« PreviousContinue »
ADDRESSED TO MISS STAPLETON
(NOW MRS. COURTNEY)
She came-she is gone—we have met
And meet perhaps never again; The sun of that moment is set,
And seems to have risen in vain. Catharina has fled like a dream
(So vanishes pleasure, alas !) But has left a regret and esteem,
That will not so suddenly pass.
The last ev'ning ramble we made,
Catharina, Maria, and I,
By the nightingale warbling nigh.
And much she was charm’d with a tone Less sweet to Maria and me,
Who so lately had witness'd her own.
My numbers that day she had sung,
And gave them a grace so divine, As only her musical tongue
Could infuse into numbers of mine.
The longer I heard, I esteem'd
The work of my fancy the more, An ev'n to myself never seem'd
So tuneful a poet before.
Though the pleasures of London exceed
In number the days of the year, Catharina, did nothing impede,
Would feel herself happier here ; For the close woven arches of limes
On the banks of our river, I know, Are sweeter to her many times
Than aught that the city can show.
So it is, when the mind is endu'd
With a well-judging taste from above, Then, whether embellish'd or rude,
'Tis nature alone that we love. The achievements of art may amuse,
May even our wonder excite,
A lasting, a sacred delight.
Since then in the rural recess
Catharina alone can rejoice, May it still be her lot to possess
The scene of her sensible choice! To inhabit a mansion remote
From the clatter of street-pacing steeds, And by Philomel's annual note
To measure the life that she leads.
With her book, and her voice, and her lyre,
To wing all ber moments at home;
And with scenes that new raptures inspire,
As oft as it suits her to roam ;
With little to bope or to fear,
Might we view her enjoying it here.
A HERMIT (or if 'chance you hold
In hope to bask a little yet,
Your hermit, young and jovial sirs! Learns something from whate'er occursAnd hence, he said, my mind computes The real worth of man's pursuits. His object chosen, wealth or fame, Or other sublunary game, Imagination to his view Presents it deck'd with ev'ry hue, That can seduce him not to spare His powers of best exertion there, But youth, health, vigour to expend On so desirable an end. Ere long approach life's ev'ning shades, The glow, that fancy gave it, fades; And earn'd too late, it wants grace, That first engag'd him in the chase.
True, answer'd an angelic guide,