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Although we ne'er again can trace,
In Granta's vale, the pedant's lore; Nor through the groves of Ida chase
Our raptured visions as before, Though Youth has flown on rosy pinion, And Manhood claims his stern dominion, Age will not every hope destroy, But yield some hours of sober joy.
As, when the ebbing flames are low,
The aid which once improved their light, And bade them burn with fiercer glow,
Now quenches all their sparks in night; Thus has it been with passion's fires,
As many a boy and girl remembers, While all the force of love expires,
Extinguish'd with the dying embers.
Yes, I will hope that Time's broad wing Will shed around some dews of spring: But if his scythe must sweep the flowers Which bloom among the fairy bowers, Where smiling Youth delights to dwell, And hearts with early rapture swell; If frowning Age, with cold control, Confines the current of the soul, Congeals the tear of Pity's eye, Or checks the sympathetic sigh, Or hears unmoved misfortune's groan, And bids me feel for self alone; Oh! may my bosom never learn
To soothe its wonted heedless flow,
But ne'er forget another's woe.
But now, dear LONG, 't is midnight's noon, And clouds obscure the watery moon, Whose beauties I shall not rehearse, Described in every stripling's verse; For why should I the path go o'er, Which every bard has trod before? Yet ere yon silver lamp of night
Has thrice perform'd her stated round, Has thrice retraced her path of light,
And chased away the gloom profound, I trust that we, my gentle friend, Shall see her rolling orbit wend Above the dear-loved peaceful scat, Which once contain'd our youth's retreat; And then with those our childhood knew We'll mingle in the festive crew; While many a tale of former day Shall wing the laughing hours away ; And all the flow of souls shall pour The sacred intellectual shower, Nor cease till Luna's waning horn Scarce glimmers through the mist of morn.
TO A LADY.
Though now on airy visions borne,
To you my soul is still the same. Oft has it been my fate to mourn,
And all my former joys are tame. But, hence! ye hours of sable hue!
Your frowns are gone, my sorrows o'er: By every bliss my childhood knew,
I'll think upon your shade no more. Thus, when the whirlwind's rage is past,
And caves their sullen roar enclose, We heed no more the wintry blast,
When lull'd by zephyr to repose.
On! had my fate been join'd with thine,
As once this pledge appear'd a token, These follies had not then been mine,
For then my peace had not been broken. To thee these early faults I owe,
To thee, the wise and old reproving: They know my sins, but do not know
'Twas thine to break the bonds of loving. For once my soul, like thine, was pure,
And all its rising fires could smother; But now thy vows no more endure,
Bestow'd by thee upon another;
Full often has my infant Muse
Attuned to love her languid lyre; But now, without a theme to choose,
The strains in stolen sighs expire. My youthful nymphs, alas! are flown;
Eis a wife, and a mother, And Carolina sighs alone,
And Mary's given to another; And Cora's eye, which roll'd on me,
Can now no more my love recall: In truth, dear LONG, 't was time to flee;
For Cora's eye will shine on all. And though the sun, with genial rays, His beams alike to all displays, And every lady's eye's a sun, These last should be confined to one. The soul's meridian don't become her, Whose sun displays a general summer! Thus faint is every former flame, And passion's self is now a name.
Perhaps his peace I could destroy,
And spoil the blisses that await him; Yet let my rival smile in joy,
For thy dear sake I cannot hate him.
Ah! since thy angel form is gone,
My heart no more can rest with any; But what it sought in thee alone,
Attempts, alas ! to find in many.
Then fare thee well, deceitful maid !
'T were vain and fruitless to regret thee; Nor hope nor memory yield their aid,
But pride may teach me to forget thee.
Yet all this giddy waste of years,
This tiresome round of palling pleasures; These varied loves, these matron's fears,
These thoughtless strains to passion's measuresIf thou wert mine, had all been hush'd :
This cheek, now pale from early riot, With passion's hectic ne'er had flushed,
But bloom'd in calm domestic quiet. Yes, once the rural scene was sweet,
For Nature seem'd to smile before thee; And once my breast abhorr'd deceit,
For then it beat but to adore thee. But now I seek for other joys:
To think would drive my soul to madness; In thoughtless throngs and empty noise
I conquer half my bosom's sadness. Yet, even in these a thought will steal
In spite of every vain endeavour,And fiends might pity what I feel,
To know that thou art lost for ever.
Give me again a faithful few,
In years and feelings still the same, And I will fly the midnight crew,
Where boist'rous joy is but a name. And woman, lovely woman! thou,
My hope, my comforter, my all! How cold must be my bosom now,
When e'en thy smiles begin to pall!
This busy scene of splendid woe,
Which virtue knows, or seems to know. Fain would I fly the haunts of men
I seek to shun, not hate mankind; My breast requires the sullen glen,
Whose gloom may suit a darken'd mind. Oh! that to me the wings were given
Which bear the turtle to her nest! Then would I cleave the vault of heaven,
To flee away, and be at rest.
I WOULD I WERE A CARELESS CHILD.
WHEN I ROVED A YOUNG HIGH
WHEN I roved a young Highlander o'er the dark heath,
[snow ! And climb'd thy steep summit, oh Morven of To gaze on the torrent that thunder'd beneath,
Or the mist of the tempest that gather'd below, Untutor'd by science, a stranger to fear,
And rude as the rocks where my infancy grew, No feeling, save one, to my bosom was dear;
Need I say, my sweet Mary,'t was centred in you?
I WOULD I were a careless child,
Still dwelling in my Highland cave, Or roaming through the dusky wild,
Or bounding o'er the dark blue wave; The cumbrous pomp of Saxon pride
Accords not with the freeborn soul, Which loves the mountain's craggy side,
And seeks the rocks where billows roll. Fortune! take back these cultured lands,
Take back this name of splendid sound! I hate the touch of servile hands,
I hate the slaves that cringe around. Place me among the rocks I love,
Which sound to Ocean's wildest roar; I ask but this-again to rove
Through scenes my youth hath known before. Few are my years, and yet I feel
The world was ne'er design'd for me : Ah! why do dark’ning shades conceal
The hour when man must cease to be?
A visionary scene of bliss :
Awake me to a world like this?
Had friends-my early friends are fled:
When all its former hopes are dead !
Dispel awhile the sense of ill;
The heart-the heart-is lonely still.
Whom rank or chance, whom wealth or power, Have made, though neither friends nor foes, Associates of the festive hour.
Yet it could not be love, for I knew not the name,
What passion can dwell the heart of a child? But still I perceive an emotion the same
As I felt, when a boy, on the crag-cover'd wild One image alone on my bosom impress'd,
I loved my bleak regions, nor panted for new; And few were my wants, for my wishes were bless'd;
(with you. And pure were my thoughts, for my soul was I arose with the dawn; with my dog as my guide,
From mountain to mountain I bounded along; I breasted the billows of Dee's rushing tide,
And heard at a distance the Highlander's song: At eve, on my heath-cover'd couch of repose,
No dreams, save of Mary, were spread to my And warm to the skies my devotions arose, (view;
For the first of my prayers was a blessing on you.
I left my bleak home, and my visions are gone;
The mountains are vanish'd, my youth is no As the last of my race, I must wither alone, (more;
And delight but in days I have witness'd before : Ah! splendour has raised but embitter'd my lot; More dear were the scenes which my infancy knew :
(not forgot; Though my hopes may have fail'd, yet they are
Though cold is my heart, still it lingers with you.
When I see some dark hill point its crest to the sky, For the present, we part,– I will hope not for ever;
I think of the rocks that o'ershadow Colbleen; For time and regret will restore you at last: When I see the soft blue of a love-speaking eye, To forget our dissension we both should endeavour,
I think of those eyes that endear'd the rude scene; I ask no atonement, but days like the past. When, haply, some light-waving locks I behold,
That faintly resemble my Mary's in hue,
TO THE EARL OF CLARE.
" Tu semper amoris inore Shall rise to my sight in their mantles of snow:
Sis memor, et cari comitis ne abscedat imago."
VAL. PLAU. But while these soar above me, unchanged as before,
FRIEND of my youth! when young we roved,
The bliss which wing'd those rosy hours
On mortals here below
The recollection seems alone you?
Dearer than all the joys I've known,
When distant far from you:
Though pain, 't is still a pleasing pain, TO GEORGE, EARL DELAWARR.
To trace those days and hours again,
And sigh again, adieu!
Those scenes to be enjoy'd no more,
The measure of our youth is full,
Life's evening dream is dark and dull,
And we may meet-ah! never!
(fires. Two streams which from one fountain rise, But glows not, like Love, with unquenchable Together join'd in vain;
How soon, diverging from their source, Full oft have we wander'd through Ida together,
Each, murmuring, seeks another course,
Till mingled in the main !
Though near, alas! distinctly flow,
Nor mingle as before: The wonted delights of our childhood retrace:
Now swift or slow, now black or clear, When pride steels the bosom, the heart is unbend
Till death's unfathom'd gulf appear, ing,
And both shall quit the shore. And what would be justice appears a disgrace.
Our souls, my friend! which once supplied However, dear George, for I still must esteem you;
One wish, nor breathed a thought beside, The few whom I love I can never upbraid: (you,
Now flow in different channels: The chance which has lost may in future redeem Disdaining humbler rural sports, Repentance will cancel the vow you have made.
"T is yours to mix in polish'd courts, I will not complain, and though chill'd is affection,
And shine in fashion's annals; With me no corroding resentment shall live:
'Tis mine to waste on love my time, My bosom is calm'd by the simple reflection,
Or vent my reveries in rhyme, That both may be wrong, and that both should
Without the aid of reason; forgive.
(ence, For sense and reason (critics know it) You knew that my soul, that my heart, my exist
Have quitted every amorous poet, If danger demanded,were wholly your own;
Nor left a thought to seize on. You knew me unalter'd by years or by distance,
Poor LITTLE! sweet, melodious bard! Devoted to love and to friendship alone.
Of late esteem'd it monstrous hard You knew,—but away with the vain retrospection! That he, who sang before all,The bond of affection no longer endures;
He who the lore of love expanded, Too late you may droop o'er the fond recollection, By dire reviewers should be branded
And sigh for the friend who was formerly yours. As void of wit and moral.
And though some trifiing share of praise,
To me were doubly dear;
To prove a prophet here.
LINES WRITTEN BENEATH AN ELM IN
THE CHURCH YARD OF HARROW.
And yet, while Beauty's praise is thine,
Repine not at thy lot.
and critics are forgot.
Bad rhymes, and those who write them;
I really will not fight them.
of such a young beginner:
A very harden'd sinner.
Accept, then, my concession.
My muse admires digression.
May regal smiles attend you!
If worth can recommend you.
From snares may saints preserve you;
But those who best deserve you!
May no delights decoy!
Your tears be tears of joy!
And virtues crown your brow;
Bestill as you are now
SPOT of my youth! whose hoary branches sigh,
When fate shall chill, at length, this fever'd And calm its cares and passions into rest, (breast, Oft have I thought,'t would soothe my dying hour,-If aught may soothe when life resigns her power,To know some humble grave, some narrow cell, Would hide my bosom where it loved to dwell; With this fond dream, mcthinks 't were sweet to
dieAnd here it linger'd, here my heart might lie; Here might I sleep where all my hopes arose, Scene of my youth, and couch of my repose; For ever stretch'd beneath this mantling shade, Press'd by the turf where once my childhood play'd; Wrapt by the soil that veils the spot I loved, Mix'd with the earth o'er which my footsteps
moyed; Blest by the tongues that charm'd my youthful ear, Mourn'd by the few my soul acknowledged here ; Deplored by those in early days allied, And unremember'd by the world beside.
Septemter 2, 1807.
WRITTEN UNDER THE IMPRESSION THAT THE
AUTHOR WOULD SOON DIE.
ADIEU, thou Hill! where early joy
Spread roses o'er my brow;
With knowledge to endow.
No more through Ida's paths we stray; Soon must I share the gloomy cell, Whose ever-slumbering inmates dwell
Unconscious of the day,
Ye spires of Granta's vale,
And Melancholy pale.
On Cama's verdant margin placed,
These scenes must be effaced. Adieu, ye mountains of the clime
Where grew my youthful years;
His giant summit rears.
With sons of pride to roam ?
To seek a Sotheron home!
Yet why to thee adieu?
Thy towers my tomb will view :
Forgets its wonted simple note
In dying strains may float.
While yet I linger here,
To retrospection dear,
At noontide heat, their pliant course;
Deprived of active force.
Still nearest to my breast?
The spot which passion blest;
To me in smiles display'd;
Thine image cannot fade.
Yet thrills my bosom's chords, How much thy friendship was above
Description's power of words!
Of Love the pure, the sacred gern;
Let Pride alone condemn!
No smile of Love's deceit
Can bid Life's pulses beat:
Or crown with fancied wreaths my head.
And mingle with the deed.
On him who gains thy praise,
Consumed in Glory's blaze;
My life a short and vulgar dream :
My fate is Lethe's stream.
Unheeded in the clay,
Where now my head must lay,