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But most we mark the wonders of her reign, When Sleep has lock'd the senses in her chain, When sober Judgment has his throne resign'd, She smiles away the chaos of the mind; And, as warm Fancy's bright Elysium glows, From Her each image springs, each colour flows. She is the sacred guest! the immortal friend! Oft seen o'er sleeping Innocence to bend, In that dread hour of night to Silence given, Whispering seraphic visions of her heaven.
When the blythe son of Savoy, roving round With humble wares and pipe of merry sound, From his green vale and shelter'd cabin hies, And scales the Alps to visit foreign skies; Tho' far below the forked lightnings play, And at his feet the thunder dies away, Oft, in the saddle rudely rock'd to sleep, While his mule browses on the dizzy steep, With Memory's aid he sits at home, and sees His children sport beneath their native trees, And bends, to hear their cherub-voices call, O'er the loud fury of the torrent's fall.
But can her smile with gloomy Madness dwell?
But, as he fondly snatch'd the wreath of Fame,
Cold was her grasp, a withering scowl she wore;
Awake, arise! with grateful fervor fraught, Go, spring the mine of elevated thought.
He who, through Nature's various walk, surveys
Who acts thus wisely, mark the moral muse,
So richly cultur'd every native grace,
Its scanty limits he forgets to trace:
Ah! who can tell the triumphs of the mind, By truth illumin'd, and by taste refin'd?
When Age has quench'd the eye, and clos❜d the ear,
Oft will she rise....with searching glance pursue
With giant-grasp fling back the folds of night,
So through the grove the impatient mother flies, Each sunless glade, each secret pathway tries; Till the light leaves the truant boy disclose, Long on the wood-moss stretch'd in sweet repose.
Nor yet to pleasing objects are confin'd The silent feasts of the reflective mind. Danger and death a dread delight inspire; And the bald veteran glows with wonted fire, When, richly bronz'd by many a summer's sun, He counts his scars, and tells what deeds were done.
Go, with old Thames, view Chelsea's glorious pile; And ask the shatter'd hero whence his smile? Go, view the splendid domes of Greenwich, go; And own what raptures from Reflection flow.
Hail, noble structures, imag'd in the wave! A nation's grateful tribute to the brave.
Oft at the silent, shadowy close of day,
When the hush'd grove has sung its parting lay; When pensive Twilight, in her dusky car,
Slowly ascends to meet the evening star;
Above, below, aerial murmurs swell,
From hanging wood, brown-heath, and bushy dell! A thousand nameless rills, that shun the light, Stealing soft music on the ear of night.
So oft the finer movements of the soul,
That shun the sphere of pleasure's gay control,
Once, and domestic annals tell the time, (Preserv'd in Cumbria's rude, romantic clime) When Nature smil'd, and o'er the landscape threw Her richest fragrance, and her brightest hue, A blythe and blooming Forester explor'd Those nobler scenes Salvator's soul ador'd; The rocky pass, half hung with shaggy wood, And the cleft oak flung boldly o'er the flood.
High on exulting wing the heath-cock rose,20 And blew his shrill blast o'er perennial snows;