Commemorative Feelings, or Miscellaneous Poems.

Spencer, Mrs. Walter.


Ophelia Yim, -- creation of electronic text.

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Copyright (c) British Women Romantic Poets Project
Shields Library, University of California, Davis, California 95616
1999
I.D. No. WalkSComme

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Davis British Women Romantic Poets Series

I.D. No. 39
Nancy Kushigian, -- General Editor
Charlotte Payne, -- Managing Editor


Commemorative feelings, or miscellaneous poems

Spencer, Mrs. Walter


White, Cochrane, and Co.
London,
1812
[This text was scanned from its original in the Shields Library Kohler Collection, University of California, Davis. Kohler ID no. I:1188. Another copy available on microfilm as Kohler I:1188mf.]

The editors thank the Shields Library, University of California, Davis, for its support for this project.

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Title Page
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[Title Page]



Page [i]

COMMEMORATIVE FEELINGS,
OR
MISCELLANEOUS POEMS. INTERSPERSED WITH
SKETCHES IN PROSE
ON THE
SOURCES OF PENSIVE PLEASURE.

LONDON:

PRINTED FOR THE AUTHOR;
PUBLISHED BY WHITE, COCHRANE, AND CO.,

FLEET-STREET; AND J. CARPENTER,
OLD BOND-STREET. 1812.
Page [ii]

PRINTED BY RICHARD TAYLOR AND CO., SHOE-LANE



Page [iii]

PREFACE.

IF the writer of this humble volume had ever imagined that the feelings and incidents it commemorates would have met the Public eye, apprehension and dread would have chilled every effort of the imagination, and checked every pulse of the heart.

Unlearned and wholly uninstructed in poetic rules, she might with great truth have called these trifles native rhymes,
     "Or flowers that all uncultured grew,"
as Feeling was her tutor, and Nature her only


Page iv

guide; and oftentimes a few lines of poetic effusion were the sole relief to the heart, between the sigh and the tear. Many were written in early youth, which the subjects and style will sufficiently indicate; but very few dates having been preserved, they are scattered indiscriminately throughout the volume. Conscious, however, of their inferiority, the whole would have been consigned to oblivion, had not peculiar circumstances aided the hand of too partial friendship to draw them into view. It is therefore with the blended emotions of REGRET and DIFFIDENCE, that they are now offered to the indulgent, the candid, and the feeling.


Page [v]

CONTENTS.

SONNETS.


Page vi

WANDERINGS.



Page [x]


Page [1]

SONNETS.


Page [2]


Page 3

I.

TO THE LAST ROSE OF SUMMER.

SWEET relic of the slowly-waning year,
    Who long with gentle, lingering, fond delay,
    Behind thy beauteous 'sociates still dost stay,
As if my senses and my heart to cheer,
Thou dost remind me of the parting friend,
    Who softly sighing cannot say adieu,
    But still would every tender vow renew,
Still some fond thought, some anxious care 'commend.
Yet ah! I like thine must come the parting hour,
    When memory only shall its sweets impart.
    Now as I press thy leaves upon my heart,
Remembrance tearful, consecrates the flower
To friendship's lingering sad, and soft adieu,
Which each late Rose of summer shall renew.


Page 4

II.

SUPPOSED TO HAVE BEEN WRITTEN BY A GENTLEMAN
   WHO VISITED THE AUTHOR IN THE HOUSE WHICH
   A LADY TO WHOM HE HAD BEEN PARTIAL AHD RE-
CENTLY QUITTED.

O RECOLLECTION ! stay thy tide awhile,
    Nor on my senses too impetuous pour;
Paint not the form which did my soul beguile,
    Since all its soft enchantments now are o'er.
Ah! were I doom'd her loss alone to mourn,
    Her merits then might consecrate the tear:
Better to weep upon the willow'd urn,
    Then mourn the change which in her mind I fear;
That mind I fondly thought the virtues' seat,
    That form an angel might have deign'd to own;
Smiles which I flew each passing hour to meet,
    And graces sweet, which charm'd in her alone.
Alas! too faithful Memory! cease thy sway,
Or deep in Lethe steep my cares away.


Page 5

III.

THE ROSE OF SAPPHO.

DEAR ROSE ! dear flower, unconscious as thou art,
    'Tis not the Zephyr agitates thy leaves,
But the soft sigh of Love, warm from the heart,
    Thy form imbues, and all thy sweets receives.
Yet should the jealous Zephyr steal along,
    And find, ah me! the kiss implanted there,
The kiss that Love had hid the leaves among,
    And left it folded sweet with anxious care,
No more he'll fan thee in the wild or bower,
    But rudely breathe upon my beauteous rose,
Call thee inconstant and ungrateful flower,
    And all the mysteries of thy fate disclose.
Safe then to guard thee from a doom like this,
My heart shall press thee, and secure thy bliss.


Page 6

IV.

SONETTO DI SERAFINO DA L'AQUILA.

QUANDO nascesti, Amor? Quando la terra
    Si rinveste di verde e bel colore.
    Di che fosti creato? D'un ardore.
Che ciò lascivo in sè rinchiude e serra.
Chi ti produsse a farmi tanta guerra?
    Calda speranza, e gelido timore.
    Ove prima abitasti? In gentil core,
Che sotto al mio valor presto s'atterra.
Chi fu la tua nutrice? Giovinezza,
    E le sue serve accolte a lei d'intorno,
Leggiadria, Vanitá, Pompa, e Bellezza.
    Di che ti pasci? D'un guardar adorno.
Non può contro di te morte o vecchiezza?
No: ch'io rinasco mille volte il giorno.


Page 7

V.

IN ANSWER TO THE PRECEDING.

O LOVE ! thy story hast thou told so sweet,
    That if thou dwell'st within a heart sincere,
    I too could wish to own a home so dear,
And feed thee with those smiles thou lov'st to meet.
Yet much I dread thy power, and known deceit;
    For should I venture thy abode too near,
In safety might I not again retreat,
But bathe each SMILE I gave thee, with a TEAR .
For in thy beauteous tale, so tempting fair,
     No picture of thy perils dost thou give,
Nor jealous torments; no, nor anxious care,
    Nor how in absence may the lover live.
Ah! I do fear thee, and must still beware,
For in Love's train a thousand sorrows are.


Page 8

VI.

THE COMPLAINT OF A SOLITARY TREE PLACED IN
  A GLOOMY COURT IN LONDON.      WINTER.

FROM Nature and her sweet communion torn,
    O say what hand unpitying placed me here?
    Without a breeze my fading form to cheer,
A pris'ner, drooping, pensive, and forlorn.
Scarce can a sun-beam glance athwart the gloom,
    Whilst every stem drives bleakly o'er my head.
    Would that the earth might hide me in her bed,
Since here I fade, and never more can bloom!
O Lady! from yon window's shaded height
    Look with compassion on my fate beneath;
    Bind not thy brow with art's ficititious wreath,
But give to me that happier, envied right;
Or ah! transplant me to thy garden fair,
And Gratitude will find an Eden there.


Page 9

VII.

BANKS OF THE THAMES.    WINTER.

SCENES sadly soothing to the sorrowing heart,
    Here let me lingering on thy borders bend;
    And though nor Sun illume, nor flowers lend
Their perfume to the breeze, we would not part,
E'en though chill wintry mists hang round thy shore,
    Or envious hide thee from the sight of day.
Though Sun nor Moon bestow one beaming ray,
As the loud tempests o'er thy waters roar,
Yet the lorn willow still adorns the scene,
    As its light sprays wave graceful to the wind,
    Or drooping as in sorrow, like the mind
That pensive weeps, o'er seasons which have been--
Slow through yon arch receding from my view,
As moves each sail, I sigh a sad adieu.


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VIII.

ON LEAVING A TEMPORARY RESIDENCE LENT BY A
  FRIEND FOR THIS RECOVERY OF MY HEALTH.

OH ! fare thee well, sweet Villa! whilst I breathe
    Such sad presaging sighs, as seem to say
    Adieu for ever!----on my pensive way,
I drop of simplest flowers this votive wreath;
And haply Taste, who loves to wander near,
    May deign to stoop, and bind it on his brow.
    And should he question, whence it came and how?
Tell him that Gratitude has left it here.
And say, that in this verdant garden's bound
    Soft Peace and Health have wove a beauteous bower
    Deck'd With each scented shrub and blooming flower;
While sweet Content has hung her garlands round.
Say, on a heart within a shrine is rear'd
To *********, to every Muse endear'd.


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IX.

TO A LADY.

SAY , when thy pensive brow, thy tearful eye,
    Bends o'er the classic shades that wave beneath,
    Does fancy bind for heroes PAST the wreath,
Heroes enroll'd by fame in history?
And does this sacred spot, so near thy home,
    Speak but of Montague's immortal page,
    Whose name will shine through every distant age,
When fall'n each tree, and ruin'd yon proud dome?
Ah! I do think, by that soft blush and sigh,
    That not of heroes PAST thy fancy dreams;
    Though clad in armour bright as lunar beams,
With shield and helmet plumed unto the sky.
Haply, in other scenes thy thoughts are held,
Where Glory waves her laurels o'er the Scheld.


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X.

ON SEEING SOME LINES DESCRIPTIVE OF ******
    WOODS, BY A STRANGER.

AH ! who can paint like me these lovely scenes?
    E'en though thy muse her sweetest gifts impart,
Can witching Fancy in her wildest dreams
    Depict the visions of the feeling heart?
Though she may vary every tint and shade,
    Yet can mere foliage touch upon the mind?
Ah yes, I feel it can without her aid,
    With every leaf some tender thought's combined.
Here Memory brings, still brings to sad review
    Friends ever lost, who 'loved these woods among
To see each season's varied change renew,
    And pensive listen to the night-bird's song.
Yet ONE remains this drooping heart to cheer,
And from affection's cheek to chase the tear.


Page 13

XI.

TO THE GLEANER, IN RETURN FOR HIS 'SYMPATHY'
    AND 'COTTAGE PICTURES,' WHICH WERE ACCOMPA-
   NIED BY A BEAUTIFUL COLLECTION OF TRIBUTARY
LINES.

AROUND thy lyre so rich a wreath is wove,
    That not a leaf, or bud, I dare entwine;
Where every Muse to deck her bard has strove,
    And bound with never-fading flowers his shrine.
Ah me! must then my tears be thine alone?
    Those tears to Sympathy and Nature true!
Would that to me some magic power were known,
    To change them instant to Castalian dew!
Then might they dwell those beauteous buds among,
    There swift imbibe each varied perfume sweet;
Nor thou, when on thy lyre the full wreath hung,
    Reject the tear, as each fair flower you greet.
Ah! may thy feeling heart, in that soft hour,
    Confess the dew still sweeter than the flower!


Page 14

XII.

PERHAPS there is no circumstance that reminds us more tenderly of the past, than the repetition of plaintive music which we have heard in the more interesting parts of our lives. The following sonnet was written on such an occasion, on hearing softly touched on the harp, an air I had been used to hear played by a celebrated band.

TO THE MEMORY OF A BEAUTIFUL BALLAD.

O CEASE ! forbear! that touching strain O cease!
    Those sounds o'er every thrilling nerve have power;
    They bring again that feeling, anxious hour,
That press'd so nearly on my bosom's peace.
O Memory! each recorded note is thine,
    So softly plaintive, so enchanting sweet,
    It seem'd as it could tears of pity greet,
Or sighs of love to harmony refine.
Still, still again that melting tone I hear,
    So finely touch'd as though by zephyr fann'd;
    Or, swept by some unseen ethereal hand,
The harp of Æolus entranced mine ear.
O Harmony, celestial power divine!
At once the present and the past are mine.


Page 15

XIII.

MOONLIGHT VISIONS ON THE SEA SHORE.

FAIR lucid Moon! whose softly chasten'd light
    Beams on the bosom of the sleepless wave,
Ah! never day may hope to rival night,
    Nor pensive minds in such fond witcheries lave,
Now thy mild ray, as stealing o'er the soul,
    Faintly illumines every long-past scene;
And syren Fancy brighter tints the whole
    With days of happiness, which might have been.
O dear delusions! must I bid you cease,
    And only dwell upon the painful past?
Must I in vain wish for the calm of peace,
    Nor Hope her anchor in life's voyage be cast
Ah! no, fond Fancy sees her moon-tipt sail,
Friendship her pilot, sighs of Joy her gale.


Page 16

MOONLIGHT SCENERY.

THE influence of moonlight scenery on the feelings is one of the most fascinating, and irresistibly attractive, that a tender heart can experience.

A sort of reflective and pleasing melancholy is often produced, as if the soft ray of the Moon poured its light through the eyes upon the soul itself. It does not always carry us quite in thought to Heaven! because, in looking at the Moon, we imagine it another Earth, perhaps resembling that which we inhabit,--or fancy it may be destined for a state of probationary or intermediate existence. Again we look, we retrace the past, compare our fate


Page 17

with what it has been, and with what it may be here or hereafter; every idea is refined, and spiritualized.

And the contemplation of the sea irradiated by the silver and beamy light of the Moon, unites all the ideas of the great Creator with all the sufferings and uncertainties incident to the element and to Humanity itself, disposing the heart to every amiable feeling, with tenderness to our fellow-creatures, and with gratitude to Heaven in giving us powers capable of adoring him in the world of beauty which surrounds us.

Moonlight has therefore a power of giving to its scenes a charm the sublime Artist of the


Page 18

world alone could bestow, to heighten the moral beauty of those who contemplate them; and affords one of the most refined sources of pensive pleasure we ever experience.


Page 19

XIV.

So far from Joy had stray'd this drooping heart;
    It seem'd we sever'd--to embrace no more;
    And ere I pensive sought this sea-beat shore,
Full oft reluctant felt from home to part,
Lest it away should steal the lonely hour.
    Then, little did I dream each artful wile
    That Joy had learn'd, our sorrows to beguile,
And playful scatter in life's path the flower.
To meet me here unseen, the wanderer flew,
    And in a cottage hid from vulgar eyes,
    Like Proteus ever in some new disguise,
Each soft enchantment o'er my senses threw,
The dance, the banquet, magic-bower* , and song,
With every charm that dwells his train among.

* An apartment lined with foliage and flowers so termed.


Page [20]


Page [21]

WANDERINGS.


Page [22]


Page 23

LINES ON A FLOWER GROWING IN THE PRISON GARDEN
OF DOVER CASTLE.

OH ! ye who wander this famed fortress round,
Or caverns dark explore in depths profound;
Depths, where yon sun has never own'd a ray,
But darkness triumphs in despite of day;
Where hosts secure within its bosom bide,
Nor heed what storms assail the rock's rude side;
Or now immerging into day's bright beam,
Amazed and pondering on each wondrous theme,
Attention wrapt in scenes or strange or new,
Whilst ocean pours sublimely on the view,
Alas! thou beauteous vain and hapless flower,
Canst thou e'er hope regard in such an hour?
Save that some pensive moralist may bend
And say "Poor flower, thou art the prisoner's friend.


Page 24

"O ever-envied fate! to cheer his sight
"At early dawn, at noon, or closing night,
"To shed thy sweets around, and, ere they die,
"Blend their soft perfume with the prisoner's sigh."

Unequal contest in the feeling heart!
Still, still, will Nature win the wreath from Art.
'Tis for the prisoner now alone he feels,
For him the silent tear unbidden steals;
The subterranean deep, the embattled tower,
The frowning fortress, fade before the flower:
Whilst those shall meet from ruthless Time their doom,
By Heaven's hand planted, still shall PITY bloom.


Page 25

CAVERN SCENERY.

CAVERN Scenery has been so favourite a theme, and, however apparently barren, has been so very prolific a source to the writers of modern romance, that, so far from wishing to encroach on their prerogative, one would perhaps rather be inclined to turn from the subject with something like distaste.

Not because it is in itself uninteresting, but because those who have described such scenes have equally o'erstept the "modesty of Nature" and the labours of Art. How unequal are the miner and the engineer to keep pace with the pen of ROMANCE, wonderful as are the effects of their skill!


Page 26

We often wander with a Heroine some miles in caverns underground, by lamp-light, torch- light, moon-light, twilight, or no light at all, in the most inconceivable manner possible, escaping from some castle, and gaining some convent, by a secret communication, or distant cave opening into the forest; during which hazardous adventure we have little pleasure and much fatigue, because this kind of routine is so common, and the repetition of the same scenes so frequent, that we have anticipated every thing, and consequently are surprised at nothing.

Yet, divesting the mind of these absurd and romantic fictions, there is certainly something peculiarly interesting in Cavern Scenery, par-


Page 27

ticularly when it is the work of Nature alone; scenes in which she often unites both simplicity and magnificence, and combines a thousand attractions to unsophisticated minds.

It may be objected that they are sources of terror also, as well as of attraction, being often the abode of the reptile, of savage animals, and still more savage man;--of lawless banditti, and the assassin, who, concealed within its shadows and recesses, starts at once upon the unsuspecting traveller:--but again, may they not also have afforded an asylum to the persecuted and the unfortunate, to virtuous poverty, and the houseless wanderer "who had not where to lay his head ?"


Page 28

They are likewise greatly interesting from having been the sacred abodes of the Druids and Bards of old. "Gray at his mossy cave is bent the aged form of Clonmal; the eyes of the Bard had failed, he leaned forward on his staff."

What scenes have ever inspired more delightful and sublime sensations than the entrance into those superb excavations which are found in the sides of mountains and on the sea-shore? feelings which no traveller can forget who has once experienced them.

Who that ever visited the Cave of Fingal, or the Hall of Ossian, has not felt pleasures which the drawing-rooms of the gay would


Page 29

attempt to rival in vain, and which the enlightened and contemplative mind would shudder even to name in comparison?

What accounts of the most splendid palaces of Eastern magnificence ever interested the fancy or left an impression on the memory so indelible, as the beautiful description of the Cave of Calypso? I much fear that the sage precepts of Mentor himself are forgotten, when the enchanting Cave of the Goddess is distinctly remembered.

Vaucluse too! the interesting Vaucluse! who has not lavished on THEE more than half the tenderness its celebrated inhabitant bestowed on his Laura? Who ever felt more


Page 30

than Petrarch the attraction of such interesting and romantic scenes? So great was their seducing influence as to steal him from the presence of her he loved, to soften his regret for her absence, to still the effervescence of the passions, and sooth the wounds of the heart.


Page 31

THE MYRTLE OF SOUTH WALES.

THOUGH odours sweet o'er Paphian gales were flung,
    When mid thy shade the shrine of Venus stood,
Italia's muse, more sweet, thy praise has sung,
    When crown'd the Empress of the enchanted wood.

Yet hence, each thought profane! nor poet's dream,
    Nor visionary flowers, must here be sought;
Truth's simple tale is all I make my theme;
    My muse of sorrow--but by nature taught.

In a lone Cot, o'er which the sea-breeze blew,
    Which oft the tempest, as in pity, spared;
When the wild wave o'er towering head-lands flew,
    And the lorn eagle from his aerie scared.


Page 32

There, humble Virtue, peaceful midst the storm,
    Fear'd not the terrors of the angry deep;
A widow'd heart, once with affection warm,
    Lived but to memory there,--to sigh or weep.

She mourn'd her son! whom had the wave intomb'd,
    Far happier had his mother deem'd his state;
He by the murderer's stroke to death was doom'd,
    And the harsh master's hand, alas! was Fate.

O Heaven! what shivering horror chill'd her heart,
    When to her ear the mournful tale was told!
"Bring me my son" she cried, "we will not part:
    "Ah me! he breathes not; no, he's pale and cold."

E'en on the bier already was he laid,
    And o'er his corse was strew'd each drooping flower,
By many a sighing youth, and pitying maid,
    With greenest myrtle, cull'd in hapless hour.


Page 33

One tender branch his weeping mother took
    From his cold hand, and press'd it to her heart,
Threw o'er his pallid form an anguish'd look,
    And cried "Oh! never from this branch I'll part."

Full many a year is now long past away,
    Since to her garden was the branch convey'd,
And still 't is water'd by her tears each day,
    And oft a sigh from pitying youth and maid.

Now, as though grateful for her tender care,
    Its leaves expanding beautify the wild,
And, as its fragrance steals along the air,
    The mourning mother sighs, "So bloom'd my child."


Page 34

SIGHS,

ADDRESSED TO PHYSIClANS.

O YE ! of our forms who have studied the laws,
And found for each sense and each organ a cause,
Yet ne'er with precision could justly define,
Where soul and where body most truly combine;
Now candidly own as you read, nor deny
That the union of both is complete in the SIGH .
    The sources of sighs are so variously framed,
That some may a CLASS of DISEASES be named.
INFECTIOUS they certainly are, you must own;
For who that the sigh of a friend has e'er known,
Did not swift-gliding feel, in the heart, in the eye,
A tear fill the one, and the other a sigh?
But perhaps in the AIR the infection we find,
Since who has not heard of the sighs of the wind?
From sorrow's deep sources such feelings are cast,
'Tis the mourner's sad sighs that we hear in the blast.


Page 35

Or haply with tones of despair they are mixt,
From some bosom-wound, which remembrance has fixt.
Ah! turn then to hope and to joy once again,
May their softest sighs sooth each wound and each pain!
"Oh! no," cries the Lover who weeps o'er the sod
Where once with some Being adored he has trod,
"What pleasure on earth is now equal with me,
"To SIGH in the breeze which is BLENDED with thee?
"Yet ah! how more envied my fate it had proved,
"To breathe my LAST SIGH on the BOSOM BELOVED !"
Alas! what is this which I feel at my heart,
That takes in each picture I paint, such a part?
Is danger so subtile?--Infection in thought
From soul-touching sorrows my fancy has caught.
Too sure, as I write, an example I find,
That sighs are the union of body and mind.


Page 36

THE STRANGER AT STOWE.

FOR happiness form'd are not scenes such as these ?
If Nature and Art taught by Genius can please,
Where each breeze seems to whisper, "Hence sadness and care,
"And come mid Elysium soft pleasures to share."
Should you ask, if the heart here a sorrow could own?
Sweet Echo, repeating, would seem to say "None."
Nor ever will Echo her fond error know,
So silently Sorrow has wander'd at Stowe.

Here each Muse, and each Grace, each Virtue may rove,
And all find some shrine, or some temple, or grove;
For Cobham's sole wish was, they never should roam,
But deign to consider his Stowe as their HOME.


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Combined every charm that could touch every heart,
Where Fancy, or Genius, or Taste have a part,
Then who could believe that a tear could e'er flow,
The Stranger be sad and be silent at Stowe?

Here Glory again from his triumphs may rest,
Already the Temple of Victory's drest;
And laurels more bright, who may win from renown
Than those which the Temple of Victory crown?
While Venus rewards still can offer more sweet,
Her myrtles may strew at the conqueror's feet.
Ah! say, in such scenes who a sorrow could know?
Yet slow stole the tear from the Stranger at Stowe.


Page 38

SYMPATHY.

AH ! I said to my heart, "Go to sleep,"
    While in Lethe I bathed every wound,
Then set Reason her vigils to keep,
    And to guard it from dangers around.

Long softly entranced had it lain,
    Or to Friendship or Love both unknown
For their efforts I check'd, nor in vain,
    Lest a throb or a sigh it might own.

For each oft, alas! had it bled,
    Disappointment had barb'd every dart
And Peace had with Happiness fled,
    Ere to sleep I devoted my heart.


Page 39

Yet again it awoke from its dream
    With a touch, O how gentle and bland!
It the wand of enchantment might seem,
    But I FELT it was SYMPATHY'S hand.

"Ah! then mine be the triumph, mine own,"
    Thus softly she sigh'd to my heart,
"Can your woes be unpitied, unknown,
    "When I claim more than half as my part?"

Then bid Reason her vigils to cease,
    Or to sleep she may quietly go;
For though Reason may oft guard your peace,
    Every JOY you to SYMPATHY owe.


Page 40

[ROSE LEAVES]

ON seeing a profusion of rose leaves, it occurred to the Author's fancy, that by filling pillows with flowers, their influence might extend according to their different virtues, real or fictitious, either to the heart or imagination of the person who reposed on them.

tHE wearied warrior from the fight
Retires, and oft at closing night,
Reckless of her who wears the willow,
Makes of his faithful shield a pillow.

The sea-boy, when the storm blows loud,
A shelter finds beneath the shroud,
Yet haply sinks into the billow
Ere he has known a softer pillow.

But here we offer to your view
Charms, through each coming night, still new;
For every wearied head a pillow
Where threats no sword, nor stormy billow.


Page 41

here Sorrow sleeps, and softly breathes,
Encircled in Lethean wreaths;
Nor dreams of shades o'erhung with willow,
For soothing poppies grace her pillow.

Here anxious Love shall gently rest,
And feeling hearts, in visions blest,
Untost by Passions' stormy billow,
Of thornless roses find a pillow.


Page 42

ON A FLOWER GATHERED IN POPE'S GARDEN, AT HIS
CELEBRATED VILLA AT TWICKENHAM.

FORGIVE me, ah! forgive me, beauteous flower,
    That thus I bear thee from thy sacred home,
A home where every Muse has wove her bower,
    And Genius loved beneath their shade to roam.
Nor rude nor sacrilegious deem that hand,
    Which raptured takes thee from thy 'sociates round,
Though trembling, blushing, all the blooming band
    In gentle whispers say, "'Tis hallow'd ground."
"'Tis this, the charm," exclaim'd I undismay'd,
    "That led my footsteps to this sacred scene;
"At eve that bids me seek this classic shade,
    "And fondly wander where your Pope has been.
"Yet ah! farewel! farewel each muse and bower,
    "Grotto and river, take my latest sigh;
"Like some blest relic will I keep this flower,
    "And on this bosom only shall it die."


Page 43

RESIDENCES OF GENIUS.

DEEPLY interesting must every spot be to those who possess the slightest portion of taste, feeling, or curiosity, which has been consecrated by the residence of superior genius.

And, a traveller of this description will rather run the risk of being benighted in a forest, or even be robbed by banditti, than refrain from visiting the abode of the philosopher or poet. It is immaterial if a cottage or embellished home, his farm or his hermitage, a superior mind will give consequence and dignity to either.

Even the longest journeys have been often


Page 44

made for the express purpose of enjoying this gratification. Every thing is interesting; his house, his garden, his favourite walk, his fayourite seat, the tree whose branches waved unconscious over his head, the rivulet that murmured at his feet. We drink with transport of its waters as of a sacred spring; every thing engages the attention, and interests the imagination; and if he has ceased to exist, how tender and how touching the regret which mixes with our thoughts and feelings!

It is a source of pensive pleasure rarely equalled; it is the MEED which the HEART bestows on GENIUS.

If such then be the sensations which scenes


Page 45

these awaken, ah! why is the residence of immortal Pope razed even to the ground?

O England! O my country! is our sensibility lost, annihilated? Is the abode of sublime inspiration no longer sacred, no longer consecrated to refined and feeling hearts, to pure and enlightened minds for ever?


Page 46

THE OLIVE WOOD.

OCCASIONED BY HEARING THAT A BATTLE HAD BEEN
FOUGHT ON THE CONTINENT IN AND NEAR A WOOD
OF OLIVES.

ALONG the wood, and light upon the breeze,
Sweet Concord whisper'd her soft harmonies,
And sung ærial hymns at evening's close,
Till all was hush'd in still and calm repose.
When lo! a solemn murmur through the wood
Sudden arose, and midst the foliage stood
The Goddess Peace. Roused with the quick alarm,
She came to guard her favourite haunt from harm;
For, as she sweetly slept amid the shade
'Neath a green canopy of olive made,
A blood-stain'd banner waved around her head,
And instant tinged each leaf and branch with red.


Page 47

"Ah me!" she cried "will War nor ever cease?
"For ever must it chase the sleep of Peace?
"Here, even here, in this my loved retreat,
"Must I the horrors of the battle meet?
"Must I in this my cherish'd loved domain
"Hear but the wounded, and but view the slain?
"O all ye powers who succour human life,
"Grant me to quell this War's inhuman strife!"

Then from on high an ample branch she tore,
And straight the quick-form'd wreaths in haste she bore
To each opposing chief; then graceful said,
As the wreathed foliage at their feet she laid,
"O spare these horrors in this hallow'd wood,
"Nor bathe the haunts of Peace in human blood!


Page 48

"Take these meek offerings, bid this warfare cease,
"For every leaf that moves, here whispers--Peace!
"O take these olive wreaths your brows to bind;
"These sacred boughs were rear'd to BLESS MANKIND. "

Resistless was her speech, her form, her air,
So merciful, so mild, so heavenly fair!
The Goddess conquer'd, saw the battle cease,
While every breeze that blew soft whisper'd--Peace.


Page 49

SUB ROSA.

HAVING PROMISED TO WRITE A FEW LINES ON ANY
GIVEN MOTTO, THE ABOVE WAS CHOSEN.

I KNOW not what whim has your fancy possest,
If serious you speak, or are only in jest,
When this of all mottos you think is the best,
          Sub Rosa.
In the mirror of truth, prithee say, is it shown?
Or is it but guess'd by your fancy alone,
That pleasure, true pleasure, can only be known
          Sub Rosa?


Page 50

O haste then, O hasten to yon blooming bower,
And carefully bring me this magical flower;
This secret to prove of such wonderful power--
          Sub Rosa.
Young Love, listening near, heard the order I gave;
And drest as a Page, he, a sly little knave,
Stole soft, for he dared not a feather to wave,
          Sub Rosa.
But when to the bower of roses he came,
What joy fillI'd his heart! Oh, it wanted a name!
For hetriumphs in mischief when shelter'd from shame
          Sub Rosa.
He skipp'd and he revel'd the roses among,
Cried "This flower's too faded, and that bud's too young,"
Whilst in anger the leaves of another he flung
          Sub Rosa.


Page 51

As still he went on, cull'd a leaf or a flower,
And doubting what proof he should give of his power,
Fair Venus his mother appear'd in the bower
          Sub Rosa.
"Dear Boy," she exclaim'd, "as a proof of thy art,
"Of thy power to subdue when most guarded the heart,
"Instead of a thorn, place a sharp-pointed dart,
          "Sub Rosa."
This exquisite mischief was form'd to delight:
He kiss'd her in rapture, and swift took his flight,
And I scarce held the gift, ere he hid from my sight
          Sub Rosa.
There watch'd he in ambush the proof of his art,
As the beautiful flower I press'd to my heart:
Yet I touch'd but the leaves, so felt not the dart
          Sub Rosa.


Page 52

To think by his art he had dealt me a wound,
He laugh'd; but the urchin I traced by the sound,
And, to punish his tricks, the young miscreant bound
          Sub Rosa.
Though sweet are his fetters, and silken his chain,
Yet the rash little knave still dares to complain;
For his arrow he left, and can never regain,
          Sub Rosa.


Page 53

LINES WOUND AROUND THE POLE OF A TENT IN MY
GARDEN.

FEAR not, ye tenants of these peaceful shades,
    Nor, whispering zephyrs, tremble mid the trees;
Shrink not, ye flowers, nordroop your blushing heads,
    But yield your fragrance to the passing breeze.

Fear not, ye shades! though hostile be my name;
    Though in far other scenes t'was mine to dwell:
Know, I for you have quitted WAR and FAME ,
    And lonely come to be a HERMIT'S CELL.

Come then, ye trees, and shelter me around,
    And o'er my head your waving foliage bend;
Let me with ivy, moss, and flowers be crown'd,
    For I of Solitude am now the friend.


Page 54

Though long enamour'd of her soothing charms,
    Yet not to me her smile was e'er reveal'd;
She flies affrlghted from the din of arms,
    Nor MARS could win her to yon tented field.

He whom I served, alas! in battle slain,
    Forlorn, deserted, mournful was my doom;
I fled in sorrow from the ensanguined plain,
    But left a laurel for the warrior's tomb.

Long, long, I journey'd, over waste and wild,
    O'er mountain bleak, and many a tangled dell,
Whilst Solitude alone my way beguiled,
    With hope to woo her in the Hermit's cell.

Come then, ye welcome shades, and close me round,
    Wide o'er my head your waving foliage bend;
Let me with ivy, moss, and flowers be crown'd,
    For here with Solitude my days shall end.


Page 55

THE WANDERER'S
VISIT TO STOURHEAD, THE CELEBRATED GARDENS OF
SIR R. C. HOARE, BART.

WHERE'ER amid these classic scenes I rove,
By lake or lawn, through gloomy grot or grove;
Or, in some solemn temple's sacred bound,
I muse of other times, to the soft sound
Of falling waters; still, where'er I turn,
Some lofty God, or laureled Hero's urn,
To Memory's view, deeds of renown restore,
And o'er the soul energic spirits pour.

    Yet pass we on; for though I stray'd to greet
These lovely scenes, with wandering pilgrim feet,
Yet came I not with critic eye to trace
The various beauties of this favour'd place,


Page 56

Where Art and Nature gracefully combine,
And with Armidian 'chantments form each line;
Where oft the Muse' has thrown her soft regard,
And waked these Echoes, as her sweet reward.

Yet might the Genius of the garden say,
"What charm has lured the Wanderer from his way?
"Haply devotion has the Pilgrim led,
"And to yon convent are his footsteps sped;
"Or 'neath that modest garb, and meek attire,
"There glows a spark of our OWN ALFRED'S fire.
"Should my divining spirit say aright,
"The latent embers sudden bring to light,
"Hie onward still, great Alfred's Tower you'll find,
"Associate meet for the aspiring mind!"
"A conscious blush the Stranger's cheek might own,
"But such as Alfred would himself have known.


Page 57

Yet still conceal'd beneath the Pilgrim's dress,
He came, he said, if not for happiness,
At least to sooth the Wanderer's lonely hour,
And breathe his sighs along the beauteous Stour.


Page 58

THE RUINED MANSION.

FROM the lone common's drear and rugged scene,
Where nought save furze aud wild flowers deck the green,
Turn we awhile to yon dark vista's shade,
Where storms and time the frequent breach have made,
And rudely bent each venerable tree,
Which shelter'd once a parent's infancy.
Dear, loved retreat! how oft, this spot to gain,
My wandering feet have sought, yet sought in vain!
For here a tender mother's youth was rear'd,
Beloved when living, and when dead revered!
Here in seclusion deep her life defined
What virtue was; and with superior mind,


Page 59

Far from the world, above that world she soar'd,
And oft the paths of science sweet explored.
Ah! might her honour'd shade now wander near,
Her smile would chase this sadly soothing tear,
And haply bid me hope, nor long to roam,
But from the Ruin point a brighter Home.


Page 60

OUR NATIVE HOME.

MY Native Home! No words ever formed a union more tender and affecting than these, in all ages, all countries, and all hearts.

As a source of PENSIVE PLEASURE, none will ever exceed or perhaps stand in competition with them. My Native Home! what a stream of soft recollections flow as it were spontaneously at the very sound! What heart ever became so callous, what nerves so blunted by an intercourse with the world, as to be rendered totally insensible to its endearing influence?

But, alas! with what various feelings and impressions do we hear it pronounced! These are


Page 61

wholly influenced by the changes which circumstances and events may have made in our fate since we were last destined to revisit it. Yet even those, whose lot in life has been the most fortunate, will rarely revert to it, even in thought, without blending a sigh with the REMEMBRANCE.

The Sailor, the Soldier, the Traveller by choice, the lonely Wanderer from necessity, even the Peasant, who imagined the untried world a paradise, all, all unite in the same sympathy; and the Hero who has gathered his laurels in a foreign soil prizes them more dearly, because they are destined to adorn his Native Home.

That love of their country, that sighing after it, and drooping for its loss, that maladie du


Page 62

pays , so much talked of as an amiable trait of national character so peculiar to the Swiss, perhaps is in a great degree to be atributed to the wonderfully romantic and interesting scenery of their country, and the strong and early impressions its sublime features have made on the imagination.

All other countries to them appear flat and insipid, however embellished by art, and they become tired and disgusted in proportion as they are attached to scenes so very much the reverse. The cultivated level may produce local and affectionate remembrances; but it is the mist-clad mountain, the dark forest, the rugged precipice, and the rushing torrent, that engenders the enthusiast one; and in the Swiss views are


Page 63

combined a thousand romantic singularities which seem to leave a whole nation unconsoled for their loss, not forgetting the Genius of the scene, the "mountain nymph with printless feet, sweet Liberty."

How touching is the trait of this suddenly awakened feeling, which is related in De Lille's Jardins, of the exquisite sensibility of Potaveri, on discovering in the King's gardens a shrub from Otaheite! In a moment he flies to embrace it with tears of joy, and with a voice of rapture exclaims, Oh! my Country! my dear Country! and while pressing it to his heart, seems for an instant restored to his Native Home.

But what makes the more peculiar interest


Page 64

of this subject, is that affecting combination of local circumstances, which are so simple and so apparently trifling in the detail, yet so tenderly impressive in the reality.

All those places which have the charm of novelty to recommend them are merely gratifying to curiosity; but in the well-remembered scenes of our. Native Home, when revisited after a long lapse of years, every thing is accompanied by a retrospective and touching interest indelibly impressed on the imagination and the heart. "'Tis the memory of former times, that comes like the evening sun upon the soul."


Page 65

SHAKESPEARE.

O SHAKESPEARE ! pride of Albion! Bard sublime!
Destined to charm the world in after-time,
And like the sun, in each succeeding age,
Pour light and warmth around the living stage,
Oft has thy power some nobler soul inspired,
And with thine Ariel's touch his bosom fired!
A touch that bade thy long-loved Garrick show
All that the heart e'er own'd of joy, or woe.


Page 66

ON AN ACTOR.

THERE are who buskin'd stalk, whose whine or rave
Might sleeping Nature wake from out her grave;
There are, Thalia! who thy art profess,
Yet mirth still ever deck in folly's dress.
From these we turn to one whose magic art
Can raise each passion of the feeling heart;
Who with a skill'd musician's master hand
Can tune each string at Harmony's command;
So touch on sorrow, with a strain so deep,
We only breathe to sigh! and hear, to weep!
Yet change the key, 'tis rapture! 'tis delight,

[This and the following two lines are connected by a large brace in the right margin of the original printed edition.]


'Tis passion elegant, and gay and light;
All that can charm the soul, or please the sight.


Page 67

IMPROMPTU

ON THE FITTING UP OF THE NEW BATH THEATRE,
WHICH WAS OF TOO GLARING A RED: MRS, EDWIN
THERE WAS THE FAVOURITE COMIC ACTRESS.

VAINLY I thought that in this brilliant scene
The favour'd muse, gay Comedy, had been;
That here her wit, her grace, her witching smile,
Would steal away all hearts, all cares beguile.
But, Heavens! look round! of her no traits
Thalia's fled, Melpomene is here;
Where'er I turn, above, below, each side,
Of tragic blood behold a crimson tide;
The Loves and Graces are in terror fled,
Lest they like Pharaoh's host be drown'd in red.


Page 68

ON SEEING THE ROSCIUS FOR THE FIRST TIME IN
THE PLAY OF DOUGLAS.

IN Scottish garb, and shepherd's humble guise,
At length the Roscius met these longing eyes.
Anxious to judge if fashion or if truth
Had thrown its radiance round this favour'd youth,
Opinion, prejudice, their veil aside
I drew, and feeling Nature took for guide.
Nursed in a cot, 'neath the bleak mountain's brow,
And hermit-taught, arms and the world to know,
Young Norval came, in native virtue proud,
His soul a mountain! though his garb a cloud;
No feign'd affections swell his ardent breast,
'Tis Douglas! 't is the Hero stands confest.


Page 69

[Ill-assorted Unions]

ON the disappointments which we often experience in the
apparently ill assorted union of Body and Mind, particular-
ly with respect to Authors; as we are too apt to imagine the face
and figure the symbols of their elegant writings.

O GENIUS ! in what hapless forms unmeet
Dost thou infold each rich and mental sweet,
Like Vestal beauty in the cloister found,
Or captive noble in some cavern bound!
Can Nature jealous owe to thee despite,
Fearing thy splendour may surpass her light?
Oh, no: an ingrate can she never prove,
For Genius decks her by the hands of Love;
Adorns, adores her, would himself expire,
Were not his soul imbued with Nature's fire.
This strange ænigma then we ne'er may solve,
While time does round this varied earth revolve.
Yet this I know--there is one form alone,
Where both unite to make that form their throne.


Page 70

SONNET.

NE'ER can the lay that on my couch I breathe,
    Tell thee the gratitude my bosom feels;
    Nor, while disease and languor o'er me steals,
Attempt with powerless hand the votive wreath.
Resemblance to my fainting form may own
    Such tender leaves as yields the early spring;
    But for my grateful heart, O hither bring
The flowers that summer hangs on Flora's throne.
And yet how weak the emblem! E'en were they laid
    Upon thy breast, and there awhile did bloom,
    Alas! its warmth too soon would prove a tomb,
Whilst that within my heart can never fade.
Can I in nature then no emblem find,
Which sweetly, truly speaks the grateful mind?


Page 71

[WESTMINSTER ABBEY]

WRITTEN WITH A PENCIL IN ONE OF THE AISLES OF
WESTMINSTER ABBEY, WHERE I HAD TAKEN SHELTER
FROM THE EXCESSIVE BRIGHTNESS AND HEAT OF
THE DAY.

BENEATH these solemn shades, this pile sublime,
This splendid record of the lapse of time,
Hid from the garish day, soft let us tread,
And musing wander amid heroes dead.
Yet not to heroes only is the bust
And each proud trophy raised,--behold the just,
The great, the good, the wise a ll here unite,
And kindred virtues pour upon the sight.
Here patent science, heaven-born genius sleep,
Here soul-touch'd tablets on which seraphs weep.
Where'er I pensive step, or look, or turn,
Some drooping statue points the much-loved urn:
Yet bland affection, too, still dries her tear
When laurel'd glory lays the hero here.


Page 72

ABBEYS AND CATHEDRALS.

AMONG the powerful impressions which for the time so greatly influence the feelings, there is none more awfully and generally experienced than on the entrance into a fine Abbey or Cathedral, which with some is capable of producing so sublime a pleasure, and so powerfully awakens the curiosity and interest, that it may be almost styled a passion. But it is reserved for hearts of profound sensibility, and in whom the love of the Supreme Being is a sentiment interwoven with their souls, to taste this pleasure in all its purity

A solitary wanderer of this description, whose


Page 73

heart has been touched by sorrow destined to be shut up in his own bosom, is of all others the most calculated to experience from such scenes a pensive and congenial pleasure, proceeding from the most refined and elevated part of his nature.

Escaping from the noise, hustle, and uninteresting occupations of common life, in which his feelings can take no part, every circumstance here surrounding him, by the contrast it affords, has an increased effect.

An old verger attends with bent and fragile form, pale countenance, and hollow eye, which is shaded by a few scattered locks silvered by the hand of Time, and which indicate that he


Page 74

is on the brink of relinquishing his employment for ever. The moment he enters the sacred precincts he uncovers his head: this simple action, scarcely observed at any other time, affects him differently; it seems the involuntary influence of the scene; the respect and homage of the heart alone.

He shuts the massive door; and, as its echoes reverberate through the edifice, the outward world is at once excluded, and the stranger is devoted to the sensations he already begins to experience. At every step they increase and awaken; the sound of their feet, the sound of the voice, every thing combines to affect him; he dreads even the slightest interruption that might tend to destroy the impressions w'hich the


Page 75

solemnity of the scene has already produced. He considers the Divine Essence as diffused through the whole church, and which seems to say GOD is HERE.

The immense height of the fretted roof; the high arched windows, painted with the history of Saints; the fine perspective formed by the ranges of pillars which divide the aisles; the highly ornamented chapels, tombs, and monuments, "above, beneath, and all around;"--the interesting legends handed down from ages past, which the venerable verger from time to time relates of days that are gone, may truly be said, in the words of the bard, to be "pleasant, and mournful to the soul."


Page 76

The organ next attracts attention,--that gigantic, noble, and appropriate instrument, consecrated to God, and destined to raise the soul to HIM who made it. The mitred pulpit hung with draperies of velvet and gold, to give outward dignity to him who is destined to expound from thence the sublime truths of our religion; till proceeding onward, at length they approach the altar.

Here the impressions are all more concentrated, more sacred; the stranger trembles, sighs, shudders; those thoughts which had fled to heaven, are now again returned to earth. The verger alarmed, approaches, speaks; the stranger hears him not, for he sees the spot which awakens all his sorrows, where he had


Page 77

plighted his vows to one beloved, lamented, gone for ever! He leans against the railing which surrounds the altar; then kneels, and addresses a low-breathed prayer to Heaven.    He looks up, and, as he does so, a sudden. stream of light, passing through the fine Gothic window. above, falls full upon an exquisite painting by one of the finest masters. He beholds our Saviour's suffering on the cross! Whata revolution takes place in his feelings! A hectic flush crosses his cheek, his spirit is chastened, his own sorrows are forgotten, he blushes to have felt them; his eyes are bent to the ground, he humbles himself, and again arises, if not con. soled, at least resigned.

He again slowly follows his venerable guide,


Page 78

repasses the whole length of the Cathedral; and at the extremity of one of the aisles he is attracted by a monument, apparently of recent construction, and of peculiar elegance and simplicity.

It was of virgin marble; and the design was an urn half shaded by a veil, half by a broken lily. On a small tablet beneath was an inscription, which the stranger approached to read; but in breathless agitation instantly exclaimed 'O Heaven, how wonderful!'--It was to the memory of Matilda, the name of her he lamented.

His bosom-wound is again opened, and bleeds in thought afresh; but almost at the


Page 79

same moment the organ is softly touched and a fine service begun; which swelling into a solemn but beautiful harmony, tears soon relieved his oppressed heart. It was congenial to his feelings, and his soul was soothed.

O say what hall of banquet, what temple of luxury, can produce effects like these* ?

* The little incident which is wove here into the general feeling is no fiction.


Page 80

TO THE MEMORY OF A LADY OF DISTINCTION.

"O TELL me! say, who are yon pensive train .
"That crown'd with cypress slowly tread the plain?"
"Ah! know you not?" the wondering stranger said,
"The Muses mourn their long-loved sister dead.
"See, to yon sacred grove they bend their way,
"And, heavenly sweet! chant their funereal lay,
"While each the laurel, bay, or myrtle wave,
"And some fond trophy bear to deck her grave."

Then with distracted air, and eye of fire,
Bathing in bitter tears his unstrung lyre,
Lo Genius comes! whom grief and anguish rend,
For he, alas! has lost his dearest friend.


Page 81

He, too, to deck her tomb, prepares a wreath,
But in the tears of Genius steeps each leaf.
"Oh! envied fate!" the enthusiast here may cry,
"Who to be so lamented would not die?"

Yet deeper woes her sable bier surround.
Look at yon pensive group in sorrow drowned!
In these no visionary feelings blend;
No Poet's dreams their 'airy nothings' lend;
The grateful heart, the cherish'd orphan's prayer,
The poor man's blessing, and his tears, are there
And high-soul'd Virtue, to misfortune driven,
Who in her pity found an earlier heaven.

But, Oh! domestic Sorrow! who shall raise
Thy sacred veil? Ah no! these ruder lays,


Page 82

Dare not profane the tender wounded mind,
Where Nature's dearest sympathies are twined.
Enough of grief this feeling heart has known,
To judge of others' sorrows by its own.
The illustrious mourners pass in silence by,
Save from each eye a tear, each breast a sigh.

From yonder sacred grove's recess profound,
With triple plume, and looks that seek the ground,
Lo! still another comes! with noble mien,
And graceful step, to close the solemn scene;
Nor heeds the Muses' melancholy train,
Who as he passes touch a softer strain.
He slow moves on, regardless in his grief;
Nor Genius nor the Muse can yield relief.
"O envied fate!" the proudest here may cry;
"Who to be so lamented would not die?"


Page 83

ANTICIPATION.

ELEGIAC STANZAS FOUND AMID THE RUINS OF A CELEBRATED ABBEY* .

SHOULD e'er to view this Abbey's ruin'd pile
    Some fond Enthusiast come with pilgrim feet,
Beneath this ivied arch Oh! stay awhile!
    Where dwelt Elffrida--still her poet meet.

He first within this consecrated wall
    Drew inspiration from each scene around;
Sage Learning swift obey'd his ardent call,
    While Genius and the Muse his temples bound.

* The idea suggested by hearing a gentleman express a wish of being buried under the last remaining Gothic arch of *** Abbey.


Page 84

It was his hope, when in yon world he stay'd,
    Where soft affections shared his feeling heart,
Should Heaven demand the debt to Nature paid,
    His long-loved Abbey might a tomb impart.

Here oft does some fair form, with name unknown,
    By Luna's shadowy, trembling light appear;
And, bending o'er this cold and moss-clad stone,
    Embalm her poet's grave with love's fond tear.

Here, as succeeding suns their sweets expand,
    And soft winds sigh these silent shades among,
Fresh flowers Elfrida strews with unseen hand
    While choral virgins raise their sacred song.


Page 85

IMPROMPTU,

ON READING THE ACCOUNT OF THE DEATH OF LORD
NELSON.

"VICTORY! Victory!" Oh! hark again!
The shouts of triumph thunder o'er the main.
She glorious comes; yet ah! upon her breast
Behold the hero godlike Nelson rest:
"Let me," full oft he said, with soul of fire,
"Oh! let me on her bosom sweet expire!"
Glory applauded as the wish was given,
And swift, by seraphs' tears, was register'd in heaven.


Page 86

TO THE MEMORY OF HER WHO IS GONE FOR EVER.

DENIED upon thy sacred urn to mourn,
    To breathe the sigh, or pour affection's tear,
Alas! from earthly ties thy spirit's torn,
    Nor Sorrow soothes her griefs upon thy bier.
Yet Fancy ever haunts each distant scene,
    Treads the lone aisle, and bends upon thy grave;
While pitying angels weep thy fate unseen,
    And flowers immortal all around it wave.
The virtues which thy living form enshrined,
    That breathed so sweet, with such unfading bloom,
By heaven exchanged, shall with thy name be twined,
    And shed their hallowed odours o'er thy tomb.


Page 87

WRITTEN ON READING THE LATE ACCOUNTS FROM THE
CONTINENT INCLUDING THE DEATH OF GALLANT
GENERAL MOORE.

SONNET.

AGAIN around Britannia's pensive brow
    Bright Glory binds the fresh though blood-stain'd wreath,
    And thickly weaves it, as to hide beneath
The tears for many a Hero fallen that flow. Here
Chill sorrow pales her cheek, not fear, Oh no!
    Britannia ne'er knew fear; no, not e'en death
    Could mingle fear, though with her latest breath.
Her MOORE she MOURNS , now in HER CAUSE LAID LOW;
For poor Iberia too she heaves a sigh.
    Oh! who could bear to see such spirits brave,
Oppress'd by power, and wrong, and tyranny,
    And not hold out the friendly hand to save
A Nation, where are souls too great! too high!
    For Liberty to find an early grave.


Page 88

IMPROMPTU.

ON READING MR. GELL'S TROY.

THOSE ardent feelings in thy bosom bred,
Which bade the Pilgrim trace the Hero dead;
Taught him to mourn the once proud city's doom,
And breathe a sigh upon the Warrior's tomb;
Show that true glory, to no age confined,
Is still the noblest passion of the mind.
Then let the Poet point where Heroes fell,
While Fame her fairest wreaths shall bind for GELL.


Page 89

THE GRAVES OF HEROES.

"BEHOLD that field, O Carthen! Many a green
"hill rises there, with mossy stones and rust-
"ling grass." Ossian.

What words can speak, what hand delineate, the feelings which fill the hearts of those who bend over the GRAVES of HEROES! It is elevation! tenderness! regret! a combination of all that is pleasing, affecting, beautiful and sublime.

It is a circumstance that occassions that ele. vation of mind, which raises us beyond the level of common life, and makes us proud of


Page 90

our humanity! We forget our own inferiority, in the swell of the soul which it produces; and while memory rapidly runs back, and traces almost with instantaneous thought the glories of the past, all seems summed up in the bursting ebullition, when we exclaim, "This was indeed a Hero!"

A pause succeeds; again we reflect, we sigh; the instability of all human affairs presents itself to our minds; we compare the present with the past; we bend in silence over the sod, and kiss with reverence the sacred earth, now blended with the dust of him "whose laurels are gathered in heaven." We linger over the spot; and if a wild-flower springs up among the grass, the hand of sensibility will seize, and, while


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pressing it to its bosom, deem that it possesses a treasure beyond all price; since, What gem that ever shed its radiance from the regalia of kings can affect the soul, like the solitary flower that blooms on the grave of the Hero!


Page 92

IMPROMPTU.

ON READING THE ACCOUNT OF THE DEATH OF
CHARLES FOX.

O LIBERTY ! who now shall dry thy tear?
    Ah! who shall heal thy bosom's bleeding wound
Lo! England weeps upon her Patriot's bier,
    Nor finds his equal in her Empire's bound.


Page 93

EPITAPH

INSCRIBED ON A PLAIN TABLET OF WHITE MARBLE.

WHAT though no Hero here with lofty name,
No trophied tablet give his deeds to fame,
O Stranger, pass not on regardless by,
But on this simple record breathe a sigh
O'er one to Science and his Country dear;
And all "the charities of life" are here.


Page 94

[IVY LEAVES]

OCCASIONED BY SOME IVY LEAVES BEING WORN IN
THE BOSOM OF A FRIEND; AND MEANT AS AN
ANSWER TO A BEAUTIFUL AIR OF DOCTOR HAR-
RINGTON'S.

"WIND , gentle evergreen!" and though around
No Poet's tomb your beauteous leaves are bound,
Yet shall their foliage still more envied prove
When twined around the heart of her I love;
And the famed Poet* , could he breathe anew,
His laurels gladly would resign for you.

* Sophocles.


Page 95

[BURNS]

BURNS, THE SCOTTISH BARD, HAVING OBTAINED PER-
MISSION TO PLACE A HEAD-STONE AT THE NEGLECTED
GRAVE OF FERGUSON, HE ADDED THE FOLLOWING
INSCRIPTION.

"No sculptured marble here, or pompous lay,
    "No storied urn or animated bust,--
"This simple stone directs pale Scotia's way
    "To pour her sorrows o'er her Poet's dust."


Page 96

AFTER SCOTLAND BEGAN TO MOURN OVER HER LA-
   MENTED BURNS, THE FOLLOWING STANZAS WERE
   WRITTEN ON THE SAME STONE WITH A PENCIL.

ADDRESSED TO SCOTLAND.

THIS humble record Sympathy has rear'd
To kindred Genius by the Muse endear'd,
Well may the tribute of thy sorrows claim:
    But while thy Poet's name shall live,
    The hand that placed it here will give
* This stone to Fame.

* The traveller shall lay him by thy side,
    Thy whistling moss shall sound in his dreams,
    The days that are past shall return. Ossian. When the darkened moon is rolled over his head, our shadowy forms may come.


Page 97

Yet ah! pale Scotia! now indeed forlorn,
Who NOW shall bind with flowers so fair thy thorn?
Who point the path where thy loved Poet lies?
    Since he who taught thy steps to meet
    This lowly grave, is fled to greet
        His native skies.

Yes! he is gone, the Bard so loved, admired,
By Heaven's Promethean spark alone inspired!
Proud of her children, Scotia call'd him one,
    But Genius ne'er will yield his claim;
    Nursed in thy upland chill domain,
        Burns was his son.


Page 98

TO THE MEMORY OF LIEUTENANT-COLONEL *****,
A BRAVE, BELOVED, AND LAMENTED BROTHER.

WHILE Britain's valiant chiefs exulting bore
The spoils of conquest to their native shore;
Ah! gallant youth! nor native shore, nor friend,
Shall e'er to thee their welcome sight extend.
Far on a hostile coast thy body lies,
Wash'd by rude waves, or scorch'd by sultry skies.


Page 99

MEMORIALS IN DOMESTIC SCENES.

THAT "pleasure is of pensive kind," nothing can be a stronger or more impressive proof, than the number of monuments which are raised to the memory of individuals in private gardens, parks, and domains. Scarcely one will be found of any extent or beauty, which has not its pillar, temple, or cenotaph, dedicated to some public character, or private friend; as if it were the pleasure of the owner to eternise his gratitude, admiration, or regret, by giving them some pleasing object to feed upon; and which will ever form, to the feeling heart, the most interesting part of the scene.


Page 100

But this pensive source of pleasure comes with all its luxury of tender recollections, when the memorial, (perhaps merely' an urn,) on which the hand of Genius has inscribed a few expressive lines, is so situated that it can be visited unperceived by others; surrounded by deep shades, and remote from all intrusion.

But many succeeding moons must have shed their soft beams over the scene, and suns have performed their wonted revolutions, ere the wounded bosom of the friend can visit it without pain. The moss must already have begun to cover the stone, and the foliage to hide it from common eyes, ere this period will have arrived.


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All the bitterness of grief must be past, and only that tender sorrow which affection loves to cherish in its bosom left;--like as the mark impressed in the sand remains, which the rolling wave has softened, but has not yet effaced.

But local circumstances, and those combinations of thought, which the changes of the varying seasons occasion, will very much affect, and influence our feelings; and in autumn, and at the approach of winter, blend much of sadness with the scene. The falling of the rustling leaves, blown and scattered by the winds around, always speak TOO PLAINLY of PAST HAPPINESS; and when we mourn over the youthful and the brave, when we can say in the words of the bard, "Death has come like the blast of the


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"Desert, and laid thy green head low; when the spring returns, but no leaves of thine appear:" alas! when thoughts like these press upon the heart, the low sighing of the wind sounds like the voice of sympathy, and imagination almost embodies the very air which surrounds us, with the spirit of the Friend we mourn.


Page 103

WRITTEN IN THE DESERTED MANSION OF SIR JAMES
THORNHILL, THE CELEBRATED PAINTER.

TASTE , Science, Genius, are ye ever fled
From these lone halls, and with your votary dead?
Must I in vain my pensive search extend,
In vain my footsteps through yon gallery bend?
Must on these walls alone my FANCY trace
The Hero, Statesman, beauty, wit, or grace?
Those attic hours Time on his bright wings bore,
Ah! not her sweet illusions can restore.
Science, nor Taste nor Genius here are found,
Sad Desolation spreads her ruin round.
Might they my call attend, their reign resume,
What change would instant fill each lonely room!
Gay Elegance should here unfetter'd roam,
And Thornhill's shade smile on his once-loved home.


Page 104

WRITTEN AT THE SAME PLACE SOME YEARS AFTER, ON
LEARNING THAT THE PRECEDING LINES HAD IN-
DUCED A PERSON OF FEELING AND TASTE TO TAKE
A JOURNEY ON PURPOSE TO VISIT IT.

YES ! I again revisit these lone halls,
    Where once my pencil pensive sketches drew,
As the eye mused along thee mould'ring walls,
    And contrast deepen'd ev'ry shade and hue.
Nor has Time held his desolating hand,
    But mark'd his progress every passing year;
And yet again these halls a sigh demand,
    For Sympathy has silent wander'd here.
Yes! these faint traces on the inquiring mind
    Raised a soft wish those sadden'd scenes to view;
And Thornhill's shade, low murmuring in the wind,
    Again has whisper'd, Child of Taste! adieu!


Page 105

SORROW'S FRIEND.

PATIENCE , pale maid! that near my beating heart
    Dost drooping sit, and oft with gentle hand
Wilt, softly stealing o'er my breast, impart
    Thy healing balms, with tender soothing bland!
Yet the warm tear still trembles on my cheek,
    Deep swells the sigh that will not be supprest:
Ah! nor thy plaintive look, nor accents meek,
    Can still the anguish of the feeling breast.
Yet, silent mourner, I entreat thy stay;
    Still to my soul thy gentle soothing lend;
Nor let misfortune ever know that day
When Patience ceases to be Sorrow's friend.


Page 106

THE VIOLET'S COMPLAINT TO NATURE.

Occasioned by a Lady having presented a Gentleman, in
return for a poem, with a golden violet.  In imitation of
the ancient Provencals.

AH ! me! poor simple flower! I fondly thought,
A Poet's soul could ne'er by GOLD be bought!
Oh! I could die! to find his heart untrue,
Though all I suffer, Nature, is for YOU .
You saw me first in spring's soft bosom rest,
Then smiling clothed me in a beauteous vest;
Did each rich fold in sweetest perfume lave,
And still a lovelier, dearer charm you gave;
Bade Truthand Faith by me be ever known,
And Constancy's true colour was my own.
Alas! your lover Nature now no more!
The Poet dotes on dross, and sordid ore;
My perfume's gone, my colour now is old,
E'en your poor Violet must be drest in gold.


Page 107

TO A SNOWDROP, WHICH HAD BEEN THE SUBJECT OF A FEW ELEGANT LINES.

ALAS ! pale drooping beauty! e'en on thee
His Muse essays insidious flattery!
Thy virgin coldness feigning to adore,
He'll steal the softest drop e'er pity wore,
In silent sorrow droop and bend like thee,
Dissolved in drops of weeping sympathy;
The impassion'd tear deride which late he shed,
Vow to be near thee, would make earth his bed.
Yet ah! the traitor trust not, though he swear
The Lily coarse, and thou alone art fair!
For ere tomorrow's sun its rays disclose,
He breathes a passion to the blushing Rose.
Then mayst thou form a wreath from Fancy's loom,
Or with'ring die upon some Vestal's tomb!


Page 108

LINES ADDRESSED TO *****, ON HEARING SOME OF
HIS POEMS IN AN EVENING.

LATE as I pass'd, methought upon the air
Soft music floated, such as softens care!
Awhile it seem'd of Philomela's strain,
And yet more sweet, as some fond charm for pain.
If minds untaught her warblings wild will feel,
Deep through the soul's recesses these will steal;
For "sentiment and thonght" inform the song;
To nature, feeling, taste, the notes belong.
Sweet Bard of mournful melodies! 'tis thine
To pour upon the soul a strain divine.
Thy powers alone infuse into the heart
New sympathies, new energies impart,
Bid Genius waken from its dream supine,
And by collision catch a spark from thine.


Page 109

TO CHARLOTTE SMITH.

A FRAGMENT.

ILL -fated Charlotte, whose enlighten'd mind
Exalted Genius by true taste refined;
For whom the Loves that hail'd thy natal morn
Wove wreaths of roses, and conceal'd each thorn!
But ah! the Fates their labours discompose,
And leave the thorns, unguarded by the rose.
Yet still, to soften what they cannot change,
The Muses call thee "Sister," with thee range,
Wait on thy walks, attend thy evening hours,
Haunt all thy steps, and in thy path strew flowers!
And, since no more is left them to bestow,
Sigh o'er the sorrows, thou art doom'd to know.


Page 110

FRAGMENT OF A GARLAND INTENDED FOR MISS
OWENSON.

IF for Glorvina you would bind a wreath,
    Go cull each wild flower that on earth may grow,
In the deep vale, or hid the wood beneath,
    Up the steep cliff, or on the mountain's brow!
E'en in yon ivied Ruin's sacred fane
    Haply some solitary sweet may dwell.
O bring it hither! nor will she disdain
    The moss that softens the lone Hermit's cell.


Page 111

HAVING A COTTAGE TO LET IN A BEAUTIFUL BUT RE-
TIRED SITUATION, THE FOLLOWING LINES WERE
FIXED TO THE DOOR BY WAY OF
ADVERTISEMENT.

O! YOU , who have toil'd in you world's busy scene,
And harass'd with cares and with follies have been,
Ah! wander no more, here your sorrows shall cease,
For this, pensive Stranger, 's the COTTAGE of PEACE.
Since our youth to the wars have been destined to roam,
Sweet Peace has been scared from her long-cherish'd home.
Like the dove she is fled the fresh olive to find,
To form into wreaths, with these laurels to bind.
This humble straw roof to my care she has given,
And yon fountain and wood, are as sacred as Heaven.
'Tis here then, dear Stranger, your sorrows shall cease,
And Happiness dwell in the Cottage of Peace.


Page 112

TIME CRUEL AND KIND.

O TIME ! 'tis thou whom we despoiler call,
And only thou whom man could ne'er enthral;
Whose flight we trace not, and who waits for none,
Yet with the happy speed'st thy way alone;
Who deck'st thy wings with Beauty's softest bloom,
Then sayst to Vanity, "Behold thy doom!",
Who see'st proud cities form a mouldering heap,
And prouder princes in their ruin sweep:
While some lone watch-tower oft is pitying found,
As its bleak head thine ivy mantles round.
If then some pity dwell within thy heart,
Haply from Care, it makes thee loth to part;
And, as her sighs are borne upon the gale,
Stoop on thy wing to listen to her tale.
Yet lingering long, the mourner bids thee 'go,'
As if thy presence but increased her woe.
Nor knows the ingrate thou dost still delay,
Unseen to fly, and STEAL her TEARS AWAY.


Page 113

RUINS.

AMONG the class of pensive pleasures, which, like mournful music, soothe our feelings while they awaken our sensibility, there is none more interesting than the contemplation of Ruins.

Yet it is infinitely more easy to experience this sensation than to define its origin. Nor is it always for our happiness to look for causes when we are satisfied with the effects. But this is a subject that peculiarly awakens our curiosity and inquiry, as it is in apparent opposition to every rule by which we are in general influenced. For, if PERFECTION be in every instance the source of admiration, whether in


Page 114

Nature or Art, it is here that IMPERFECTION, nay even DESOLATION, charms; and perhaps it is much more easy to say what it is not, than to define what it is.

Decrepid age, feeble, bending, tottering, in danger of falling with the least gust of wind at every step;--or some mutilated wretch deprived of a leg or an arm;--a house half pulled down, half standing forlorn, or ravaged and black with fire;--a garden whose fences are broken, and whose walks and wonted beauties are all choked and overrun with brambles and every reptile weed;--these all are Ruins! Yet in what different forms must they appear, before they can produce any thing like pleasure to the beholder? pleasure of that pensive kind so con.


Page 115

genial to a tender heart. It is, however, of no rustic origin: the vulgar cannot experience it: the peasant, scared and overcome with superstitious fears, passes with hasty steps the spot, where the pilgrim feet of taste and feeling will linger with untired delay.

To one of this cast, a fine Gothic moss-clad ivied Ruin, whether it be abbey or baronial' castle, is an object beyoud measure interesting.

It is a beautiful record of ages past; a page of history illuminated by the pleasures of imagination; a theatre which the changing seasons and revolving years have decorated, softening every tint to harmony, and which the spectator can people with actors at his bidding. It is no


Page 116

regretted friend he mourns; no individual sorrow blends with the scene: it is a "tale of other times," united with the sympathies of our nature for the fate of the human race "now to the earth gone down."

It is Desolation clothed in the garb of beauty by the hand of Time, that fascinates his attention, and steals him from himself.

Hours uncounted pass away; the sun has set, and the rising moon still finds him on the battlement. All personal regard absorbed, danger unfelt, unthought of, every faculty is enchained by the new beauties that surround him, which the moon begins to illuminate with still more enchanting effect.


Page 117

The whole Ruin soon becomes a superb, a sublime transparency; and each broken pillar and Gothic arch appears hung with drooping plants and ivy, waving and sighing in the evening breeze.

And could Time roll his ages back, and give the scene its original 'perfections' the soul of taste and feeling would arrest his hand, and stay his reverted step; since to its slow and gradual progression he owes that soft, contemplative, and pensive pleasure produced alone by the BEAUTY of DESOLATION.


Page 118

WRITTEN UNDER EXTREME DEPRESSION OF SPIRITS AT
A WINDOW IN WHICH WAS AN ÆOLIAN HARP.

THE Muse would softly wake some plaintive strain,
    To soothe the sorrows of the aching breast,
To lull awhile the sense of mental pain,
    And bid fair Fancy lull each care to rest.
Yet ah! in vain. Fancy with Joy is fled,
    I see her tresses waving in the wind:
No more a fragrance shall those tresses shed,
    From wreaths I wont around her head to bind.
The Muse desponding turns: denied her aid,
    To touch the lyre she pensive tries in vain.
"But hark," she cries "soft sounds each sense invade;
    "'Tis mournful music of Æolian strain."
Along the lyre the air with gentle sweep
    May with sweet Harmony some joy impart:
Yet ah! such tones the Muse herself must weep,
Form'd by the sighs that speak the bleeding heart.


Page 119

ON RETURNING FROM UNINTERESTING SOCIETY, WHEN
THE HEART IS OPPRESSED WITH SECRET SORROW.

ALAS ! then, is this wounded mind
Become unfeeling and unkind?
Can sorrow, disappointment, grief,
Find but in solitude relief?
Can each gay scene, where oft a part
I born, now but oppress my heart?
Oft from the crowd's inquiring eye
I turn to hide a tear, or sigh,
Wear in my cheek a faithless smile,
And innocent my friends beguile;
Who fondly think that nothing less
Is hid beneath, than HAPPINESS.
Oh! sweet delusion! come, impart,
EXTEND thy power and REACH Oh! reach my HEART !


Page 120

TO A FRIEND.

TO whom, alas! to whom shall this full heart
Its bursting anguish or its joys impart?
To whom, but to the soul of sympathy,
The friend whom bounteous Heaven has form'd for me?
Say, does the Earth within her richest vein
A gem so precious and so rare contain?
Not either India, could they their treasures blend,
Can yield a treasure like that gem--a Friend.
Come, of the mourner's heart thou solace blest,
And find a casket in my faithful breast;
There will I wear thee long as life is given,
And only yield thee to thy native Heaven.


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LINES.

TO him who loves whate'er is good or great,
    In the lone Cottage, or the Courts of Kings,
To view perspectively a NATION'S fate,
    Or of the heart reveal the secret springs,
Whose soul high-swelling as the Atlantic wave,
    O'er whose wide bosom blooms his native wild,
Whose deep woods shadow a long-honour'd grave,
    And shelter Liberty, great Nature's child!
With thoughts beneficent, whose views extend,
    To foster Genius, in what soil e'er found,
To give to Talent, and to Taste, a friend,
    And modest Merit with a wreath surround.
Nor does the Muse her scanty gifts impart,
    But silent scatters in his path each flower:
Her sympathy, her feeling fill his heart,
    His loved seclusion owns her soothing power.


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TO A LIVELY FRIEND WHO APPEARED OUT OF SPIRITS.

IF e'er the face with truth impart
The faithful emblem of the heart,
Ah! wherefore then is thine so changed?
Where late the laughing Graces ranged,
Alas! the pensive Sisters bind
Fresh cypress wreaths with willow twined,
And hang them on each drooping tree,
Now dear to them, since dear to thee.
Ah! let not sorrow veil that face,
But yield to joy each native grace.
E'en Flora's fairest florets fade,
Since you have sought pale Sorrow's shade.
Come! let her bowers renew their bloom,
While Friendship shares their sweet perfume.


Page 123

IMPROMPTU.

A Gentleman wishing to make his peace with a Lady,
sent as a mediator a bouquet of roses; and applied to the
Author for a few lines to bind round the stems of the flowers.
They were hastily written with a pencil.

I COME the harbinger of Peace.
Let Discord's jealous bickerings cease,
That flow, perhaps, from hearts too warm;
And though the Olive's wonted form
I bear not, may this hostage sweet,
Some favour in thy bosom meet,
And the soft blushing herald prove,
Auspicious of returning Love!
Oh! may its balmy fragrance o'er
Each sense, some dear enchantment pour,
While Zephyrs, whispering round disclose
The proudest triumph of the Rose:
"The Olive's symbol power shall cease,
"And ROSES be the PLEDGE of Peace."


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HOPE.

COME , Hope, dear stranger to this care-worn breast,
    Oh come! and be again its welcome guest!
So long, so deep thy absence I have mourn'd,
    I scarce believe thou art INDEED return'd.

ON MADAME DE SEVIGNÉ'S INKSTAND IN THE TOILET
OF THE HOLBEIN CHAMBER AT STRAWBERRY HILL.

IMPROMPTU.

DEAR Sevigné! hadst thou this inkstand retain'd,
And left me thy PEN , Oh! how much I had gain'd!
Like Sylphs wit and sense had then dwelt in the quill,
Nor were left as Heir-looms to Strawberry Hill.


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WRITTEN FOR AN INTERESTING AND UNFORTUNATE
YOUNG WOMAN.

THE PETITION.

DEAR Lady! in that feeling heart
Give the poor Penitent a part;
For 'neath her mournful garb of woe,
"There's that within which passeth show."
Oh! may your breast soft pity fill!
So prays the Wanderer of the Hill.


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TO GENTLEMAN REMARKABLE FOR HIS ATTACHMENT
TO THE CAUSE OF LIBERTY.

O SAY , enthusiast! does thy Muse alone
Bid PATRIOT brows its blushing honours own?
Does lovely Liberty e'er tune thy lyre?
Do patriot deeds alone thy bosom fire?
And has no other theme thy heart alarm'd,
No softer lay that ardeut soul e'er warm'd?
Has no sweet bondage e'er had charms for thee?
Still wilt thou live aud DIE for Liberty?
Ah! I do fear thou wouldst most perjured prove;
If thon shouldst swear she was thine ONLY LOVE.


Page 127

THE PHILOSOPHER.

O LAURA ! when in philosophic dream
On thee I thought, thou to my mind didst seem
Even some disembodied spirit bright,
Clothed in the drapery of ethereal light,
Or emanation of the SOUL alone,
Or some pure spirit, such as ANGELS OWN.
Ah! had I thought thee form'd in every part
A blooming woman with a feeling heart,
Had I conceived thee of that 'witching sex,
SkilI'd every system to distract, perplex;
To smile at Science and her solemn schools;
And make philosophers forget all rules;
Oh! had I never, like Pygmalion, pray'd
To breathe a soul into an ivory maid;
No, of the Gods this boon would ask alone,
To change tormenting Woman into stone:
Then still Philosophy might count her charms;
And the cold STATUE save him all alarms.


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ADDRESSED TO A PILGRIM AT A MASQUERADE.

GO , gentle Pilgrim! take thy pensive way
Round this strange scene, where Folly bears the sway.
If here each form, caprice and whim may own,
From frozen Zembla to the burning Zone;
Fearless some mild reproof thy tongue may give,
In some pure heart thy counsels yet may llve;
Think, when thy pilgrimage at length is past,
How sweet to find thy name there shrined at last.


Page 129

THE WREATH OF SENTIMENT GIVEN WITH SELECTED
FLOWERS.

NO flattery here with poison'd sweets I send,
But Nature softly sueing for her friend;
For while with flowers I dress'd each tender thought,
She smiling took each hint my fancy caught;
An essence then refin'dly sweet did breathe,
That swift infused a SOUL into a WREATH.
See here Affection blooms in roseate hue,
Here softly tinted Truth's celestial blue;
Here Innocence in lily white is seen,
Here Constancy's unfading evergreen;
Quick Sensibility, whose power to tell,
The elegant Mimosa shows so well;
And modest Genius, of a form so rare,
The laurel hides what it should proudly wear.


Page 130

INSCRIPTION

Suspended to a tree in the midst of an intricate wood of
singularly romantic beauty, as a direction to the Hermitage
hid in its deepest recesses.

SHOULD e'er some Pilgrim's fainting footsteps stray
        Through these deep shades and solitude forlorn,
Droop not; for Charity, to cheer thy way,
        E'er bade me wait thee at soft eve and morn.
Know, she herself is oft a wanderer here,
        And often hides her in this leaf-clad dell.
Then turn thee, Pilgrim, sweet repose is near,
With Contemplation, in yon Herinit's cell.


Page 131

HERMITAGES.

HERMITAGES ever convey romantic and pleasing ideas, and awaken a train of pensive feelings, and are ever found in the most secluded scenes.--Yet should we ask what renders them peculiarly interesting, it is not merely their situation, but that they have been the chosen retreats of the deeply unfortunate, and of characters the most singular; who perhaps having been engaged in adventures whose consequences have been fatal to their happiness, have at length been induced to retire from the world; and thus remote from its deceptions, time and reflection have softened their sorrows and purified their hearts. And from such sources have emanated the germs of every virtue,--mildness,


Page 132

gentleness, charity, devotion, and the purest sanctity of manners.

Men of the most elevated birth, and of the highest attainments, have been often known to devote themselves to the shade of the Hermitage; even the Courtier, aud the Hero who has led armies to victory! Public neglect and private wrong have alike contributed to the same resource. But to such characters Retirement brings the happiest advantages. They may be said to resemble a picture, where the drawing is fine, but the colouring, like the passions, too vivid, while every passing day, by imperceptible degrees, adds to its perfection.

The venerable Anchorite at length becomes


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both physician and divine. He studies for the benefit of others, and often affords them that consolation he feels the want of himself; and, while his own bosom is still sad and cheerless, has inspired with hope the unfortunate and the wanderer, whom chance has led to his lonely cell; a cave, perhaps, excavated from the side of a mountain, and completed with the roots of trees, which he has with infinite labour cut and arranged, with all the contrivances that his ingenuity could suggest, to shelter himself from the changes and rigour of the seasons.

There is always something peculiarly interesting in considering the manner by which a perfect recluse supplies the means of his existence. For in the world we are so dependent on each


Page 134

other, that such thoughts have even an air of novelty, every thing being supplied without any efforts of our own. The fortunate gradations of society make every thing easy; but in almost impenetrable woods and wilds, to discover modes of comfort as well as of existence, a solitary recluse must be a host in himself!

Perhaps, among all the little histories and tales of youth, that of Robinson Crusoe is in this respect the most interesting. Nothing can be conceived more natural, more simple. We take a part in the most trifling action, every feeling, every thought; our hearts are identified with poor Crusoe and his Cave. Yet as he was not a voluntary recluse, the comparison will not be allowed; as I fear the celebrated Hermits of


Page 135

the continent would think themselves degraded by being named in his company. For there is a certain dignity in voluntary seclusion, which must ever be the chief support of the soul of him who makes the sacrifice.

Hermitages then, even though never inhabited; yet as being dedicated to solitude, are a source of pensive pleasure; and when constructed with simplicity and judgement, and surrounded with romantic, wild, and interesting scenery, have an influence on the feelings, more seducing, and attractive, than the most polished architecture of Greece or Rome.


Page 136

PALE COMPLEXIONS.

VAUNT not, thou blooming sweet, love-tinted Rose,
O'er whose rich beauties each wild Zephyr blows,
Thy charms unequall'd, or unrivall'd power;
Though Joy should cull thee in his happiest hour,
Oft will the feeling heart thy bloom disdain,
And thou an exile from the cheek remain;
Whilst the pale Lily steals thy envied place,
Yet elegantly yields a milder grace.
Ah! should a rising blush renew thy bloom,
Again the Lily is the Rose's tomb.
But Art to paint the mind must ever fail,
Whose tint most interesting, is softly pale.


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INVITATION FROM A BEAUTIFUL TREE IN A RETIRED PART OF KENSINGTON GARDENS.

O YE ! who flaunt it in yon gaudy crowd,
Where blend the gay, the humble, and the proud,
Where Fashion's sons in lounging phalanx rove,
Whom fluttering Beauties seek in vain to move;
Beauties, who brave the sun's unclouded ray,
As if they wish'd t' enslave the god of day;
Ah! should there still amid that scene be one,
Who, sorrow-touch'd, may wish to sigh alone,
O come to me! her shall my branches shade,
And soothing whisper to the pensive maid.


Page 138

THE TOMB OF TRAY

DISCOVERED IN A FRIEND'S GARDEN BY FIDEL.

MILD evening comes, nor does a breeze prevail
To waft the rose's perfume on the gale.
With my loved mistress now I quit the dome,
Where Taste and Fancy find a polish'd home,
And pensively, within the garden's bound,
With beauty charm'd, we take our silent round,
Where the clear river pours its winding stream,
And the broad tree betrays the partial beam;
Where light, and shade, in chequer'd mazes spread,
And bending branches sweep the wanderer's head;
Through grass and flowers I run and careless stray,
Nor knew the shade conceal'd the tomb of Tray.
Poor Tray! thy merits on the tablet graved,
This sweet memorial, e'en from death has saved.
Yet ah! when I have lived and served as well,

[This and the following two lines are connected by a large brace in the right margin of the original printed edition.]


My long-loved mistress then may haply tell
The fond attachment of her lost Fidel.


Page 139

ON SOME BEAUTIFUL GREYHOUNDS BELONGING TO
LADY ******

FROM fair Italia's favour'd shore
Our race their native beauty bore;
To Albion's happier isle allured
By Liberty, that blissful word!
Bounding with joy and hope we came,
Yet found our freedom but a name.
Still 'tis a bondage sweet we bear;
Affection forms the chains we wear;
And oh! if happiness be known,
'T is Felix and his Rosa's own.


Page 140

SONG. DUET.

OH ! say will that stolen sigh I gave to thee,
When thou art absent softly breathe for me?
And wilt thou ne'er forget that feeling mind
Where every fibre with thine own is twined?
(Answer) "Oh! never."
Then will I hie me to some shelter'd vale,
Where health's pure rose is wafted on the gale;
And the stolen sigh exchanged again shall be,
The charm unknown that binds me still to thee
(Both) "For ever."


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OCCASIONED BY A BASKET OF WATER LILIES BEING
PRESENTED TO A YOUNG LADY FROM THE RIVER
********.

HERE, on these banks, which like another Nile
Pour out their fertile flood, delay awhile.
Through the deep vale it bends its winding way,
And bares its bosom to each beaming ray;
While scatter'd herds its verdant sides adorn,
And sportive bathe, or drink at eve and morn.
Or oft, recluse, it gleams amid the shade,
Where pensive sits a solitary maid,
And, as she warbles wild her plaintive song,
In mute meanders softly steals along;
Or, grateful at her feet, with silent care,
Spreads opening lilies for her braided hair;
Then gently murmurs, "Nymph, these lilies take,
"And form a garland for thy River's sake."


Page 142

WITH A LOCK OF HAlR.

NOR laurel wreath, nor bay, nor myrtle I,
Embalm'd I come in Love's soft tear and sigh.
A sacred pledge, and proof, behold in me,
Of truth, esteem, and purest sympathy.

Yet ah! should absence its dark veil extend,
And shade from view the dear, the long-loved friend,
Oh! may this pledge each tender thought enshrine,
To soothe the sorrows which must then be mine!


Page 143

IN IMITATION OF A CERTAIN STYLE.

HENCE ! hence, each myrtle, rose, and twining wreath,
    And all the fictions maddening poets give!
Oh! who in such an atmosphere could breathe?
    Who but themselves can mid such follies live?

Tell me no more of soft Castalian dews,
    Poetic visions on Parnassus' steep;
All the Muse owns I would with joy refuse,
    Give me but quiet, a clear sky, and sleep!


Page 144

Oh! not o'er me has power, if ever found,
    Union of form and mind so rarely given!
Nor looks, nor soften'd voice of silver sound,
    Nor harp of harmony though stolen from heaven

No! o'er such charms I bear a potent spell,
    And spurn'd their blandishments from earliest youth;
By water nymphs was drawn from some deep well,
    And though Indifference call'd, my name is Truth,
Honest Truth.


Page 145

IMPROMPTU.

IN ANSWER TO THE TOO PARTIAL OPINION OF A
FRIEND.

NO , flatterer, no! ah ne'er on me, dear friend,
Will Poesy the wreath-bound brow unbend;
Nor smiles, but ever frowning still anew,
Scarce owns a thought, to taste or nature true;
E'en if my sighs but vibrate on the lyre,
Again will frown and chide the harmless wire;
Ne'er bids me hope a leaf from his bright crown,
But seek in friendship's smile my sole renown.


Page 146

AUTUMNAL STORMS.

THE various subjects which have grown, as it were, out of the little Poems which compose these pages, and which I have so faintly and inadequately touched, will, however, serve to confirm the opinion that our pleasurable feelings are much more frequent than we ourselves are aware of, or are inclined to allow; seldom reflecting that even those tinted with melancholy have still irresistible attractions.

Listlessness and vacuity of mind are so abhorrent to our nature, so tedious, and sit so heavily on the springs of life, that any object which awakens interest and produces a succession of ideas, as contrasted to torpor and


Page 147

apathy, even though allied toPAIN, is PLEASING; and there is no object in nature which more completely answers this end, and calls every feeling into action, than a storm at sea when contemplated in safety from the land; even the very verge of danger is one of the most powerful sources of attraction.

The sea in such a state of agitation produces unceasing changes and perpetual variety, and the attention is sometimes so fixed and fascinated by the sublimity of the scene, that the soul seems almost incorporated into the very elements, and blended with the storm.

How sudden and frequent are those transtions in the Autumn, which make a marine re-


Page 148

sidence at that season so particularly interesting!

One day the sea is calm like a mirror, succeeded by a soft breeze and an evening of exquisite beauty;--we are never tired with watching its silver and beamy Iight, and though borrowed from the moon, it is often so beautifully reflected that it forms a fine emblem of that gratitude, which "by owing owes not, but still "pays, at once indebted and discharged* ."

* Milton.

By the wonderful influence of an unseen power of the winds, of merely agitated air, how totally changed is the scene in a few short


Page 149

hours! The roaring of the sea is distinctly heard, though screened from our view by intervening cliffs and distance. To gratify our curiosity and witness the change, we must quit the shelter of our situation, and openly encounter the storm.

Heaven and Earth! what a scene presents itself! The whole ocean, far as the eye can reach, is covered with white foam, and forms a watery wilderness of terrors.

See! see! how those poor fishermen run to secure their boat, and drag it up the beach out of the surf, which would soon beat it to pieces! Alas! perhaps the subsistence of themselves and families depends on the security of their only


Page 150

treasure. Look how the waves dash over the Pier! the work of years and labour of hundreds; how firm the resistance; yet even now while we gaze, the jointed masses begin to sever, nor can unmoved sustain the dread assault of the raging element.

Let us stand further back, even here the spray covers us.

Look along the shore to the right near the Battery; how tremendous the swell! and see that ship with her tattered sail and broken mast driven so near the ledge of rocks; another is coming round the point, whose condition seems still worse.

How dreadfully she labours! Hark! a gun, 'tis a signal of distress; again did you not see


Page 151

the flash? Another! Oh! Heavens, will not some boat venture off to their assistance?-- There is a small vessel seems endeavouring to reach the shore; how it is tost! and now seems dipping its sail into the sea; see just opposite the blazing beacon on the cliff. It is the smugglers' warning, the signal of those hardy and intrepid men, who despising danger in all its forms, and ruder than the winds and seas, often display a bravery and courage which would do honour to a nobler cause.

Their fire improves the picture, and while they are adding fresh fuel, as the winds scatter the lighted brands around them, they resemble one of those groups of banditti with which Salvator animates his wildest scenes.


Page 152

Yet this way cast your eye towards the lighthouse, where the sea runs mountains, and threatens its destruction. See how the waves mock its feeble aid, and dash up even to the lantern! Let us return along the shore by the cliffs beneath the Castle. Look up and observe that poor Sentinel, mid-way in air, at his post upon a small platform excavated from the rock; how fearful his situation! one single instant of forgetfulness, he falls, and with his life he expiates his error.

How majestic on the rock above, stands that ancient Castle, scorning the "viewless winds," and frowning on the storm!

Hark! as they sweep along, in thunder roll, Ah! not the ear they waken, but the soul!


Page [153a]

THE
ROYAL INTERVIEW.


Page [154a]


Page 153

INTRODUCTION.

[pages 153 and 154 repeated in numbering]

THE incident which occasioned the following poem was related in a London Newspaper, among the articles of "foreign intelligences" in October 1805.

The writer was then living in the seclusion of the country, and though impressed by the circumstance, it was impossible for her to judge of its authenticity . But the deep sympathy which every heart had long felt for the fate of the august personages to whom it related, could not fail of rendering every thing which concerned them highly interesting.


Page 154

There also prevailed at that moment, throughout England, and indeed the whole Continent, the most enthusiastic partiality, blended with a thousand brilliant hopes and expectations respecting the Emperor Alexander; as if the very name carried inspiration with it! and the dawn of whose glory seemed more bright and beautiful, as are the rays of the rising sun, when reflected from the snows of his native country.

He was then going to join the allies at Berlin, and we anticipated with delight the splendour of his career. On his way, attended only by his chamberlain, he was said to have paid a visit incognito to Louis the Eighteenth, then resident in an old palace in the Emperor's dominions.


Page 155

But alas! how vain are all expectations which depend on the variable passions of man! What disappointment was ever more complete, than that which so soon succeeded?

How little also could I have imagined, when this trifle of commemorative feeling was written, that ere it was drawn from the oblivion to which it was destined alike by its inferiority and by the regret I experienced in my disappointed ideas of the conduct of my Hero, that England instead of Russia would have the honour to afford an asylum to the House of Bourbon!

How gratifying to feel, and to reflect, that the stranger and the unfortunate alike repose in security in the BOSOM of our COUNTRY!


Page 156

THE ROYAL INTERVIEW.

NOR guard nor pomp was there, nor regal state:
Unseen the stranger pass'd the palace gate,
Through lonely courts and gloomy antique halls,
Where time-tinged hangings clothed the unsun'd walls.
Cold, dreary, dark, deserted all appear'd;
And not a footstep, not a voice was heard!

Onward he pass'd, and as he went he sigh'd,
Oh! what a lesson this to human pride!
Deep to his heart the self-taught moral flew,
And from his lips these feeling accents drew:
"Ah! what is grandeur! what a fate is thine,
Unhappy prince! and yet it may be MINE ."


Page 157

Scarce had he spoke, when on his ear there stole
A solemn chant, that touch'd upon his soul!
Now swelling deep, now soft, now sad they sing;
Hark! 'tis a requiem to a murder'd King!
And now, the chapel's slowly-opening door
He gained, then awed, surprised, proceeds no more,
But silent humbly kneel'd the stranger chief,
And sacred tears sooth'd, as he kneel'd, his grief.
There he beheld, low at the altars feet,
The prostrate prince he anxious sought to greet;
Who meek in suffering, bends beneath the rod,
And seeks consolement at the THRONE of GOD.
There clad in sacred stole, lo! at his side,
Him, who when martyr'd royal Louis died,
With virtuous firmness, caught his parting breath,
And sooth'd with hope sublime the pangs of death.


Page 158

There last of all her race to exile driven,
Deprived of all, "save innocence and Heaven,"
Heard he the daughter of the murder'd King,
Peace to his manes mid the requiem sing!
Oh scene afflicting to the feeling heart!
Where every sense is fill'd with sorrow's smart.
Lo! royal beauty, in life's early morn,
From friends, from kindred, and from country torn,
Like a fair flower, that by a stranger hand
Stolen, nursed and planted in a distant land,
With charms exotic is more sweet, as rare,
Yet fades, alas! beneath its fostering care.
At length, the sacred service o'er, they rise,
And, ah! what tender joy, what glad surprise;
What various feelings now again possess'd
The mourner's heart, when to that heart he press'd


Page 159

His great ILLUSTRIOUS GUEST ! the suppliant's pray'r
Heaven seem'd to hear: and as to soothe his care,
Had with its own benevolence inspired
That breast, with pity as with glory fired!
Yet! for a moment were its rays suppress'd
By sorrows tear, when thus the prince address'd:

"What though no diadem thy brows adorn,
"Where oft beneath the jewel lurks the thorn;
"Yet shalt thou soon a regal throne ascend,
"And with thy virtues give mankind a friend."
The generous warmth relumed the mourner's eye,
Glow'd on his cheek, and drew a grateful sigh,
As from the heart all eloquent it came:
It spoke of glory, honour, virtue, fame,
In thrilling thoughts confused, that want a name.


Page 160

The wanderer Joy return'd, so long unknown,
And Hope was proud to own a royal home.
Emotion swell'd too full the exile's breast,
For words; the stranger's hand alone he press'd,
And from the chapel led the distant way,
While social thoughts again resumed their sway.

A light repast succeeds; with fairer hand
Not fabled Hebe gave at Jove's command
The full nectarian cup, or smiles so sweet
As those which now the pensive stranger meet.
Yet he was sad; for her enchanting form
Seem'd a fair rose, the victim of the storm:
Torn from its stem, it fades, unseen, unknown,
Its sweets exhaling to the winds alone.


Page 161

So seem'd adorn'd with every blooming grace
The sad survivor of her murder'd race,
His thoughts ran back to every dreadful scene,
And memory question'd if SUCH THINGS BEEN !

By all he saw, by all he felt, opprest,
Reflective sorrow fill'd his ardent breast;
For he had learn'd to feel, ere yet a crown
He wore, the generous Hero's best renown!

Now time press'd on,--time, who ne'er knew to wait
E'en royal wills, but makes his will their fate!
The illustrious stranger rose, he must depart,
Reluctant did he feel, for in his heart
Imprest, a thousand tender thoughts had been,
Nor ever will forget that morning's scene.


Page 162

By duty urged, the royal guest withdrew,
But not content to bid a soft adieu,
More than his pity, sympathy to prove,
And for an equal show respect and love;
A splendid guard of honour bade repair,
And to his host these friendly greetings bear.

THE LETTER.

NO more must thou refuse the guard I send,
Not to the Prince I pity, but the Friend;
No more deserted be thy palace gate,
Nor more regardless of thy royal state.
O cheer thee, Prince! the tyrant to dethrone
We go, and soon from thee the world may own,


Page 163

Neither by war nor conquest glory's bound,
But its TRUE ESSENCE in the SOUL is found.
May the usurper from thy throne be hurl'd,
And Peace her olive wave around the world!
Mayst thou to France in triumph be restored,
And render virtue from its throne adored!
I go--confederate armies to attend,
Yet nought, save glory, dearer than the Friend:
By Heaven with conquest may our hopes be crown'd,
And laurels, native of each clime, be found!


THE END.


Page [164]

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RICHARD TAYLOR AND CO.
SHOE-LANE, LONDON.