Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

Yet fain the mind its anguish would forego— Spread then, historic Muse, thy pictured scroll; Bid thy great scenes in all their splendour glow, And swell to thought sublime th' exalted soul.

What mingling pomps rush boundless on the gaze! What gallant navies ride the heaving deep' What glittering towns their cloud wrapt turrets raise' What bulwarks frown horrific o'er the steep!

Bristling with spears, and bright with burnish'd shields, Th/ embattled legions stretch their long array; Discord's red torch, as fierce she scours the fields, With bloody tincture stains the face of day.

And now the hosts in silence wait the sign. How keen their looks whom Liberty inspires! Quick as the goddess darts along the line, Each breast impatient burns with noble fires.

Her form how graceful! In her lofty mien The smiles of Love stern Wisdom's frown control j Her fearless eye, determined though serene, Speaks the great purpose, and th' unconqucred soul.

Mark, where Ambition leads the adverse band, Each feature fierce and haggard, as with pain! With menace loud he cries, while from his hand He vainly strives to wipe the crimson stain.

Lo, at his call, impetuous as the storms,
Headlong to deeds of death the hosts are driven;
Hatred to madness wrought each face deforms,
Mounts the black whirlwind, and involves the heaven

Now, Virtue, now thy powerful succour lend,
Shield them for Liberty who dare to die—
Ab Liberty! will none thy cause befriend?
Are these thy sons, thy generous sons, that fly?
K

Not Virtue's setf, when Heaven its aid denies,
Can brace the loosen'd nerves, or warm the heart;
Not Virtue's self can still the burst of sighs,
When festers in the soul Misfortune's dart.

See, where by heaven-bred terror all dismay'd
The scattering legions pour along the plain.
Ambition's car, with bloody spoils array'd
Hews its broad way, as Vengeance guides the rem.

But who is he, that by yon lonely brook
With woods o'erhung and precipices rude,*
Abandon'd lies, and with undaunted look
Sees streaming from his breast the purple flood?

Ah, Brutus! ever thine be Virtue's tear!
Lo, his dim eyes to Liberty he turns,
As scarce supported on her broken spear
O'er her expiring son the goddess mourns.

Loose to the wind her azure mantle flies,
From her dishevell'd locks she rends the plume;
No lustre lightens in her weeping eyes,
And on her tear-stain'd cheek no roses bloom.

Meanwhile the world, Ambition, owns thy sway,
Fame's loudest trumpet labours in thy praise;
For thee the Muse awakes her sweetest lay,
And flattery bids for thee her altars blaze.

Nor in life's lofty bustling sphere alone,
The sphere where monarchs and where heroes toil,
Sink Virtue's sons beneath Misfortune's frown,
While Guilt's thrill'd bosom leaps at Pleasure's simile;

Full oft, where Solitude and Silence dwell Far, far remote amid the lowly pHin, Resounds the voice of Woe from Virtue's cell. Such is man's doom, and Pity weeps in vain.

• Such, according to Plutaf ch, was the scene of Brutus'a dcitfc.

Still grief recoils—How vainly have I strove
Thy power, O Melancholy, to withstand!
Tired I submit; but yet, O yet remove,
Or ease the pressure of thy heavy hand.

Yet for awhile let the bewilder'd soul
Find in .society relief from woe;
O yield awhile to Friendship's soft control;
Some respite, Friendship, wilt thou not bestow?

Com e, then, Philander! for thy lofty mind
Looks down from far on all that charms the great:
For thou canst bear, unshaken and resign'd,
The brightest smiles, the blackest frowns of Fate:

Come thou., whose love unlimited, sincere,
Nor faction cools, nor injury destroys;
Who lend'st to Misery's moans a pitying ear,
And feel'st with ecstasy another's joys:

Who know'st man's frailty; with a favouring eye,
And melting heart, behold'st a brother's fall j
Who, unenslaved by custom's narrow tie,
With manly freedom follow'st reason's call.

And bring thy Delia, softly smiling fair, Whose spotless soul no sordid thoughts deform; Her accents mild would still each throbbing care, And harmonize the thunder of the storm:

Though blest with wisdom and with wit refined , She courts not homage, nor desires to shine t In her each sentiment sublime is join'd To female sweetness, and a form divine.

Come, and dispel the deep-surrounding shade: Let chasten'd mirth the social hours employ j O catch the swift wing'd hour before 'tis fled, On swiftest pinion flies the hour of joy.

Even while the careless disencumber'd soul
Dissolving sinks to joy's oblivious dream,
Even then to time's tremendous verge we roH
With haste impetuous down life's surgy stream.

Can gaiety the vanished years Testore,
Or on the withering limbs fresh beauty shed,
Or soothe the sad inevitable hour,
Or cheer the dark dark mansions of the dead?

Still sound the solemn knell in fancy's ear,
That call'd Cleora to the silent tomb;
To her how jocund roll'd the sprightly year!
How shone the nymph in beauty's brightest bloom!

Ah! Beauty's bloom avails not in the grave, Youth's lofty mien, nor age's awful grace; Moulder unknown the monarch and the slave, Whelm'd in th' enormous wreck of human race.

The thought fix'd portraiture, the breathing bust, The arch with proud memorials array'd, The long-lived pyramid shall sink in dust, To dumb oblivion's ever-desert shade.

Fancy from comfort wanders still astray. Ah, Melancholy! how I feel thy power! Long have I labour'd to elude thy sway! But 'tis enough, for I resist no more.

The traveller thus, that o'er the midnight waste Through many a lonesome path is doom'd to roam* 'Wilder'd and weary sits him down at last; For long the night, and distant far his home.

EPITAPH
ON ••••• ••«#•• «#|

ESCAPED the gloom of mortal life, a soul
Here leaves its mouldering tenement of clay,
Safe, where no cares their whelming billows roll,
No doubts bewilder, and no hopes betray.

Like thee, I once have stemm'd the sea of life;
Like thee, have languished after empty joys;
Like thee, have labour'd in the stormy strife;
Been grieved for trifles, and amused with toys.

Yet for awhile 'gainst Passion's threatful blast Let steady Reason urge the struggling oar; Shot through the dreary gloom the morn at last Gives to thy longing eye the blissful shore.

Forget my frailties, thou art also frail; Forgive my lapses, for thyself may'st fall; Nor read unmoved my artless tender tale, I was a inend, 9 r«an, to thee, to all

t Junes Be»tUe: Intended for faimitlf*

« AnteriorContinuar »