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But soon tempestuous clouds the scene deform,
If youthful charms decay with age or pain,
How cold I feel life's idle current flow, Where once the dancing spirits loved to glow! No more these eyes with youthful rapture shine, Nor cheeks, soft blushing, speak a warmth divine; Graceful no more amid the festive dance My steps with easy dignity advance, And all the glossy locks, whose ringlets spread O’er my fair neck, the honours of my head, Cease the neat labours of my hand to know; Ill suits the care of elegance with woe!
Why did not Nature, when she gave to charm, With unrelenting pride my bosom arm? Why was my soul its tender pity taught, Each soft affection, and each generous thought ? Hence spring my sorrows, hence with sighs I prove How feeble woman, and how fierce is love.
In unavailing streams my tears are shed; Sad Laura's bliss is with Lorenzo fled. For thee, false youth, was every joy resigned, Young health, sweet peace, and innocence of mind; Are these the constant vows thy tongue profess'd, When first thy arms my yielding beauties press'd ? Thus did thy kiss dispel my empty fears? Or winning voice delight my raptured ears ? Thus swore thy lips by ocean, air, and sky, By hell's dread powers, and heaven's all-piercing eye?
[storm Yawns not the grave for thee? why sleeps the To blast thy limbs, and rend thy perjured form? Unmoved, O faithless, canst thou hear my pain, Like the proud rocks which brave the’ unwearied
main? Sooner the shipwreck'd pilot shall appease With sighs the howling winds, with tears the seas, Than Laura's prayers thy heart unfeeling move, O lost to fame, to honour, and to love ! Nursed in dark caverns on some mountain wild, To cruel manhood grew the darling child, No female breast supplied thy infant food, But tigers growling o'er their savage brood. Cursed be that fatal hour thy charms were seen, While yet this mind was guiltless and serene. With thee, false man, I urged my hasty flight, And dared the horrors of tempestuous night;
Nor fear'd, with thee, through plains unknown to
When at my feet entranced my lover lay,
power; When bolder grown, your glances flash'd with fire, And your pale lips all trembled with desire; Back to my heart my blood tumultuous flew, From every pore distilld the chilling dew, When shame presaging spoke each future pain, And struggling virtue arm'd my soul in vain. But, O! let silence all my weakness veil, And burning blushes only tell the tale. [maid,
Ah, faithless man! and thou more wretched To guilt and grief and misery betray'd ! Far flies thy lover to some distant plain, Now cleaves his bounding bark the peaceful main; Avenging Heaven, that heard the vows he swore, Bid howl the blackening storm, and thunder roar, Till waves on waves in tumbling mountains roll, Now sink to hell, and now ascend the pole; Then on some plank o'er foaming billows borne, Trembling, his perjured faith the wretch shall
mourn, But mourn in vain : his vigorous arm shall fail, Guilt sink him down, and angry Heaven prevail; No friendly hand to earth his limbs convey, But dogs and vultures tear the bloated prey.
Yet, ah! fond heart! avert, kind Heaven, the
stroke, My heart denies what trembling lips have spoke. The varying accents real nature prove, And only show how wild a thing is love. Go,much loved youth, with every blessing crown'd, And Laura's wishes ever guard thee round. Me to the silent shades and sad retreat, Where love's expiring flames forget their heat, Death woos all powerful : ere he parts the clue, Once more thy Laura bids her love adieu : Bids health and affluence every bliss afford ; Bids thee be loved, be happy, and adored ; In ease, in mirth glide each glad hour away: No pain to spot thy fortune's cloudless day; Nor sigh to swell, no tear to flow for me: O grant, Heaven, all; but grant thee constancy.
Yet from my hand this last address receive, This last address is all that hand can give. In vain thy bark with spreading canvass flies, If these sad lines shall meet thy conscious eyes, And, taught with winning eloquence to move, The winds and waters waft the voice of love ; That voice, O grant what dying lips implore, Asks but one tear from thee, and asks no more. Then, world, farewell, farewell life's fond de
sires, False flattering hopes, and love's tormenting fires. Already, death, before my closing eyes Thy airy forms and glimmering shades arise. Hark! hear I not for me yon passing bell Toll forth, with frequent pause, its sullen knell? Waits not for me yon sexton on his spade, Blithe whistling o'er the grave his toil has made ? Say why in lengthen'd pomp yon sable train, With measured steps, slow stalk along the plain? Say why yon hearse with fading flowers is crown'd, And midnight gales the deep-mouth'd dirge re
sound? Hail, sister worms, and thou my kindred dust, Secure to you my wearied limbs I trust. (plete, Dim burns life's lamp; O Death! thy work comAnd give my soul to gain her last retreat. Such as before the birth of nature sway'd, Ere springing light the first great word obey'd, Let silence reign- --come, fate, exert thy might, And darkness wrap me in eternal night!
THE LOVER AND THE FRIEND.
O Thou for whom my lyre I string,
Fear not the poet's flattering strain,
Not distant is the cruel day