Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

WILLIAM COLLINS.

And see, the fairy valleys fade;

Dun Night has veiled the solemn view! Yet once again, dear parted shade,

Meek Nature's child, again adieu!

The genial meads assigned to bless

Thy life, shall mourn thy early doom! Their hinds and shepherd girls shall dress

With simple hands thy rural tomb.

Long, long, thy stone and pointed clay

Shall melt the musing Briton's eyes : "O! vales, and wild woods," shall he say,

"In yonder grave your Druid lies!”

[graphic][merged small]

TOBIAS SMOLLETT.

1721-1771.

ODE TO LEVEN WATER.

ON Leven's banks, while free to rove
And tune the rural pipe to love;
I envied not the happiest swain
That ever trod the Arcadian plain.

Pure stream, in whose transparent wave
My youthful limbs I wont to lave;
No torrents stain thy limpid source;
No rocks impede thy dimpling course,
That sweetly warbles o'er its bed,
With white, round, polished pebbles spread;
While, lightly poised, the scaly brood
In myriads cleave thy crystal flood;
The springing trout in speckled pride;
The salmon, monarch of the tide;
The ruthless pike, intent on war;
The silver eel, and mottled par.
Devolving from thy parent lake,
A charming maze thy waters make,
By bowers of birch, and groves of pine,
And edges flowered with eglantine.

Still on thy banks so gaily green, May numerous herds and flocks be seen, And lasses chanting o'er the pail, And shepherds piping in the dale, And ancient faith that knows no guile, And industry embrowned with toil, And hearts resolved, and hands prepared, The blessings they enjoy to guard.

MARK AKENSIDE.

1721-1770.

ODE ON THE WINTER SOLSTICE.

The radiant ruler of the year

At length his wintry goal attains, Soon to reverse the long career,

And northward bend his steady reins. Now piercing half Potosi's height, Prone rush the fiery floods of light,

Ripening the mountain's silver stores, While in some cavern's horrid shade The panting Indian hides his head,

And oft the approach of eve implores.

But lo! on this deserted coast

How pale the sun, how thick the air! Mustering his storms, a sordid host!

Lo! Winter desolates the year. The fields resign their latest bloom, No more their breezes waft perfume,

No more the streams in music roll, But snows all dark or rains resound, And while great Nature mourns around Her griefs infect the human soul.

ODE ON THE WINTER SOLSTICE.

Hence the loud city's busy throngs

Urge the warm bowl and splendid fire; Harmonious dances, festive songs,

Against the spiteful heaven conspire. Meantime, perhaps with tender fears, Some village-dame the curfew hears,

While round the hearth her children play: At morn their father went abroad; The moon is sunk and deep the road;

She sighs, and wonders at his stay.

But thou, my Lyre! awake, arise,

And hail the sun's returning force;
Even now he climbs the northern skies,

And health and hope attend his course.
Then louder howl the aërial waste,
Be earth with keener cold embraced,

Yet gentler hours advance their wing;
And Fancy, mocking Winter's might,
With flowers, and dews, and streaming light,

Already decks the new-born Spring.

O fountain of the golden day!

Could mortal vows promote thy speed, How soon before thy vernal ray

Should each unkindly damp recede! How soon each hovering tempest fly, Whose stores for mischief arm the sky,

Prompt on our heads to burst amain, To rend the forest from the steep, Or thundering o'er the Baltic deep To 'whelm the merchant's hopes of gain!

MARK AKENSIDE.

But let not man's unequal views

Presume o'er Nature and her laws; 'Tis his with grateful joy to use

The indulgence of the Sovereign Cause; Secure that health and beauty springs Through this majestic frame of things

Beyond what he can reach to know, And that Heaven's all-subduing will, With good the progeny of ill,

Attempereth every state below.

seem

How pleasing wears the wintry night,

Spent with the old illustrious dead!
While, by the taper's trembling light,

I those awful scenes to tread
Where chiefs or legislators lie,
Whose triumphs move before my eye

In arms and antique pomp arrayed;
While now I taste the Ionian song,
Now bend to Plato's god-like tongue,

Resounding through the olive shade.

But should some cheerful equal friend

Bid leave the studious page a while, Let mirth on wisdom then attend,

And social ease on learned toil: Then, while at love's uncareful shrine Each dictates to the God of Wine

Her name whom all his hopes obey, What flattering dreams his bosom warm, While absence, heightening every charm,

Invokes the slow-returning May!

« ForrigeFortsæt »