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WRITTEN IN 6 LETTERS OF AN ITALIAN NUN AND
AN ENGLISH GENTLEMAN. BY J. J. ROUSSEAU. FOUNDED ON FACTS." *
Where love chased each fast-fleeting year,
Loth to leave thee, I mourned,
For a last look I turn'd, But thy spire was scarce seen through a Tear.
Though my vows I can pour
To my Mary no more,
In the shade of her bower
I remember the hour
By another possest,
May she live ever blest! Her name still my heart must revere:
With a sigh I resign
What I once thought was mine, And forgive her deceit with a Tear.
Ye friends of my heart,
Ere from you I depart, This hope to my breast is most near :
If again we shall meet
In this rural retreat, May we meet, as we part, with a Tear.
DEAR simple girl, those flattering arts,
When my soul wings her flight
To the regions of night, *And my corse shall recline on its bier,
As ye pass by the tomb
Where my ashes consume,
May no marble bestow
The splendor of wo
No fiction of fame
Shall blazon my name;
October 26, 1806.
No specious splendor of this stone
Endears it to my memory ever; With lustre only once it shone,
And blushes modest as the giver.
Had Fortune aided Nature's care,
For once forgetting to be blind,
If well-proportion'd to his mind.
Well: we have pass'd some happy nours,
And joy will mingle with our tears ;
The shelter of our infant years;
But had the goddess clearly seen,
His form had fix'd her fickle breast;
And none remain'd to give the rest.
Where from the gothic casement's height,
We view'd the lake, the park, the dale, And still, though tears obstruct our sight, We lingering look a last farewell.
O'er fields through which we used to run,
And spend the hours in childish play;
ON THE DEATH OF A YOUNG LADY,*
Whilst I, admiring, too remiss,
Forgot to scare the hov'ring flies,
It dared to give your slumbering eyes •
Husu'd are the winds, and still the evening gloom,
Not een a zephyr, wanders through the grove, Whilst I return to view my Margaret's tomb,
And scatter flowers on the dust I love.
See still the little painted bark,
In which I row'd you o'er the lake,
The elm I clamber'd for your sake.
Within this narrow cell reclines her clay,
That clay where once such animation beam'd; The King of Terrors seized her as his prey,
Not worth, nor beauty, have her life redeem'd.
These times are pastmour joys are gone,
You leave me, leave this happy vale;
Without thee what will they avail?
Oh! could that King of Terrors pity feel,
Or Heaven reverse the dread decrees of fate! Not here the mourner would his grief reveal,
Not here the muse her virtues would relate.
Who can conceive, who has not proved,
The anguish of a last embrace ?
You bid a long adieu to peace.
But wherefore weep? her matchless spirit soars
Beyond where splendid shines the orb of day; And weeping angels lead her to those bowers
Where.endless pleasures virtue's deeds repay.
This is the deepest of our woes,
For this these tears our cheeks bedew;
Oh God, the fondest, last adieu !
And shall presumptuous mortals heaven arraign,
And, madly, godlike providence accuse ? Ah! no, far fly from me attempts so vain,
I'll ne'er submission to my God refuse.
AN OCCASIONAL PROLOGUE.
Yet is remembrance of those virtues dear,
Yet fresh the memory of that beauteous face; Still they call forth my warm affection's tear,
Still in my heart retain their wonted place.
DELIVERED PREVIOUS TO THE PERFORMANCE OF
" THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE” AT A PRIVATR THEATRE
SINCE the refinement of this polish'd age
Has swept immoral raillery from the stage;
Since taste has now expunged licentious wit,
Which stamp'd disgrace on all an author writ; SINCE now the hour is come at last,
Since now to please with purer scenes we scek, When you must quit your anxious lover ; Nor dare to call the blush from Beauty's cheek; Since now our dream of bliss is past,
Oh! let the modest Muse some pity claim, One pang, my girl, and all is over.
And meet indulgence, though she find not fame.
Still, not for her alone we wish respect, Alas! that pang will be severe,
Others appear more conscious of defect: Which bids us part to meet no more,
To-night no veteran Roscii you behold, Which tears me far from one so dear,
In all the arts of scenic action old; Departing for a distant shore.
No COOKE, no KEMBLE, can salute you here,
NO SIDDONS draw the sympathetic tear ; • Miss Parker.
To-night you throng to witness the debut + To these stanzas, which are from the private volume, the following note of embryo actors, to the Drama new: was attached : “ The author claims the indulgence of the reader more for this piece than, perhaps, any other in the collection ; but as it was written at Here, then, our almost unfledged wings we try; an earlier period than the rest (being composed at the age of fourteen,) and Clip not our pinions ere the birds can fly : his first essay, ho preferred submitting it to the indulgence of his friends in
Failing in this our first attempt to soar, its present state, to making either addition or alteration." • This poem is inserted from the private volunc.
Drooping, alas! we fall to rise no more.
Not one poor trembler only fear betrays,
Whene'er I dream of that pure breast,
How could I dwell upon its snows? Yet is the daring wish represt,
For that,-would banish its repose.
A glance from thy soul-searching eye
Can raise with hope, depress with fear; Yet I conceal my love, and why?
I would not force a painful tear.
I ne'er have told my love, yet thou
Hast seen my ardent flame too well; And shall I plead my passion now,
To make thy bosom's heaven a hell ?
ON THE DEATH OF MR. FOX.
THE FOLLOWING ILLIBERAL IMPROMPTU AP
PEARED IN A MORNING PAPER. I
No! for thou never canst be mine,
United by the priest's decree; By any ties but those divine,
Mine, my beloved, thou ne'er shalt be.
« OUR nation's foes lament on Fox's death,
Then let the secret fire consume,
Let it consume, thou shalt not know; With joy I court a certain doom,
TO WHICH THE AUTHOR OF THESE PIECES SENT
THE FOLLOWING REPLY. S
I will not ease my tortured heart,
By driving dove-eyed peace from thine, Rather than such a sting impart,
Each thought presumptuous I resign.
Yes ! yield those lips, for which I'd brave
More than I here shall dare to tell ; Thy innocence and mine to save,
I bid thee now a last farewell.
Yes, yield that breast to seek despair,
And hope no more thy soft embrace, Which to obtain my soul would dare,
All, all reproach, but thy disgrace.
Oh, factious viper ! whose envenom’d tooth
At least from guilt shalt thou be free,
No matron shall thy shame reprove, Though cureless pangs may prey on me,
No martyr shalt thou be to love.
THINK'st thou I saw thy beauteous eyes,
Suffused in tears implore to stay; And heard unmoved thy plenteous sighs,
Which said far more than words can say?
Though keen the grief thy tears exprest,
When love and hope lay both o’erthrown; Yet still, my girl, this bleeding breast
Throbb’d with deep sorrow as thine own.
• Our. In the private volume, their. † Censor. In the private volume, critic. I “In the Morning post." --Private volume. $ " For insertion in the Morning Chronicle," was here added in the krivate volume.
* Only printed in the private volume. † Printed only in the private volume.
But when our cheeks with anguish glow'd, Let us pass round the cup of love's bliss in ful When thy sweet lips were join'd to mine,
measure, The tears that from my eyelids flow'd
And quaff the contents as our nectar below. Were lost in those which fell from thine.
Was my eye 'stead of tears, with red fury flakes TO CAROLINE.*
Would my lips breathe a flame which no stream WHEN I hear you express an affection so warm,
could assuage, Ne'er think, my beloved, that I do not believe; On our foes should my glance launch in vengeance For your lip would the soul of suspicion disarm,
its lightning, And your eye beams a ray which can never de- With transport my tongue give a loose to its rage. ceive.
But now tears and curses, alike unavailing, Yet still, this fond bosom regrets while adoring, I Would add to the souls of our tyrants delight,
That love, like the leaf, must fall into the sear, Could they view us our sad separation bewailing, That age will come on, when remembrance, de-1 Their merciless hearts would rejoice at the sight
ploring, Contemplates the scenes of her youth with a tear; Yet still, though we bend with a feign'd resigna.
tion, That the time must arrive, when no longer retaining
ning Life beams not for us with one ray that can cheer;
Life her Their auburn, those locks must wave thin to their
the Love and hope upon earth bring no more consolabreeze,
tion, When a few silver hairs of those tresses remaining, In the grave is our hope, for in life is our fear.
Prove nature a prey to decay and disease. 'Tis this, my beloved, whick spreads gloom o'er my
.my Oh! when, my adored, in the tomb will they place
me, features, Though I ne'er shall presume to arraign the decree
of Since in life, love and friendship for ever are fled? Which God has proclaimed as the fate of his crea
If again in the mansion of death I embrace thee,
Perhaps they will leave unmolested the dead. tures,
1805. In the death which one day will deprive you of me.
* Inserted from the private volume.
* This poem also is reprinted from the private value.
Then read, dear girl! with feeling read,
OH! did those eyes, instead of fire,
With bright but mild affection shine,
Though they might kindle less desire, He was in sooth a genuine bard;
Love, more than mortal, would be thine.
For thou art form’d so heavenly fair,
Howe'er those orbs may wildly beam,
That fatal glance forbids esteem.
Your shepherds, your flocks, I those fantastical
Oh ! cease to affirm that man since his birth, s
And Eden revives in the first kiss of love.
WOMAN! experience might have told me
When age chills the blood, when our pleasures are
pasta For years fleet away with the wings of the dove The dearest remembrance will still be the last,
Our sweetest memorial the first kiss of love.
These stanzas were printed in the private volume, and in the first edition of Hours of I Ueness, but omitted in the second.
† " Those tissues of fancy Moriah* has wove."-Private volume.
f" Those tissites, but omitted in the cene volume, and in the first
• “Moriah, the Goddess of Folly."
• The last line is almost a literal translation from a Spanish proverb