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My dazling spells into the spungy air,
Of pow'r to cheat the eye with blear illusion, 155
And give it false presentments, left the place
And my quaint habits breed astonishment,
And put the damsel to suspicious flight,
Which must not be, for that's against my course;
I under fair pretence of friendly ends, 160
And well plac'd words of glozing courtesy
Baited with reasons not unplausible,
Wind me into the easy-hearted man,
And hug him into snares. When once her eye
Hath met the virtue of this magic dust, 165
I shall appear some harmless villager,
Whom thrist keeps up about his country gear.
But here she comes, I fairly step aside,
And hearken, if I may, her business here.
The Lady enters.
This way the noise was, if mine ear be true, 170
My best guide now; methought it was the found
Of riot and ill manag’d merriment,
Such as the jocund flute, or gamesome pipe -
Stirs up among the loose unletter'd hinds,
When for their teeming flocks, and granges full, 175
In wanton dance they praise the bounteous Pan,
And thank the Gods amiss. I should be loath
To meet the rudeness, and swill'd insolence
Of such late wassailers ; yet, О where else
Shall I inform my unacquainted feet
In the blind mazes of this tangled wood ?
My Brothers, when they saw me wearied out
With this long way, resolving here to lodge
Under the spreading favor of these pines,
Stept, as they said, to the next thicket fide 185
To bring me berries, or such cooling fruit
As the kind hospitable woods provide.
They left me then, when the gray-hooded Even,
Like a sad votarist in palmer's weed,
Rose from the hindmost wheels of Phæbus’wain. 190
But where they are, and why they came not back,
Is now the labor of my thoughts; 'tis likeliest
They had engag’d their wand'ring steps too far,
And envious darkness, ere they could return,
Had stole them from me; else O thievish Night 195
Why should'st thou, but for some fellonious end,
In thy dark lantern thus close up the stars,
That nature hung in Heav'n, and fill'd their lamps
With everlasting oil, to give due light
To the misled and lonely traveller ?
This is the place, as well as I may guess,
Whence even now the tumult of loud mirth
Was rife, and perfect in my life’ning ear,
Yet nought but single darkness do I find.
What might this be? A thousand fantasies 205
Begin to throng into my memory,
Of calling shapes, and beck’ning shadows dire,
And aery tongues, that syllable men's names
On sands, and shores, and desert wildernesses.
These thoughts may startle well, but not astound
The virtuous mind, that ever walks attended 211
By a strong siding champion, conscience.---
O welcome pure-ey'd Faith, white-handed Hope,
Thou hovering Angel girt with golden wings,
And thou unblemish'd form of Chastity; 215
I see ye visibly, and now believe
That he, the Supreme Good, t'whom all things ill
Are but as slavish officers of vengeance,
Would send a glift'ring guardian if need were
To keep my life and honor unassail’d. 220
Was I deceiv'd, or did a fable cloud
Turn forth her silver lining on the night?
I did not err, there does a sable cloud
Turn forth her silver lining on the night,
And casts a gleam over this tufted grove. 225
I cannot hallow to my Brothers, but
Such noise as I can make to be heard farthest
I'll venture, for my new inliven’d spirits
Prompt me; and they perhaps are not far off.
so N G. SWEET Echo, sweetest nymph, that liv'st unseen Within thy aery shell,
231 By flow Meander's margent green, And in the violet-embroider'd vale, Where the love-lorn nightingale Ff
Nightly to thee her sad song mourneth well; 235 Canst thou not tell me of a gentle pair
That likest thy Narcissus are ?
O if thou have
Hid them in some flow’ry cave,
Tell me but where,
240 Sweet queen of parly, daughter of the sphere,
So may'st thou be translated to the skies, And give resounding grace to all Heav'n's harmo
(nies. Com. Can any mortal mixture of earth's mold Breathe such divine inchanting ravishment ? 245 Sure something holy lodges in that breast, And with these raptures moves the vocal air To testify his hidden residence: How sweetly did they flote upon the wings Of silence, through the empty-vaulted night, 250 At every fall smoothing the raven down Of darkness till it smild! I have oft heard. My mother Circe with the Sirens three, Amidst the flow'ry-kirtled Naiades Culling their potent herbs, and baleful drugs, 255 Who as they sung, would take the prison’d soul, And lap it in Elysium; Scylla wept, And chid her barking waves into attention, And fell Charybdis murmur'd soft applause: Yet they in pleasing slumber lull’d the sense, 260 And in sweet madness robb’d it of itself;
But such a sacred, and home-felt delight,
Such sober certainty of waking bliss
I never heard till now. I'll speak to her, 264
And she shall be my queen. Hail foreign wonder,
Whom certain these rough shades did never breed,
Unless the Goddess that in rural shrine
Dwell'st here with Pan, or Silvan, by blest song
Forbidding every bleak unkindly fog · 269
To touch the prosp'rous growth of this tall wood.
Lady. Nay gentle Shepherd, ill is lost that praise
That is address'd to unattending ears; .
Not any boast of skill, but extreme shift
How to regain my sever'd company,
Compell’d me to awake the courteous Echo 275
To give me answer from her mosly couch..
Com. What chance, good Lady, hath bereft youthus?
Lady. Dim darkness, and this leafy labyrinth.
Com. Could that divide you from near-ushering
guides ? Lady. They left me weary on a grally turf. 280 Com. By falshood, or discourtesy, or why? Lady. To seek i'th' valley fome cool friendly spring. Com. And left your fair side all unguarded, Lady? Lady. Theywere buttwain,and purpos'dquick return. Com. Perhaps fore-stalling night prevented them. Lady. How easy my misfortune is to hit! 286 Com. Imports their loss, beside the present need? Lady. No less than if I should my Brothers lose. F f 2