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TEMPLE OF APOLLO.
Thou great inspirer of the poet's fong!
Hail, pow'r omnipotent! me 'uninvok'd
MAY. ETHEREAL daughter of the lufty spring,
And sweet Favonius, ever gentle MAY!
And with thy living colours gild my lay
With storms when winter blackens nature’s face ; When whirling winds the howling forest tear,
And shake the solid mountains from their bafe: Say, what refulgent chambers of the sky Veil thy beloved glories from the eye, For which the nations pine, and earth's fair children
die? Where Leda's twins, forth from their diamond tow'r,
Alternate o'er the night their beams divide;
From winter rage, thou choosest to abide.
(For ever spread, ye laurels, green and new!) The brother stars their gracious nurture thed,
And secret blessings of poetic dew.
Rains fragrance o’erthe world, and kindly thow'rs; But, in the eastern pride of beauty, MAY,
To gladden earth, fortakes her heav'nly bow'rs, Restoring nature from her palsy'd state. APRIL, retire ; ne longer nature wait; Soon may she issue from the morning's golden gate.
Come, bounteous MAY! in fulness of thy might,
Lead briskly on the mirth-infusing hours, All-recent from the bofom of delight,
With nectar nurtur'd; and involv'd in flow’rs : By spring's sweet blush; by nature's teeming womb; By Hebe’s dimply smile; by Flora's bloom ; By Venus' self (for Venus' self demands thee) come! By the warm fighs, in dewy even-tide,
Of melting maidens in the woodbine groves, To pity loosen'd, foften'd down from pride;
By billing turtles, and by cooing doves; By the youth's plainings stealing on the air, (For youths will plain, though yielding be the fair) Hither to bless the maidens and the youths repair. With dew bespangled, by the hawthorn buds,
With freshness breathing, by the daily'd plains, By the mix'd music of the warbling woods,
And jovial roundelays of nymphs and swains ; In thy full energy, and rich array, Delight of earth and heaven! O blessed MAY! From heav'n defcend to earth; on earth vouchsafe
to stay. She comes !-a filken camus, em'ral'd-green,
Gracefully loose, adown her shoulders flows, (Fit to enfold the limbs of Paphos' Queen)
And with the labours of the needle glows, Purfled by nature's hạnd! the amorous air And mulky western breezes fast repair, Her mantle proud to swell, and wanton with her
hair. Her hair (but rather threads of light it seems)
With the gay honours of the spring entwin'd, Copious, unbound, in nectar'd ringlets streams,
Floats glitt’ring on the sun, and scents the wind, Love-fick with odours !-Now to order roll’d, It melts upon her bofom's dainty mould, Or, curling round her waste, disparts its wavy gold. Young circling roses, blushing round them throw
The sweet abundance of their purple rays, And lilies, dipp'd in fragrance, freshly blow,
With blended beauties in her anges face. The humid radiance beaming from her eyes The air and seas illumes, the earth and skies; And open, when the fmiles, the sweets of Paradise. On Zephyr's wing the laughing goddess view,
Dillilling balm. She cleaves the buxom air, Attended by the silver-footed dew,
The ravages of winter to repair. She gives her naked bosom to the gales, Her naked botom down the ether fails; Her bosom breathes delight; her breath the spring
exhales. All as the phænix in Arabian skies,
New-burnish'd from his spicy funeral pyres, At large, in roseal undulation flies;
Ilis plumage dazzles and the gazer tires : Around their king the plumy nations wait, Attend his triumph, and augment his state : He tow'ring, claps his wings, and wins th' ethereal
height. So round this phænix of the gaudy year,
A thousand, nay, ten thousand Iports and smiles, Fluttering in gold, along the hemisphere,
lier praises chaunt: her praites glad the illes. Conscious of her approach (to deck her bow'rs) Earth from her fruitful lap and botom pours A waste of springing tweets, and voluntary flow'rs. Narcissus fair, in snowy velvet gown'd;
Ah foolish! full to love the fountain-brim : Sweet hyacinth, by Phæbus ersi bemoan'd;
And tulip, flaring in her powder'd trim. Whate’er, armida, in thy gardens blew; Whate'er the sun inhales, or lips the dew; } hate’er compose the chaplet on IANTHES' brow
He who undaz'd can wander o'er her face,
May gaze upon the solar blaze at noon!
Peculiar! fave, IANTHE, thine alone,
The leffer lamps of night in sheen excel;
Above all other months, doth bear the bell;
To fire his fancy and enlarge bis foul :
And grows immortal as he drains the bowl.
Roll to harmonious measures, active all ! Earth, water, air, and fire, with feeling glee,
Exult to celebrate thy festival. Fire glows intenser; fofter blows the air, More smooth the waters flow; earth smiles more
fair : Earth, water, air, and fire, thy glad’ning impulfe
share. What boundless tides of splendour o'er the skies,
O'erflowing brightness i ftream their golden rays! Heav’n’s azure kindles with the varying dies,
Reflects the glory, and returns the blaze.