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Where is the dread prophetic heat, With which my bosom wont to beat? Where all the bright mysterious dreams
Of haunted groves and tuneful streams, That woo'd my genius to divinest themes ?
Say, goddess, can the festal board,
The soul of Milton shall I gain,
O powerful strain, O sacred soul!
Made all her blissful treasures known,
No, foolish youth-To virtuous fame
His songs, his words, his looks beware, Nor join his votaries, the young and fair.
By thought, by dangers, and by toils,
of ease adorn :
By love unmanly fears are taught; And love's reward with gaudy sloth is bought.
Yet thou hast read in tuneful lays,
Each finer sense, each comelier art,
If then, from love's deceit secure,
The grove, the lawn, the soften'd scene,
Attend, while that harmonious tongue
O Delia, win my thoughts to thine;
Yet, conscious of the dangerous charm,
But thou, my friend--I hear thy sighs :
Alas, I read thy downcast eyes; And thy tongue fauters; and thy colour flies.
So soon again to meet the fair?
- yet, unlucky youth, beware,
Thy passion veils its inward shame; Friendship, the treacherous fuel of thy flame!
Once I remember, new to love,
And pitying view the love-sick band,
Thus frequent pass'd the cloudless day,
Each night with unknown cares possess’d, Dash'd my coy slumbers, or my dreams distress’d.
Fool that I was!- And now, even now
TO-NIGHT retir'd the
queen of heaven With young Endymion strays: And now to Hesper is it given A while to rule the vacant sky, Till she shall to her lamp supply
A stream of lighter rays.
O Hesper! while the starry throng
With awe thy paths surrounds, Oh listen to my suppliant song, If haply now the vocal sphere Can suffer thy delighted ear
To stoop to mortal sounds.
So may the bridegroom's genial strain!
Thee still invoke to shine : So may the bride's unmarried train To Hymen chaunt their flattering vow, Still that his lucky torch may glow
With lustre pure as thine.
Far other vows must I prefer
To thy indulgent power, Alas! but now I paid my tear On fair Olympia's virgin tomb: And lo, from thence, in quest I roam
Of Philomela's bower,
Propitious send thy golden ray,
Thou purest light above :
May sooth afficted love.
To them, by many a grateful song
In happier seasons vow'd,
Beneath yon copses stood,
Nor seldom where the beechen boughs
That roofiess tower invade,
She fled the solemn solemn shade.
But hark; I hear her liquid tone,
Now Hesper, guide my feet Down the red marl with moss o'ergrown, Through yon wild thicket next the plain, Whose hawthorns choke the winding lane
Which leads to her retreat.
See the green space ; on either hand
Enlarg'd it spreads around:
Enclos'd in woods profound.