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And, lo! majestic as thy manly song,
Flows the full tide of human life along.
Still must my partial pencil love to dwell
On the home-prospects of my
The mossy pales that skirt the orchard-green,
Here hid by shrub-wood, there by glimpses seen ;
And the brown pathway, that, with careless flow,
Sinks, and is lost among the trees below.
Still must it trace (the flattering tints forgive)
Each fleeting charm that bids the landscape live.
Oft o'er the mead, at pleasing distance, pass,
Browsing the hedge by fits, the panniered ass ;
The idling shepherd-boy, with rude delight,
Whistling his dog to mark the pebbles' flight;
And in her kerchief blue the cottage-maid,
With brimming pitcher from the shadowy glade.
Far to the south a mountain-vale retires,
Rich in its groves, and glens, and village-spires;
Its upland-lawns, and cliffs with foliage hung,
Its wizard stream, nor nameless, nor unsung ;
And through the various years, the various day,
What scenes of glory burst, and melt away!
When April verdure springs in Grosvenor Square,
And the furred beauty comes to winter there,
She bids old Nature mar the plan no more;
Yet still the seasons circle as before.
Ah! still as soon the young Aurora plays,
Tho' moons and flambeaux trail their broadest blaze ;
As soon the sky-lark pours his matin song,
Tho' evening lingers at the mask so long.
There let her strike with momentary ray,
As tapers shine their little lives away;
There let her practise from herself to steal,
And look the happine she does not feel ;
The ready smile and bidden blush employ
At Faro-routs, that dazzle to destroy;
Fan with affected ease the essenced air,
And lisp of fashions with unmeaning stare.
Be thine to meditate an humbler flight,
When morning fills the fields with rosy light;
Be thine to blend, nor thine a vulgar aim,
Repose with dignity, with Quiet fame.
Here no state-chambers in long line unfold,
Bright with broad mirrors, rough with fretted gold;
Yet modest ornament, with use combined,
Attracts the eye to exercise the mind.
Small change of scene, small space his home requires,
Who leads a life of satisfied desires.
What tho' no marble breathes, no canvas glows,
From every point a ray of genius flows!
Be mine to bless the more mechanic skill,
That stamps, renews, and multiplies at will;
And cheaply circulates, through distant climes,
The fairest relics of the purest times.
Here from the mould to conscious being start
Those finer forms, the miracles of art;
Here chosen gems, imprest on sulphur, shine,
That slept for ages in a second mine;
And here the faithful graver dares to trace
A Michael's grandeur, and a Raphael's grace !
Thy gallery, Florence, gilds my humble walls;
And my low roof the Vatican recalls !
Soon as the morning dream my pillow flies,
To waking sense what brighter visions rise !
O mark! again the coursers of the sun,
At Guido's call, their round of glory run!
Again the rosy Hours resume their flight,
Obscured and lost in floods of golden light!
But could thine erring friend so long forget
(Sweet source of pensive joy and fond regret)
That here its warmest hues the pencil flings,
Lo! here the lost restores, the absent brings ;
And still the few best loved and most revered
Rise round the board their social smile endeared ?
Selected shelves shall claim thy studious hours ;
There shall thy ranging mind be fed on flowers !
There, while the shaded lamp's mild lustre streams,
Read ancient books, or dream inspiring dreams ;
And, when a sage's bust arrests thee there,
Pause, and his features with his thoughts compare.
-Ah! most that art my grateful rapture calls,
Which breathes a soul into the silent walls;
Which gathers round the wise of every tongue,
All on whose words departed nations hung;
Still prompt to charm with many a converse sweet;
Guides in the world, companions in retreat !
thatched bath no rich mosaic knows, A limpid spring with unfelt current flows. Emblem of life! which still as we survey, Seems motionless, yet ever glides away! The shadowy walls record, with Attic art, The strength and beauty which its waves impart. Here Thetis, bending with a mother's fears, Dips her dear boy, whose pride restrains his tears ; There Venus, rising, shrinks with sweet surprise, As her fair self, reflected, seems to rise !
Far from the joyless glare, the maddening strife, And all the dull impertinence of life, These eyelids open to the rising ray, And close, when Nature bids, at close of day. Here, at the dawn, the kindling landscape glows; There noon-day levees call from faint repose. Here the flushed wave flings back the parting light; There glimmering lamps anticipate the night. When from his classic dreams the student steals, Amid the buzz of crowds, the whirl of wheels, To muse unnoticed—while around him press The meteor forms of equipage and dress; Alone, in wonder lost, he seems to stand A very stranger in his native land ! And (tho' perchance of current coin possest, And modern phrase by living lips exprest) Like those blest youths, forgive the fabling page, Whose blameless lives deceived a twilight age,
Spent in sweet slumbers; till the miner's spade
Unclosed the cavern, and the morning played.
Ah, what their strange surprise, their wild delight!
New arts of life, new manners meet their sight!
In a new world they wake, as from the dead ;
Yet doubt the trance dissolved, the vision fled !
O come, and, rich in intellectual wealth,
Blend thought with exercise, with knowledge health ;
Long in this sheltered scene of lettered talk,
With sober step repeat the pensive walk;
Nor scorn, when graver triflings fail to please,
The cheap amusement of a mind at ease;
Here every care in sweet oblivion cast,
And many an idle hour-not idly passed.
No tuneful echoes, ambushed at my gate,
Catch the blest accents of the wise and great.
Vain of its various page, no album breathes
The sigh that friendship or the muse bequeaths.
Yet some good genii o'er my hearth preside,
Oft the far friend, with secret spell to guide;
And there I trace, when the grey evening lours,
A silent chronicle of happier hours !
When Christmas revels in a world of snow,
And bids her berries blush, her carols flow;
His spangling shower when frost the wizard flings;
Or, borne in ether blue, on viewless wings,
O'er the white pane his silvery foliage weaves,
with icicles the sheltering eaves;
-Thy muffled friend his nectarine-wall pursues,
What time the sun the yellow crocus woos,
Screened from the
and duly hies
To meet the morning rumour as it flies ;
To range the murmuring market-place, and view
The motley groups that faithful Teniers drew.
When spring bursts forth in blossoms thro' the vale,
And her wild music triumphs on the gale,
book I muse from stile to stile ; Oft in my porch the listless noon beguile,
Framing loose numbers, till declining day
Thro' the green trellis shoots a crimson ray;
Till the west wind leads on the twilight hours,
And shakes the fragrant bells of closing flowers.
Nor boast, O Choisy, seat of soft delight,
The secret charm of thy voluptuous night.
Vain is the blaze of wealth, the pomp of power!
Lo! here, attendant on the shadowy hour,
Thy closet-supper, served by hands unseen,
Sheds, like an evening star, its ray serene
To hail our coming. Not a step profane
Dares, with rude sound, the cheerful rite restrain ;
And, while the frugal banquet glows revealed,
Pure and unbought--the natives of my field;
While blushing fruits thro' scattered leaves invite,
Still clad in bloom, and veiled in azure light;
With wine, as rich in years as Horace sings,
With water, clear as his own fountain flings,
The shifting side-board plays its humbler part,
Beyond the triumphs of a Loriot's art.
Thus, in this calm recess so richly fraught With mental light and luxury of thought, My life steals on; (O could it blend with thine !) Careless my course, yet not without design. So thro' the vales of Loire the bee-hives glide, The light raft dropping with the silent tide; So, till the laughing scenes are lost in night, The busy people wing their various flight, Culling unnumbered sweets from nameless flowers, That scent the vineyard in its purple hours.
Rise, ere the watch-relieving clarions play. Caught thro' St. James's groves at blush of day; Ere its full voice the choral anthem flings Thro' trophied tombs of heroes and of kings. Haste to the tranquil shade of learned ease, Tho' skilled alike to dazzle and to please ; Tho' each gay scene be searched with anxious éye, Nor thy shut doors be passed without a sigh.