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THOU child of painting's mimic pencil go,
A well known face to dear Alicia shew,
And could thy lips by magic influence move,
Thou should'st declare my cordial friendly love.
Tho’not encircled with the diamond’s blaze,
The glowing ruby, or the em’rald's rays,
I know to souls like her's, a faithful friend
Does all luxurious grandeur's gems transcend,
And she the humble gift will fondly prize,
That holds a friend's resemblance to her eyes.
Oh! may it call our social hours to mind,
Revive each pleasing trace they left behind;
While faithful images of past delight,
Rise in succession to her mental sight;
Our winter ev’nings rational, and gay,
Which converse, books, so sweetly stole away ;
When fair historic Truth enlarg’d our views,
Or tun’d to rapture by the heav'nly muse,
We tasted pleasures only friendship knows,
Beyond whate'er from dissipation flows.
And sure my friend's affection will suggest,'
The same fond ardent wish which warms my breast,
That we may shortly meet, and Friendship’s pow'r
Again lend downy wings to many an hour.
Shall meet the rapid whirlwind in its course,
Nor fear unequal arms, or mightier force.
Thus ʼmidst the wintry storms, while Boreas flies
O'er groaning earth, and shoots athwart the skies;
While the pale garden withers, by its side
Blooms the green fir-tree in perennial pride.
Fair Virtue interpos’d, her succour gave,
And snatch'd her fav’rite from oblivion's wave,
Enthron’d in Heaven, with a prophetic mind,
She saw proud banners waving in the wind;
Saw nodding helmets, close compacted shields,
And Tarquin's legions scou’ring o'er the fields.
Swift as the lightning, flew the heav'nly guest,
And fix'd her dwelling in Cocles's breast.
llere while her potent force the soul inspires,
Horatius burns with more than mortal fires.
Thus thro' the mantling gloom, and shades of night,
Shines pallid Cynthia, with reflected light,
And cheers the dusky orb; with gentle beam
Gilds the dark trees, and dances on the stream.
But panick struck, behold the Romans fly,
The battle rages, and the foe draws nigh,
While Cocles leaning on his warlike spear,
Thus reasons with himself, unmov'd by fear; “ Should force united, vet’ran legions fail, Can single valour turn the sinking scale ; Alone, unaided shall I dare to stand, And meet the fury of yon hostile band ? Or to insulting Tarquin yield the day, And follow where Rome's warriors lead the way, Fly to the city with unmanly dread, By base born fear, and coward terrors led : Where trembling temples from their spiry height, Where Gods and Liberty upbraid my flight; No: dearer than myself, and father's shade, When Rome and Liberty demand my aid, Not like a coward shall Horatius fly The field, where glory calls, and fear to die. If to a tyrant such success is giv’, If Liberty can find no friend in Heav'n, If to my pray’rs averse, the God's command That Rome must perish, by a tyrant's hand, That foreign hands must wrap her tow’rs in flame, Let me first full, nor view ny country's shame ; Dish'd on some rock, which,while rough whirlwinds blow, Frowns dreadful on the wat'ry plairs below;
'Midst adverse legions and encount'ring foes,
Where the fight rages, and the battle glows,
With dauntless heart to perish do I go.”
The hero spoke, then rush'd upon the foe,
And pois’d the dart of death, and twang’d the deadly