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The setting sun's effulgence, not a strain
DAVID MALLETT. 1700-1765.
WILLIAM AND MARGARET.
'Twas at the silent, solemn hour
When night and morning meet; In glided Margaret's grimly ghost,
And stood at William's feet.
Her face was like an April morn,
Clad in a wintry cloud;
T'hat held her sable shroud.
So shall the fairest face appear,
When youth and years are flown: Such is the robe that kings must wear,
When Death has reft their crown.
Her bloom was like the springing flower,
That sips the silver dew;
But love had, like the canker-worm,
Consumed her early prime:
She died before her time.
“ Awake!” she cried, “thy true love calls,
Come from her midnight-grave;Now let thy pity hear the maid
Thy love refused to save. “ This is the dumb and dreary hour,
When injured ghosts complain; When yawning graves give up their dead,
To haunt the faithless swain.
“ Bethink thee, William, of thy fault,
Thy pledge and broken oath!
• Why did you promise love to me,
And not that promise keep? Why did you swear my eyes were bright,
Yet leave those eyes to weep ?
And yet that face forsake ?
“Why did you say my lip was sweet,
And made the scarlet pale ?
Believe the flattering tale ?
“ That face, alas! no more is fair,
Those lips no longer red:
“The hungry-worm my sister is;
This winding-sheet I wear:
Till that last morn appear.
“But, hark! the cock has warn'd me hence ;
A long and late adieu!
Who died for love of you.”
With beams of rosy red :
He hied him to the fatal place
Where Margaret's body lay,
That wrapp'd her breathless clay.
And thrice he wept full sore;
And word spoke never more !
WILLIAM SHENSTONE. 1714-1763.
ODE TO MEMORY.
On Memory! celestial maid !
Who glean’st the flowerets cropp'd by Time; And, suffering not a leaf to fade,
Preserv'st the blossoms of our prime; Bring, bring those moments to my mind When life was new, and Lesbia kind. And bring that garland to my sight
With which my favour'd crook she bound; And bring that wreath of roses bright
Which then my festive temples crown'd;
Where Isis rolls her silver tide;
That shines on Cherwell's verdant side ;
But sure, to sooth our youthful dreams, Those banks and streams appeard more bright
Than other banks, than other streams :
Or, by thy softening pencil shown,
When, all beneath the poplar bough, My spirits light, my soul serene,
I breathed in verse one cordial vow: That nothing should my soul inspire But friendship warm, and love entire. Dull to the sense of new delight,
On thee the drooping Muse attends; As some fond lover, robb’d of sight,
On thy expressive power depends ; Nor would exchange thy glowing lines, To live the lord of all that shines. But let me chase those vows away
Which at ambition's shrine I made; Nor ever let thy skill display
Those anxious moments, ill repaid: Oh! from my breast that season raze, And bring my childhood in its place. Bring me the bells, the rattle bring,
And bring the hobby I bestrode; When, pleased, in many a sportive ring,
Around the room I jovial rode :
Why did not those enjoyments last? How sweetly wasted I the day,
While innocence allow'd to waste !