Samuel Rogers.

The poems of Samuel Rogers, with a memoir online

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To thee she turns— forgive a virgin's fears !
To thee she turns with surest, tenderest claim.
Weakness that charms, reluctance that endears '

At each response the sacred rite requires.
From her full bosom bursts the unbidden sigh.
A strange mysterious awe ihe scene inspires ;
And on her lips the trembling accents die.

O'er her fair face what wild emotions play !
What lights and shades in sweet confusioa

blend !
Soon shall they fly, glad harbingers of day.
And settled s-mshine on her soul descend !

275



276 MISCELLiNEOUS roi'.Ma.

Ah soon, thine own confest, ecstatic fhought !
That hand shall strew thy summer-path with

flowers ;
And those blue eyes, with mildest lustre

fraught,
Gild the calm current of domestic hours !



A WISFI.



Mine be a cot beside the hill,
A bee-hive's hum shall soothe my ear;
A willowy brook, that turns a mill,
With many a fall, shall linger near.

The swallow, oft, beneath my thatch
Shall twitter from her clay-built nest;
Oft shall the pngrrm lift the latch,
And share my meal, a welcome guest.

Around my ivied porch shall spring
Each fragrant flower that drinks the dew
And Lucy, at her wheel, shall sing
In russet gown and apron blue.

The village-church, among the trees,
Where tirst our marriage-vows were given.
With merry peals shall swell the breeze,
And point with taper spire to heaven.



TO .♦

Ah ! Utile thought sh>, when, with v/ild delight,
By many a torrent's shining track she flew,
When mountain-glens and caverns full of night
O'er her joung mind divine enchantment
threw.

That in her veins a secret horror slept,

That her light footsteps should be heard no

more,
That she should die — nor watch' d, alas, nor

wept
By thee, unconscious of the pangs she bore.

Yet round her couch indulgent Fancy drew
The kindred forms her closing eye required.
There didst thou stand — there, with the smile

she knew,
She moved her lips to bless thee, and expired.

And now to thee she comes ; still, still tho

same
As in the hours gone unregarded by !
To thee, how changed ! comes as she evef

came,
Health on her cheek, and pleasure in her eye!

• On the death of her aister.

277



278 mis:ellaneoi;6 po2M8.

Nor less, less oft, as on that day, appears,
When lingering, as prophetic of the truth,
By the way-side she shod her parting teara— •
For ever lovely in the light of Youth t



CAPTIVITY.

Caoed in old woods, whose reverend echoet

wake
When the hern screams along the distant lake,
Her little heart oft flutters to be free.
Oft sighs to turn the unrelenting key.
In vain ! the nurse that rusted relic wears.
Nor moved by gold — nor to be moved by tears ;
And terraced walls their black reflection throw
On the green-mantled moat that sleeps below.



A FAREWELL.

Once more, enchanting maid adieu !
I must be gone while yet I may ;
Oft shall I weep to think of you,
But here I will not, cannot stay.

The sweet expression of that face.
For evei* changing, yet the same,



SSISCELLANZOUS XOEMS. t79

Ah no, I dare not turn to trace —
It melts my soul, it lires my frame!

Yet give me, give me, ere I go,
One little lock of those so blest,
That lend your cheek a warmer glow,
And on your white neck love to rest.

— Say, when to kindle soft delight,
That hand has chanced with mine to moet.
How could its thrilling touch excite
A sigh so short, and yet so sweet ?

O say — but no, it must not be.
Adieu ! a long, a long adieu !
— Yet still, methinks, you frown on me,
Or never could I fly from you.



TO THE FRAGMENT OF A STATUE

OF HERCULES, COMMONLY CAL-

LED THE TORSO.



And dost thou still, thou mass of breathing

stone,
(Thy giant limbs to night in chaos hurl'd),
Still sit as on the fragment of a world ;
Surviving all, majestic and alone ?
What though the Spirits of the North, thai

swept



280 MISCELLANEOUS TOEMS.

Rome from the earth, when in her pomp she

slept,
Smote thee with fury, and thy headless trunk
Dsep in the dust 'mid tower and temple sunk :
Soon to subdue mankind 't was thine to rise,
Still, still unquell'd thy glorious energies !
Aspiring minds, with thee conversing, caught
Bright revelations of the Good they sought;
By thee that long-lost spell in secret given,
To draw down Gods., and lift the soul to

Heaven :



AN ITALIAN SONG.



Dear is my little native vnle,

The ring-dove builds and murmurs there;

Close by my cot she tells her tale

To every passing villager.

The squirrel leaps from tree to tree,

And shells his nuts at liberty.

In orange-groves and myrtle-bowers,
That breathe a gale of fragrance round,
I charm the fairy-footed hours
With my loved lute's romantic sound;
Or crowns of living laurel weave.
For those -that win the race at eve.

The shepherd's horn at break of day.
The ballet danced in twilight glade,



JWSCELl.ANEOTTS POEMS. 381

The enn.'.onet and roundelay
Sung in the silent greenwood shade,
These sitnpio joys that never fail,
Shall bind mt lo my native vale.



FROM A GREEK EPIGRAM.

While on the cliff with calm delight she kneela^
And the blue vales a thousand joys recall,
See to the last, last verge her infant steals !
O fly — yet stir not, speak not, lest it fall.
Far better taught, she lays her bosom bare,
And the fond boy springs back to nestle there.



WRITTEN IN THE HIGHLANDS OF
SCOTLAND, SEPTEMBER 2, 1812.



Blue was the loch, the clouds were gona
Ben Lomond in his glory shone,
When, Luss, 1 left thee ; when the bre^se
Bore me from thy silver sands,
Thy kirk-yard wall among the trees.
Where, grey with age, the dial stands
That dial so well known to me !
•-Thouyh many a shadow it had shed.



MISCEI LANEOUS POEMS.

Beloved Sister, since with thee
The legend on the stone was read.

The fairy isles fled far away ;
That with its woods and uplands green,
Where shepherd-huts are dimly seen,
And songs are heard at closo of day ;
That, too, the deer's wild covert, fled,
And that, the asylum of the dead:
While, as the boat went merrily,
Much of Rob Roy* the boatman told ;
His arm, that fell below his knee,
His cattle-ford and mountain-hold.

Tarbat, thy shore I climb'd at last ;
And, thy shady region pass'd,
Upon another shore I stood,
And look'd upon another flood ;t
Great Ocean's self! ('T is He who fills
That vast and awfal depth of hills);
Where many an elf was playing round
Who treads unshod his classic ground ;
And speaks, his native rocks among,
As Fingal spoke, and Ossian sung.

Night fell ; and dark and darker grew
That narrow sea, that narrow sky.
As o'er the glimmering waves we flew;
The sea-bird rustling, wailing by.
And now the grampus, half-descried.
Black and huge above the tide ;
The clitls and promontories there,
Front to front, and broad and bare ;

♦ A famous Outlaw. -f Loch-Long.



MISCEI.LAXEOUS POEMS. 283

Ea(h beyond each, with giant-feet

Advancing as in haste to meet ;

The shatter'd fortress, whence the Dane

Blew his shrill blast, nor rush'd in vain,

Tyrant of the drear domain :

All into midnight-shadow sweep,

When day springs upward from the deep !

Kindling the waters in its flight,

The prow wakes splendour ; and the oar,

That rose and fell unseen before,

Flashes in a sea of light !

Glad sign, and sure ! lor now we hail

Thy flowers, Glenfinnart, in the gale;

And bright indeed the path should be

That leads to Friendship and to thee !

Oh blest retreat, and sacred too !
Sacred as when the bell of prayer
ToU'd duly on the desert air.
And crosses deck'd thy summits blue.
Oft, like some loved romantic tale,
Oft shall my weary mind recall,
Amid the hum and stir of men.
Thy beechen grove and waterfall
Thy ferry with its g'iding sail,
And her — the Lady of the dlen*



TO THE BUTTERFLY.

Child of the sun I pursue -.Iiy rapturous flight,
Mingling with her thou lovest in fields of light;
And, where the flowers of Paradise unfold,
Quaff" fragrant nectar from their cups of gold.
There shall thy wings, rich as an evening-sky,
Expand and shut wuh silent ecstacy I
—Yet wert thou once a worm, a thing that crept
On the bare earth, then wrought a tomb, and

slept.
And such is man ; sr )n from his cell of clay
To burst a seraph in the blaze of day !



INSCRIPTION FOR A TEMPLE

DEDICATED TO THE GRACES.



Appkoach with reverence. There are those

within
Whose dwelling place is Heaven. Daughters

of Jove,
From them flow all the decencies of life ;
Without them nothing pleases, Virtue's self
Admired, not loved ; and those on whom they

smile,
Great though they be, and wise, and beautiful^
Shme forth vith double lustre.
284



WRITTEN IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY.
OCVOBER 10, 1S06.



Whoe'er thou art, approach, and, with a sigh,
Mark where the small remains of greatness lie.
There sleeps the dust of Fux, for ever gone :
How near the Place where late his glory shone !
And, though no more ascends the voice of

Prayer,
Though the last footsteps cease to linger there,
Still, like an awful dream that comes again,
Alas! at best as transient and as vain,
Still do I see (while through the vaults of night
The funeral-song once more proclaims the ritej
The moving Pomp along the shadowy aisle,
That, like a Darkness, fiU'd the solemn Pile ;
The illustrious line, that in long order led.
Of those that loved Him living, mourn' d Him

dead;
Of those the Few, that for their Country stood
Round Him who dared be singularly good:
All, of all ranks, that claim'd Him for their ov/n;
And nothing wanting — but himself alone !

Oh say, of Him now rests there but a name ;
Wont, as He was, to breathe ethereal flame?
Friend of the Absent, Guardian of the Dead !
Who but would here their sacred sorrows shed?
(Such as He shed on Nelson's closing grave ;
How soon to claim the sympathy He gave !)
In Him, resentful of another's wrong,

Q35



£86 MISCELLANEOUS P0EM5,

The dumb were eloquent, the feeble strong.
Truth from his lips a charm celestial drew —
Ah, who so mighty and so gentle too ?

What though with War the madding nations
rung
"Peace," when He spoke, was ever on his

tongue I
Amidst the frowns of Power, the tricks of State,
Fearless, resolved, and negligently great !
In vain malignant vapours gather' d round;
He walk'd, erect, on consecrated ground.
The clouds, that rise to quench the Orb of day,
Reflect its splendour, and dissolve away !
When in retreat He laid his thunder by,
For letter' d ease and calm Philosophy,
Blest were his hours within the silent grove,
Where still his god-like Spirit deigns to rove ;
Blest by the orphan's smile, the widow's prayer,
For many a deed, long done in secret there.
There shone his lamp on Homer's hallow'd page ;
There, listening, sate the hero and the sage ;
And they, by virtue and by blood allied,
Whom most He loved, and in whose arms He
died.
Friend of all human-kind ! not here alone
(The voice that speaks, was not to thee un-
known)
Wilt Thou be missed. — O'er every land and sea,
Long, long shall England be revered in Thee !
And, when the storm is hush'd — in distant

years —
Foes on Thy grave shall meet, and ming^le tears



TO .

Go — you may call it madness, folly;
You shall not chase my gloom away.
There's such a charm in melancholy,
I would noc, if I could, be gay.

Oh if you knew the pensive pleasure
That fills my bosom when I sigh,
You would not rob me of a treasure
Monarchs are too poor to buy.



THE ALPS AT DAY-BREAK.



The sun-beams streak the azure skies,
And line with light the mountain's browi
With hounds and horns the hunters rise,
And chase the roe-buck through the snow

From rock to rock, with giant-bound,
High on their iron poles they pass ;
Mute, lest the air, convulsed by soxmd.
Rend from above a frozen mass.

The goats wind slow their wonted way
Up craggy steeps and ridges rude ;

287



MISCELLANEOUS POES.J.

Mark'd by the wild wolf for hia pref
From desert cave or hanging wood.

And while the torrent thunders loud,
And as the echoing cliflTs reply.
The huts peep o'er the morning cloud
Perch'd, like an eagle's nest, on higl».



AN INSCRIPTION.

Shepberd, or Huntsman, or worn Marin«rr,
Whate'er thou art, who woulast allay thy ihirst.
Drink and be glad. This cistern of white stone,
Arch'd, and o'erwrought wi.h many a sacred

verse,
This iron cup chain'd for the general use.
And these rude seats of eart'.i within the grove,
Were given by Fatfma, Borne hence a bride,
'T was here she turn'd fro.-i lier beloved sire.
To see his face no more. Oh if thou canst,
('Tis not far off) visit his t'.mb with flowers,
And with a drop of this swejt water fill
The two s.mall cells scoop' d m the marble there.
That birds may come and di ink upon his grave,
Making it holyl*

* A Turkish superstlllon.



THE

PLEASURES OF MEMORY.



PART I.



Twilight's soft dews steal o'er the villag»»
green,
With magic tints to harmonize the scene.
Still'd is the hum that through the hamlet broke.
When round the ruins of their ancient oak
The peasants flock'd to hear the minstrel play,
And games and carols closed the busy day.
Her wheel at rest, the matron thrills no more
With treasured tales, and legendary lore.
All, all are fled ; nor mirth nor music flows
To chase the dreams of innocent repose.
All, all are fled ; yet still I linger here !
What secret charms this silent spot endear !

Mark yon old Mansion frowning through the

trees,

Whose hollow turret wooes the whistling breeze.

That casement arch' d with ivy's brownestshade,

First to these eyes the light of heaven convey'd.

VJ 26d



290 Rogers's

The mouldering gateway strews the grass-grown

court,
Once the calm scene of many a simple sport ;
When nature pleased, for life itself was new
And the heart promised what the fancy drew.

See, through the fractured pediment reveal'd,
Where moss inlays the rudely-sculptured shield,
The martin's old, hereditary nest :
Long may the ruin spare its hallow' d guest !

As jars the hinge, what sullen echoes call !
Oh haste, unfold the hospitable hall 1
That hall, where once, in antiquated state,
The chair of justice held the grave debate.

Now stain'd with dews, with cobwebs darkly
hung,
Oft has its roof with peals of rapture rung ;
When round yon ample board, in due degree,
We sweeten'd every meal with social glee.
The heart's light laugh pursued the circhng

jest ;
And all was sunshine in each little breast.
'Twas there we chased the slipper by the sound ;
And turn'd the blindfold hero round and round.
'Twas here, at eve, we form'd our fairy ring ;
And Fancy flutter'd on her wildest wing.
Giants and genii chain'd each wondering ear;
And orphan-sorrows drew the ready tear.



PLEASURES OF MEMORY. 201

Oft with the babe we wander'd in the iv'O.xi,
Or view'd the forest-feats of Robin Hood :
Oft fancy-led, at midnight's fearful hour,
With starthng step we scaled the lonely tower;
O'er infant innocence to hang and weep.
Murder' d by ruffian hands, when smiling in its
deep.

Ye Household Deities ! whose guardian eye
Mark'd each pure thought, ere register'd on

high;
Still, still ye walkth^ consecrated ground,
And breathe the soul of Inspiration round.

As o'er the dusky furniture I bend
Each chair awakes the feeUngs of a friend.
The storied arras, source of fond delight,
With old achievement charms the wilder'd sight
And still, with Heraldry's rich hues imprest,
On the dim window glows the pictured crest.
The screen unfolds its many-colour'd chart,
The clock still points its moral to the heart.
That faithful monitor 'twas heaven to hear,
When soft it spoke a promised p'easure near ;
And has its sober hand, its simple chime.
Forgot to trace the feather'd feet of Time ?
That massive beam, with curious carvings

wrought,
Whence the caged linnet soothed my pensivf

thought;



293 BooERs's

Those musltets, cased with Tenerableruft j
Those once-loved forma, still breathing through

their dust,
Still, from the frame in m^ould gigantic cast,
Starting to life — all whisper of the Past !

As through the garden's desert paths I rove,
What fond illusions swarm in every grove !
How oft, when purple evening tinged the west.
We watch'd the emmet to her grainy nest ;
Welcomed the wild-bee home on weary wing.
Laden with sweets, the choicest of th* spring !
How oft inscribed, with Friendship's votiva

rhyme,
The bark now silver'd by the toxich of Time ;
Soar'd in the swing, half pleased and half afraid.
Through sister elms that waved their summer-
shade ;
Or strew'd with crumbs yon root-inwoven seat.
To lure the redbreast from his lone retreat!

Childhood's loved group revisits every scene.
The tangled wood- walk, and the tafted green I
Indulgent Memory wakes, and lo, they live !
Clothed with far softer hues than Light can give.
Thou first best i'riend that Heaven assigns

below,
To soothe and sweeten all the cares we know ;
Whose glad suggestions still each vain alarm,
When nature fades, and life forgets to charm ;



PLEAftURES OF MEMORY. «>1


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Online LibrarySamuel RogersThe poems of Samuel Rogers, with a memoir → online text (page 14 of 16)