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With eyes up-rais'd, as one inspir’d,
Pale Melancholy sat retir’d,
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; [stole,
Through glades and glooms the mingled measure
Or o'er some haunted streams 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-ey'd
Satyrs and sylvan boys were seen,
Peeping from forth their alleys green;
Brown Exercise rejoic'd to hear,
And Sport leapt up, and seiz'd 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 lov'd the best.
They would have thought, who heard the strain,
They saw in Tempé'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 fram'd 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 lov'd 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—
'T is 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
Caecilia'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!
sung BY GUIDERUs AND ARVIRAGU's ovKR FIDELE, suppoSED TO BE DEAD.
To fair Fidele's grassy tomb
Soft maids and village hinds shall bring
Each opening sweet, of earliest bloom,
And rifle all the breathing Spring.
No wailing ghost shall dare appear
To vex with shrieks this quiet grove,
But shepherd lads assemble here,
And melting virgins own their love.
No wither'd witch shall here be seen,
No goblins lead their nightly crew;
The female fays shall haunt the green,
And dress thy grave with pearly dew.
The red-breast oft at evening hours
Shall kindly lend his little aid,
With hoary moss, and gather'd flowers,
To deck the ground where thou art laid.
When howling winds, and beating rain,
In tempests shake thy sylvan cell;
Or 'midst the chase on every plain,
The tender thought on thee shall dwell.
Each lonely scene shall thee restore,
For thee the tear be duly shed;
Belov'd, till life can charm no more ;
And mourn'd, till Pity's self be dead.
POPULAR SUPERSTITIONS OF THE HIGHLANDS OF SCOTLAND;
THE SUBJECT OF POETRY.
INSCRIBED TO MR. John Home.
HoME, thou return'st from Thames, whose Naiads
Have seen thee lingering with a fond delay, [day
Mid those soft friends, whose hearts some future
Shall melt, perhaps, to hearthy tragic song. *
Go, not unmindful of that cordial youth f [side;
Whom, long endear'd, thou leav'st by Lavant's
Together let us wish him lasting truth
And joy untainted with his destin’d bride.
Go! nor regardless, while these numbers boast
My short-liv'd bliss, forget my social name;
But think, far off, how, on the Southern coast,
I met thy friendship with an equal flame !
Fresh to that soil thou turn'st, where every vale
Shall prompt the poet, and his song demand:
To thee thy copious subjects ne'er shall fail;
Thou need'st but take thy pencil to thy hand,
And paint what all believe, who own thy genial land.
* * How truly did Collins predict Home's tragic powers' + A gentleman of the name of Barrow, who introduced Home to Collins.
There must thou wake perforce thy Doric quill;
'Tis Fancy's land to which thou sett'st thy feet;
Where still, 'tis said, the fairy people meet,
Beneath each birken shade, on mead or hill.
There each trim lass, that skims the milky store
To the swart tribes, their creamy bowls alots;
By night they sip it round the cottage-door,
While airy minstrels warble jocund notes.
There, every herd, by sad experience, knows
How, wing'd with fate, their elf-shot arrows fly,
When the sick ewe her summer food forgoes,
Or, stretch'd on earth, the heart-smit heifers lie.
Such airy beings awe th' untutor'd swain:
Nor thou, tho' learn'd, his homelier thoughts
Let thy sweet Muse the rural faith sustain;
These are the themes of simple, sure effect,
That add new conquests to her boundless reign,
And fill with double force her heart-commanding
E’en yet preserv'd, how often mayst thou hear,
Where to the Pole the Boreal mountains run,
Taught by the father, to his listening son;
Strange lays, whose power had charm'd a Spenser's
At every pause, before thy mind possest,
Old Runic bards shall seem to rise around,
With uncouth lyres, in many-colour'd vest,
Their matted hair with boughs fantastic crown'd:
Whether thou bidd'st the well-taught hind repeat
The choral dirge that mourns some chieftain brave,