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We'll ask no long protracted treat,
Since winter-life is seldom sweet;
But when our feast is o'er,
Grateful from table we'll arise,
Nor grudge our sons with envious eyes
The relics of our store.
Thus, hand in hand, thro' life we'll go; Its chequer'd paths of joy and woe
With cautious steps we'll tread; Quit its vain scenes without a tear, Without a trouble or a fear,
And mingle with the dead.' While Conscience, like a faithful friend, Shall thro' the gloomy vale attend,
And cheer our dying breath; Shall, when all other comforts cease, Like a kind angel whisper peace,
And smooth the bed of death.
HEN Music, heavenly maid, was young,
While yet in early Greece she sung,
The Passions oft, to hear her shell,
Throng'd around her magic cell,
Exulting, trembling, raging, fainting,
Possest beyond the Muse's painting ;
By turns they felt the glowing mind
Disturb'd, delighted, rais'd, refin'd,
Till once, 'tis said, when all were fir'd,
Fill'd with fury, rapt, inspir'd,
From the supporting myrtles round
They snatch'd her instruments of sound;
And as they oft had heard apart
Sweet lessons of her forceful art,
Each, for Madness ruld the hour,
Would prove his own expressive power.
First Fear, his hand its skill to try,
Amid the chords bewilder'd laid,
And back recoild, he knew not why,
E'en at the sound himself had made. Next Anger rush'd, his eyes on fire,
In lightnings own'd his secret stings, In one rude clash he struck the lyre,
And swept with hurried hand the strings. With woeful measures, wan Despair,
Low sullen sounds, his grief beguild; A solemn, strange, and mingled air,
"Twas sad by fits, by starts 'twas wild,
THE PASSIONS. But thou, O Hope, with eyes so fair,
What was thy delighted measure?
Still it whisper'd promis'd pleasure,
And bade the lovely scenes at distance hail !
Still would her touch the strain prolong,
And from the rocks, the woods, the vale,
She call'd on Echo still thro' all the song ;
And where her sweetest theme she chose, ,
A soft responsive voice was heard at every close, And Hope enchanted smild, and wav'd her golden
And longer had she sung-but, with a frown,
Revenge impatient rose,
He threw his blood-stain'd sword in thunder down,
And, with a withering look,
The war-denouncing trumpet took,
And blew a blast so loud and dread,
Were ne'er prophetic sounds so full of woe.
And ever and anon he beat
The doubling drum with furious heat;
And tho' sometimes, cach dreary pause between,
Dejected Pity at his side
Her soul-subduing voice applied,
Yet still he kept his wild unalter'd mien;
While each strain'd ball of sight seem'd bursting from
Thy numbers, Jealousy, to nought were fix'd,
Sad proof of thy distressful state!
Of differing themes the veering song was mix'd,
And now it courted Love, now raving callid on
With eyes uprais'd, as one inspir'd,
Pale Melancholy sat retir'd,
And from her wild sequester'd seat,
In notes by distance inade more sweet,
Pour'd thro' the mellow horn her pensive soul:
And dashing soft from rocks around,
Bubbling runnels join'd the sound;
Thro' glades and glooms the mingled measure stole,
Or o'er some haunted streams with fond delay,
Round an holy calm diffusing,
Love of peace, and lonely musing,
In hollow murmurs died away,
But, o, how alter'd was its sprightlier tone!
When Cheerfulness, a nymph of healthiest hue,
Her bow across her shoulder flung,
Her buskins gemm'd with morning dew,
Blew an aspiring air, that dale and thicket rung,
The hunter's call to Faun and Dryad known;
The oak-crown'd sisters, and their chaste-ey'd queen,
Satyrs and sylvan boys, were seen
Peeping from forth their alleys green; Brown Exercise rejoic'd to hear,
And Sport leap'd up, and seiz'd his beechen spear, Last came Joy's ecstatic trial. He, with viny crown advancing,
First to the lively pipe his hand address'd,
But soon he saw the brisk-awakening viol,
Whose sweet entrancing voice he lov'd the best.
They would have thought, who heard the strain,
They saw in Tempe's vale her native maids,
Amidst the festal sounding shades,
To some unwearied minstrel dancing,
While, as his flying fingers kiss'd the strings,
Love fram'd with Mirth a gay fantastic round;
Loose were her tresses seen, her zone unbound,
And he, amidst his frolic play,
As if he would the charming air repay,
Shook thousand odors from his dewy wings.
O Music, sphere-descended maid,
Friend of pleasure, wisdom's aid,
Why, Goddess, why, to us deny'd,
Lay'st thou thy ancient lyre aside ?
As in that lov'd Athenian bower,
You learn'd an all-commanding power,
Thy mimic soul, O nymph endear'd,
Can well recal what then it heard.
Where is thy native simple heart,
Devote to virtue, fancy, art ?
Arise, as in that elder time,
Warm, energetic, chaste, sublime!
Thy wonders, in that godlike age,
Fill thy recording sister's page
Tis said, and I believe the tale,
Thy humblest reed could more prevail,
Had more of strength, diviner rage,
Than all which charms this laggard age,
Ev'n all at once together found
Cæcilia's mingled world of sound-
O, bid our vain endeavours cease,
Revive the just designs of Greece,
Return in all thy simple state,
Confirm the tales her sons relate!
OPPRESS'D with ef, oppress'd with care, A burden more than I can bear,
I sit me down and sigh:
O life ! thou art a galling load,
Along a rough, a weary road,
To wretches such as I !
Dim-backward as I cast my view,
What sickening scenes appear!
What sorrows yet may pierce me thro',
Too justly I may fear!
Still caring, despairing,
Must be my bitter doom ;
My woes here shall close ne'er,
But with the closing tomb !