coluntque,
Tradidit arcano quoscumque volumine Moses ! which accounts for the air of conscious superiority and dignified contempt they assume towards those perverted disciples of Homer and Sophocles, who are insensible to the primitive mellitluence of patriarchal modulation. It is not less creditable to the soundness of their theology than to the purity of their taste, that they herein differ toto cælo from the proíane Frenchman, who concludes his poem with a treaty between the principal persona es of the ancient and modern religions of Europe, by which it is stipulated that the latter shall continue throned in glory on Mount Sinui, while the former shall retain the exclusive and undisturbed possession of Mount Parnassus.
He sate him down, beside a care
As black as hell itself,
And heard the breakers roar and rave,
A melancholy elf:
But when he wanted to proceed,
And advertise his mare,
In vain he struggled to be freed,
Such magic fixed him there.
Then came a voice of thrilling force :
“In vain my power you lirare,
For here must end your earthly course,
And here's Oblivion's cave.
“Far, far within its deep recesz,
Descends the winding ruail,
By which forgotten iniustrels press
To Pluto's drear abude.
“ Here Cr-k-r fights his battles o'er,
And doubly kills the slain,
Where Y- no more can nod or spore
In concert to the strain.
“Here, to psalm tunes thy C-1-1-dge sets
His serio-comic lay:
Here his gray Pegasus curvets,
Where none can hear him bray.
“ Here dreaming W-rds—th wanders lost,
Since Juve hath cleft his dek:*
Lo! on these rocks his tub is tost,
A shattered, shapeless wreck.
– NHA 60HN (gọn t + 1) ΖΕΥΣ ελσας εκεασσε, μεσω ενι οινοπι ποντφ. + See page 122, 871.
“In such a vessel ne'er before
Din human creature leave the shore.
But say what was it ?- I bought of fear!
Well may ye tremble when ye hear!
A household tub, like one of those
Which women use to wash their ciothex !
WORDSWORTH'S Poems, vol. ii. p. 72.
“Here shall Corruption's laureate wreath,
By ancient Dulness twined
With flowers that courtly iniluence breathe,
Thy votive temples bind.
“ Amid the thick Lethean fen
The dull dwarf-laure) springs, *
To bind the brows of venal men,
The tuneful slaves of kings.
“ Come, then, and join the apostate train
Of thy poetic stamp,
That vent for gain the loyal strain,
'Mid Stygian vapours damp,
While far below, where Lethe creeps,
The ghost of Freedom sits, and weeps
()'er Truth's extinguished lamp.”
Good reader! who have lost your time
In listening to a noisy rhyme!
If catgnt's din, and tramping rad,
Have not yet made completely mad
The little brains you ever had, -
Hear me, in friendly lay expressing
A better than the “Bellman's” blessing :
That Nature may to you dispense
Just so much share of common sense,
As may distinguish smoke from fire,
A shrieking tiddle from a lyre,
And Phabus, with his steed of air,
From poor old Puulter and his Mare.
* The dwarf-laurel is a little stunted plant, growing in ditches and bogs, and very dissimilar to that l'arnassiau shrub “ which Drydon and diviner Spenden wore ;" as in the “Carmen Triumphale" for the year 1814, mellifluously singeth the Protean bard, Robert Southey, Esquire, Poet-Laureate!!!
Χαιρε μοι, ω ΠΡΩΤΕΥ:συ δ' ουκέτι τερζεαι οιος
Τεχνη: ΜΙΣΘΟΦΟΡΕΙ ΓΑΡ Ο ΠΟΙΚΙΛΟΜΟΡΦΟΣ ΑΠΟΛΛΩΝ
SPEECH OF THE MESSENGER TO THE CHORUS IN TIIE CEDIPUS
AT COLONUS OF SOPHOCLES.
[Written in 1815.]
V E men of Athens, wondrous is the tale
I bear: the fate of Elips: no more
In the lone darkness of his days he roams,
Snatched in strange manner from the paths of men.
You witnessed his departure: no kind hand
Guiding his blindness, but with steadfast tread,
Alone and unsupported, through the woods
And winding rocks he led our wond'ring course.
Till by that broken way, which brazen steps
Uphold, beside the hollow ground he stood,
Where Theseus and Pirithous held erewhile
The compact of inviolable love:
There, in the midst, from the Thorician rock
And the Acherdian cave alike remote,
He sate himself upon the marble tomb,
And loosed his melancholy garb, and called
His daughters, from the living spring to bear
His last ablution. They, to the near hill
Of Ceres h istening, brought the fountain-flood,
And wrapped him in the garments that beseem
Funereal rites. Then subterranean Jove
Thundered : the maidens trembled as they heard,
And beat their breasts, and uttered loud laments.
Touched at the bitter sound, he wrapped his arms
Around them: “Oh, my children !” he exclaimed,
“ The hour and place of my appointed rest
Are found : your father from this breathing world
Departs : a weary lot was yours, my children,
Wide o'er the inhospitable earth to lead
A blind, forlorn, old, persecuted man.
These toils are yours no more : yet well I deem
Affection overweighed them, and the love,
The soul-felt love, which he who caused them bore you,
Where shall you find again ?" Then on their necks
He wept, and they on his, in speechless woe,
· And all was silence round. A thrilling voice
Called “ Edipus !"' the blood of all who heard
Congealed with fear, and every hair grew stiff.
6 Oh, (Edipus !" it cried, “oh, (Edipus!
Why tarry we? for thee alone we wait !"
He recognized the summons of the god,
And calling Theseus to him, said : “ Oh, friend !
Now take my children by the hand, and pledge
Thy faith in violate, to allord them ever
Protection and support.” The generous king
Fulfilled his wish, and bade high Jove record
The irrevocable vow. Then (Elipus
Folded his daughters in his last embrace,
And said : “Farewell, my children ! from this spot
Depart with fortitude: the will of fate
From all but Theseus veils the coming scene.”
These words we heard : with the receding maids
We turned away awhile : reverting then
Our looks, the spot where (Elipus had been
Was vacant, and King Theseus stood alone,
His hand before his eyes, his head bowed down,
As one oppressed with supernatural light,
Or sight of some intolerable thing.
Then falling prostrate, on the goddess Earth
He called, and Jove, and the Olympian gods.
How perished Elipus, to none beside
Is known : for not the thunder-bolts of Jove
Consumed him. nor the whirlwinds of the deep
Rushed o'er his head and swept him from the world,
But with some silent messenger of fate
He passed away in peace, or that dark chasm
By which he stood, disclosed beneath his feet
A tranquil passage to the Stygian flood.