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To the Memory of Mrs. Tempest.
THYRSIS! the music of that murmuring spring
Is not so mournful as the strains you sing;
Nor rivers winding through the vales below,
So sweetly warble, or so smoothly flow.
Now sleeping flocks on their soft fleeces lie,
The moon, serene in glory, mounts the sky;
While silent birds forget their tuneful lays,
O sing of Daphne's fate, and Daphne's praise!
Thyr. Behold thegroves that shine with silver frost,
Their beauty wither'd, and their verdure lost.
Here shall I try the sweet Alexis' strain,
That call'd the listening Dryads to the plain?
Thames heard the numbers, as he flow'd along,
And bade his willows learn the moving song.
Lyc. So may kind rains their vital moisture yield,
And swell the future harvest of the field.
Begin this charge the dying Daphne gave,
And said, “Ye shepherds, sing around my grave!"
Sing, while beside the shaded tomb I mourn,
And with fresh bays her rural shrine adorn.
Thyr. Ye gentle Muses, leave your crystal spring;
Let nymphs and silvans cypress-garlands bring:
Ye weeping loves, the stream with myrtles hide,
And break your bows, as when Adonis died;
And with your golden darts, now useless grown,
Inscribe a verse on this relenting stone:
"Let nature change, let Heav'n and earth deplore, Fair Daphne's dead, and love is now no more!" 'Tis done; and nature's various charms decay, See gloomy clouds obscure the cheerful day! Now hung with pearls the dropping trees appear, Their faded honours scatter'd on her bier.
See, where on earth the flowery glories lie,
With her they flourish'd, and with her they die.
Ah! what avail the beauties nature wore?
Fair Daphne's dead, and beauty is no more!
For her the flocks refuse their verdant food,
The thirsty heifers shun the gliding flood;
The silver swans her hapless fate bemoan,
In notes more sad than when they sing their own:
In hollow caves sweet Echo silent lies,
Silent, or only to her name replies;
Her name with pleasure once she taught the shore;
Now Daphne's dead, and pleasure is no more!
No grateful dews descend from evening skies,
Nor morning odours from the flowers arise;
No rich perfumes refresh the fruitful field,
Nor fragrant herbs the native incense yield.
The balmy zephyrs, silent since her death,
Lament the ceasing of a sweeter breath;
The' industrious bees neglect their golden store :
Fair Daphne's dead, and sweetness is no more!
No more the mounting larks, while Daphne sings,
Shall, listening in mid air, suspend their wings;
No more the birds shall imitate her lays,
Or, hush'd with wonder, hearken from the sprays;
No more the streams their murmurs shall forbear,
A sweeter music than their own to hear;
But tell the reeds, and tell the vocal shore,
Fair Daphne's dead, and music is no more!
Her fate is whisper'd by the gentle breeze,
And told in sighs to all the trembling trees;
The trembling trees, in every plain and wood,
Her fate remurmur to the silver flood;
The silver flood, so lately calm, appears
Swell'd with new passion, and o'erflows with tears;
The winds and trees and floods her death deplore,
Daphne, our grief, our glory now no more!
But see! where Daphne wondering mounts on high Above the clouds, above the starry sky! Eternal beauties grace the shining scene, Fields ever fresh, and groves for ever green!
There while you rest in amaranthine bowers,
Or from those meads select unfading flowers,
Behold us kindly, who your name implore,
Daphne, our goddess, and our grief no more!
Lyc.How allthingslisten,whilethy Muse complains!
Such silence waits on Philomela's strains,
In some still evening, when the whisp'ring breeze
Pants on the leaves, and dies upon the trees.
To thee, bright goddess, oft a lamb shall bleed,
If teeming ewes increase my fleecy breed.
While'plants their shade, or flowers their odours give,
Thy name, thy honour, and thy praise shall live!
Thyr. But see, Orion sheds unwholesome dews;
Arise, the pines a noxious shade diffuse?
Sharp Boreas blows, and Nature feels decay,
Time conquers all, and we must time obey.
Adieu, ye vales, ye mountains, streams and groves ;
Adieu, ye shepherd's rural lays and loves;
Adieu, my flocks; farewell, ye silvan crew;
Daphne, farewell; and all the world adieu!
THE HAPPY LIFE OF A COUNTRY PARSON.
PARSON, these things in thy possessing
Are better than the bishop's blessing:
A wife that makes conserves; a steed
That carries double when there's need;
October store, and best Virginia,
Tythe pig, and mortuary guinea;
Gazettes sent gratis down and frank'd,
For which thy patron's weekly thank'd;
A large concordance, bound long since;
Sermons to Charles the First, when prince;
A chronicle of ancient standing;
A Chrysostom to smoothe thy band in:
The Polyglot-three parts-my text,
Howbeit-likewise-now to my next:
Lo here the Septuagint-and Paul,
To sum the whole the close of all.
He that has these may pass his life,
Drink with the 'squire, and kiss his wife;
On Sundays preach, and eat his fill,
And fast on Fridays-if he will;
Toast church and queen, explain the news,
Talk with churchwardens about pews,
Pray heartily for some new gift,
And shake his head at Doctor S-t.
A SACRED ECLOGUE.
IN IMITATION OF VIRGIL's POLLIO.
In reading several passages of the prophet Isaiah, which ⚫ foretel the coming of Christ, and the felicities attending it; I could not but observe a remarkable parity between many of the thoughts and those in the Pollio of Virgil. This will not seem surprising, when we reflect that the eclogue was taken from a sibylline prophecy on the same subject. One may judge that Virgil did not copy it line by line, but selected such ideas as best agreed with the nature of pastoral poetry, and disposed them in that manner which served most to beautify his piece. I have endeavoured the same in this imitation of him, though without admitting any thing of my own; since it was written with this particular view, that the reader, by comparing the several thoughts, might see how far the images and descriptions of the prophet are superior to those of the poet. But as I fear I have prejudiced them by my management, I shall subjoin the passages of Isaiah, and those of Virgil, under the same disadvantage of a literal translation.
E nymphs of Solyma! begin the song:
To heavenly themes sublimer strains belong. The mossy fountains, and the silvan shades, The dreams of Pindus, and the' Aonian maids,
Delight no more-0 thou my voice inspire
Who touch'd Isaiah's hallow'd lips with fire!
Rapt into future times, the bard begun:
A virgin shall conceive, a virgin bear a son!
From Jesse's root behold a branch arise,
Whose sacred flower with fragrance fills the skies:
The' etherial spirit o'er its leaves shall move,
And on its top descends the mystic dove.
Yet heavens! from high the dewy nectar pour,
And in soft silence shed the kindly show'r!
The sick and weak the healing plant shall aid,
From storms a shelter, and from heat a shade.
All crimes shall cease, and ancient fraud shall fail;
Returning Justice § lift aloft her scale;
Peace o'er the world her olive wand extend,
And white-rob'd Innocence from Heav'n descend.
A virgin shall conceive-all crimes shall cease, &c.] Virg. Ecl. iv. ver. 6.
Jam redit et virgo, redeunt Saturnia regna; Jam nova progenies cœlo demittitur alto. Te dace, si qua manent sceleris vestigia nostri, Irrita perpetua solvent formidine terrasPacatumque reget patriis virtutibus orbem. 'Now the virgin returns, now the kingdom of Saturn returns, now a new progeny is sent down from high heaven. By means of thee, whatever relics of our crimes remain shall be wiped away, and free the world from perpetual fears. He shall govern the earth in peace, with the virtues of his father.'
Isaiah, ch. vii. ver. 14. 'Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son.'- Chap. ix. ver. 6, 7. Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, the Prince of Peace: of the increase of his government, and of his peace, there shall be no end: upon