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Round about with eager pry. Saving when with freshening lave, Thou dipp'st them in the taintless wave ; Like twin water-lilies, born In the coolness of the morn. 0, if thou hadst breathed then, Now the Muses had been ten. Couldst thou wish for lineage higher Than twin-sister of Thalia ? At least for ever, evermore Will I call the Graces four. Hadst thou lived when chivalry Lifted up her lance on high, Tell me what thou wouldst have been ? Ah! I see the silver sheen Of thy broider'd-floating vest Covering half thine ivory breast : Which, O Heavens! I should see, But that cruel Destiny Has placed a golden cuirass there, Keeping secret what is fair. Like sunbeams in a cloudlet nested, Thy locks in knightly casque are rested ; O’er which bend four milky plumes Like the gentle lily's blooms Springing from a costly vase See with what a stately pace Comes thine alabaster steed; Servant of heroic deed ! O'er his loins, his trappings glow Like the northern lights on snow. Mount his back! thy sword unsheath! Sign of the enchanter's death; Bane of every wicked spell ; Silencer of dragou's yell
Alas! thou this wilt never do:
WAEN by my solitary hearth I sit,
And hateful thoughts enwrap my soul in gloom;
And the bare heath of life presents no bloom ;
Whene'er I wander, at the fall of night,
Where woven boughs shut out the moon's bright ray, Should sad Despondency my musings fright,
And frown, to drive fair Cheerfulness away, Peep with the moonbeams through the leafy roof, And keep that fiend Despondence far aloof.
Should Disappointment, parent of Despair,
Strive for her son to seize my careless heart When, like a cloud, he sits upon the air,
Preparing on his spell-bound prey to dart: Chase him away, sweet Hope, with visage bright, And fright him, as the morning frightens night!
Whene'er the fate of those I hold most dear
Tells to my fearful breast a tale of sorrow, O bright-eyed Hope, my morbid fancy cheer;
Let me awhile thy sweetest comforts borrow:
Thy heaven-born radiance around me shed,
Should e'er unhappy love my bosom pain,
From cruel parents, or relentless fair, O let me think it is not quite in vain
To sigh out sonnets to the midnight air! Sweet Hope ! ethereal balm upon me shed, And wave thy silver pinions o'er my head.
In the long vista of the years to roll,
Let me not see our country's honour fade! O let me see our land retain her soul !
Her pride, her freedom; and not freedom's shade. From thy bright eyes unusual brightness shedBeneath thy pinions canopy my head !
Let me not see the patriot's high bequest,
Great liberty! how great in plain attire !
Bowing her, head, and ready to expire :
And as, in sparkling majesty, a star
Gilds the bright summit of some gloomy cloud; Brightening the half-veil'd face of heaven afar:
So, when dark thoughts my boding spirit shroud, Sweet Hope! celestial influence round me shed, Waving thy silver pinions o'er my head.
· February, 1815.
IMITATION OF SPENSER
Now morning from her orient chamber came
Which round its marge reflected woven bowers,
There the kingfisher saw his plumage bright,
Beneath the waves like Afric's ebony,
Ah! could I tell the wonders of an isle
Of the bright waters; or as when on high,
In strife to throw upon the shore a gem
Woman! when I behold thee flippant, vain,
Inconstant, childish, proud, and full of fancies ;
E'en then, elate, my spirit leaps and prances,
E'en then my soul with exultation dances
Heavens! how desperately do I adore
I hotly burn—to be a Calidore-
Might I be loved by thee like these of yore.
Light feet, dark violet eyes, and parted hair;
Soft dimpled hands, white neck, and creamy breast;
Are things on which the dazzled senses rest