« PreviousContinue »
Let her speak, and whatever she say,
Methinks I should love her the more.
Can a bosom so gentle remain
Unmoved, when her Corydon sighs ? Will a nymph that is fond of the plain,
These plains and this valley despise ? 100 Dear regions of silence and shade!
Soft scenes of contentment and ease! Where I could have pleasingly stray'd,
If aught, in her absence, could please. But where does my Phyllida stray ? 105
And where are her grots and her bowers ?
And the shepherds as gentle as ours ?
110 The swains may in manners compare,
But their love is not equal to mine.
Why will you my passion reprove ?
Why term it a folly to grieve,
you can believe. With her mien she enamours the brave;
With her wit she engages the free; With her modesty pleases the grave;
She is every way pleasing to me.
Come and join in my amorous lays !
That will sing but a song in her praise.
When he sings, may the nymphs of the town 125
Come trooping and listen the while; Nay on him let not Phyllida frown;
But I cannot allow her to smile.
For when Paridel tries in the dance
Any favour with Phyllis to find, O how, with one trivial glance,
Might she ruin the peace of my mind! In ringlets he dresses his hair,
And his crook is bestudded around; And his pipe: O may Phyllis beware
Of a magic there is in the sound !
'T is his with mock passion to glow,
'T is his in smooth tales to unfold, “ How her face is as bright as the snow,
And her bosom, be sure, is as cold : How the nightingales labour the strain,
With the notes of his charmer to vie; How they vary their accents in vain,
Repine at her triumphs and die."
To the grove or the garden he strays, 145
And pillages every sweet;
He throws it at Phyllis's feet.
More sweet than the jessamine's flower! 150 What are pinks in a morn to compare ?
What is eglantine after a shower ?
“ Then the lily no longer is white;
The rose is deprived of its bloom;
Then the violets die with despite ;
And the woodbines give up their perfume." Thus glide the soft numbers along,
And he fancies no shepherd his peer: Yet I never could envy the song,
Were not Phyllis to lend it an ear. 160
Let his crook be with hyacinths bound,
So Phyllis the trophy despise;
So they shine not in Phyllis's eyes.
Is a stranger to Paridel's tongue:
Ye shepherds, give ear to my lay,
And take no more heed of my sheep: They have nothing to do, but to stray;
I have nothing to do, but to weep. Yet do not my folly reprove;
She was fair—and my passion begun; She smiled—and I could not but love;
She is faithless and I am undone.
Perhaps I was void of all thought;
Perhaps it was plain to foresee,
180 Ahl Love every hope can inspire ;
It banishes wisdom the while; And the lip of the nymph we admire
Seems for ever adorn'd with a smile.
She is faithless, and I am undone:
185 Ye that witness the woes I endure, Let reason instruct you to shun
What it cannot instruct you to cure. Beware how you loiter in vain
Amid nymphs of a higher degree : 190 It is not for me to explain
How fair and how fickle they be. Alas! from the day that we met,
What hope of an end to my woes ? When I cannot endure to forget
195 The glance that undid my repose. Yet time may diminish the pain;
The flower, and the shrub, and the tree, Which I rear'd for her pleasure in vain,
In time may have comfort for me. 200 The sweets of a dew-sprinkled rose,
The sound of a murmuring stream, The peace
which from solitude flows, Henceforth shall be Corydon's theme. High transports are shown to the sight, 205
But we are not to find them our own;
As I with my Phyllis had known.
210 I would hide with the beasts of the chase;
Ï would vanish from every eye. Yet my
reed shall resound through the grove With the same sad complaint it begun; How she smiled—and I could not but love ; 215
Was faithless—and I am undone ! SHENSTONE.
I WISH I WAS WHERE ANNA LIES.
I WISH I was where Anna lies;
For I am sick of lingering here ; And every
hour Affection cries, “Go and partake her humble bier.” I wish I could; for when she died,
5 I lost my all; and life has proved, Since that sad hour, a dreary void,
A waste unlovely and unloved. But who, when I am turn'd to clay, Shall duly to her grave repair,
10 And pluck the ragged moss away,
And weeds, that have “no business there ?" And who with pious hand shall bring
The flower she cherish’d, snowdrops cold, And violets that unheeded spring,
15 To scatter o'er her hallow'd mould ?
And who, while Memory loves to dwell
Upon her name for ever dear,
the bitter, bitter tear ? I did it; and, would fate allow,
Should visit still, should still deplore:
And I, alas, can weep no more.
The last I offer at thy shrine ;
And all thy memory fade with mine.