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O MUSIC, sphere-descended maid,
Friend of Pleasure, Wisdom's aid,
Why, goddess, why, to us denied,
Lay'st thou thy ancient lyre aside ?
As in that lov'd Athenian bow'r
You learn'd an all-commanding pow'r,
Thy mimic soul, O nymph endear'd,
Can well recall what then it heard.
Where is thy native simple heart,
Devote to Virtue, Fancy, Art?
Arise, as in that elder time,
Warm, energic, chaste, sublime!
Thy wonders in that godlike age
Fill thy recording sister's page:
'Tis said, and I believe the tale,
Thy humblest reed could more prevail,
Had more of strength, diviner rage,
Than all which charms this laggard age,
E'en all at once together found,
Cæcilia's mingled world of sound.
Oh! bid our vain endeavours cease,
Revive the just designs of Greece;
Return in all thy simple state;
Confirm the tales her sons relate!
Hymn to Contentment.
LOVELY, lasting Peace of mind!
Sweet delight of human kind!
Heavenly born and bred on high,
To crown the fav'rites of the sky
With more of happiness below
Than victors in a triumph know!
Whither, oh whither art thou fled,
To lay thy meek contented head?
What happy region dost thou please
To make the seat of calms and ease?
Ambition searches all its sphere
Of pomp and state, to meet thee there:
Increasing avarice would find
Thy presence in its gold enshrin'd :
The bold advent'rer ploughs his way,
Through rocks, amidst the foaming sea,
To gain thy love; and then perceives
Thou wert not in the rocks and waves :
The silent heart, which grief assails,
Treads soft and lonesome o'er the vales,
Sees daisies open, rivers run,
And seeks (as I have vainly done)
Amusing thought; but learns to know
That Solitude 's the nurse of woe.
No real happiness is found
In trailing purple o'er the ground;
Or in a soul exalted high,
To range the circuit of the sky,
Converse with stars above, and know
All nature in its forms below:
The rest it seeks in seeking dies;
And doubts at last for knowledge rise.
Lovely, lasting Peace, appear;
This world itself, if thou art here,
Is once again with Eden blest,
And man contains it in his breast.
'Twas thus, as under shade I stood,
sung my wishes to the wood,
And, lost in thought, no more perceiv'd
The branches whisper as they wav'd :
It seem'd as all the quiet place
Confess'd the presence of her grace,
When thus she spoke: "Go, rule thy will,
Bid thy wild passions all be still;
Know God, and bring thy heart to know
The joys which from religion flow:
Then ev'ry grace shall prove its guest,
And I'll be there to crown the rest."
Oh, by yonder mossy seat,
In my hours of sweet retreat,
Might I thus my soul employ,
With sense of gratitude and joy!
Rais'd, as ancient prophets were,
In heav'nly vision, praise, and pray'r;
Pleasing all men, hurting none,
Pleas'd and blest with God alone:
Then, while the gardens take my sight
With all the colours of delight;
PARAPHRASE ON PSALM XXIII.
While silver waters glide along,
To please my ear and court my song,-
I'll lift my voice, and tune my string,
And thee, great Source of nature, sing.
Paraphrase on Psalm xxiii.
THE Lord my pasture shall prepare,
And feed me with a shepherd's care;
His presence shall my wants supply,
And guard me with a watchful eye;
My noon-day walks He shall attend,
And all my midnight hours defend.
When in the sultry glebe I faint,
Or on the thirsty mountain pant,
To fertile vales and dewy meads
My weary, wandering steps He leads;
Where peaceful rivers, soft and slow,
Amid the verdant landscapes flow.
Though in the paths of death I tread,
With gloomy horrors overspread,
My stedfast heart shall fear no ill,
For thou, O God, art with me still;
Thy friendly crook shall give me aid,
And guide me through the dreadful shade.
Though, in a bare and rugged way,
Through devious, lonely wilds I stray,
Thy bounty shall my wants beguile;
The barren wilderness shall smile,
With sudden greens and herbage crown'd,
And streams shall murmur all around.
The Primrose and Bramble.
WHEN nature wore her loveliest bloom,
And fields and hedges breath'd perfume;
When every painted child of spring
Flutter'd in air its little wing;
Pleas'd as I rang'd a verdant field
(Each scene can some instruction yield),
Beneath a hedge within my view,
A BRAMBLE and a PRIMROSE grew.
Fancy, that all-creative power,
Can give a tongue to ev'ry flower;
And thus, as I pursu'd my walk,
To fancy's ear they seem'd to talk.
The bramble rear'd her thorny head,
And to her humble neighbour said: