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Amid the secret windings of the wood,
With folemn Meditation let me stray ;
The heavenly maid repays the toils of day,
The river murmurs, and the breathing gale
Whifpers the gently-waving boughs among;
And leads the filent host of heaven along.
How bright, emerging o'er yon broom-clad height,
The filver empress of the night appears!
And faintly in it's breast the woodland bears,
The waters tumbling o'er their rocky bed,
Solemn and constant, from yon dell resound;
The bat, low-wheeling, kims the duky ground,
Auguft and hoary, o'er the floping dale,
The Gothick abbey rears it's sculptur'd towers;
Dark Solitude among the pillars lours,
Where yon old trees bend o'er a place of graves,
And solemn fhade a chapel's sad remains,
And, twining round, the hoary arch fuftains;
There oft, at dawn, as one forgot behind,
Who longs to follow, yet unknowing where,
Pores on the graves, and fighs a broken prayer.
High o'er the pines, that with their darkening shade
Surround yon craggy bank, the caftle rears It's crumbling turrets: ftill it's towery head
A warlike mien, a fallen grandeur wears.
So, midst the snow of age, a boastful air
Still on the war-worn veteran's brow attends ; Still his big bones his youthful prime declare,
Tho' trembling o'er the feeble crutch he bends.
Wild round the gates the dusky wall-flowers creep,
Where oft the knights the beauteous dames have led Gone is the bower, the grot a ruin'd heap,
Where bays and ivy o'er the fragments spread,
'Twas here our fires, exulting from the fight;
Great in their bloody arms, march'd o'er the lea,.. Eying their rescu'd fields with proud delight!
Now lost to them land, ah! how chang'd to me!
This bank, the river, and the fanning breeze,
The dear idea of my Pollio bring ;
When here we wander'd in the eves of spring.
When April's fmiles the flowesy lawn adorn,
And modeft cowslips deck the streamlet's fide; When fragrant orchards to the roseate morn.....
Unfold their bloom, in heaven's own colours dy'd:
So fair a blossom gentle Pollio wore,
These were the emblems of his healthful mind; To him the letter'd page display'd it's lore,
To him bright Fancy all her wealth resigp'di
Him, with her purest flames the Muse endow'd,
Flames never to th’illiberal thought ally'd ;
In all her charms; he saw, he felt, and dy'doi 1'?,,
Oh, partner of my infant griefs and joys!
Big with the scenes now paft, my heart o'erAows ;
And dwells luxurious on her melting woes :
Oft with the rising fun, when liferwas new,
Along the woodland have I roam'd with thee;
When all was fearlefs innocence and glee.
The fainted well, where yon bleak hill declines,
Has oft been conscious of those happy hours;
And fainted well, have loft their chearing powers:
For thou art gone. My guide, my friend! bh; where,
Where haft thou Aed, and left me here behind !
Oh, now cut off each påffage to thy mind! "
How dreary is the gulph! how dárk, how võid,
The trackless fhores that never were repass?d!.
Hope faulters, and the foal recoils aghaft ! :
Wide round the spacious heavens I caft my eyes :
And shall these stars glow with immortal fire!
And could thy bright, thy living foul expire !'. ?
Far be the thought! The pleafures moft fublime
The glow of friendship, and the virtuous tears
Chill'd in this vale of death, but languish here:
So plant the vinte ori Norway's wint'ty latid;
The languid ftranger feebly buds, and dies:
With godlike strength beneath het native kies!
The lonely fliepherd on the mountain's fide,
With patience waits the rofy opening days
With chearful hope expects, the morning rayi
Thus I, on.life's stori-beaten ocean toss'd,
In mental vision view the happy shore,
Where fate and death divide the friends no more !!
Oh, that some kind, fome pitying kindred shades
Who now, perhaps, frequents this folemn grove,
Vain is the with yet surely tot in vain
Man's bofom glows with that celestial fire,
And wings his fpirit with fublime defire!
To fan this spark of Heaven, this ray divine,
Still, O my soul! ftill be thy dear employ ;
And swell thy breaft with visionary joy!
So to the dark-brow'd wood, or facred mount,
In ancient days, the holy feers retir'd; And, led in vision, drank at Siloe's fount,
While rising extafies their bofoms fir’d:
Restor'd creation bright before them rose,
The burning defarts smil'd as Eden's plains, One friendly shade the wolf and lambkin chose,
The flowery mountain fung, Mefliah reigns !"
Tho' fainter raptures my cold breast inspire,
Yet let me oft frequent this folemn scene; Oft to the abbey's fhatter'd walls retire,
What time the moonshine dimly gleams between :
There, where the cross in hoary ruin nods,
And weeping yews.o'ershade the letter'd stones, While midnight filence wraps these drear abodes,
And soothes me wandering o'er my kindred bones;
Let kindled Fancy view the glorious morn,
When from the bursting graves the jaft shall rise, All Nature smiling, and by angels borne,
Mefliah's cross far blazing o'er the fies !
ODE TO INDEPENDENCE.
BY DR. SMOLLETT,
Lord of the lion-heart and eagle-eye,
Nor heed the storm that howls along the sky;