Page images



On utmost Kilda's 1 shore, whose lonely race

Nor heeds the rein, nor hears the sounding thong : Resign the setting sun to Indian worlds,

Blows are not felt; but, tossing high his head, The royal eagle draws his vigorous young,

And by the well-known joy to distant plains Strong-pounced, and ardent with paternal fire. Attracted strong, all wide he bursts away ; Now fit to raise a kingdom of their own,

O'er rocks, and woods, and craggy mountains flies, He drives them from his fort, the towering seat, And, neighing, on the aërial summit takes For ages, of his empire ; which, in peace,

The exciting gale ; then, steep-descending, cleaves Unstained he holds, while many a league to sea The headlong torrents foarning down the hills, He wings his course, and preys in distant isles. E'en where the madness of the straitened stream

Turns in black eddies round : such is the force THE YOUNG OF THE POULTRY-YARD.-THE ROOK ; HEN AND

With which his frantic heart and sinews swell. CHICKENS; COCK ; DUCK ; SWAN ; TCRKEY ; PEACOCK ; DOVE. Should I my steps turn to the rural seat,


THE WILD BEASTS OF THE FOREST - THE SHEPWhose lofty elms, and venerable oaks,

HERD ; LAMBS AT PLAY. - ANCIENT RAMPART ; LIBERTY Invite the rook, who high amid the boughs, In early Spring, his airy city builds,

Nor undelighted by the boundless Spring And ceaseless caws amusive ; there, well-pleased,

Are the broad monsters of the foaming deep : I might the various polity survey

From the deep ooze and gelid cavern roused, Of the mixed household kind. The careful hen

They flounce and tumble in unwieldy joy.
Calls all her chirping family around,

Dire were the strain, and dissonant, to sing
Fed and defended by the fearless cock,
Whose breast with ardor flames, as on he walks,

The cruel raptures of the savage kind ;

How, by this flame their native wrath sublimed, Graceful, and crows defiance. In the pond

They roam, amid the fury of their heart, The finely-checkered duck before her train

The far-resounding waste in fiercer bands, Rows garrulous. The stately-sailing swan

And growl their horrid loves. But this the theme Gives out his snowy plumage to the gale ;

I sing, enraptured, to the British Fair, And, arching proud his neck, with oary


Forbids, and leads me to the mountain brow,
Bears forward fierce, and guards his osier-isle,

Where sits the shepherd on the grassy turf,
Protective of his young. The turkey nigh,
Loud threatening, reddens; while the peacock spreads Around him feeds his many-bleating flock,

Inhaling, healthful, the descending sun.
His every-colored glory to the sun,

of various cadence ; and his sportive lambs, And swims in radiant majesty along.

This way and that convolved, in friskful glee, O'er the whole homely scene, the cooing dove

Their frolics play. And now the sprightly race Flies thick in amorous chase, and wanton rolls

Invites them forth ; when swift, the signal given, The glancing eye, and turns the changeful neck.

They start away, and sweep the massy mound

That runs around the hill ; the rampart once
While thus the gentle tenants of the shade

Of iron war, in ancient barbarous times, Indulge their purer loves, the rougher world

When disunited Britain ever bled, Of brutes, below, rush furious into flame,

Lost in eternal broil : ere yet she grew And fierce desire. Through all his lusty veins

To this deep-laid indissoluble state, The bull, deep-scorched, the raging passion feels.

Where Wealth and Commerce lift their golden heads; Of pasture sick, and negligent of food,

And o'er our labors Liberty and Law,
Scarce seen, he wades among the yellow broom, Impartial, watch ; the wonder of a world!
While o'er his ample sides the rambling sprays
Luxuriant shoot; or through the mazy wood

CREATIVE LOVE. - INSTINCT. - SPRING, THE SMILE OF GOD. Dejected wanders, nor the enticing bud

What is this mighty breath, ye sages, say, Crops, though it presses on his careless sense. That, in a powerful language, felt, not heard, And oft, in jealous maddening fancy rapt,

Instructs the fowls of heaven, and through their breast He seeks the fight, and, idly butting, feigns

These arts of love diffuses ? What, but God ? His rival gored in every knotty trunk.

Inspiring God ! who, boundless Spirit all, Him should he meet, the bellowing war begins :

And unremitting Energy, pervades, Their eyes flash fury ; to the hollowed earth, Adjusts, sustains, and agitates the whole. Whence the sand flies, they mutter bloody deeds, He ceaseless works alone ; and yet alone And, groaning deep, the impetuous battle mix : Seems not to work : with such perfection framed While the fair heifer, balmy-breathing, near,

Is this complex, stupendous scheme of things.
Stands kindling up their rage.

But, though concealed, to every purer eye
The informing Author in his works appears :

Chief, lovely Spring ! in thee, and thy soft scenes,
The trembling steed,

The smiling God is seen ; while water, earth, With this hot impulse seized in every nerve,

And air attest his bounty ; which exalts 1 The farthest of the Western Islands of Scotland. The brute creation to this finer thought,


[ocr errors]

And, annual, melts their undesigning hearts Profusely thus in tenderness and joy.


Still let my song a nobler note assume, And sing the infusive force of Spring on Man ; When heaven and earth, as if contending, vio To raise his being, and serene his soul, Can he forbear to join the general smile Of Nature ? Can fierce passions vex his breast, While every gale is peace, and every grove Is melody? Hence! from the bounteous walks Of flowing Spring, ye sordid sons of earth, Hard, and unfeeling of another's woe, Or only lavish to yourselves, away! Butcome, ye generous minds, in whose wide thought, Of all his works, creative Bounty burns With warmest beam ; and on your open front And liberal eye sits, from his dark retreat Inviting modest Want. Nor, till invoked, Can restless Goodness wait ; your active search Leaves no cold wintry corner unexplored ; Like silent-working Heaven, surprising oft The lonely heart with unexpected good. For you the roving spirit of the wind Blows Spring abroad ; for you the teeming clouds Descend in gladsome plenty o'er the world ; And the sun sheds his kindest rays for you, Ye flower of Iluman Race !

With woods o'erhung and shagged with mossy rocks,
Whence on each hand the gushing waters play,
And down the rough cascade white-dasbing fall,
Or gleam in lengthened vista through the trees,
You silent steal ; or sit beneath the shade
Of solemn oaks, that tuft the swelling mounts
Thrown graceful round by Nature's careless hand,
And, pensive, listen to the various voice
Of rural peace : the herds, and flocks, the birds,
The hollow-whispering breeze, the plaint of rills,
That, purling down amid the twisted roots
Which creep around, their dewy murmurs shake
On the soothed ear. From these abstracted oft,
You wander through the philosophic world,
Where in bright train continual wonders rise
Or to the curious or the pious eye.
And oft, conducted by historic truth,
You tread the long extent of backward time;
Planning, with warm benevolence of mind
And honest zeal unwarped by party rage,
Britannia's weal ; how from the venal gulf
To raise her virtue, and her arts revive.
Or, turning thence thy view, these graver thoughts
The Muses charm : while, with sure taste refined,
You draw the inspiring breath of ancient song,
Till nobly rises, emulous, thy own.




In these green days, Reviving Sickness lifts her languid head ; Life flows afresh ; and young-eyed Health exalts The whole creation round. Contentment walks The sunny glade, and feels an inward bliss Spring o'er his mind, beyond the power of kings To purchase. Pure serenity apace Induces thought and contemplation still. By swift degrees the love of Nature works, And warms the bosom ; till at last sublimed To rapture and enthusiastic heat, We feel the present Deity, and taste

iny of God to see a happy world!

Perhaps thy loved Lucinda shares thy walk, With soul to thine attuned. Then Nature all Wears to the lover's eye a look of love ; And all the tumult of a guilty world, Tossed by ungenerous passions, sinks away. The tender heart is animated peace ; And as it pours its copious treasures forth In varied converse, softening every theme, You, frequent-pausing, turn, and from her eyes, Where meekened sense and amiable

grace And lively sweetness dwell, enraptured, drink That nameless spirit of ethereal joy, Unutterable happiness ! which love Alone bestows, and on a favored few.




These are the sacred feelings of thy heart, Thy heart informed by reason's purer ray, O Lyttelton,' the friend ! thy passions thus And meditations vary, as at large, [stray'st ; Courting the Muse, through Hagley Park thou Thy Brit.. Tempé 2! There, along the dale

Meantime you gain the height from whose fair brow The bursting prospect spreads, immense, around : And snatched o'er hill and dale, and wood and lawn, And verdant field, and darkening heath between, And villages embosomed soft in trees, And spiry towns by surging columns marked Of household smoke, your eye excursive roams : Wide-stretching from the hall, in whose kind haunt The Hospitable Genius lingers still, To where the broken landscape, by degrecs Ascending, rougheng into rigid hills; O'er which the Cambrian mountains, like far clouds That skirt the blue horizon, dusky rise.

1 George, Lord Lyttelton, eldest son of S# Thomas, Baronet of Hagley, in Worcestershire, England. Born 1709; died Aug. 22, 1773. Besides being a poet of some reputation, one of his biographers calls him “a judicious critic, an entertaining traveller, a wise and upright statesman, and a good man.” By a lavish expenditure he rendered his residence, Hagley Park, "a terrestrial paradise.”

2 Tempé is a valley of Thessaly, renowned for its rural beauty.


Flushed by the spirit of the genial year, Now from the virgin's cheek a fresher bloom

Shoots, less and less, the live carnation round;
Her lips blush deeper sweets : she breathes of youth;
The shining moisture swells into her eyes,
In brighter flow; her wishing bosom heaves
With palpitations wild ; kind tumults seize
Her veins, and all her yielding soul is love.
From the keen gaze her lover turns away,
Full of the dear ecstatic power, and sick
With sighing languishment. Ah, then, ye fair !
Be greatly cautious of your sliding hearts :
Dare not the infectious sigh, the pleading look,
Downcast and low, in moek submission dressed,
But full of guile. Let not the fervent tongue,
Prompt to deceive, with adulation smooth,
Gain on your purposed will. Nor in the bower,
Where woodbines flaunt, and roses shed a couch,
While Evening draws her crimson curtains round,
Trust your soft minutes with betraying man.

To the vain bosom of his distant fair ;
And leaves the semblance of a lover, fixed
In melancholy site, with head declined,
And love-dejected eyes. Sudden he starts,
Shook from his tender trance, and restless runs
To glimmering shades and sympathetic glooms;
Where the dun umbrage o'er the falling stream,
Romantic, hangs; there through the pensive dusk
Strays, in heart-thrilling meditation lost,
Indulging all to love : or on the bank
Thrown, amid drooping lilies, swells the breeze
With sighs unceasing, and the brook with tears.





And let the aspiring youth beware of love, of the smooth glance beware ; for 't is too late When on his heart the torrent-softness pours. Then wisdom prostrate lies, and fading fame Dissolves in air away; while the fond soul, Wrapped in gay visions of unreal bliss, Still paints the illusive form ; the kindling grace ; The enticing smile ; the modest seeming eye, Beneath whose beauteous beams, belying heaven, Lurk searchless cunning, cruelty, and death ; And still, false-warbling in his cheated ear, Her siren voice, enchanting, draws him on To guileful shores, and meads of fatal joy.

E'en present, in the very lap of love Inglorious laid ; while music flows around, Perfumes, and oils, and wine, and wanton hours ; Amid the roses fierce Repentance rears Her snaky crest : a quick-returning pang

[still Shoots through the conscious heart; where honor And great design, against the oppressive load Of luxury, by fits, impatient heave.

Thus in soft anguish he consumes the day, Nor quits his deep retirement, till the moon Peeps through the chambers of the fleecy east, Enlightened by degrees, and in her train Leads on the gentle Hours ; then forth he walks, Beneath the trembling languish of her beam, With softened soul, and woos the bird of eve To mingle woes with his ; or, while the world And all the sons of Care lie hushed in sleep, Associates with the midnight shadows drear ; And, sighing to the lonely taper, pours His idly-tortured heart into the page Meant for the moving messenger of love ; Where rapture burns on rapture, every line With rising frenzy fired. But, if on bed Delirious flung, sleep from his pillow flies. All night he tosses, nor the balmy power In any posture finds ; till the gray morn Lifts her pale lustre on the paler wretch, Exanimate by love : and then perhaps Exhausted nature sinks a while to rest, Still interrupted by distracted dreams, That o'er the sick imagination rise, And in black colors paint the mimic scene.

Oft with the enchantress of his soul he talks ; Sometimes in crowds distressed ; or if retired To secret, winding, flower-enwoven bowers, Far from the dull impertinence of man, Just as he, credulous, his endless cares Begins to lose in blind oblivious love, Snatched from her yielded hand, he knows not how, Through forests huge, and long untravelled heaths With desolation brown, he wanders waste, In night and tempest wrapped ; or shrinks aghast, Back, from the bending precipice ; or wades The turbid stream below, and strives to reach The further shore ; where, succorless and sad, She with extended arms his aid implores ; But strives in vain ; borne by the outrageous flood To distance down, he rides the ridgy wave, Or whelmed beneath the boiling eddy sinks.


But absent, what fantastic woes, aroused, Rage in each thought, by restless musing fed, Chill the warm cheek, and blast the bloom of life ! Neglected fortune flies ; and, sliding swift, Prone into ruin fall his scorned affairs. ”T is naught but gloom around ; the darkened sun Loses his light; the rosy-bosomed Spring To weeping fancy pines ; and yon bright arch, Contracted, bends into a dusky vault. All Nature fades extinct; and she alone, Heard, felt, and seen, possesses every thought, Fills every sense, and pants in every vein. Books are but forinal dulness, tedious friends ; And sad amid the social band he sits, Lonely, and unattentive. From his tongue The unfinished period falls : while, borne away On swelling thought, his wafted spirit flies


These are the charming agonies of love, Whose misery delights. But through the heart Should jealousy its venom once diffuse,

The loathing virgin, in eternal care,
Well-merited, consume his nights and days :
Let barbarous nations, whose inhuman love
Is wild desire, fierce as the suns they feel ;
Let Eastern tyrants from the light of heaven
Seclude their bosom-slaves, meanly possessed
Of a mere lifeless violated form :
While those whom love cements in holy faith,
And equal transport, free as Nature live,
Disdaining fear. What is the world to them,
Its pomp, its pleasure, and its nonsense all,
Who in each other clasp whatever fair
High fancy forms, and lavish hearts can wish ;
Something than beauty dearer, should they look
Or on the mind, or mind-illumined face :
Truth, goodness, honor, harmony, and love,
The richest bounty of indulgent Heaven?

"T is then delightful misery no more,
But agony unmixed, incessant gall,
Corroding every thought and blasting all
Love's paradise. Ye fairy prospects, then,
Ye beds of roses, and ye bowers of joy,
Farewell! Ye gleamings of departed peace,
Shine out your last! the yellow-tinging plague
Internal vision taints, and in a night
Of livid gloom imagination wraps.
Ah, then ! instead of love-enlivened cheeks,
Of sunny features, and of ardent eyes
With flowing rapture bright, dark looks succeed,
Suffused and glaring with untender fire ;
A clouded aspect, and a burning cheek,
Where the whole poisoned soul, malignant, sits,
And frightens love away. Ten thousand fears
Invented wild, ten thousand frantic views
Of horrid rivals, hanging on the charins
For which he melts in fondness, eat him up
With fervent anguish and consuming rage.
In vain reproaches lend their idle aid,
Deceitful pride, and resolution frail,
Giving false peace a moment. Fancy pours,
Afresh, her beauties on his busy thought,
Her first endearments twining round the soul
With all the witchcraft of ensnaring love.
Straight the fierce storm involves his mind anew,
Flames through the nerves and boils along the veins;
While anxious doubt distracts the tortured heart :
For e'en the sad assurance of his fears
Were ease to what he feels. Thus the warm youth,
Whom love deludes into his thorny wilds,
Through flowery-tempting paths, or leads a life
Of evered rapture, or of cruel care ;
His brightest aims extinguished all, and all
His lively moments running down to waste.


Meantime a smiling offspring rises round, And mingles both their graces. By degrees, The human blossom blows ; and every day, Soft as it rolls along, shows some new charm, The father's lustre, and the mother's bloom. Then infant reason grows apace, and calls For the kind hand of an assiduous care. Delightful task ! to rear the tender thought, To teach the young idea how to shoot, To pour the fresh instruction o'er the mind, To breathe the enlivening spirit, and to fix The generous purpose in the glowing breast.


But happy they! the happiest of their kind ! Whom gentler stars unite, and in one fate Their hearts, their fortunes, and their beings blend. 'T is not the coarser tie of human laws, Unnatural oft, and foreign to the mind, That binds their peace, but harmony itself, Attuning all their passions into love ; Where friendship full exerts her softest power, Perfect esteem enlivened by desire Ineffable, and sympathy of soul ; Thought meeting thought, and will preventing will, With boundless confidence : for naught but love Can answer love, and render bliss secure. Let him, ungenerous, who, alone intent To bless himself, from sordid parents buys


0, speak the joy ! ye, whom the sudden tear
Surprises often, while you look around,
And nothing strikes your eye but sights of bliss,
All various Nature pressing on the heart :
An elegant sufficiency, content,
Retirement, rural quiet, friendship, books,
Ease and alternate labor, useful life,
Progressive virtue, and approving Heaven !
These are the matchless joys of virtuous love ;
And thus their moments fly. The Seasons thus,
As ceaseless round a jarring world they roll,
Still find them happy; and consenting Spring
Sheds her own rosy garland on their heads :
Till evening comes at last, serene and mild ;
When after the long vernal day of life,
Enamored more as more remembrance swells
With many a proof of recollected love,
Together down they sink in social sleep ;
Together freed, their gentle spirits fly
To scenes where love and bliss immortal reign.

[blocks in formation]


THOMALIN, why sitten we so
As weren overwent with woe,

Upon so fair a morrow?
The joyous time now nigheth fast
That shall alegg this bitter blast,

And slake the Winter sorrow.

THOMALIN. Nay, but thy seeing will not serve; My sheep for that may chance to swerve,

And fall into some mischief ;
For sithens is but the third morrow
That I chaunst to fall asleep with sorrow,

And waked again with grief;
The while thilk same unhappy ewe,
Whose clouted leg herself doth shew,

Fell headlong into a dell,
And then unjointed both her bones ;
Mought her neck been jointed attones,

She should bave need no more spell ;
Th'elf was so wanton and so wood,
(But now I trow can better good)

She mought ne gang on the green.

THOMALIN. Siker, Willy, thou warnest well ; For Winter's wrath begins to quell,

And pleasant Spring appeareth ; The grass now 'gins to be refresht, The swallow peeps out of her nest,

And cloudy welkin cleareth.


Let be as may be that is past;
That is to come let be forecast ;

Now tell us what thou hast seen.


Seest not thilk same hawthorn stud, How bragly it begins to bud

And utter his tender head ? Flora now calleth forth each flower, And bids make ready Maia's bower,

That new is uprist from bed : Tho shall we sporten in delight, And learn with Lettice to wex light

That scornfully looks askaunce ; Tho will we little Love awake, That now sleepeth in Lethe lake,

And pray him leaden our daunce.


Willy, I ween thou be a sot;
For lusty Love still sleepeth not,

But is abroad at his game.

It was upon a holy-day,
When shepherd's grooms han leave to play,

I cast to go a shooting ;
Long wandering up and down the land,
With bow and bolts in either hand,

For birds in bushes tooting ;
At length, within the ivy tod
(There shrouded was the little god)

I heard a busie bustling ;
I bent my bolt against the bush,
List’ning if anything did rush,

But then heard no more rustling.
Tho peeping close into the quick,
Whose shape appeared not,
But, were it fairy, fiend, or snake,
My courage earn'd it to awake,

And manfully thereat shot :
With that sprang forth a naked swain,
With spotted wings like peacock's train,

And, laughing, lope to a tree;
His gilden quiver at his back,
And silver bow which was but slack,

Which lightly he bent at me :


How kenst thou that he is awoke? Or hast thyself his slumber broke?

Or made privy to the same?


No; but happily I him spide,
When in a bush he did him hide,

With wings of purple and blue ;
And were not that my sheep would stray,
The privy marks I would bewray

Whereby by chance I him knew.

« PreviousContinue »