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A TOMBLESS EPITAPH.
'Tis true, Idoloclastes Satyrane!
But he had traced it upward to its source, Through open glade, dark glen, and secret dell, Knew the gay wild flowers on its banks, and
culled Its med’cinable herbs. Yea, oft alone, Piercing the long-neglected holy cave, The haunt obscure of old Philosophy, He bade with lifted torch its starry walls Sparkle, as erst they sparkled to the flame Of odorous lamps tended by Saint and sage. O framed for calmer times and nobler hearts ! O studious Poet, eloquent for truth! Philosopher! contemning wealth and death, Yet docile, childlike, full for Life and Love! Here, rather than on monumental stone, This record of thy worth thy Friend inscribes, Thoughtful, with quiet tears upon his cheek.
PAGE 3.-FIRST ADVENT OF LOVE. THE early date assigned to these exquisite lines is derived from a memorandum of the author. "Relics of my Schoolboy Muse; i. e. fragments of poems composed before my fifteenth year.
LOVE'S FIRST HOPE
"O fair is Love's first hope,' &c. The concluding stanza of an Elegy on a Lady, who died in early youth:
O'er the raised earth the gales of evening sigh;
And see a Daisy peeps upon its slope!
Even on the cold Grave lights the Cherub Hope!
AGE.-A stanza written forty years later than the pre ceding:
Dew-drops are the Gems of Morning,
But the Tears of dewy Eve!
S. T. C. Sept. 1827."
6. This little poem was written when the author was a boy." Note to the edition of 1796.
THE RAVEN and TIME, REAL AND IMAGINARY, are mentioned as “School-boy Poems” in the Preface to the " Sibylline Leaves,” published in 1817.
This “Effusion” and “The Rose” were originally addressed to a Miss F. Nesbitt, at Plymouth, whither the author accompanied his eldest brother, to whom he was paying a visit, when he was twenty-one years of age. Both poems are written in pencil on the blank pages of a copy of Langhorne's Collins. “ Kisses” is entitled “ Cupid turned Chymist;” is signed S. T. Coleridge, and dated Friday evening, 1793.
“ The Rose” has this heading:-"On presenting a Moss Rose to Miss F. Nesbitt.” In both poems the name of Nesbitt appears instead of Sara, afterwards substituted.
“KISSES” has this note in the edition of 1796:-
Basia lascivâ Cypria Diva manu.
Fragransque infuso nectare tingit opus.
Non impune favis surripuisset Amor.
Et spolia æstivis plurima rapta rosis:
Et quot Acidalius gaudia Cestus habet.
Carm. Quad. vol. ii.
PAGE 20.-LINES ON AN AUTUMNAL EVENING.
In the edition of 1796 this poem is stated to have been written in early youth; and in a note to the line “O (have I sighed) were mine the wizard's rod," the author “entreats
the Public's pardon for having carelessly suffered to be printed such intolerable stuff as this and the thirteen following lines;” adding," that they have not even the merit of originality, as every thought is to be found in the Greek epigrams.” In the edition brought out the following year, the whole poem was first omitted, but eventually “reprieved," and printed in an Appendix, at the request of some intelligent friends, who observed, that “what most delighted the author when he was young in writing would probably best please those who are young in reading poetry," and that “ must learn to be pleased with a subject before he can yield that attention to it which is necessary in order to acquire a just taste.” In the edition of 1803 the poem appears in its proper place, without any remark. Few readers will have regretted that this bright and popular strain was thus rescued from the hasty condemnation of its youthful author. In the note, the author repels an imputation of plagiarism from Mr. Rogers's “Pleasures of Memory,” and brings a similar charge against his distinguished contemporary. He finds the original of the tale of “ Florio,” “in ‘Lochleven,' a poem of great merit by Michael Bruce.” This assertion he afterwards withdrew, apologizing (in the Appendix above referred to) for his rashness, in very handsome terms. This occurred fifty-six years ago. Mr. Rogers still lives to wear his unwithering laurels. He has seen two generations of his poetic brethren pass away,-μετά δε τριτάτοισιν ανάσσει.
The following note, in the edition of 1796, may be cited as a proof how early, and how decidedly, the genius of Wordsworth was detected and proclaimed by Coleridge:-“ The expression, 'green radiance,'” he says, (referring to the “ Lines Written at Shurton Bars,” p. 68 of the present edition,) " is borrowed from Mr. Wordsworth, a poet whose versification is occasionally harsh, and his diction too frequently obscure,” (the “ Descriptive Sketches,” and “Evening Walk,” published 1793, since republished, with numerous corrections, as juvenile pieces, were the poems thus characterized); “ but whom I deem unrivalled among the writers of the present day in manly sentiment, novel imagery, and vivid colouring.”