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The spirits, when they gayeft shine,
But when the sun, with noon-tide ray,
There, plung'd amid the lhadows brown,
The distant WOODMAN's echoing stroke;
While thus I mus'd beneath the shade,
SELIM; OR, THE SHEPHERD's MORAL.
Scene, a Valley near Bagdat.-Time, Morning. YE PERSIAN maids, attend your poet's lays, " And hear how shepherds pass their
golden days, « Not all are bleft whom fortune's hand sustains fr With wealth in courts, nor all that haunt the
« Well may your hearts believe the truths I tell! “ 'Tis VIRTUE makes the bliss, where'er we dwell.”
Thus selim fung, by sacred TRUTH inspir'd; Nor praise, but such as TRUTH bestowd, desir'd : Wife in himself, his meaning songs convey'd, Informing morals to the SHEPHERD MAID; Or taught the swains that surest bliss to find, What groves nor streams beftow--AVIRTUOUS MIND.
When sweet and blushing, like a virgin bride, The radiant morn resum'd her orient pride, When wanton gales along the vallies play, Breathe on each flow'r, and bear their sweets away : By TIGRIS' wand'ring ways he fate, and sung This useful lesson for the fair and young:
“ Ye PERSIAN dames,” he said, “ to you belong, “ Well may they please, the morals of my fong: “ No fairer maids, I trust, than you are found, “ Grac'd with soft arts, the peopled world around! “ The morn that lights you, to your loves fupplies “ Each gentler ray, delicious to your eyes : “ For you those fow’rs her fragrant hands bestow, “And yours the love that kings delight to know. “ Yet think not these, all beaut’ous as they are, “ The best kind blessings heav'n can grant the fair ! • Who trust alone in beauty's feeble ray, “ Boaft but the worth Bassora's pearls display! “ Drawn from the deep, we own their surface bright, “ But, dark within, they drink no lustrous light; " Such are the maids, and such the charms they boast; “ By sense unaided, or to VIRTUE loft. “ Self-fatt'ring sex! your hearts believe, in vain, “ That LOVE Thall blind, when once he fires the
“ Or, hope a lover by your faults to win,
“ Each tender passion man delights to find, “ The lov'd perfections of a female mind ! “ Blest were the days, when Wisdom held her
“ reign, “ And shepherds fought her on the silent plain; “ With Truth she wedded in the secret grove; “ Immortal TRUTH! and daughters bless’d their
“ love. “ O hafte, fair maids ! ye virtues come away! « Sweet peace and PLENTY lead you on your way! “ The balmy shrub for you shall love our shore,
By Ind excell’d, or ARABY, no more.
“ Loft to our fields, for fo the fates ordain, “ The dear deferters shall return again. • Come thou, whose thoughts as limpid springs are
" clear, « To lead the train, sweet MODESTY, appear: “ Here make thy court amidst our rural scene, “ And SHEPHERD-GIRLS Ihall own thee for their
queen. “ With thee be CHASTITY, of all afraid, “ Distrusting all, a wise suspicious maid, “ But MAN the most--not more the mountain Dog “ Holds the swift FALCON for her deadly foe. “ Cold is her breaft, like flow'rs that drink the dew, " A filken veil conceals her from the view; “ No wild defires amidst thy train be known, “ But FAITH, whose heart is fix'd on one alone :
Defponding meekness, with her down-cafteyes, “ And friendly Pity, full of tender sighs ; “ And love the last: by these your hearts approve, “ These are the VIRTUES that must lead to love.'
Thus sung the fwain ; and ancient legends say, The maids of BAGDAT verified the lay : Dear to the plains, the virtues came along; The SHEPHERDS lov’d, and selim bless’d his song.
ALAS! with swift and filent pace,
Impatient time rolls on the year; The seasons change, and nature's face
Now sweetly smiles, now frowns fevere. 'Twas SPRING, 'twas SUMMER, all was gay,
Now AUTUMN bends a cloudy brow; The flow'rs of Spring are swept away,,
And Summer fruits desert the bough. The verdant leaves that play'd on high,
And wanton'd on the western breeze, Now trod in duft neglected lie,
As BOREAs strips the bending trees.
As russet heaths, are wild and bare;
Nor HEALTH, nor PLEASURE, wanders there. No more, while through the midnight-shade,
Beneath the moon's pale orb I ftray, Such pleasing woes my heart invade,
As PROGNE pours the melting lay. From this capricious clime she foars,
O! would fome god but wings fupply! To where each morn the SPRING restores,
Companion of her flight I'd fly. Vain wish! me fate compels to bear,
The downward seasons' iron reign;
And liver on a blafted plain.
If glooms, and show'rs, and storms prevail;
And flow'rs, and fruits, and PHBus fail?