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The Gods of Marriage lend their mutual Aid ;
And the warm Youth enjoys the lovely Maid.
ÆsAcus transformed into a Cormorant.
From the eleventh Book of
Ovid's METAMORPHOS E s.
Hese some old Man fees wantor in the Air,
And praises the unhappy constant Pair.
Then to his friend the long-neck'd Corm’rant shows,
The former Tale reviving others Woes :
That sable Bird, he cries, which cuts the Flood
With slender Legs, was once of Royal Blood;
His Ancestors from mighty Tros proceed,
The brave Laomedon, and Ganymede,
(Whose Beauty tempted Forve to steal the Boy)
And Priam, hapless Prince ! who fell with Troy :
Himself was Hector's Brother, and (had Fate
But giv'n this hopeful Youth a longer Date)
Perhaps had rival'd warlike Hektor's Worth,
Tho' on the Mother's Side of meaner Birth;
Fair Alyxothoé, a Country Maid,
Bare Æfacus by stealth in Ida's Shade.
He fled the noisy Town, and pompous Court,
Loy'd the lone Hills, and fimple rural Sport,
And seldom to the City would resort.
Yet he no rustick Clownishness profest,
Nor was soft Love a Stranger to his Breast :
The Youth had long the Nymph Hesperia woo'd,
Oft thro' the Thicket, or the Mead pursu'd ;
Her haply on her Father's Bank he spy'd,
While fearless the her filver Treffes dry'd ;
Away she fled : Not Stags with half fuch Speed, Before the prowling Wolf, scud o'er the Mead; Not Ducks, when they the safer Flood forsake, Pursu'd by Hawks, so swift regain the Lake. As fast he follow'din the hot Career ; Defire the Lover wing'd, the Virgin Fear. A Snake unseen now pierc'd her heedless Foot ; Quick thro’ the Veins the venom'd Juices shoot : She fell, and 'scap'd by Death his fierce Pursuit. Her lifeless Body, frighted, he embrac'd, And cry'd, Not this I dreaded, but thy Haste : O had my Love been less, or less thy Fear ! The Victory thus bought is far too dear. Accursed Snake! yet I more curs'd than he ! He gave the Wound ; the Cause was given by me. Yet none shall say, that unreveng'd you dy'd. He spoke ; then climb’d a Cliff's o'er-hanging Side, And, resolute, leap'd on the foaming Tide. Tethys receiv'd him gently on the Wave ; The Death he fought deny'd, and Feathers gave. Debarr’d the surest Remedy of Grief, And forc'd to live, he curft th' unask'd Relief, Then on his Airy Pinions upward Alies, And at a second Fall successless tries ; The downy Plume a Quick Descent denies. Enrag'd, he often dives beneath the Wave, And there in vain expects to find a Grave. His ceaseless Sorrow for th' unhappy Maid Meager'd his Look, and on his Spirits prey'd. Still near the founding Deep he lives ; his Name From frequent Diving and Emerging came.
The Story of Acis, POLYPH EM U S,
and G AL ATE A. From the thirteenth Book of Ovid's Metamorphoses.
CIS, the lovely Youth, whose Loss I mourn,
From Faunus, and the Nymph Symethis born, Was both his Parents Pleasure ; but to me Was all that Love could make a Lover be. The Gods our Minds in mutual Bands did join : I was his only Joy, and he was mine. Now fixteen Summers the sweet Youth had seen; And doubtful Down began to shade his Chin : When Polyphemus first disturb'd our Joy, And lov'd me fiercely, as I lov'd the Boy. Ask not which Passion in my Soul was high'r, My last Averfion, or my first Desire : Nor this the greater was, nor that the less ; Both were alike, for both were in Excess. Thee, Venus, thee, both Heav'n and Earth obey :: Immenfe thy Pow'r, and boundless is thy Sway. The Cyclops, who defy'd th' Ætherial Throne, And thought no Thunder louder than his own, The Terror of the Woods, and wilder far Than Wolves in Plains, or Bears in Forests are, Th'inhuman Hoft, who made his bloody Feafts On mangld Members of his butcher'd Guests, Yet felt the force of Love, and fierce Desire, And burnt for me, with unrelenting Fire : Forgot his Caverns, and his woolly Care, Allum'd the Softness of a Lover's Air ; And comb’d, with Teeth of Rakes, his rugged Hair. VOL. II.
Now with a crooked Scythe his Beard he fleeks,
And mows the Aubborn Stubble of his Cheeks :
Now in the Crystal Stream he looks, to try
His Simagres, and rowls his glaring Eye.
His Cruelty and Thirft of Blood are loit;
And Ships securely fail along the Coast.
The Prophet Telemus (arriv’d by chance
Where Atna's Summits to the Seas advance,
Who mark'd the Tracks of ev'ry Bird that flew,
And sure Presages from their Flying drew)
l'oretold the Cyclops, that Ulyses Hand
In his broad Eye shou'd thrust a flaming Brand.
The Giant, with a scornful Grin, reply'd,
Vain Augur, thou hast fallly prophesy'd ;
Already Love his flaming Brand has toft ;
Looking on two fair Eyes, my Sight I loft.
Thus, warn’d in vain, with stalking Pace he trode,
And stamp' the Margin of the briny Flood
With heavy Steps ; and, weary, fought agen
The cool Retirement of his gloomy Den.
A Promontory, sharp'ning by degrees,
Ends in a Wedge, and overlooks the Seas :
On either Side, below, the Water flows :
This airy Walk the Giant Lover chose ;
Here on the midst he fate ; his Flocks, unled,
Their Shepherd follow'd, and securely fed.
A Pine so burly, and of Length fo vaft,
That failing Ships requir'd it for a Mait,
He wielded for a Staff, his Steps to guide :
But laid it by, his Whistle while he try'd.
A hundred Reeds, of a prodigious Growth,
Scarce made a Pipe proportion'd to his Mouth :
Which when he gave it Wind, the Rocks around,
And wat'ry Plains, the dreadful Hiss resound.
Theard the Ruffian Shepherd rudely blow,
Where, in a hollow Cave, I sat below;
On Acis' Bosom I my Head reclin'd:
And still preserve the Poem in my Mind.
Oh lovely Galatea, whiter far
Than falling Snows, and rising Lilies are ;
More flow'ry than the Meads, as Crystal bright ;
Erect as Alders, and of equal Height :
More wanton than a Kid; more sleek thy Skin,
Than Orient Shells, that on the Shores are seen :
Than Apples fairer, when the Boughs they lade;
Pleasing, as Winter Suns, or Summer Shade :
More grateful to the Sight, than goodly Plains;
And softer to the Touch, than Down of Swans,
Or Curds new turn'd ; and sweeter to the Taste,
Than swelling Grapes, that to the Vintage haste :
More clear than Ice, or running Streams, that stray
Through Garden Plots, but ah ! more swift than they.
Yet, Galatea, harder to be broke
Than Bullocks, unreclaim'd to bear the Yoke :
And far more stubborn than the knotted Oak :
Like sliding Streams, impossible to hold ;
Like them, fallacious ; like their Fountains, cold:
More warping, than the Willow, to decline
My warm Embrace ; more brittle than the Vine ;
Immoveable, and fixt in thy Disdain :
Rough, as these Rocks, and of a harder Grain ;
More violent, than is the rifing Flood :
And the prais'd Peacock is not half so proud :
Fierce as the Fire, and sharp as Thistles are ;
And more outragious, than a Mother-Bear :
Deaf as the Billows to the Vows I make;
And more revengeful than a troden Snake :