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And his light scrip contained a scanty store;
A fan of painted feathers in his hand,
To guard his shaded face from scorching sand.
The sultry sun had gained the middle sky,
And not a tree and not an herb was nigh;
The beasts with pain their dusty way pursue,
Shrill roared the winds, and dreary was the view!
With desp'rate sorrow wild, th' affrighted man
Thrice sighed, thrice strook his breast, and thus began:

"Sad was the hour, and luckless was the day,
When first from Schiraz' walls I bent my way!

10.

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“Ah, little thought I of the blasting wind,

15 The thirst or pinching hunger, that I find ! Bethink thee, Hassan, where shall Thirst assuage, When fails this cruse, his unrelenting rage? Soon shall this scrip its precious load resign; Then what but tears and hunger shall be thine? Ye mute companions of my toils, that bear In all my griefs a more than equal share! Here, where no springs in murmurs break away, Or moss-crowned fountains mitigate the day, In vain ye hope the green delights to know

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Which plains more blest or verdant vales bestow;
Here rocks alone and tasteless sands are found,
And faint and sickly winds forever howl around.

Sad was the hour, and luckless was the day,
When first from Schiraz' walls I bent my way! 30

35.

“Curst be the gold and silver which persuade
Weak men to follow far-fatiguing trade!
The lily peace outshines the silver store,
And life is dearer than the golden ore.
Yet money tempts us o'er the desert brown,
To ev'ry distant mart and wealthy town;
Full oft we tempt the land, and oft the sea;
And are we only yet repaid by thee?
Ah, why was ruin so attractive made,
Or why fond man so easily betrayed ?
Why heed we not, whilst mad we haste along,
The gentle voice of Peace or Pleasure's song?

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Or wherefore think the flow'ry mountain's side,
The fountain's murmurs, and the valley's pride,
Why think we these less pleasing to behold
Than dreary deserts if they lead to gold?

Sad was the hour, and luckless was the day,
When first from Schiraz' walls I bent my way!

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“O cease, my fears !—all frantic as I go,
When thought creates unnumbered scenes of woe,
What if the lion in his rage I meet!
Oft in the dust I view his printed feet :
And (fearful!) oft, when Day's declining light
Yields her pale empire to the mourner Night,
By hunger roused, he scours the groaning plain,
Gaunt wolves and sullen tigers in his train;
Before them Death with shrieks directs their way,
Fills the wild yell, and leads them to their prey.

Sad was the hour, and luckless was the day,
When first from Schiraz' walls I bent my way!

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“At that dead hour the silent asp shall creep,
If aught of rest I find, upon my sleep;
Or some swoln serpent twist his scales around,
And wake to anguish with a burning wound.
Thrice happy they, the wise contented poor,
From lust of wealth and dread of death secure!
They tempt no deserts, and no griefs they find;
Peace rules the day, where reason rules the mind.

Sad was the hour, and luckless was the day,
When first from Schiraz' walls I bent my way!

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"O hapless youth! for she thy love hath won,
The tender Zara, will be most undone!
Big swelled my heart, and owned the pow'rful maid,
When fast she dropped her tears, as thus she said:
‘Farewell the youth whom sighs could not detain,
Whom Zara's breaking heart implored in vain!
Yet, as thou go'st, may ev'ry blast arise
Weak and unfelt as these rejected sighs!
Safe o'er the wild, no perils mayst thou see,
No griefs endure, nor weep, false youth, like me.'

80

O let me safely to the fair return,
Say, with a kiss, she must not, shall not mourn!
O let me teach my heart to lose its fears,
Recalled by Wisdom's voice and Zara's tears !"

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He said, and called on Heav'n to bless the day

When back to Schiraz' walls he bent his way. 1738 or 1739.

1742.

FROM

AN EPISTLE

ADDRESSED TO SIR THOMAS HAN MER ON HIS EDITION OF SHAKESPEAR'S

WORKS

5

IO

Each rising art by just gradation moves,
Toil builds on toil, and age on age improves ;
The Muse alone unequal dealt her rage,
And graced with noblest pomp her earliest stage.
Preserved through time, the speaking scenes impart * 5
Each changeful wish of Phædra's tortured heart;
Or paint the curse that marked the Theban's reign-
A bed incestuous, and a father slain.
With kind concern our pitying eyes o'erflow,
Trace the sad tale, and own another's woe.

To Rome removed, with wit secure to please,
The Comic Sisters kept their native ease;
With jealous fear declining Greece beheld
Her own Menander's art almost excelled.
But ev'ry Muse essayed to raise in vain
Some laboured rival of her tragic strain;
Ilissus' laurels, though transferred with toil,
Drooped their fair leaves, nor knew th' unfriendly soil.

As Arts expired, resistless Dulness rose;
Goths, priests, or Vandals—all were Learning's foes :
Till Julius first recalled each exiled maid,
And Cosmo owned them in th' Etrurian shade.
Then, deeply skilled in love's engaging theme,
The soft Provençal passed to Arno's stream;
With graceful ease the wanton lyre he strung,

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Sweet flowed the lays—but love was all he sung;
The gay description could not fail to move,
For, led by nature, all are friends to love.

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But Heav'n, still various in its works, decreed
The perfect boast of time should last succeed;
The beauteous union must appear, at length,
Of Tuscan fancy and Athenian strength;
One greater Muse Eliza's reign adorn,
And ev'n a Shakespear to her fame be born!

Yet, ah, so bright her morning's op'ning ray,
In vain our Britain hoped an equal day:
No second growth the western isle could bear,
At once exhausted with too rich a year.
Too nicely Jonson knew the critic's part;
Nature in him was almost lost in art.
Of softer mould the gentle Fletcher came,
The next in order as the next in name:
With pleased attention, 'midst his scenes we find
Each glowing thought that warms the female mind;
Each melting sigh and ev'ry tender tear,
The lover's wishes and the virgin's fear.
His ev'ry strain the Smiles and Graces own,
But stronger Shakespear felt for man alone;
Drawn by his pen, our ruder passions stand
Th' unrivalled picture of his early hand.

With gradual steps and slow, exacter France
Saw Art's fair empire o'er her shores advance;
By length of toil a bright perfection knew,
Со ctly bold, and just in all she drew:
Till laté Corneille, with Lucan's spirit fired,
Breathed the free strain, as Rome and he inspired;
And classic judgment gained to sweet Racine
The temp'rate strength of Maro's chaster line.

But wilder far the British laurel spread,
And wreaths less artful crown our poet's head.
Yet he alone to ev'ry scene could give
Th' historian's truth, and bid the manners live.
1743.

1743.

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A SONG FROM SHAKESPEAR'S “CYMBELINE”

To fair Fidele's grassy tomb

Soft maids and village hinds shall bring
Each op'ning sweet of earliest bloom,

And rifle all the breathing spring.

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No wailing ghost shall dare appear,

To vex with shrieks this quiet grove; But shepherd lads assemble here,

And melting virgins own their love.

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No withered witch shall here be seen,

No goblins lead their nightly crew; The female fays shall haunt the green,

And dress thy grave with pearly dew.

The redbreast oft, at ev'ning hours,

Shall kindly lend his little aid,
With hoary moss and gathered flow'rs,

To deck the ground where thou art laid.

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When howling winds and beating rain

In tempests shake the sylvan cell, Or 'midst the chase, on ev'ry plain,

The tender thought on thee shall dwell.

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Each lonely scene shall thee restore;

For thee the tear be duly shed; Beloved till life could charm no more,

And mourned till Pity's self be dead.

1744.

ODE TO FEAR

STROPHE

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Thou to whom the world unknown,
With all its shadowy shapes, is shown;
Who see'st, appalled, th' unreal scene,
While Fancy lifts the veil between;

Ah Fear! ah frantic Fear !
I
see,

I see thee near!
I know thy hurried step, thy haggard eye!
Like thee I start, like thee disordered fly,
For, lo, what monsters in thy train appear !
Danger, whose limbs of giant mould
What mortal eye can fixed behold?

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