Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

Thy clothing next shall be a gown
Made of the Fleeces purest down.
The tongues of kids shall be thy meat;
Their milk thy drink; and thou shalt eat
The paste of filbert's for thy bread
With cream of cowslips buttered:
Thy feasting tables shall be hills
With daisies spread, and daffadills;
IV here thou shalt sit, and Red-breast by,
For meat shall give thee melody.
I'll give thee chains and carkanets *
Of primroses and violets.
A bag and bottle thou shalt have;
That richly wrought, and this as brave;
So that as either shall express
The Wearer's no mean Shepherdess.
At sheering times, and yearly wakes,
When Themilis his pastime makes,
There thou shalt be; and be the wit,
Nay more, the feast, and grace of it.
On holy-days, when Virgins meet
To dance the heys with nimble feet,
Thou shalt come forth, and then appear.
The Queen of Roses for that year.
And, having danc'd 'bove all the best,
Carry the garland from the rest.
In wicker baskets Maids shali bring
To thee my dearest Shepharling,

* Carkanét, a bracelet or necklaces

The blushing apple, bashful pear,
And shame-fac'd Plum, all simp’ring there;
Walk in the groves, and thou shalt find
The name of Phillis in the rind
Of every straight, and smooth-skin tree';
Where kissing that, I'll twice kiss thee.
To thee a sheep-hook I will send,
Be-pranck'd with ribbands, to this end,
This, this alluring hook might be
Less for to catch a sheep, than me.
Thou shalt have possets, wassails fine,
Not made of ale, but spiced wine;
To make thy Maids and self free mirth,
All sitting near the glitt'ring hearth.
Thou shall have ribbands, roses, rings,
Gloves, garters, stockings, shoes and strings
Of winning colours, that shall move
Others to lust, but me to love.
These, nay and more, thine own shall be,
If thou wilt love, and live with me.

Page 223

Of ANACREONTIC Poetry there are numerous specimens in the volume of Herrick. Many of these are extremely beautiful, and there are many likewise, which, without the smallest regret, may be consigned to utter oblivion. Herrick, however, seems to have entertained a more correct idea of the style and genius of Anacrçon, than the generality of those who have since attempted to imitate the lively Grecian. The songs of revelry and mirth, descriptive of the joys of wine, form only a part of the productions of the Teian Bard; he abounds also in the niost delicate delineations of beauty, touched, indeed, with a pencil light as air, but picturesque, and guided by the finest taste. They are miniatures, in fact, which, though occupying a small space, are wrought with perfect symmetry, and glow with the richest rinting

The English poet has evidently copied both these modes of composition, and if, as might be expected, he fail to rival his favourite, he has yet presented us with imitations which merit much praise, and are, in general, undoubtedly superior to the efforts of his contemporaries. Of the first species, the following lines upon

himself

may sidered as a proper example.

be con-,

Borne I was to meet with Age,
And to walk Life's pilgrimage.
Much I know of Time is spent,
Tell I can't, what's resident,

Howsoever, cares adieu !
I'll have nought to say to you:
But I'll spend my coming hours,
Drinking wine, and crown'd with Aowers.

Page 222.

Of the second, what he has termed “The Vision,” I hesitate not to bring forward as a happy proof, that he understood and felt the characteristic beauties of Anacreon.

Sitting alone, as one forsook,
Close by a silver-shedding brook;
With hands held up to Love, I wept;
And after sorrows spent, I slept:
Then in a Vision I did see
A glorious form appear to me:
A Virgin's face she had; her dress
Was like a sprightly Spartaness.
A silver bow with green silk strung;
Down from her comely shoulders hung:
And as she stood, the wanton Air
Dandled the ringlets of her hair.
Her legs were such Diana shows,
When tuck'd up she a hunting goes;
With buskins short'ned to descry
The happy dawning of her thigh:
Which when I saw, I made access
To kiss that tempting nakedness :
But she forbade me, with a wand
Of Mirtle she had in her haird;
. .

VOL. III.

[ocr errors]

And chiding me, said, Hence, remove,
Herrick, thou art too coarse to love.

Page 54.

The picture here is lively and elegantly drawn, with so inuch minuteness, indeed, and spirit, as to bring the object immediately

to the eye.

In

my selection of pieces under this head, it would be deemed unpardonable were I to omit the exquisite morsel entitled “ The Captiv'd Bee.” In this, perhaps, more than iņ any other production, Herrick may be pronounced truly Anacreontic.

As Julia once a slumb’ring lay,
It chanc'd a Beę did flie that way,
After a dew, or dew-like shower,
To tipple freely in a Aower.
For some rich flower, he took the lip
Of Julia, and began to sip;
But when he felt he suck'd from thence
Honey, and in the quintessence:
He drank so much he scarce could stir,
So Julia took the Pilferer.
And thus surpris'd, as Filchers use,
He thus began himself t'excuse:
Sweet Lady-Flower, I never brought
Hither the least one thieving thought:

« ZurückWeiter »