« PreviousContinue »
If with adventurous oar and ready sail,
[The following couplet, which was intended to have been in
troduced in the poem on the Alliance of Education and
Government, is much too beautiful to be lost. Mason.)
STANZAS TO MR. BENTLEY.
Mr. Bentley had made a set of designs for Mr. Gray's Poems,
particularly a headpiece to the Long Story. The original drawings are in the library at Strawberry Hill.
In silent gaze the tuneful choir
among, Half pleased, half blushing, let the Muse admire, While Bentley leads her sister art along,
And bids the pencil answer to the lyre.
See, in their course, each transitory thought
Fix'd by his touch a lasting essence take; Each dream, in fancy's airy colouring wrought
To local symmetry and life awake!
The tardy rhymes that used to linger on,
To censure cold, and negligent of fame, In swifter measures animated run,
And catch a lustre from his genuine flame.
Ah! could they catch his strength, his easy grace,
His quick creation, his unerring line; The
energy of Pope they might efface, And Dryden's harmony submit to mine.
But not to one in this benighted age
Is that diviner inspiration given,
and prodigality of heaven.
As when, conspiring in the diamond’s blaze,
The meaner gems, that singly charm the sight,
And dazzle with a luxury of light.
My lines a secret sympathy "impart;'
A sigh of soft reflection • heaves the heart.'
HIS OWN CHARACTER.
WRITTEN IN 1761,
AND FOUND IN ONE OF HIS POCKET BOOKS.
Too poor for a bribe, and too proud to importune ;
No very great wit, he believed in a God:
* Squire] At that time Fellow of St. ohn's College, Cam bridge, and afterwards Bishop of St. David's.
This jeu d'esprit first appeared in Warton's Edition of Pope.
With beauty, with pleasure surrounded, to languish
weep without knowing the cause of my anguish : To start from short slumbers, and wish for the morn
when I see it returning ; Sighs sudden and frequent, looks ever dejected Words that steal from my tongue, by no meaning
connected ! Ah, say, fellow-swains, how these symptoms befell me? They smile, but reply not-Sure Delia will tell me!