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Ye sons of wealth ! protect the muse's train ;
From winds protect them, and with food supply ; Ah! helpless they, to ward the threaten'd pain!
The meagre famine, and the wint'ry sky!
He lov'd a nymph: amidst his sender store,
He dar'd to love ; and CYNTHIA was his theme; He breath'd his plaints along the rocky shore,
They only echo'd o'er the winding stream.
His nymph was fair ; the sweetest bud that blows,
Revives less lovely from the recent show'r; So Philomel enamour'd eyes the rose;
Sweet bird ! enamour'd of the sweetest flow'r !
He lov'd the muse; she taught him to complain ;
He saw his tim'rous loves on her depend ; He lov’d the muse, altho' she taught in vain ;
He lov’d the muse, for she was virtue's friend.
She guides the foot that treads on Parian floors;
She wins the ear when formal pleas are vain ; She tempts patricians from the fatal doors
Of vice's brothel, forth to virtue's fane.
He wish'd for wealth, for much he wilh'd to give ;
He griev'd that virtue might not wealth obrain ;
I saw him faint ! I saw him sink to rest !
Like one ordain'd to swell the vulgar throng; As tho' the virtues had not warm'd his breast,
As tho' the muses not inspir'd his tongue.
I saw his bier ignobly cross the plain ;
Saw peasant hands the pious rite supply :
But pow'r and wealth's unvarying cheek was dry !
Such Alcon fell; in meagre want forlorn !
Where were ye then ye powerful patrons, where ? Wou'd ye the purple shou'd your limbs adorn,
Go wash the conscious blemish with a tear.
HRO'the dim veil of ev’ning's dusky shade
green, What dreary forms has magic fear survey'd !
What shrouded spectres superstition seen!
But you secure shall pour your fad complaint,
Nor dread the meagre phantom's wan array ; What none but fear's officious hand can paint,
What none, but superstition's eye, survey.
The glim’ring twilight and the doubtful dawn
Shall see your step to these sad scenes return : Constant, as crystal dews impearl the lawn,
Shall STREPHON's tear bedew Ophelia's urn!
Sure nought unhallow'd shall presume to stray
Where Deep the reliques of that virtuous maid : Nor aught unlovely bend its devious way,
Where soft OPHELIA's dear remains are laid.
Haply thy muse, as with unceasing sighs
She keeps late vigils on her urn reclin'd, May see light groups of pleasing visions rise ;
And phantoms glide, but of celestial kind.
Then farne, her clarion pendent át her side,
Shall seek forgiveness of Ophelia's shade ; “ Why has such worth, without distinction, dy'd,
Why, like the desert's lilly, bloom'd to fade ?"
Then young simplicity, averse to feign,
Shall unmolested breathe her fofteft sigh : And candour with unwonted warmth complain, · And innocence indulge a wailful cry,
Then elegance with coy judicious hand,
Shall cull fresh flow'rets for OPHELIA's tomb: And beauty chide the fates' severe command,
That shew'd the frailty of so fair a bloom !
And fancy then with wild ungovern'd woe,
Shall her lov'd pupil's native taste explain ; For mournful fable all her hues forego,
And ask sweet solace of the mufe in vain!
Ah gentle forms expect no fond relief;
Too much the sacred nine their loss deplore : Well may ye grieve, nor find an end of grief
Your best, your brightest fav’rite is no more.
E L EGY V.
Hc compares the turbulence of love with the tranquillity
of friendship. To Melissa his friend.
ROM love, from angry love's inclement reign
I pass awhile to friendship’s equal skies ; Thou, gen’rous maid, reliev'st my partial pain,
And chear'st the victim of another's eyes.
'Tis thou, Melissa, thou deserv'st my care :
How can my will and reason disagree? How can my passion live beneath despair !
How can my bosom figh for aught but thee?
Ah dear Melissa! pleas'd with thee to rove,
My soul has yet surviv'd its dreariest time Ill can I bear the various clime of love!
Love is a pleasing, but a various clime !
So smiles immortal Maro's fav’rite shore,
PARTHENOPE, with ev'ry verdure crown'd! When ftrait Vesuvio's horrid cauldrons roar,
And the dry vapour blasts the regions round.
Oh blisful regions ! oh unrivald plains !
When Maro to these fragrant haunts retir’d! Oh fatal realms! and oh accurft domains ! When Pliny, ’mid sulphureous clouds, expir’d!