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With ravish'd ears,
The monarch hears,
Assumes the god,
Affects to nod,
And seems to shake the spheres.
The praise of Bacchus, then, the sweet musiciansung;
Of Bacchus ever fair, and ever young:
The jolly god in triumph comes;
Sound the trumpets, beat the drums;
Flush'd with a purple grace,
He shews his honest face.
Now give the hautboys breath—he comes, he comes!
Bacchus, ever fair and young,
Drinking joys did first ordain:
Bacchus' blessings are a treasure,
Drinking is the soldier's pleasure;
Rich the treasure,
Sweet the pleasure;
Sweet is pleasure after pain.
Sooth'd with the sound, the king grew vain;
Fought all his battles o'er again; And thrice he routed all his foes, and thrice he slew the slain. *.
The master saw the madness rise,
His glowing cheeks, his ardent eyes;
And while he heav'n and earth defy'd,
Chang'd his hand, and check'd his pride.
He chose a mournful muse,
Soft pity to infuse:
He sung Darius, great and good
By too severe a fate --
Fall’n, fall’n, fall'n, fall'n,
Fall’n from his high estate,
And welt’ring in his blood:
Deserted, at his utmost need,
By those his former bounty fed;
On the bare earth expos'd he lies,
With not a friend to close his eyes.
With downcast looks the joyless victor sate, - Revolving in his alter'd soul The various turns of chance below ; And now and then a sigh he stole, And tears began to flow.
The mighty master smil'd to see
That love was in the next degree;
'Twas but a kindred sound to move,
For pity melts the mind to love. ,
Softly sweet, in Lydian measures,
Soon he sooth'd his soul to pleasures.
War, he sung, is toil and trouble,
Honour but an empty bubble;
Never ending, still beginning,
Fighting still, and still destroying:
If the world be worth thy winning,
Think, O think it worth enjoying !
Lovely. Thaïs sits beside thee;
Take the good the gods provide thee.
The many rend the skies with loud applause:
So Love was crown'd, but Music won the cause.
The prince, unable to conceal his pain,
Gaz'd on the fair
Who caus'd his care,
Sigh’d and look'd, sigh’d and look'd,
Sigh’d and look'd, and sigh’d again.
At length, with love and wine at once opprest,
The vanquish'd victor sunk upon her breast.
Now strike the golden lyre again:
A louder yet, and yet a louder strain.
Break his bands of sleep asunder,
And rouze him, like a rattling peal of thunder.
Hark, hark, the horrid sound
Has rais'd up his head,
As awak'd from the dead,
And, amaz'd, he stares around,
Revenge, revenge! Timotheus cries:
See the furies arise
See the snakes how they rear,
How they hiss in the air
And the sparkles that flash from their eyes?
Behold a ghastly band, Each a torch in his hand, These are Grecian ghosts, that in battle were slain, And unburied remain, * Inglorious on the plain : Give the vengeance due To the valiant crew. Behold how they toss their torches on high, How they point to the Persian abodes, And glitt'ring temples of their hostile gods – The princes applaud with a furious joy, And the king seiz'd a flambeau, with zeal to destroy: Thai's led the way, To light him to his prey, And, hike another Helen, fir’d another Troy.
Thus, long ago, Ere heaving bellows learn'd to blow, While organs yet were mute; Timotheus, to his breathing flute And sounding lyre, Could swell the soul to rage, or kindle soft desire. At last divine Cecilia came, Inventress of the vocal frame; The sweet enthusiast, from her sacred store, Enlarg’d the former narrow bounds, And added length to solemn sounds, With Nature's mother-wit, and arts unknown before. Let old Timotheus yield the prize, Or both divide the crown; He rais'd a mortal to the skies, She drew an angel down.
O DE To the pious Memory of the accomplished young Lady, Mrs. ANNE KllLIGREW, Excellent in the two Sister-Arts of Poesy and Painting.
Thou youngest virgin-daughter of the Skies,
* Made in the last promotion of the bless'd;
"Whose palms, new pluck'd from Paradise,
In spreading branches more sublimely rise,
Rich with immortal green above the rest:
Whether, adopted to some neighbouring star,
Thou roll'st above us in thy wandering race,
Or, in procession fix’d and regular,
Mov’d with the heavn's majestic pace;
Or, call'd to more superior bliss,
Thou tread'st with seraphims, the vast abyss:
Whatever happy region is thy place,
Cease thy celestial song a little space;
Thou wilt have time enough for hymns divine,
Since Heaven's eternal year is thine.
Hear, then, a mortal muse thy praise rehearse
In no ignoble verse; "
But such as thy own voice did practise here,
When thy first fruits of poesy were giv'n
To make thyself a welcome inmate there;
While yet a young probationer,
And candidate of Heav'n.
If by traduction came thy mind,
Our wonder is the less to find
A soul so charming from a stock so good;
Thy father was transfus'd into thy blood:
So wert thou born into a tuneful strain,
An early, rich, and inexhausted vein,
But if thy pre-existing soul
Was form’d, at first with myriads more,
It did through all the mighty poets roll, -
Who Greek or Latin laurels wore,
And was that Sappho last, which once it was before.
If so, then cease thy flight, O heav'n-born mind
Thou hast no dross to purge from thy rich ore;
Nor can thy soul a fairer mansion find,
Than was the beauteous frame she left behind: }
Returntofill or mend the choirofthycelestial kind.
May we presume to say, that at thy birth,
New joy was sprung in heaven, as well as here on
earth a -
For sure the milder planets did combine
On thy auspicious horoscope to shine, }
And even the most malicious were in triue.
Thy brother-angels at thy birth
Strung each his lyre, and tun'd it high,
That all the people of the sky
Might know a poetess was born on earth;
And then, if ever, mortal ears
Had heard the music of the spheres.
And if no clustering swarm of bees
On thy sweet mouth distill'd their golden dew, .
*Twas that such vulgar miracles
Heaven had not leisure to renew :
For all thy bless'd fraternity of love
Solemniz'd there thy birth, and kept thy holy-day
above. O gracious God how far have we Profan'd thy heavenly gift of poesy *
Made prostitute and profligate the Muse,
Debas'd to each obscene and impious use, -
Whose harmony was first ordain’d above ...
For tongues of angels, and for hymns of love 2
O wretched we why were we hurried down
This lubrique and adulterate age,
(Nay, added fat pollutions of our own) -
To increase the streaming ordures of the stage 1
What can we say to” excuse our second fall?
Let this thy vestal, Heaven, atone for all :
Her Arethusian stream remains unsoil'd, }
Unmix’d with foreign filth, and undefil’d;
Her wit was more than man, herinnocence a child.