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النشر الإلكتروني

L'ALLEGRO.

HENCE, loathed Melancholy,
Of Cerberus and blackest Midnight born,
In Stygian cave forlorn,
'Mongst horrid shapes, and shrieks, and sights

unholy!
Find out some uncouth cell,

Where brooding Darkness spreads his jealous

wings,

And the night-raven sings;

There under ebon shades, and low-brow'd rocks, As ragged as thy locks,

In dark Cinimerian desart ever dwell.

But come, thou Goddess fair and free, In Heaven yclep'd Euphrosyne,

And by Men, heart-easing Mirth;
Whom lovely Venus, at a birth,
With two sister Graces more,
To ivy-crowned Bacchus bore :
Or whether (as some sager sing)
The frolick wind, that breathes the spring,
Zephyr, with Aurora playing,
As he met her once a-Maying ;
There on beds of violets blue,
And fresh-blown roses wash'd in dew,
Filld her with thee a daughter fair,
So buxom, blythe, and debonair.

Haste thee, Nymph, and bring with thee
Jest, and youthful Jollity,
Quips, and Cranks, and wanton Wiles,
Nods, and Becks, and wreathed Smiles,
Such as hang on Hebe's cheek,
And love to live in dimple sleek ;
Sport that wrinkled Care derides,
And Laughter holding both his sides,
Come, and trip it, as you go,
On the light fantastick toe;
And in thy right hand lead with thee
The mountain-nymph, sweet Liberty;
And, if I give thee honour due,
Mirth, admit me of thy crew, .
To live with her, and live with thee,
In unreproved pleasures free;

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To hear the lark begin his flight,
And singing startle the dull night,
From his watch-tower in the skies,
Till the dappled dawn doth rise;
Then to come, in spite of sorrow,
And at my window bid good morrow,
Through the sweet-briar, or the vine,
Or the twisted eglantine :
While the cock, with lively din,
Scatters the rear of Darkness thin.
And to the stack, or the barn-door,
Stoutly struts his dames before :
Oft listening how the hounds and horn
Cheerly rouse the slumbering morn,
From the side of some hoar hill,
Through the high wood echoing shrill :
Some time walking, not unseen,
By hedge-row elms, on hillocks green,
Right against the eastern gate
Where the great sun begins his state,
Rob’d in flames, and amber light,
The clouds in thợusand liveries dight;
While the plowman, near at hand,
Whistles o'er the furrow'd land,
And the milkmaid singeth blithe,
And the mower whets his sithe,
And every shepherd tells his tale
Under the hawthorn in the dale.

Straight mine eye hath caught new pleasures, Whilst the landskip round it measures ; Russet laws, and fallows gray, Where the nibbling flocks do stray, Mountains, on whose barren breast, The labouring clouds do often rest; Meadows trim with daisies pide, Shallow brooks, and rivers wide : Towers and battlements it sees Bosom’d high in tufted trees, Where perhaps some Beauty lies, The Cynosure of neighbouring eyes. Hard by, a cottage chimney smoaks, From betwixt two aged oaks, Where Corydon and Thyrsis, met, Are at their savoury dinner set Of herbs, and other country messes, Which the neat-handed Phillis dresses ; And then in haste her bower she leaves, With Thestylis to bind the sheaves ; Or, if the earlier season lead, To the tann'd haycock in the mead. Sometimes with secure delight The upland hamlets will invite, When the merry bells ring round, And the jocund rebecks sound To many a youth, and many a maid, Dancing in the chequer'd shade ;

And young and old come forth to play
On a sun-shine holy-day,
Till the live-long day-light fail :
Then to the spicy nut-brown ale,
With stories told of many a feat,
How faery Mab the junkets eat;
She was pinch’d, and pull'd, she sed;
And, he, by friars lantern led,
Tells how the drudging Goblin swet,
To earn his cream-bowl duly set,
When in one night, ere glimpse of morn,
His shadowy flail hath thresh'd the corn,
That ten day-labourers could not end ;
Then lies him down the lubbar fiend,
And, stretch'd out all the chimney's length,
Basks at the fire his hairy strength;
And crop-full out of doors he flings,
Ere the first cock his matin rings.
Thus done the tales, to bed they creep,
By whispering winds soon lulld asleep.
Tower'd cities please us then,
And the busy hum of men,
Where throngs of knights and barons bold,
In weeds of peace, high triumphs hold,
With store of ladies, whose bright eyes
Rain influence, and judge the prize
Of wit, or arms, while both contend
To win her grace, whom all commend.

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