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How dreadful, then, to meet them all alone,
Take Phæbus to yourselves, ye basking bards!
Thou, who didst lately borrow Cynthia's form,
Are there demurring wits, who dare dispute 35
of heav'n! What title, or what name, endears thee most?
Cynthia! Cyllene! Phæbe !or dost hear 45
And kind thou wilt be-kind on such a theme 55
soul 'Twas night; on her fond hopes perpetual night; A night which struck a damp, a deadlier damp 60 Than that which smote me from PHILANDER's tomb. NARCISSA follows, ere his tomb is clos’d. Woes cluster; rare are solitary woes; They love a train, they tread each other's heel; Her death invades his mournful right, and claims 65 The grief that started from my lids for him: Seizes the faithless, alienated tear, Or shares it, ere it falls. So frequent death, Sorrow he more than causes, he confounds; For human sighs his rival strokes contend,
70 And make distress, distraction. Oh PHILANDER! What was thy fate? A double fate to me; Portent, and pain! a menace, and a blow! Like the black raven hov’ring o'er my peace, Not less a bird of omen, than of prey.
75 It call'd NARCISSA long before her hour;
It call'd her tender soul, by break of bliss,
90 Her song still vibrates in
Song, beauty, youth, love, virtue, joy! this group Of bright ideas, flow'rs of Paradise,
95 As yet unforfeit, in one blaze we bind, Kneel, and present it to the skies; as all We guess of Heav'n: And these were all her own. And she was mine; and I was-was most blest Gay title of the deepest misery!
100 As bodies grow more pond'rous robb’d of life; Good lost weighs more in grief, than gain’d in joy. Like blossom'd trees o'erturn'd by vernal storm, Lovely in death the beauteous ruin lay; And if in death still lovely, lovelier there; 105 Far lovelier! Pity swells the tide of love. And will not the severe excuse a sigh? Scorn the proud man that is asham'd to weep:
Our tears indulg'd indeed deserve our shame.
Queen lilies! and ye painted populace! Who dwell in fields, and lead ambrosial lives; 125 In morn and ev'ning dew, your beauties bathe, And drink the sun; which gives your cheeks to glow, And out-blush (mine excepted) ev'ry fair; You gladlier grew, ambitious of her hand, Which often crop'd your odours, incense meet 130 To thought so pure.
Ye lovely fugitives! Coëval race with Man! for Man you smile; Why not smile at him too? You share indeed His sudden pass; but not his constant pain.
So Man is made, nought ministers delight 135 But what his glowing passions can engage; And glowing passions, bent on aught below, Must, soon or late, with anguish turn the scale; And anguish, after rapture, how severe! Rapture--Bold Man! who tempts the wrath divine,
By plucking fruit deny'd to mortal taste,
141 Whilst here, presuming on the rights of Heav'n! For transport dost thou call on ev'ry hour, LORENZO? At thy friend's expence be wise; Lean not on earth; 'twill pierce thee to the heart; 145 A broken reed at best; but oft a spear; On its sharp point peace bleeds, and hope expires. Turn, hopeless thought! turn from her: Thought
repell’d, Resenting rallies, and wakes ev'ry woe. Snatch'd ere thy prime! and in thy bridal hour! 150 And when kind fortune, with thy lover, smil'd! And when high-flavour'd thy fresh op’ning joys! And when blind Man pronounc'd thy bliss complete! And on a foreign shore; where strangers wept! Strangers to thee; and, more surprising still, 155 Strangers to kindness, wept: Their eyes let fall Inhuman tears; strange tears; that trickled down From marble hearts! obdurate tenderness! A tenderness that call'd them more severe; In spite of Nature's soft persuasion, steeld; 160 While Nature melted, Superstition rav’d; That mourn'd the dead; and this deny'd a grave!
Their sighs incens’d; sighs foreign to the will! Their will the tyger suck’d, outrag'd the storm. For oh! the curst ungodliness of zeal!
165 While sinful flesh relented, spirit nurs’d In blind Infallibility's embrace, The sainted spirit petrify'd the breast; Deny'd the charity of dust, to spread O’er dust! a charity their dogs enjoy.
170 What could I do? what succour? what resource?