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P O E M S

Ο Ν

Several Occasions.

LYCIDA S.

YET

In this Monody the Author bewails a Learned Friend, unfortunately drown'd in his paffage from Chester on the Irish Seas, 1637. And by occafion foretells. the ruin of our corrupted Clergie, then in their height. ET once more, Oye Laurels, and once more

Ye Myrtles brown, with Ivy never sear,
I come to pluck your Berries harsh and crude,
And with forc'd fingers rude,
Shatter your leaves before the mellowing year,
Bitter constraint, and fad occasion dear,
Compels me to disturb your season duę:
DO!

For

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For Lycidas is dead, dead e'er his prime,
Young Lycidas, and hath not left his peer:
Who would not sing for Lycidas? he knew
Himself to fing, and build the lofty Rhyme,
He must not flote

upon

bis
watry

bier Unwept, and welter to the parching wind, Without the meed of fome melodious tear.

Begin then, Sisters of the Sacred well, That from beneath the seat of Jove doth spring, Begin, and somewhat loudly sweep the string. Hence with denial vain, and coy excuse, So may

some gentle Muse With lucky words favour my destin’d Urn, And as he palles turn, And bid fair peace be to my sable Chrowd. For we were nurst upon the self-fame Hill, Fed the same flock; by fountain, shade, and ril).

Together both, e'er the high Lawns appear'd Under the opening Eye-lids of the morn, We drove a field, and both together heard What time the Gray-fly winds her sultry horn, Bate’ning our flocks with the fresh dews of night, Oft till the Star that rofe, at Ev’ning, bright,

Toward

Towards Heav'ns descent had flop'd his westering

(wheel Mean while the Rural ditties were not mute, Temper'd to th’Oaten Flute, Rough Satyrs danc'd, and Fauns with clov’n heel, From the glad found would not be absent long, And old Damætas loy'd to hear our Song.

But the heavy change, now thou art gone, Now thou art gone, and never must return! Thee Shepherd, thee the Woods and desert Caves With wild Thyme and the gadding Vine o'ergrown, And all their echoes mourn. The Willows, and the Hazel Copses green, Shall now no more be seen, Fanning their joyous Leaves to thy soft layes, As killing as the Canker to the Rofe, Or Taint-worm to the weanling Herds that graze, Or Froft to Flowers, that their gay wardrobe wear, When first the white Thorn blows; Such, Lycidas, thy loss to Shepherds ear.

Where were ye, Nymphs, when the remorseless Clos'd o'er the head of your lov'd Lycidas?

[deep For neither were ye playing on the steep, Where your old Bards, the famous Druids, lye,

Nor

Nor on the shaggy top of Mona high,
Nor
yet

where Deva spreads her wisard stream: Ay me, I fondly dream! Had

ye

been there for what could that have done What could the Muse her self that Orpheus bore, The Muse her felf for her enchanting Son, Wbom Universal Nature did lament, When by the rout that made the hideous roar, His

goary visage down the stream was sent, Down the swift Hebrus to the Lesbian shoar.

Alas! What boots it with unceffant care To end the homely slighted Shepherds trade, And strictly meditate the chankless Muse, Were it not better done as others use, To sport with Amaryllis in the shade, Or with the tangles of Neera's hair? Fame is the spur that the clear spirit doth raise (That last infirmity of Noble mind) To scorn delights, and live laborious days; But the fạir Guerdon when we hope to find, And think to burst out into sudden blaze, Comes the blind Fury with th' abhorred shears, And flits the thin spun Life, But not the praise,

Phæbus

!

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Phæbus reply'd, and touch'd my trembling ears;
Fame is no plant that grows on mortal foil,
Nor in the glistering foil
Set off to th' world, nor in broad rumour lies,
But lives and spreads aloft by those pure eyes,
And perfect witness of all-judging Jove;
As he pronounces lastly on each deed,
Of so much fame in Heav'n expect thy meed.

O Fountain Arethuse, and thou honour'd flood,
Smooth-sliding Mincius, crown'd with vocal reeds,
That strain I heard was of a higher mood:
But now my Oat proceeds,
And listens to the Herald of the Sea
That came in Neptune's plea,
He ask'd the Waves, and ask'd the Fellon Winds,
What hard mishap hath doom'd this gentle swain.
And question'd every gust of rugged winds
That blows from off each beaked Promontory;
They knew not of his story,
And sage Hippotades their answer brings,
That not a blast was from his dungeon stray'd,
The Air was calm, and on the level brine,
Sleek Panope with all her Sisters play'd,

.

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