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The Doric Muse caress'd the fav’rite boy ;
The hermit Wisdom stor'd his op'ning mind.
As rolling years matur'd his age,
He flourish'd bold and sinewy as his sire;
While the mild passions in his breast assuage
The fiercer flames of his maternal fire,
Accomplish'd thus, he wing'd his way, And zealous rov'd from pole to pole, The rolls of right eternal to display, And warm with patriot thoughts th' aspiring soul. On desart isles 'twas he that rais'd Those spires that gild th’ Adriatic wave, Where Tyranny beheld amaz'd Fair Freedom's temple, where he mark'd her grave. He steel'd the blunt Bardavian's arms To burst th' Iberian's double chain; And cities rear'd, and planted farms, Won from the skirts of Neptune's wide domain. He with the generous rustick, sate On Uris' rocks in close divan, And wing'd that arrow sure as fate Which ascertain’d the sacred rights of man.
Arabia's scorching sands he crost,
Where blasted Nature pants supine,
Conductor of her tribes adust,
To Freedom's adamantine shrine ;
And many a Tartar hord forlorn, aghast,
He snatch'd from under fell Oppression's wing;
And taught, amidst the dreary waste,
Th’all.chearing hymns of Liberty to sing.
He virtue finds, like precious ore,
Diffus'd through every baser mould ;
Ev'n now he stands on Calvis' rocky shore,
And turns the dross of Corsica to gold.
He, guardian genius, taught my youth
Pomp's tinsel'd liv'ry to despise :
My lips by him chastis'd to truth
Ne'er paid that homage which the heart denies.
ANTISTROPHE. Those sculptur'd halls my feet shall never tread Where varnish'd vice and vanity combin'd, To dazzle and seduce their banners spread, And forge vile shackles for the free-born mind : Where Insolence his wrinkled front uprears, And all the flowers of spurious fancy blow, And Title his ill-woven chaplet wears, Full often wreath'd around the miscreant's brow; Wherever dimpling Falshood, pert and vain, Presents her cup of state professions froth, And pale Disease with all his bloated train Torments the sons of Gluttony and Sloth.
In Fortune's car behold that minion ride,
With either India's glittering spoils opprest :
So moves the sumpter-mule, in harness'd pride,
That bears the treasure which he cannot taste.
For him let venal bards disgrace the bay,
And hireling minstrell wake the tinkling string;
Her sensual snares let faithless Pleasure lay,
And all her gingling bells fantastic Folly ring:
Disquiet, Doubt, and Dread shall intervene,
And Nature, still to all her feelings just,
In vengeance hang a damp on every scene,
Shook from the baleful pinions of Disgust.
Nature I'll court in her sequester'd haunts, By mountain, meadow, streamlet, grove, or cell, Where the pois'd lark his evening ditty chaunts. And Health, and Peace, and Contemplation dwell. There, Study shall with Solitude recline, And Friendship pledge me to his fellow-swains ; And Toil and Temperance sedately twine The slender cord that fluttering life sustains : And fearless Poverty shall guard the door; And Taste unspoil'd the frugal table spread; And Industry supply the humble store, And sleep unbrib’d his dews refreshing shed: White-mantled Innocence, etherial spright, Shall chace far off the goblins of the night ; And Independence o'er the day preside ; Propitious power! my patron and my pride.
BY THE REV. W. MASON, M. A.
Here, on my native shore reclin'd
While Silence rules the midnight hour,
I woo thee, Goddess. On my musing mind
Descend, propitious Power!
And bid these ruffling gales of grief subside :
Bid my calm'd soul with all thy influence shine;
As yon chaste Orb along this ample tide
Draws the long lustre of her silver line ;
While the hush'd breeze its last weak whisper blows,
And lulls old Humber to his deep repose.
Come to thy Vot'ry's ardent prayer,
In all thy graceful plainness drest;
No knot confines thy waving hair,
No zone thy floating vest.
Unsullied Honor decks thine open brow,
And Candor brightens in thy modest eye :
Thy blush is warm Content's aetherial glow,
Thy smile is Peace; thy step is Liberty:
Thou scatter'st blessings round with lavish hand,
As Spring with careless fragrance fills the land.
As now o'er this lone beach I stray ;
Thy fav’rite Swain oft stole along,
And artless wove his Doric lay,
Far from the busy throng.
Thou heard'st him, Goddess, strike the tender string,
And bad'st his soul with bolder passions move :
Strait these responsive shores forgot to ring
With Beauty's praise, or plaint of slighted Love;
To loftier Alights his daring Genius rose,
And led the war 'gainst thine and Freedom's foes.
Pointed with Satire's keenest steel,
The shafts of Wit he darts around :
Ev'n mitred Dulness learns to feel,
And shrinks beneath the wound.
In awful poverty his honest Muse,
Walks forth vindictive through a venal land;
In vain Corruption sheds her golden dews,
In vain Oppression lifts her iron hand :
He scorns them both, and, arm’d with truth alone,
Bids Lust and Folly tremble on the throne.
Behold, like him, immortal Maid,
The Muses vestal fires I bring :
Here at thy feet the sparks I spread;
Propitious wave thy wing,
And fan them to that dazzling blaze of Song,