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Hail, bounteous May, that dost inspire Mirth, and youth, and warm desire; Woods and groves are of thy dressing, Hill and dale doth boast thy blessing. Thus we salute thee with our early song, And welcome thee, and wish thee long.
ANNO ÆTATIS XIX.
At a Vacation Exercise in the College, part Latin, parl English
The Latin speeches ended, the English thus began : Hail, native language, that by sinews weak, Didst move my first-endeavouring tongue to speak, And madest imperfect words, with childish trips, Half unpronounced, slide through my infant lips, Driving dumb silence from the portal door, Where he had mutely sat two years before : Here I salute thee, and thy pardon ask, That now I use thee in my latter task: Small loss it is that thence can come unto thee, I know my tongue but little grace can do thee: Thou need'st not be ambitious to be first, Believe me, I have thither pack'd the worst : And, if it happen as I did forecast, The daintiest dishes shall be served up last, I pray thee then deny me not thy aid, For this same small neglect that I have made: But haste thee straight to do me once a pleasure, And from thy wardrobe bring thy chiefest treasure Not those new-fangled toys and trimming slig?it Which take our late fantastics with delight; But cull those richest robes, and gayest attire, Which deepest spirits and choicest wits desire
I have some naked thoughts that rove about,
fire, And misty regions of wide air next under, And hills of snow, and lofts of piled thunder, May tell at length how green-eyed Neptune raves In heaven's defiance mustering all his waves; Then sing of secret things that came to pass When beldame Nature in her cradle was; And last of kings, and queens, and heroes old, Such as the wise Demodocus once told In solemn songs at king Alcinous' feast, While sad Ulysses' soul, and all the rest, Are held, with his melodious harmony, In willing chains and sweet captivity.
But fie, my wandering muse, how dost thou stray.
Then Ens is represented as father of the Predicaments, his ten
sons ; whereof the eldest stood for Substance, with his canons,
which Ens, thus speaking, explains : Good luck befriend thee, son; for, at thy birth, The faëry ladies danced upon the hearth; Thy drowsy nurse hath sworn she did them spy Come tripping to the room where thou didst lie, And, sweetly singing round about thy bed, Strew all their blessings on thy sleeping head. She heard them give thee this, that thou shouldst
still From eyes of mortals walk invisible : Yet there is something that doth force my fear; For once it was my dismal hap to hear A sibyl old, bow-bent with crooked age, That far events full wisely could presage, And, in time's long and dark prosp 'ctive glass, Foresaw what future days should bring to pass; “Your son,” said she, "(nor can you it prevent,) Shall subject be to many an accident. O’er all his brethren he shall reign as king, Yet every one shall make him underling; And those, that cannot live from himn asunder, Ungratefully shall strive to keep him under: