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The naked beggar shivering lies,
While whistling tempests round her rise,
And trembles lest the tottering wall
Should on her sleeping infants fall.
Now let us louder strike the lyre,
For my heart glows with martial fire ;
I feel, I feel, with sudden heat,
My big tumultuous bosom beat;
The trumpet's clangours pierce my ear,
A thousand widows' shrieks I hear:
'Give me another horse!' I'cry:
Lo, the base Gallic squadrons fly.
Whence is this rage ?-what spirit, say,
To battle hurries me away ?
'Tis Fancy, in her fiery car,
Transports me to the thickest war;
There whirls me o'er the hills of slain,
Where tumult and destruction reign;
Where mad with pain, the wounded steed
Tramples the dying and the dead;
Where giant Terror stalks around,
With sullen joys surveys the ground,
And, pointing to th' ensanguin'd field,
Shakes his dreadful Gorgon-shield.
O guide me from this horrid scene
To high-arch'd walks, and alleys green,
Which lovely Laura seeks, to shun
The fervours of the mid-day sun.
The pangs of absence, O remove!
For thou can'st please me near my love :
Can'st fold in visionary bliss,
And let me think I steal a kiss;
While her ruby lips dispense
Luscious nectar's quintessence!
When young-ey'd Spring profusely throws
From her green lap the pink and rose;
When the soft turtle of the dale
To Summer tells her tender tale;
When Autumn cooling caverns seeks,
And stains with wine his jolly cheeks;
When Winter, like poor pilgrim old,
Shakes his silver beard with cold;
At every season let my ear
Thy solemn whispers, Fancy, hear.
O warm, enthusiastic maid!
Without thy powerful, vital aid,
That breathes an energy divine,
That gives a soul to every line,
Ne'er may I strive with lips profane,
To utter an unhallow'd strain;
Nor dare to touch the sacred string,
Save when with smiles thou bid'st me sing.
O hear our prayer! O hither come,
From thy lamented Shakspeare's tomb,
On which thou lov'st to sit at eve,
Musing o'er thy darling's grave!
0 queen of numbers, once again
Animate some chosen swain,
Who, fill'd with inexhausted fire,
May boldly smite the sounding lyre!
Who, with some new, unequall'd song,
May rise above the rhyming throng;
O'er all our listening passions reign,
O'erwhelm our souls with joy and pain:
With terror shake, with pity move,
Rouse with revenge, or melt with love.
O deign t' attend his evening walk,
With him in groves and grottoes talk;
Teach him to scorn with frigid art,
Feebly to touch th' enraptur'd heart ;
Like lightning, let his mighty verse
The bosom's inmost foldings pierce;
With native beauties win applause,
Beyond cold critic's studied laws.
O let each Muse's fame increase,
O bid Britannia rival Greece!
HAIL meek-ey'd maiden, clad in sober gray,
Whose soft approach the weary woodman loves;
As homeward bent to kiss his prattling babes,
Jocund he whistles through the twilight groves.
When Phoebus sinks behind the gilded hills,
You lightly o'er the misty meadows walk;
The drooping daisies bathe in honey dews,
And nurse the nodding violet's slender stalk.
The panting dryads, that in day's fierce heat
To inmost bowers, and cooling caverns ran,
Return to trip in wanton ev'ning-dance;
Old Silvan too returns, and laughing Pan.
To the deep wood the clamorous rooks repair,
Light skims the swallow o'er the watery scene;
And from the sheep-cote, and fresh-furrow'd field,
Stout ploughmen meet, to wrestle on the green.
The swain, that artless sings on yonder rock,
His nibbling sheep, and lengthening shadow spies ;
Pleas'd with the cool, the calm, refreshful hour,
And with hoarse humming of unnumber'd flies.
Now every passion sleeps: desponding Love,
And pining Envy, ever-restless Pride;
An holy calm creeps o'er my peaceful soul,
Anger and mad Ambition's storms subside.
O modest Evening! oft let me appear
A wandering votary in thy pensive train ;
Listening to every wildly-warbling throat
That fills with farewell sweet thy darkening plain.
O GODDESS, on whose steps attend
Pleasure and laughter-loving Health,
White-mantled Peace, with olive-wand,
Young Joy, and diamond-sceptred Wealth,
Blithe Plenty, with her loaded horn,
With Science, bright-ey'd as the morn,
In Britain, which for ages past
Has been thy choicest darling care;
Who mad'st her wise, and strong, and fair,
May thy best blessings ever last!
For thee the pining prisoner mourns,
Depriv'd of food, of mirth, of light;
For thee pale slaves to galleys chain'd,
That ply tough oars from morn to night;
Thee the proud sultan's beauteous train,
By eunuchs guarded, weep in vain,
Tearing the roses from their locks;
And Guinea's captive kings lament,
By christian lords to labour sent,
Whipt like the dull, unfeeling ox.
Inspir'd by thee, deaf to fond Nature's cries,
Stern Brutus, when Rome's genius loudly call'd,
Gave her the matchless filial sacrifice,
Unable to behold her power enthrall'd!
And he of later age, but equal fame,
Dar'd stab the tyrant though he lov'd the friend;
How burnt the Spartan* with warm patriot flame,
In thy great cause his valorous life to end!
How burst Gustavus from the Swedish mine!
Like light from chaos dark, eternally to shine.
When Heav'n to all thy joys bestows,
And graves upon our hearts-be free !——
Shall coward man those joys resign,
And dare reverse this great decree?
Submit him to some idol king,
Some selfish, passion-guided thing,
Abhorring man, by man abhorr'd,
Around whose throne stands trembling Doubt,
Whose jealous eyes still roll about,
And murder with his reeking sword?
Where trampling Tyranny with Fate
And black Revenge gigantic goes;
Hark, how the dying infants shriek,
How hopeless age is sunk in woes!
Fly, mortals, from that faded land,
Though rivers roll o'er golden sand,
Though birds in shades of cassia sing,
Harvests and fruits spontaneous rise,
No storms disturb the smiling skies,
And each soft breeze rich odours bring.