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And with my partners sought a neighb'ring vate,
What time the rural nymphs repair’d to pay
Their floral honours to the queen of May.
At first their various charms my choice confuse;
For what is choice where each is fit to chule?
But Love or Fate at length my bofom fir'd
With a bright maid in myrtle green attird;
A shepherdess she was, and on the lawn
Sat to the setting fun from dewy dawn;
Yer fairer than the nymphs who guard the streams,
In pearly caves, and thun the burning beams.
I whisper love; she flies; I still pursue,
To press her to the joy she never knew;
And while I speak, the virgin blushes spread
Her dainask beauty with a warmer red.
I vow'd unshaken faith, invoking loud
Venus t'attest the folemn faith I vow'd;
Invoking all the radiant lights above,
(But most the lamp that lights the realın of Love)
No more to guide me with their friendly rays,
But leave my ship to perish on the feas,
If the dear charmer ever chanc'd to find
My heart disloyal, or my look unkind.
A maid will liften when a lover swears,
And think his faith more real than her fears.
The careful shepherders fecur'd her flocks
From the devouring wolf and wily fox,
Yet fell herself an undefended prey
To one more cruel and more false than they.
The nuptial joys we there consummate foon,
Safe in the friendly silence of the moon;
And till the birds proclaim'd the dawning day,
Beneath a shade of flow'rs in transport lay.
I rose, and, softly sighing, view'd her o'er;
How chang'd, I thought, from what she was befo-
Yet still repeated (eager to be gone)
My former pledges with a fainter tone,
And promis'd quick return. The pensive fair
Went with reluctance to her fleecy care,
While I refolv'd to quit my native shore,
Never to see the late - loy'd Malea more.
Fresh on the waves the morning - breezes
To bear my vessel and my vows away:
With prosp'rous fpeed I fly before the wind,
And leave the length of Lesbos all behind.
Far distant from my Malean love at last
(Secure with twenty leagues between us cast)
I furl my fails, and on the Sigrian fhore,
Adopting that my seat, the vessel moor;
Sigrium, from whose sërial height I spy
The distant fields that bore imperial Troy,
Which, still accurs'd for Helen's broken voir,
Produce thin crops, ungrateful to the plow.
I gaze, revolving in my guilty mind,
What future vengeance will my falsehood find,
When kings and empires no forgiveness gain'd
For violated rites and faith profan'd!
Sea-faring on that coast I led my life,
A commoner of love, without a wife;
Content with casual joys; and vainly thought
Venus forgave the perjur'd, or forgot.
And now my sixtieth year began to shed
An undistinguish'd winter on my head,
When, bent for Tenedos, a country dame
(I thought her such) for speedy passage caine:
A pally shook her limbs; a fhrivelld skin
But ill conceal'd the skeleton within;
A monument of Time: with equal grace
Her garb had poverty to suit her face.
Extorting first my price, I spread my fail,
And steer my course before a merry gale,
Which haply turn'd her tatter'd veil aside,
When in her lap a golden vase I spy'd,
Around fo rich with orient gems enchasid,
A flamy lustre o'er the gold they cast.
Senton. With eager eyes I view the tempting bane,
And, failing now secure amid the main,
With felon force I seize the seeming crone,
To plunge her in, and make the prize my own.
To Venus straight she chang'd, divine to view!
The laughing Loves around their mother flew,
Who, circled with a pomp of Graces, stood,
Such, as she first ascended from the flood.
I bow'd, ador'd -- With terror in her voice,
„Thy violence (she cry'd) shall win the prize:
,, Renew thy wrinkled form; be young and fair;
,,But soon thy heart shall own the purchase dear.
„Nor is revenge forgot, tho' long delay'd,
„For vows attested in the Malean shades
Wrapt in a purple cloud she cut the skies,
And looking down still threaten'd with her eyes.
My fear at length dispelld (the fight of gold
Can make an avaricious coward bold)
I leiz'd the glittring spoil, in hope to find
A cale so rich with riches treasures lin'd.
The lid remov'd, the vacant space inclos'd
An essence with celestial art compos'd,
Which cures old age, and makes the shrivella
Blushy as Bacchus, and as Hebe sleek;
Strength to the nerves the neétar'd sweets supply,
And eagle-radiance to the faded eye:
Nor sharp diseale, nor want, nor age, have pow'r
T' invade that vigour, and that bloom deflow'r.
Th' effect I found; for, when return to
Some drops I sprinkled on my sun - burnt hand;
Where'er they fell, surprising to the fight
The freckled brown imbib'd a milky white:
So look the panther's varied fides, and so
The pheasant's wing, bedropp'd with flakes of
I wet the whole, the same celestial hue
Tinctur'd the whole, meanderd o'er with blue.
Śtruck with amazement here, I pause a space;
Next with the liquid sweets anoint my face ;
My neck and hoary locks I then bedew,
And in the '
waves my changing visage view;
Straight with my charms the wat’ry mirror glows,
Thole fatal charms that ruin'd your repose!
Still doubting, up I start, and fear to find
Some young Adonis gazing o'er behind.
My waist, and all iny limbs, I last besmear'd,
And soon a glosty youth o'er all appear'd.
Long wrapt in filent wonder, on the strand
I like a statue of Apollo stand:
Like his, with oval grace my front is spread,
Like his, my lips and cheeks are rosy red;
Like his, my limbs are shapd; in ev'ry part
So just, they inock the sculptor's mimic art;
And golden curls adown my shoulders flow;
Nor wants there ought except the lyre and bow.
Restor'd to youth, triumphant I repair
To court, to captivate th' admiring fair:
My faultlefs form the Lesbian nymphs adore,
Avow their flames, weep, figh, protest, implore;
There feel I first the
All Spring without, and winter all within!
From me the sense of gay defire is filed,
And all their charms are cordials to the dead.
Or if within my breast there chance to rise
The sweet remembrance of the genial joys,
Sudden it leaves me, like a transient glean,
That gilds the surface of a freezing stream.
Mean- time with various pangs my heart is
Hate strives with pity, shame contends with scorn.
Confus'd with grief, I quit the court, to range
In lavage wilds, and curse my penal change.
The phoenix so, restor'd with rich perfumes,
Displays the florid pride of all his plumes,
Then flies to live amid th’ Arabian grove,
In barren solitude, a foe to love.
Fenton. But in the calm recess of woods and plains
The viper Envy revella in my veins,
And ever when the male carels'd his bride,
Sighing with rage, I turn'd my eyes aside.
In river, niead, and grove, such objects role,
T'avenge the goddess and awake my woes;
Fish, beast, and bird, in river, mead, and grove,
Bless'd and rever'd the blissful pow'rs of Love.
What can I do for ease? 0! whither Ay?
Resume my fatal form, ye Gods! I cry;
Wither this beauteous bloom, lo tempting gay,
And let me live transform'd to weak and gray!
By change of clime my sorrow's to beguile,
I leave for Sicily my native isle;
Vain hope! for who can leave himself behind,
And live a thoughtless exile from the mind?
Arriving there, amidst a flow'ry plain,
That join'd the shore, I view'd a virgin-train,
Who in soft ditties sung of Acis' fame,
And strew'd with annual wreaths his amber stream.
Me foon they faw, and, fir'd with pious joy,
,,He comes, the godlike Acis comes!" they cry:
Fair pride of Neptune's court! indulge our pray's,
9 Approach, you've now no Polypheme to fear.
„Accept our rites: to bind thy brow we bring
„These earliest honours of the rosy Spring:
So may thy Galatea still be kind,
„As we thy smiling pow'r propitious find!
„But if – (they read their error in my blush,
For shame, and rage, and scorn, alternate flush)
But if of earthly race, yet kinder prove;
Refuse all other rites but those of Love.“
That hated word new - stabs my rankling wound;
Like a struck deer I startle at the sound;
Thence to the woods with furious speed repair,
And leave them all abandon'd to despair.
So, frighted by the fwains, to reach the brake,
Glides froin a funny bank the glitt'ring (nåke;