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Then too, 'tis said, an hoary pile,
Midst the green navel of our ille,
Thy shrine in some religious wood,
O foul-enforcing Goddess, stood !
There oft the painted native's feet
Were wont thy form celestial meet :
Though now with hopeless toil we trace
Time's backward rolls, to find its place ;
Whether the fiery-tressed Dane,
Or Roman's self o’erturn'd the fane,
Or in what heaven-left age it fell,
’T were hard for modern song to tell.
Yet still, if truth those beams infuse,
Which guide at once, and charm the Muse,
braided clouds that lie,
Paving the light embroider'd sky:
Amidst the bright pavilion'd plains,
The beauteous model still remains.
There happier than in islands blest,
Or bowers by Spring or Hebe drest,
The chiefs who fill our Albion's story,
In warlike weeds, retir'd in glory,
Hear their consorted Druids fing
Their triumphs to th’immortal string.
How may the poet now unfold,
What never tongue or numbers told ?
How learn delighted, and amaz’d,
What hands unknown that fabric rais'd?
Ev'n now, before his favour'd eyes,
In Gothic pride it seems to rise !
Yet Grecia's graceful orders join,
Majestic, through the mix'd design;
The secret builder knew to chuse,
Each sphere found gem of richest hues :
Whate'er heaven's purer mold contains,
When nearer suns emblaze its veins;
There on the walls the Patriot's sight
May ever hang with fresh delight,
And, grav'd with some prophetic rage,
Read Albion's fame through every age.
Ye forms divine, ye laureate band,
That near her inmost altar stand!
Now foothie her, to her blissful train
Blithe Concord's social form to gain :
Concord, whose myrtle wand can steep
Ev'n Anger's blood - hot eyes in sleep:
Before whose breathing bosom's balm,
Rage drops his steel, and storms grow calm;
Her let our fires and matrons hoar
Welcome to Britain's ravag'd thore,
Our youths, enamour'd of the fair,
Play with the tangles of her hair,
Till, in one loud applauding sound,
The nations thout to her around,
O, how supremely art thou blest,
Thou, Lady, thou shalt rule the west!
To a Lady, on the Death of Colonel Charles
Ross, in the Action at Fontenoy. Written
WHILE, loft to all his former mirth,
Britannia’s genius bends to earth,
And mourns the fatal day :
While stain'd with blood he strives to tear
Unseemly from his sea-green hair
The wreaths of chearful May:
The thoughts which musing pity pays,
And fond remembrance loves to raise,
Your faithful hours attend :
Still Fancy, to herself unkind,
Awakes to grief the soften'd mind,
And points the bleeding friend.
By rapid Scheld's descending wave
His country's vows shall bless the grave,
Wheree'er the youth is laid :
That facred spot the village hind
With every sweetest turf shall bind,
And Peace protect the shade.
O’er him, whose doom thy virtues grieve,
Aërial forms shall fit at eve,
And bend the pensive head;
And, fall’n to save his injur'd land,
Imperial Honour's aweful hand
Shall point his lonely bed!
The warlike dead of every age,
Who fill the fair recording page,
Shall leave their sainted rest :
And, half-reclining on his spear,
Each wondering chief by turns appear,
To hail the blooming guest.
Old Edward's sons, unknown to yield,
Shall crowd from Creffy's laureld field,
with fix'd delight: Again for Britain's wrongs they feel, Again they snatch the gleamy steel,
And wish th' avenging fight.
But, lo! where, funk in deep despair,
Her garments torn, her bosom bare,
Impatient Freedom lies !
Her matted tresses madly spread,
To every fod which wraps the dead,
She turns her joyless eyes.
Ne'er shall she leave that lowly ground,
Till notes of triumph bursting round
Proclaim her reign restor’d:
Till William seek the sad retreat,
And, bleeding at her facred feet,
Present the fated sword.
If, weak to soothe fa soft an heart,
These pictur'd glories nought impart,
To dry thy constant tear :
If yet, in Sorrow's distant eye,
Expos’d and pale thou see'st him lie,
Wild war insulting near :
Wheree'er from time thou court'st relief,
The Muse shall still, with social grief,
Her gentlest promise keep :
Ev'n humble Harting's cottag’d vale
Shall learn the sad repeated tale,
And bid her shepherds weep.
Faught of oaten stop, or pastoral song,
May hope, chaste Eve, to soothe thy modeft ear,
Like thy own solemn springs,
Thy springs, and dying gales;
O nymph reserv'd, while now the bright-hair'd fun
Sits in yon western tent, whose cloudy skirts,
With brede ethereal wove,
O'erhang his wavy bed :
Now air is hush'd, save where the weak-ey'd bat,
With short shrill shriek flits by on leathern wing,
Or where the beetle winds
His small but fullen horn,