Page images
PDF
EPUB

10

20

Graces till now that fingly met our view,
And fingly charm’d, unite at once in you :
A style polite, from affectation free,
Virgil's correctness, Homer's majesty!
Soft Waller's case, with Milton's vigour wrought,
And Spenser's bold luxuriancy of thought.
In each bright page, Strength, Beauty, Genius shine,
While nervous Judgment guides each flowing Line. 15
No borrow'd Tinsel glitters o'er these Lays,
And to the Mind a false Delight conveys :
Throughout the whole with blended power is found,
The Weight of Sense and Elegance of Sound.
A lavish Fancy, Wit, and Force, and Fire,
Graces each motion of th' immortal Lyre.
The matchless strains our ravish'd fenfes charm :
How great the thought ! the images how warm!
How beautifully just the turns appear ;
The language how majestically clear!
With energy divine each period swells,
And all the Bard th' inspiring God reveals.
Loft in delights, my dazzled eyes I turn,
Where Thames Jeans hoary o'er his ample urn;
Where his rich waves fair Windsor's towers surround,
And bounteous ruth amid poetic ground.
O Windfor! sacred to thy blissful feats,
Thy sylvan fhades, the Muses' lov'd retreats,
Thy rising hills, low vales, and waving woods,
Thy sunny glades, and celebrated floods !

35
But chief Lodona's silver tides, that flow
Cold and unsullied as the mountain snow;
VOL. I.

b

Whose

25

40

50

Whose virgin name no time nor change can hide,
Though ev'n her spotless waves should cease to glide :
In mighty Pope's immortalizing strains,
Still shall The grace and range the verdant plains ;
By him selected for the Muses' theme,
Still shine a blooming maid, and roll a limpid stream.

Go on, and, with thy rare resistless art,
Rule each emotion of the various heart;

45
The spring and test of verse unrival'd reign,
And the full honours of thy youth maintain;
Sooth with thy wonted ease and power divine,
Our souls, and our degenerate tastes refine ;
In judgment o’er our favourite follies fit,
And soften Wisdom's harsh reproofs to Wit.

Now war and arms thy mighty aid demand,
And Homer wakes beneath thy powerful hand ;
His vigour, genuine heat, and manly force,
In thee rise worthy of their sacred source ;

55
His fpirit heighten'd, yet his sense intire,
As Gold runs purer from the trying fire.
O, for a Muse like thine, while I rehearse,
Th’immortal beauties of thy various verse !
Now light as air th' inlivening numbers move, 60
Soft as the downy plumes of fabled Love,
Gay as the streaks that stain the gaudy bow,
Smooth as Meander's crystal Mirrours flow.

But, when Achilles, panting for the war, Joins the fleet coursers to the whirling car ; When the warm hero, with celestial might, Augments the terror of the raging fight,

From

65

From his fierce eyes refulgent lightnings stream
(As Sol emerging darts a golden gleam);
In rough hoarse verse we see th' embattled foes ; 70
In each loud strain the fiery onset glows ;
With strength redoubled here Achilles shines,
And all the battle thunders in thy lines.

So the bright Magic of the Painter's hand, Can cities, streams, tall towers, and far-stretch'd plains, command ;

75 Here spreading woods embrown the beauteous scene, There the wide landscape smiles with livelier green, The floating glass reflects the distant sky, And o'er the whole the glancing sun-beams fly; Buds open, and disclose the inmost shade ;

80 The ripen'd harvest crowns the level glade. But when the artist does a work design, Where bolder rage informs each breathing line ; When the stretch'd cloth a rougher stroke receives, And Cæsar awful in the canvas lives ; When Art like lavish Nature's self supplies, Grace to the limbs, and spirit to the Eyes ; When ev’n the passions of the mind are seen, And the Soul speaks in the exalted Mein; When all is juft, and regular, and great,

90 We own the mighty Master's skill, as boundless as

complete.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][merged small]

Lord MIDDLESEX to Mr. POPE.

On reading Mr. ADDISON'S Account of the

English Poets.

10

IF all who e'er invokid the tuneful Nine

In Addison's majestic numbers thine,
Why then should Pope, ye bards, ye critics tell,
Remain unsung, who sings himself so well?
Hear then, great bard, who can alike inspire
With Waller's softness, or with Milton's fire;
Whilft I, the mcanest of the Muses’ throng,
To thy just praises tune th' adventurous song.

How am I fill’d with rapture and delight
When gods and mortals, mix’d, sustain the fight !
Like Milton then, though in more polish'd strains,
Thy chariots rattle o'er the smoaking plains.
What though archangel 'gainst archangel arms,
And highest Heaven resounds with dire alarms!
Doth not the reader with like dread survey

is The wounded gode repuls'd with foul dismay?

But when some fair-one guides your softer verse,
Her charms, her godlike features, to rehearse;
Sec how her eyes with quicker lightnings arm,
And Waller's thoughts in smoother numbers charm. 20

When fools provoke, and dunces urge thy rage,
Fleck noc improv'd bites kcener in cach page.
Give o'er, great bard, your fruitless toil give o'cr,
For ftill king Tibbald scribbles as before;

Poor

Poor Shakespeare suffers by his pen each day, 25 While Grubstreet alleys own his lawful sway.

Now turn, my Muse, thy quick, poetic eyes, And view gay scenes and opening prospects rise. Hark! how his rustic numbers charm around, While groves to groves, and hills to hills resound. 30 The listening beasts stand fearless as he sings, And birds attentive close their useless wings, The swains and fatyrs trip it o'er the plain, And think old Spenser is reviv'd again. But when once more the godlike man begun 35 In words smooth flowing from his tuneful tongue, Ravish'd they gaze, and struck with wonder say, Sure Spenser's self ne'er sung so sweet a lay : Sure once again Eliza glads the ille, That the kind Muses thus propitious smile 40 Why gaze ye thus ? Why all this wonder, swains ? 'Tis Pope that fings, and Carolina reigns.

But hold, my Muse! whose aukward verfe betrays Thy want of skill, nor shew the poet's praise ; Cease then, and leave some fitter bard to tell 4-5 How Pope in every strain can write, in every strain excell.

To

« PreviousContinue »