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POEMS AND FRAGMENTS.
ON THE PLEASURES ARISING FROM VICISSITUDE.
Left unfinished by Mr. Gray. With additions by Mr. Mason, distinguished by inverted commas.
Now the golden morn aloft
Waves her dew-bespangled wing,
New-born flocks, in rustic dance,
But chief, the sky-lark warbles high
Rise, my soul! on wings of fire,
Rise the rapturous choir among; Hark! 'tis nature strikes the lyre,
And leads the general song: "Warm let the lyric transport flow, "Warm as the ray that bids it glow; . And animates the vernal grove "With health, with harmony, and love."
Yesterday the sullen year
Saw the snowy whirlwind fly;
Smiles on past misfortune's brow
Soft reflection's hand can trace; And o'er the cheek of sorrow throw
A melancholy grace;
While hope prolongs our happier hour
Still, where rosy pleasure leads,
See the wretch, that long has toss'd
Humble quiet builds her cell,
Near the source whence pleasure flows; She eyes the clear crystalline well, And tastes it as it goes.
'While' far below the 'madding' crowd Rush headlong to the dangerous flood,' Where broad and turbulent it sweeps, 'And' perish' in the boundless deeps.
Mark where indolence and pride,
'To these, if Hebe's self should bring
'Mark ambition's march sublime
Up to power's meridian height; While pale-eyed envy sees him climb, And sickens at the sight.
Phantoms of danger, death, and dread,
'Happier he, the peasant, far,
From the pangs of passion free,
He, when his morning task is done,
'He, unconscious whence the bliss,
Feels, and owns in carols rude, That all the circling joys are his, Of dear Vicissitude.
From toil he wins his spirits light,
TRANSLATION OF A PASSAGE
THEB. LIB. VI., VER. 704-724.
This translation, which Gray sent to West, consisted of about a hundred and ten lines. Mr. Mason selected twenty-seven lines, which he published, as Gray's first attempt in English verse.
THIRD in the labours of the disc came on, With sturdy step and slow, Hippomedon; Artful and strong he poised the well-known weight,
By Phlegyas warn'd, and fir'd by Mnestheus' fate,
That to avoid, and this to emulate.
His vigorous arm he tried before he flung,