« 前へ次へ »
Judgment of HERCULES.
y^Hile blooming spring descends from genial skies,
By whose mild influence instant wonders rise j From whose soft breath Elysian beauties flow; The sweets of Hagley, or the pride of Stowe; Will Lyttelton the rural landskip range, Leave noisy fame, and not regret the change? Pleas'd will he tread the garden's early scenes, And learn a moral from the rising greens? There, warm'd alike by Sol's enliv'ning pow'r, The weed, aspiring, emulates the flow'r: The drooping flow'r, its fairer charms display'd, Invites, from grateful hands, their gen'rous aid:
R 2 Soon,
Soon, if none check th' invasive foe's designs,
'Tis thus, the spring of youth, the morn of life,
There are, who blind to thought's fatiguing ray, As fortune gives examples, urge their way: Not virtue's foes, tho' they her paths decline, And scarce her friends, tho' with her friends they join, In her's, or vice's casual road advance Thoughtless, the sinners or the saints of chance! Yet some more nobly scorn the vulgar voice; With judgment six, with zeal pursue their choice, When ripen'd thought, when reason born to reign, Checks the wild tumults of the youthful vein While passion's lawless tides, at their command, Glide thro' more useful tracts, and bless r.he land.
Happiest of these is he whose matchless mind, By learning strengthens, and by taste resin'd, In virtue's cause essay'd its earliest pow'rs} Chose virtue's paths, and strew'd her paths with flow'rs. The first alarm'd, if freedom waves her wings: The fittest to adorn each art siie brings:
Lov'd by that prince whom ev'ry virtus fires:
'Twas youth's perplexing stage his doubts inspir'd,
While thus he trac'd thro' fancy's puzzling maze The sep'rate sweets of pleasure, and of praise; Sudden the wind a fragrant gale convey'd, And a new lustre gain'd upon the shade.
At once, before his wond'ring eyes were seen Two female forms, of more than mortal mien. Various their charms; and, in their dress and face, Each seem'd to vie with some peculiar grace. This, whose attire less clogg'd with art appears, The simple sweets of innocence endear'd. Her sprightly bloom, her quick sagacious eye, Shew'd native merit mix'd with modesty. Her air diffus'd a mild yet aweful ray, Severely sweet, and innocently gay. Such the chaste image of the martial maid, In artless folds of virgin white array'd! She let no borrow'd rose her cheeks adorn, Her blushing cheeks, that sham'd the purple morn* Her charms nor had, nor wanted artful foils, Or study'd gestures, or well-practis'd smiles. She scorn'd the toys which render beauty less; She prov'd th' engaging chastity of dress; And while she chose in native charms to shine, Ev'n thus she seem'd, nay more than seem'd, divine. One modest em'rald clasp'd the robe me wore, And, in her hand, th' imperial sword me bore. Sublime her height, majestic was her pace, And match'd the aweful honours of her face. Theshrubs, theflow'rs, thatdeck'd the verdant ground, Seem'd, where me trod, with rising lustre crown'd. Still her approach with stronger influence warm'd; She pleas'd, while distant, but, when near, ihe charm'd.