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Mixt with the mourning willow's careful grey,
Where reverend Cham cuts out his famous way,

The melancholy Cowley lay :
And lo! a Muse appear`d to 's closed sight,
(The Muses oft in lands of vision play)
Body'd, array'd, and seen, by an internal light.
A golden harp with silver strings she bore;
A wondrous hieroglyphick robe she wore,
In which all colours and all figures were,
That nature or that fancy can create,

That art can never imitate;
And with loose pride it wanton'd in the air.
In such a dress, in such a well-cloth'd dream,
She us’d, of old, near fair Ismenus' stream,
Pindar, her Theban favourite, to meet ;
A crown was on her head, and wings were on her feet.
She touch'd him with her harp, and rais'd him from

the ground; The shaken strings melodiously resound.

“ Art thou return'd at last," said she,

“ To this forsaken place and me? “Thou prodigal ! who didst so loosely waste “ Of all thy youthful years the good estate; Art thou return'd here, to repent too late, “ And gather husks of learning up at last, “Now the rich harvest-time of life is past,

“ And winter marches on so fast? “But, when I meant t'adopt thee for my son, “ And did as learn'd a portion assigo, “ As ever any of the mighty Nine

“ Had to their dearest children done ; “When I resolv'd t'exalt thy' anointed name, “ Among the spiritual lords of peaceful fame; “ Thou changeling ! thou, bewitch'd with noise and

show « Wouldst into courts and cities from me go ; “ Wouldst see the world abroad, and have a share “In all the follies and the tumults there :

“ Thou wouldst, forsooth, be something in a state, And business thou wouldst find, and wouldst create:

“ Business! the frivolous pretence “ Of human lusts, to shake off innocence;

“ Business! the grave impertinence; “ Business! the thing which I of all things hate; “ Business! the contradiction of thy fate. “Go, renegado ! cast up thy account,

And see to what amount

“Thy foolish gains by quitting me : “ The sale of Knowledge, Fame, and Liberty, “ The fruits of thy unlearn'd apostacy. “Thou thought'st, if once the public storm were past, “ All thy remaining life should sun shine be: “ Behold! the public storm is spent at last, “ The sovereign's tost at sea no more, “ And thou, with all the noble company,

“ Art got at last to shore. “But, whilst thy fellow-voyagers I see “ All march'd up to possess the promis'd land, “ Thou still alone, alas ! dost gaping stand “ Upon the naked beach, upon the barren sand! “ As a fair morning of the blessed spring,

“ After a tedious stormy night, "Such was the glorious entry of our king ; “ Enriching moisture dropp'd on every thing ; “ Plenty he sow'd below, and cast about him light!

“ But then, alas ! to thee alone " One of old Gideon's miracles was shown; For every tree and every herb around

“With pearly dew was crown'd, “ And upon all the quicken'd ground “The fruitful seed of heaven did brooding lie, “And nothing but the Muse's fleece was dry.

“ It did all other threats surpass, " When God to his own people said “The men whom through long wanderings he had

“ led) “That he would give them ev'n a heaven of brass:

“They look'd up to that heaven in vain, « That bounteous heaven, which God did not

“ restrain Upon the most unjust to shine and rain. “ The Rachel, for which twice seven years and

« more

“ Thou didst with faith and labour serve, “ And didst (if faith and labour can) deserve,

“ Though she contracted was to thee,

“Given to another, who had store " of fairer and of richer wives before, “And not a Leah left, thy recompence to be! « Go on : twice seven years more thy fortune try; “Twice seven years more God in his bounty may

“ Give thee, to fling away * Into the court's deceitful lottery :

“ But think how likely 't is that thou, « With the dull work of thy unwieldy plough, « Shouldst in a hard and barren season thrive,

« Should even able be to live ; “ Thou, to whose share so little bread did fall, “In the miraculous year when manna rain'd on all." Thus spake the Muse, and spake it with a smile, That seem'd at once to pity and revile. And to her thus, raising his thoughtful head,

The melancholy Cowley said-
“Ah, wanton foe! dos thou upbraid

“ The hills which thou thyself hast made ?
" When in the cradle innocent I lay,
« Thou, wicked spirit! stolest me away,

“ And my abused soul didst bear “Into thy new-found worlds, I know not where,

“ Thy golden Indies in the air;
" And ever since I strive in vain

“ My ravish'd freedom to regain ;
“ Still I rebel, still thou dost reign ;
Lo! still in verse against thee I complaiu.

“There is a sort of stubborn weeds, "Whicb, if the earth but once, it ever, kreeds;


“No wholesome herb can near them thrive,

No useful plant can keep alive : “The foolish sports I did on thee bestow, “ Make all my art and labour fruitless now; “ Where once such fairies dance, no grass doth

“ ever grow “ When my new mind had no infusion known, “Thou gav'st so deep a tincture of thine own,

That ever since I vainly try

“ To wash away th' inherent dye : “ Long work perhaps may spoil thy colours quite, “ But never will reduce the native white:

“ To all the ports of honour and of gain

“ I often steer my course in vain ; “Thy gale comes cross, and drives me back again. “Thou slacken'st all my nerves of industry,

“ By making them so oft to be
“The tinkling strings of thy loose minstrelsy.
“Whoever this world's happiness would see,

Must as entirely cast-off thee,
“ As they who only heaven desire

“ Do from the world retire. “ This was my error, this my gross mistake, · Myself a demi-votary to make. “ Thus, with Sapphira and her husband's fate “(A fault which I, like them, am taught too late), “For all that I gave up I nothing gain, “And perish for the part which I retain. “ Teach me not then, O thou fallacious Muse!

“The court, and better king, t'accuse: “ The heaven under which I live is fair, "The fertile soil will a full harvest bear : " Thine, thine is all the barrenness; if thou “Mak'st me sit stilland sing, when I should plough. “ When I'but think how many a tedious year

“ Our patient sovereign did attend

“His long misfortunes' fatal end; “ How cheerfully, and how exempt from fear, “ On the Great Sovereign's will he did depend;

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" I ought to be accurst, if I refuse " To wait on his, O thou fallacious Muse! “ Kings have long hands, they say; and though I be "So distant, they may reach at length to me.

“ However, of all princes, thou “ Shouldst not reproach rewards for being small or


“ Thou ! wbo rewardest but with popular breath,

“ And that too after death."

FIRST-born of Chaos, who so fair didst come

From the old negro's darksome womb!

Which, when it saw the lovely child, The melancholy mass put on kind looks and smild; Thou tide of glory, which no rest dost know,

But ever ebb and ever flow!

Thou golden shower of a true Jove! Who does in thee descend, and heaven to earth

make love!

Hail, active Nature's watchful life and health!

Her joy, her ornament, and wealth!

Hail to thy husband Heat, and thee! Thou the world's beauteous bride, the lusty bride.

groom he!

Say from what golden quivers of the sky

Do all thy winged arrows fly?

Swiftness and power by birth are thine: From thy great sire they came, thy sire the Word


'Tis, I believe, this archery to show,

That so much cost in colours thou,

And skill in painting, dost bestow, Upon thy ancient arms, the gaudy heavenly bow.

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