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Where Orcas howls, his wolfish mountains rounding;
Till all the banded west at once 'gan rise,
A wide wild storm e'en Nature's self confounding,
Withering her giant sons with strange uncouth
This pillar'd earth so firm and wide,
By winds and inward labours torn,
In thunders dread was push'd aside,
And down the shouldering billows borne.
And see, like gems, her laughing train,
The little isles on every side,
Mona", once hid from those who search the main,
Where thousand elfin shapes abide,
And Wight, who checks the westering tide,
For thee consenting Heaven has each bestow'd,
A fair attendant on her sovereign pride:
To thee this blest divorce she ow'd,
For thou hast made her vales thy lov'd, thy last
* There is a tradition in the Isle of Man, that a mermaid, becoming enamoured of a young man of extraordinary beauty, took an opportunity of meeting him one day as he walked on the shore, and opened her passion to him, but was received with a coldness, occasioned by his horrour and surprise at her appearance. This, however, was so misconstrued by the sea-lady, that, in revenge for his treatment of her, she punished the whole island, by covering it with a mist, so that all who attempted to carry on any commerce with it, either never arrived at it, but wandered up and down the sea, or were on a sudden wrecked upon its cliffs.
Then too, 'tis said, an hoary pile,
"Midst the green navel of our isle,
Thy shrine in some religious wood,
O soul-enforcing goddess, stood!
There oft the painted native's feet
Were wont thy form celestial meet:
Though now with hopeless toil we trace
Time's backward rolls, to find its place;
Whether the fiery-tressed Dane,
Or Roman's self o’erturn'd the fane,
Or in what heaven-left age it fell,
'T were hard for modern song to tell.
Yet still, if truth those beams infuse,
Which guide at once, and charm the Muse,
Beyond yon braided clouds that lie,
Paving the light embroider'd sky:
Amidst the bright pavilion'd plains,
The beauteous model still remains,
There happier than in islands blest,
Or bowers by Spring or Hebe drest,
The chiefs who fill our Albion's story,
In warlike weeds, retir'd in glory,
Hear their consorted Druids sing
Their triumphs to th’ immortal string.
How may the poet now unfold,
What never tongue or numbers told?
How learn delighted, and amaz'd,
What hands unknown that fabric rais'd?
E’en now, before his favour’d eyes,
In Gothic pride it seems to rise !
Yet Grecia's graceful orders join,
Majestic, through the mix’d design;
The secret builder knew to chuse,
Each sphere-found gem of richest hues:
Whate'er Heaven's purer mould contains,
When nearer suns emblaze its veins;
There on the walls the patriot's sight
May ever hang with fresh delight,
And, 'grav'd with some prophetic rage,
Read Albion's fame through every age.
Ye forms divine, ye laureate band,
That near her inmost altar stand 1
Now soothe her, to her blissful train
Blithe Concord's social form to gain:
Concord, whose myrtle wand can steep
E'en Anger's blood-shot eyes in sleep :
Before whose breathing bosom's balm,
Rage drops his steel, and storms grow calm;
Her let our sires and matrons hoar
Welcome to Britain's ravag'd shore,
Our youths, enamour'd of the fair,
Play with the tangles of her hair,
Till, in one loud applauding sound,
The nations shout to her around,
“O, how supremely art thou blest,
Thou, lady, thou shalt rule the Wes
WHEN Music, heavenly maid, was young,
While yet in early Greece she sung,
The Passions oft, to hear her shell,
Throng'd around her magic cell,
Exulting, trembling, raging, fainting,
Possest beyond the Muse's painting;
By turns they felt the glowing mind
Disturb’d, delighted, rais'd, refin’d ;
Till once, ’t is said, when all were fir’d,
Fill'd with fury, rapt, inspir’d,
From the supporting myrtles round
They snatch'd her instruments of sound,
And, as they oft had heard apart
Sweet lessons of her forceful art,
Each, for madness rul’d the hour,
Would prove his own expressive power.
First Fear his hand, its skill to try,
Amid the chords bewilder'd laid,
And back recoil'd, he knew not why,
E’en at the sound himself had made.
Next Anger rush'd, his eyes on fire,
In lightnings own'd his secret stings,
In one rude clash he struck the lyre,
And swept with hurried hand the strings.
With woeful measures wan. Despair —
Low sullen sounds his grief beguil'd,
A solemn, strange, and mingled air,
'T was sad by fits, by starts 't was wild.
But thou, O Hope, with eyes so fair,
What was thy delighted measure?
Still it whisper'd promis'd 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 smil'd, and wav'd her golden
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 sound so full of woe.
And ever and anon he beat,
The doubling drum with furious heat; [tween,
And though sometimes, each dreary pause be-
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