Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors][merged small]

1

ALMIGHTY Pow'r, amazing are thy ways!
Above our knowledge, and above our praise !
How all thy works thy excellence display;
How fair, how great, how wonderful are they!
Thy hand yon wide-extended heaven up-rais'd,
Yon wide-extended heaven with stars emblaz'd,
Where each brightorb, since time hiscourse begun,
Has rolld a mighty world, or shin'd a sun;
Stupendous thought! how sinks all human race!
A point, an atom in the field of space!
Yet ev’n to us, O LORD, thy care extends,
Thy bounty feeds us, and thy pow'r defends ;
Yet ev'n to'us, as delegates of Thee,
Thou giv'st dominion over land and sea;
Whate'er or walks on earth, or flits in air,
Whate'er of life the wat’ry regions bear;
All these are ours, and for th' extensive claim,
We owe due homage to thy Sacred Nanie!
Almighty Pow'r! how wond'rous are thy ways!
How far above our knowledge and our praise!

AN ELEGY,

DESCRIBING THE

SORROW OF AN INGENUOUS MIND,

ON THE

MELANCHOLY EVENT OF A LICENTIOUS AMOUR.

SHENSTONE.

WHY mourns my friend? why weeps his down

cast eye? That eye where mirth, where fancyus'd to shine;. Thy cheerful meads reprove that swelling sigh;

Spring ne'er enamel'a fairer meads than thine.

Art thou not lodg'd in fortune's warm embrace?

Wert thou not form’d by nature's partial care? Bless'd in thy song, and bless’d in ev'ry grace

That wins the friend, and that enchants the fair?

Damon, said he, thy partial praise restrain ;

Not Damon's friendship can my peace restore; Alas! his very praise awakes my pain,

And my poor wounded bosom bleeds the more.

For O! that nature on my birth had frown'd!

Or fortune fix'd me to some lowly cell! Then had my bosom 'scap'd this fatal wound,

Nor had I bid these vernal sweets farewel.

But led by fortune's hand, her darling child,

My youth her vain licentious bliss admir'd; In fortune's train the syren flatt'ry smild,

And rashly hallow'd all her queen inspir’d.
Of folly studious, ev'n of vices vain,

Ah, vices! gilded by the rich and gay!
I chas'd the guileless daughters of the plain!

Nor dropp'd the chase till Jessy was my prey. Poor artless maid! to stain thy spotless name,

Expence, and art, and toil, united strove; To lure a breast that felt the purest flame,

Sustain’d by virtue, but betray'd by love.

School'd in the science of love's mazy wiles,

I cloth'd each feature with affected scorn; I spoke of jealous doubts, and fickle smiles,

And feigning, left her anxious and forlorn.

Then, while the fancy'd rage alarm’d her care,

Warm to deny, and zealous to disprove: I bade

my

words their wonted softness wear, And seiz'd the minute of returning love.

To thee, my Damon, dare I paint the rest?

Will yet thy love a candid ear incline? Assur'd that virtue, by misfortune prest,

Feels not the sharpness of a pang like mine. Nine envious moons matur'd her growing shame!

Ere while to flaunt it in the face of day; When scornd of virtue, stigmatiz'd by fame,

Low at my feet desponding Jessy lay. " Henry,” she said, “ by thy dear form subdu'd,

See the sad relics of a nymph undone; I find, I find this rising sob renew'd:

I sigh in shades, and sicken at the sun. Amid the dreary gloom of night I cry,

When will the morn's once pleasing scenes reYet what can morn's returning ray supply,

But foes that triumph, or but friends that mourn? Alas! no more the joyous morn appears

That led the tranquil hours of spotless fame! For I have steep'd a father's couch in tears,

And ting'da mother's glowing cheek with shame. The vocal birds that raise their matin strain,

The sportive lambs increase my pensive moan; All-seem to chase me from the cheerful plain,

And talk of truth and innocence alone.

(turn) If through the garden's flow'ry tribes I stray,

Where bloom the jes’mins thatcould once allure,
Hope not to find delight in us, they say,

For we are spotless, Jessy, we are pure.
Ye flow'rs! that well reproach a nymph so frail,

Say, could you with my virgin-fame compare?
The brightest bud that scents the vernal gale,

Was not so fragrant, and was not so fair. Now the grave old alarm the gentler young;

And all my fame's abhorr'd contagion flee; Trembles each lip, and faulters ev'ry tongue,

That bids the morn propitious smile on me. Thus for

your

sake I shun each human eye: I bid the sweets of blooming youth adieu; To die I languish, but I dread to die, Lest my sad fate should nourish

pangs

for

you. Raise me from earth; the pains of want remove,

And let me silent seek some friendly shore; There, only banish'd from the form I love,

My weeping virtues shall relapse no more. Be but

my

friend! I ask no dearer name; Be such the meed of some more artful fair : Nor could it heal my peace, or chase my shame,

That pity gave what love refus'd to share.

[ocr errors]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »