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But thou, O Hope, with eyes so fair,

What was thy delighted measure ? Still it whisper'd promised pleasure

And bade the lovely scenes at distance hail ! Still would her touch the strain prolong;

And from the rocks, the woods, the vale She call'd on Echo still through all the song;

And, where her sweetest theme she chose,

A soft responsive voice was heard at every close ; And Hope enchanted smiled, and waved her golden

hair ;

And longer had she sung :—but with a frown Revenge

impatient rose : He threw his blood-stain'd sword in thunder down;

And with a withering look
The war-denouncing trumpet took
And blew a blast so loud and dread,
Were ne'er prophetic sounds so full of woe !

And ever and anon he beat

The doubling drum with furious heat ; And, though sometimes, each dreary pause between,

Dejected Pity at his side

Her soul-subduing voice applied, Yet still he kept his wild unalter'd mien, While each strain'd ball of sight seem'd bursting from

his head.

Thy numbers, Jealousy, to nought were fix'd:

Sad proof of thy distressful state !
Of differing themes the veering song was mix'd;

And now it courted Love, now raving call'd on Hate.

With eyes up-raised, as one inspired,
Pale Melancholy sat retired ;
And from her wild sequester'd seat,
In notes by distance made more sweet,

Pour'd through the mellow horn her pensive soul :

And dashing soft from rocks around

Bubbling runnels join'd the sound; Through glades and glooms the mingled measure

stole, Or, o'er some haunted stream, with fond delay,

Round an holy calm diffusing,

Love of peace, and lonely musing,
In hollow murmurs died away.
But O! how alter'd was its sprightlier tone
When Cheerfulness, a nymph of healthiest hue,

Her bow across her shoulder flung,

Her buskins gemm'd with morning dew,
Blew an inspiring air, that dale and thicket rung,

The hunter's call to Faun and Dryad known !
The oak-crown'd Sisters and their chaste-eyed Queen,

Satyrs and Sylvan Boys, were seen

Peeping from forth their alleys green: Brown Exercise rejoiced to hear ;

And Sport leap'd up, and seized his beechen spear.

Last came Joy's ecstatic trial :
He, with viny crown advancing,

First to the lively pipe his hand addrest :
But soon he saw the brisk awakening viol

Whose sweet entrancing voice he loved the best : They would have thought who heard the strain

They saw, in Tempe's vale, her native maids

Amidst the festal-sounding shades
To some unwearied minstrel dancing ;
While, as his flying fingers kiss'd the strings,

Love framed with Mirth a gay fantastic round:
Loose were her tresses seen, her zone unbound;
And he, amidst his frolic play,

As if he would the charming air repay,
Shook thousand odours from his dewy wings.

O Music ! sphere-descended maid,
Friend of Pleasure, Wisdom's aid !
Why, goddess, why, to us denied,
Lay'st thou thy ancient lyre aside ?
As in that loved Athenian bower
You learn'd an all-commanding power,
Thy mimic soul, O nymph endear'd !
Can well recall what then it heard.
Where is thy native simple heart
Devote to Virtue, Fancy, Art?
Arise, as in that elder time,
Warm, energic, chaste, sublime !
Thy wonders, in that god-like age,
Fill thy recording Sister's page ;-
'Tis said, and I believe the tale,
Thy humblest reed could more prevail
Had more of strength, diviner rage,
Than all which charms this laggard age,
E’en all at once together found
Cecilia's mingled world of sound :-
O bid our vain endeavours cease :
Revive the just designs of Greece:
Return in all thy simple state!
Confirm the tales her sons relate !

W. COLLINS.

142. ODE ON THE SPRING.

Lo! where the rosy-bosom'd Hours

Fair Venus' train, appear,
Disclose the long-expecting flowers

And wake the purple year!
The Attic warbler pours her throat
Responsive to the cuckoo's note,
The untaught harmony of Spring :
While, whispering pleasure as they fly,

Cool Zephyrs through the clear blue sky

Their gather'd fragrance fling.

Where'er the oak's thick branches stretch

A broader, browner shade,
Where'er the rude and moss-grown beech

O'er-canopies the glade,
Beside some water's rushy brink
With me the Muse shall sit, and think
(At ease reclined in rustic state)
How vain the ardour of the Crowd,
How low, how little are the Proud,

How indigent the Great !

Still is the toiling hand of Care;

The panting herds repose :
Yet hark, how thro' the peopled air

The busy murmur glows !
The insect youth are on the wing,
Eager to taste the honied spring
And float amid the liquid noon :
Some lightly o'er the current skim,
Some show their gaily-gilded trina

Quick-glancing to the sun.

To Contemplation's sober eye

Such is the race of Man :
And they that creep, and they that fly,
Shall end where they began.

Alike the busy and the gay
But flutter thro’ life's little day,
lo Fortune's varying colours drest :
Brush'd by the hand of rough Mischance
Or chill'd by Age, their airy dance

They leave, in dust to rest.

Methinks I hear in accents low

The sportive kind reply:
Poor moralist ! and what art thou ?

A solitary fly!
Thy joys no glittering female meets,
No hive hast thou of hoarded sweets,
No painted plumage to display:
On hasty wings thy youth is flown;
Thy sun is set, thy spring is gone-
We frolic while 'tis May.

T. GRAY.

143. THE POPLAR FIELD. The poplars are fell’d, farewell to the shade And the whispering sound of the cool colonnade; The winds play no longer and sing in the leaves, Nor Ouse on his bosom their image receives. Twelve years have elapsed since I last took a view Of my favourite field, and the bank where they grew : And now in the grass behold they are laid, And the tree is my seat that once lent me a shade. The blackbird has fled to another retreat Where the hazels afford him a screen from the heat ; And the scene where his melody charm'd me before Resounds with his sweet-flowing ditty no more. My fugitive years are all hasting away, And I must ere long lie as lowly as they, With a turf on my breast and a stone at my head, Ere another such grove shall arise in its stead. 'Tis a sight to engage me, if anything can, To muse on the perishing pleasures of man; Short-lived as we are, our enjoyments, I see, Have a still shorter date, and die sooner than we.

W. CowPER.

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