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OPE, to whose reed beneath the beechen shade,
The Nymphs of Thames a pleas'd attention paid;
While 3 This noble author was born in the year 1709. He was the eldest fon of Sir Thomas Lyttelton, of Hagley in Worcestershire, and received his education at Eton, where he was so much diftinguished, that VOL. II, А
While yet thy Muse, content with hambler praise,
Warbled in Windsor's grove her fylvan lays ;
Though now fublimely borne on Homer's wing,
Of glorious wars, and godlike chiefs the fing:
Wilt thou with me re-visit once again
The crystal fountain, and the flow'ry plain ?
Wilt thou, indulgent, hear my verse relate
The various changes of a lover's ftate;
And while each turn of passion I pursue,
Ak thy own heart if what I tell be true.
To the green margin of a lonely wood,
Whose pendent shades o’erlook'd a filver flood,
Young Damon came, unknowing where he fray'd,
Full of the image of his beauteous maid:
His flock far off, unfed, untended lay,
To every favage a defenceless prey;
No sense of intreft could their master move,
And every care seem'd trifling now but Love.
His exercises were recommended as models to his school-fellows. From Eron he went to Christ Church, Oxford, but ftaid there only a fhort time. He then travelled through France and Italy; and, foon after his return to England, in 1735, obtained a seat in Parliament, where be became a violent opposer of Sir Robert Walpole's adminis ration. Sa the year 1741, he married Miss Lucy Fortescue, the lady to whom several of the following Poems are addressed; and in 1744, was made one of the Lords of the Treasury. He frequently after this period was in place, and supported the measures of the Court. In 1756, he was created a Peer; and died at Hagley, August 22, 1973, aged 64 years.
Awhile in pensive Glence he remain’d,
But though his voice was muté, his looks complain'd ;
At length the thoughts within his bofom pent,
Forc'd his unwilling tongue to give them vent.
Ye Nymphs, he cry'd, ye Dryads, who so long
Have favour'd Damon, and inspir'd his song ;
For whom, retir'd, I fhun the gay resorts
Of sportful cities, and of pompous courts;
In vain I bid the restless world adieu,
To seek tranquillity and peace with you.
Though wild Ambition and destructive Rage
No factions here can form, no wars can wage;
Though Envy frowns not on your humble fhades,
Nor Calumny your innocence invades,
Yet cruel Love, that troubler of the breaft,
Too often violates your boasted reft ;
With inbred ftorm's difturbs
calm retreat, And taints with bitterness each rural sweet.
Ah luckless day! when first with fond surprize
On Delia's face I fix'd my eager eyes ;
Then in wild tumults all my soul was toft,
Then reason, liberty, at once were loft :
And every with, and thought, and care was gone,
But what my heart employ'd on her alone.
Then too she smild: can fmiles our peace destroy
Those lovely children of Content and Joys
How can soft pleasure and tormenting woes
From the same spring at the fame moment flow?
Unhappy boy, these vain enquiries cease,
Thought could not guard, nor will restore thy peace :
Indulge the frenzy that thou must endure,
And sooth the pain thou know'lt not how to cure.
Come, flatt'ring Memory, and tell my heart
How kind she was, and with what pleasing art
She strove its fondest wishes to obtain,
Confirm her pow'r, and faster bind my chain.
If on the green we danc'd, a mirthful band,
To me alone she gave her willing hand ;
Her partial taste, if e'er I touch'd the lyre,
Still in my fong found something to admire.
By none but her my crook with flow'rs was crown'd,
By none but her my brows with ivy bound:
The world that Damon was her choice believ'd,
The world, alas ! like Damon was deceiv'd.
When last I saw her, and declar'd my fire,
In words as soft as paflion could inspire,
Coldly she heard, and full of scorn withdrew,
Without one pitying glance, one sweet adieu.
The frighted hird, who sees his ripen'd corn
Up froin the roots by sudden tempest torn,
Whose fairest hopes destroy'd and blasted lie,
Feels not so keen a pang of grief as I.
Ah ! how have I deserv’d, inhuman maid,
To have my faithful service thus repay'd ?
Were all the marks of kindness I receiv'd,
Bui dreams of joy, that charm’d me and deceiv'd?
Or did you only nurse my growing love,
That with more pain I might your hatred prove ?
Sure guilty treachery no place could find
In such a gentle, such a gen'rous mind :
A maid brought up the woods and wilds among,
Could ne'er have learnt the art of courts so young:
No; let me rather think her anger feign'd,
Still let me hope my Delia may be gain'd;
'Twas only modesty that feem'd disdain,
And her heart suffer'd when she gave me pain.
Pleas’d with this flattering thought, the love-fick boy
Felt the faint dawnings of a doubtful joy ;
Back to his flock more chearful he return'd,
When now the setting fun less fiercely burn'd;
Blue vapours rose along the mazy rills,
And light's last blushes ting'd the distant hills.