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Τ Η Ε
B A S T A R D.
IN gayer hours, when high my fancy ran,
The Muse, exulting, thus her lay began.. Bleft be the Bastard's birth! through wondrous ways, He shines eccentric like a comet's baze! No sickly fruit of faint compliance He!
5 He! stampt in nature's mint of ecstacy! He lives to build, not boast, a generous race :No tenth transmitter of a foolish face. His daring hope, no fire's example bounds ; His first-born lights, no prejudice confounds. He, kindling from within, requires no flame; He glories in a Bastard's glowing name.
Born to himself, by no poffeffion led,
O Mother, yet no Mother! 'tis to you,
25 From ties maternal, noral and divine,
Discharg'd my grasping foul; puth'd me from more,
What had I loft, if, conjugally kind,
Far nobler blessings wait the Bastard's lot;
45 Climbs against wrongs, and brightens into day.
Thus unprophetic, lately misinspir’d,
way, Whom caution arms not, and whom woes betray; But now, expos'd, and shrinking from distress,
55 I fly to shelter, while the tempests press ;
My Muse to grief resigns the varying tone,
O memory! thou foul of joy and pain!
60 Why dost thou aggravate the wretch's woe? Why add continuous smart to every blow? Few are my joys; alas! how soon forgot! On that kind quarter thou invad'st me not: While sharp and numberless my sorrows fall; Yet thou repeat's, and multiply'st them all!
Is chance a guilt ? that my disasterous heart, For mischief never meant, must ever smart ? Can felf-defence be fin !-Ah, plead no more! What though no purpos’d malice stain'd thee o'er? 70 Had heaven befriended thy unhappy lide, Thou hadît not been provok’d-Or thou hadst died.
Far be the guilt of homeshed blood from all On whoin, unfought, embroiling dangers fall ! Still the pale Dead revives, and lives to me, 75 To me! through Pity's eye condemn'd to fee. Remembrance veils his rage, but swells his fate; Griev'd I forgive, and am grown cool too late. Young, and unthoughtful then; who knows, one day, What ripening virtues might have made their way ! 80 He might have liv'd till folly died in shame, Till kindling wisdom felt a thirst for fame. He might perhaps his country's friend have prov'd; Both happy, generous, candid, and belov'd He might have sav'd some worth, now doom'd to fall ; And I, perchance, in him, have murder'd all.
O fate of late repentance ! always vain :
Mother, miscall’d, farewell--of foul severe,
Lost to the life you gave, your son no more,
HERE Thames with pride beholds Augusta's
charms, And either India pours into her arms; Where Liberty bids honest arts abound, And pleasures dance in one eternal round; High-thron'd appears the laughter-loving dame, 5 Goddess of mirth! Euphrosyne her name. Her smile more cheerful than a vernal morn; All life! all bloom! of Youth and Fancy born. Touch'd into joy, what hearts to her submit! She looks her Sire, and speaks her Mother's wit. io
O'er the gay world the sweet inspirer reigns; Spleen flies, and Elegance her pomp sustains. Thee, goddess ! thee! the fair and young obey; Wealth, Wit, Love, Mufic, all confess thy fway.