« PreviousContinue »
EPISTLE TO DR. ENFIELD,
ON HIS REVISITING WARRINGTON IN 1789.
Frien Dof those yearswhichfrom Youth's sparkling fount
O when thy feet retrace that western shore
Will not thy heart with mixed emotions thrill,
Shades of light transient Loves shall pass
Lo there the seats where Science loved to dwell,
Where Liberty her ardent spirit breathed;
O seats beloved in vain! Your rising dome
Does Desolation spread his gloomy veil
Yet still, perhaps, in some sequestered walk
Thine ear shall catch the tales of other times;
Still in faint sounds the learned echoes talk,
Where unprofaned as yet by vulgar chimes.
Do not the deeply-wounded trees still bear
The dear memorial of some infant flame ?
And murmuring sounds yet fill the hallowed air, Once vocal to the youthful poet's fame?
For where her sacred step impressed the Muse, She left a long perfume through all the bowers ; Still mayst thou gather thence Castalian dews In honeyed sweetness clinging to the flowers.
Shrowded in stolen glance, here timorous Love The grave rebuke of careful Wisdom drew,
With wholesome frown austere who vainly strove
To shield the sliding heart from Beauty's view.
Go fling this garland in fair Mersey's stream,
Say, Thames to Avon still repeats his theme ;
Visit each shade and trace each weeping rill
Where purple foxgloves fringe the rugged stone:
And if thou seest on some neglected spray
The lyre which soothed my careless hours so much
Were it, like thine, my lot once more to tread
Plains now but seen in distant perspective,
With that soft hue, that dubious gloom o'erspread,
That tender tint which only time can give;
How would it open every secret cell
Where cherished thought and fond remembrance sleep! How many a tale each conscious step would tell !
How many a parted friend these eyes would weep!
But O the chief!—If in thy feeling breast
If there domestic love have built her nest,
And thy fond heart a parent's cares divide;
Go seek the turf where worth, where wisdom lies,
Wisdom and worth, ah, never to return!
There, kneeling, weep my tears, and breathe my sighs, A daughter's sorrows o'er her father's urn!