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“ Thou hast ever been constant and kind;
My fondness ne'er met with a slight: In thee a firm friendship I find;
How unhappy when out of my sight!
"When with speed I could travel the plain,
With thy Mistress to sport was thy pride; And now I am weak and in pain,
Thou art heartless and dull by my side.
“ When I'm gone, thou, poor fellow, wilt pine,
And seek me, uneasy, around; Beseeching the swains, with a whine,
To tell where thy Friend may be found.
“Shouldst thou find my cold dwelling at last,
Near my sod thou wilt mope the long day: Nor the night, nor the rain, nor the blast,
Nay, nor hunger, will force thee away.”
Thus she spoke to her Fav’rite, whose eye
Was fix'd upon those of the MAID: Then he lick'd her fond hand at her sigh,
As if conscious of all she had said !
Sweet Nymph! What a sudden decay!
Now her limbs she could scarcely sustain ; Now her head would sink feebly away,
Like the lily press'd down by the rain.
At length on her pillow she fell;
In silence we watch'd her last breath : When she bade us for ever farewell,
How divine, tho' the whisper of Death!
No struggle in dying she knew,
Life pass’d with such sweetness away! So calm from the world she withdrew,
Her last sigh seem'd the zephyr of May.
Beneath a plain stone she is laid,
For needless of praise is the tale ;
May be seen in the tears of the VALE,
TO THE READER.
THE unfortunate subject of this ELEGIAC BALLAD was a young Lady, possessed of uncommon beauty, united with a highly-cultivated intellect, and the most fascinating manners. A tender attachment, terminating in disappointment, so affected her spirits as to occasion a fatal decline. Her Lover, from whose professions of regard she expected every happiness, deserted her almost in the hour of leading her to the Hymenäal altar. Deluded by the idea of im
mense riches, he gave his hand to another; thus sacrificing peace, honour, and humanity, at the “ tinsel shrine of Fortune.” His marriage, as might be expected, commencing with infamy, terminated in sorrow, and shortened a life that seemed to possess a claim to longevity. His last hours were those of repentance and horror : before his death he frequently visited the grave of his beloved but deserted JULIA, and strewed flowers, mingled with sighs, on her sod: and if a long and unfeigned contrition might be allowed to atone for the insanity of a moment, his tears must have obliterated his offences. Naturally of a poetical turn, he wrote a number of what he modestly called his love trifles, and sent occasionally to his Mistress, during the paroxysm of his passion, some of which we have subjoined, that seem to breathe a spirit of sincerity, whose foundation one would imagine could never have been shaken by the feeble arm of a puerile ambition.
ELEGY I. He despairs of obtaining the smiles of his Mistress.
What are the thunders of the ruthless wind?
And what the billows that tumultuous roll? Calms to the raging tempest of my mind, -
Rills to the restless surges of my soul.
Intent to please, I vainly urge my toil;
No hopes, alas! the Virgin's looks impart: O tell me, Julia, what can win thy smile ?
O speak, and heave the mountain from my heart.
What can I do to win a cruel maid ?
The front of Danger willing would I brave: No coward terror can this heart invade,
Whose chiefest glory is to be thy slave.
Fate holds no horror while I please my Fair;
Then, Julia, bid me my fond passion prove : All, all thy rigour can command, I dare,
But lose thine image, and forget to love.