« AnteriorContinuar »
WHOE'ER, with curious eye, has rang'd
Repentant soon, th' offending race
To give them back the human face,
Jove, sooth'd at length, his ear inclin'd,
Scarce had the Thund'rer giv'n the nod
The hair in curls luxuriant now
Around their temples spread; The tail that whilom hung below, Now dangled from the head.
The head remains unchang'd within,
Thus half transform'd and half the same,
Man with contempt the brute survey'd,
Ingenuas didicisse fideliter artes
To you, whose groves protect the feather'd quires, Who lend their artless notes a willing ear,
Το you, whom pity moves, and taste inspires,
'Twas gentle spring, when all the tuneful race,
By nature taught, in nuptial leagues combine; A Goldfinch joy'd to meet the warm embrace,
And hearts and fortunes with her mate to join.
Through nature's spacious walks at large they rang'd,
'Till on a day to weighty cares resign'd,
All in a garden, on a currant bush,
With wond'rous art they built their waving seat: In the next orchard liv'd a friendly thrush, Nor distant far, a woodlark's soft retreat.
Here blest with ease, and in each other blest,
And now what transport glow'd in either's eye!
And future sonnets in the chirping brood!
But ah! what earthly happiness can last?
How does the fairest purpose often fail! A truant school-boy's wantonness could blast Their rising hopes, and leave them both to wail.
The most ungentle of his tribe was he;
No gen'rous precept ever touch'd his heart:
On barb'rous plunder bent, with savage eye
But how shall I relate in numbers rude
So wrapt in grief some heart-struck matron stands,
While horrid flames surround her children's room! On heav'n she calls, and wrings her trembling hands; Constrain'd to see, but not prevent their doom.
"O grief of griefs!" with shrieking voice she cry'd, "What sight is this that I have liv'd to see? "O that I had a maiden goldfinch dy'd,
"From love's false joys and bitter sorrows free!.
"Was it for this, alas! with weary bill,
"Was it for this, I pois'd th' unwieldy straw? "For this I pick'd the moss from yonder hill? "Nor shunn'd the pond'rous chat along to draw?
"Was it for this, I cull'd the wool with care;
"And strove with all my skill our work to crown? "For this, with pain I bent the stubborn hair;
"And lin'd our cradle with the thistle's down?
"Was it for this, my freedom I resign'd;
"And ceas'd to rove from beauteous plain to plain? "For this, I sat at home whole days confin'd,
"And bore the scorching heat and pealing rain?
"Was it for this, my watchful eyes grew dim?
"The crimson roses on my cheek turn'd pale? · "Pale is my golden plumage, once so trim; "And all my wonted spirits 'gin to fail.
* Chrysomitris it seems, is the name for a goldfinch,
"O plunderer vile! O more than weezel fell!
"More treach'rous than the cat with prudish face! "More fierce than kites with whom the furies dwell! "More pilf'ring than the cuckow's prowling race!
"For thee may plum or goosb'ry never grow,
Thus sang the mournful bird her piteous tale,
The piteous tale her mournful mate return'd: Then side by side they sought the distant vale, And there in silent sadness inly mourn'd.
An ODE on the HEAVENLY BODIES.
THE spacious firmament on high,
Soon as the evening shades prevail,
What though, in solemn silence, all
An HYMN on GRATITUDE.
WHEN all thy mercies, O my God,
O how shall words, with equal warmth,
That glows within my ravish'd heart?
Thy providence my life sustain'd,
To all my weak complaints and cries
Ere yet my feeble thoughts had learnt
Unnumber'd comforts to my soul
From whom those comforts flow'd.
When in the slipp'ry paths of youth
Through hidden dangers, toils, and deaths,
When worn with sickness, oft hast thou
And when in sins and sorrows sunk,