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Now spacious lands, and mountains tall,
The pleasures we in childhood felt
Are duller grown-less bold-less brightAnd all their fairer portions melt,
Like clouds, before the mental sight.
As penitence can ne'er procure.
Scenes that we never can forget?
That all those golden days are o'er ; And sorrow in the bosom stirs,
To think they shall return no more.
Behind us lies a lovely field,
Before us lies a dreary waste;
The sweets we could no longer taste!
And, pond'ring, heave the pensive sigh!
SUCH THINGS WERE.
SCENES of my youth! ye once were dear,
I once was wont to linger here,
'Twas here a tender father strove To keep my happiness in view; I smil'd beneath a mother's love,
That soft compassion ever knew: In them the virtues all combin'd,
On them I could with faith rely; To them my heart and soul were join'd By mild Affection's primal tie; They smile in heav'n, exempt from care, Whilst I remember-Such things were!
'Twas here, where calm and tranquil rest
With glowing Friendship's open smile.
His little fortune to increase;
'Twas here, ev'n in this gloomy grove,
I fondly gaz'd on Laura's charms,
And sigh'd responsive in my arms.
Far from my sight the charm of life,
There first I saw the morn appear
Of guiltless Pleasure's shining day; I met the dazzling brightness here,
Here mark'd the soft-declining ray. Behold the skies, whose streaming light
Gave splendour to the parting sun, Now lost in Sorrow's sable night,
And all their mingled glories gone!
STANZAS WRITTEN IN A WOOD.
A SCENE like this can seldom fail to please,
And hold sweet converse with the Sylvan Muse.
Her let me worship with obedience true,
Oh! let me frequent from the plains retire,
Shew me, kind Druid, some pacific dale,
Of armies victim'd in the fields of war.
Perhaps, e'en now, while here the rustic lay
I tune, deep pond'ring over Nature's page, Thousands stand forth in terrible array,
And hosts with hosts in deeds of death engage.
Full many a tear will tender mothers shed,
Happy for me, that underneath this shade
And listen to the blackbird's mellow song.
What tho' fair Iris hath not ting'd thy wing, Nor sprinkled on thy breast her heav'nly dye; Sweet harmonist! I'd rather hear thee sing Than all the noisy minstrels of the sky.
Why dances thus yon butterfly so gay,
And lonely here her idle flight pursues? Go, spread thy colours to the noontide ray, And bid the painter emulate thy hues.
Lost is the lustre of thy silky vest,
Here, where no multitudes its gloss descry; Hence, where spectators may observe thee best, Nor hide thy beauties from the public eye.
*Feigned to preside over the rainbow.
With awful gloom this solemn place is fill'd,
No splendid object strikes upon the sight, Save where the sun, the dark-brown scene to gild, Draws his long-meas'ring line of radiant light.
High over-head is perch'd the clam'rous rook, Croaking harsh notes from her discordant tongue; With secret pleasure she surveys the nook
Where she has built the cradle for her young.
Here let me muse, until my eye beholds
The radiant moon and twinkling stars appear, Until the last low tinkling from the folds
No longer vibrates on the list'ning ear.
Then homeward let me meditate my way,
Wrapt in the silence of ecstatic thought, Each glowing orb with wond'ring eye survey, And praise the great Creator as I ought.
ODE ON CUPID.
'Twas noon of night, when round the pole