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OPE, to whose reed beneath the beechen shade,
The nymphs of Thames a pleas'd attention paid ; While yet thy Muse, content with humbler praise, Warbled in Windsor's grove her sylvan lays ; Though now sublimely borne on Homer's wing, Of glorious wars, and godlike chiefs she sing : Wilt thou with me re-visit once again The crystal fountain, and the flow'ry plain? VOL. II.
Wilt thou, indulgent, hear my verse relate
The various changes of a lover's state ;
And while each turn of passion I pursue,
Ask thy own heart if what I tell be true ?
To the green margin of a lonely wood,
Whose pendent shades o’erlook'd a silver flood,
Young Damon came, unknowing where he stray'd,
Full of the image of his beauteous maid :
His flock far off, unfed, untended lay,
To ev'ry savage a defenceless prey ;
No sense of intrest could their master move,
And ev'ry care seem'd trifling now but Love.
Awhile in pensive filence he remainid,
But tho' his voice was mute his looks complain’d ;
At length the thoughts within his bosom pent,
Forc'd his unwilling tongue to give them vent..
Ye Nymphs, he cry'd, ye Dryads, who fo long
Have favour'd, Damon, and inspird his song ;
For whom, retir'd, I shun the gay resorts
Of sportful cities, and of pompous courts ;
In vain I bid the restless world adieu,
To seek tranquillity and peace with you.
Tho'wild Ambition, and destructive Rage,
No Factions here can form, no Wars can wage ;
Tho’Envy frowns not on your humble shades,
Nor Calumny your innocence invades,
Yet cruel Love, that troubler of the breast,
Tou often violates your boasted reft ;
With inbred storms disturbs your calm retreat,
And taints with bitterness each rural sweet.
Ah luckless day! when firft with fond surprize
On Delia's. face I fix'd my eager eyes ;
Then in wild tumults all my
foul was tost,
Then reason, liberty, at once were lost :
And ev'ry with, and thought, and care was gone,
But what my heart employ'd on her alone.
Then too she smild: can smiles our peace deftroy,
Those lovely children of Content and Joy ?
How can foft pleasure and tormenting woe,
From the fame spring at the same moment flow?
Unhappy boy, these vain enquiries ceafe,
Thought cou'd not guard, nor will restore thy peace :
Indulge the frenzy that thou must endure,
And footh the pain thou know'ft not how to cure.
Come, flatt'ring Memory, and tell my heart
How kind she was, and with what pleasing art
She strove its fondest wishes to obtain,
Confirm her pow'r, and fafter bind my chain.
If on the green we danc'd a mirthful band,
To me alone she gave her willing hand ;
Her partial taste, if e’er I touch'd the lyre,
Still in my fong found fomething to admire.
By none but her my crook with flow'rs was crown'd,
By none but her my brows with ivy bound :
The world that Damon was her choice believ'd,
The world, alas ! like Damon, was deceiv'd;
When last I faw her, and declar'd my fire
In words as foft as passion cou'd inspire,
Coldly she heard, and full of scorn withdrew,
Without one pitying glance, one sweet adieu.
The frighted hind, who sees his ripen'd corn
Up from the roots by sudden tempefts torn,
Whose fairest hopes destroy'd and blasted lie,
Feels not so keen a pang of grief as I.
Ah, how have I deserv'd, inhuman maid,
To have my faithful service thus repay'd ?
Were all the marks of kindness I receiv'd,
But dreams of joy, that charm'd me and deceiv'd ?
Or did you only nurse my growing love,
That with more pain I might your
Sure guilty treachery no place cou'd find
In such a gentle, such a gen'rous mind :
A maid brought up the woods and wilds among,
Cou'd ne'er have learnt the art of courts fo
No; let me rather think her anger feign’d,
Still let me hope my Delia may be gain'd ;
'Twas only modefty that seem'd disdain,
And her heart suffer'd when she gave me pain.
Pleas’d with this flatt'ring thought, the love-fick boy Felt the faint dawnings of a doubtful joy ; Back to his flock more cheerful he returnd, When now the setting fun less fiercely burn'd, Blue
vapours rose along the mazy And light's last blushes ting’d the distant hills.
H O P E.