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Presented to Anna Seward, of Lichfield, upon her saying that she had written her last Verse.
BY THE REV. W. FITZTHOMAS.
Not the last verse! till Death in dread repose
Those honied lips, those beaming eyes shall close 3
No! let sweet verse his late approach attend,
Cheer his dark brow; and O! his dart suspend.
Nor then the last; for, Seward, from thy tongue
Shall verse resound, in heavenly mansions sung;
Nor Fancy fond, nor this fond Friendship feigns,
That wish thy life immortal as thy strains;
Strains, that from never-dying Genius flow,
And life, whose days no baneful passions know.
For ne'er did Avarice goad that tender breast,
Envy, or conscious Fraud, forbid to rest;
There faithful Love, and Truth, and Mercy live,
Wrongs to redress, and sooth; and wrong'd forgive;
Fair Fame, that bade to fadeless wreaths aspire,
And generous Praise, that fann'd another's fire;
Now sinking Sorrow clasps the treasured urn,
With trembling hands, while pitying angels mourn;
And thou, that ever lov'dst thy Maker's praise,
Graetful shalt join to theirs thy hallow'd lays;
Siill then, O Anna, charm us with the past!
Still let no strain of thine be deem'd the last!
Oft, to that long-expected day,
Great theme of terror and dismay,
The Judgment Day! I, smiling, turn;
When time must cease, and systems burn.
Exulting think, the morn shall rise,
That fires the earth, and rends the skies;
For Justice pleads the dreadful doom,
And Virtue soars beyond the tomb.
Yes, on this world's eventful close
My solace, and my joys repose;
Its thought shall cheer, its prospects dry
The sorrowing heart—the weeping eye.
Prisoner of hope! the soul may rest
Below, though panting to be blest;
Awhile may bear the galling yoke;
But mourns to see her fetters broke!
ODE 7, BOOK 2, IMITATED.
TO MRS. W. BOSCAWEN.
WRITTEN IN THE SUMMER OF 1805.
* Thou, who if Heav'n, that join'd our hand-;,
O'er Zembla's snows, or Libya's sands,
Ordain'd me far to roam,
Would'st still, with faithful love, attend
My fond companion, gentle friend,
And deem my heart thy home!
Though yet, unbroke by care and pain,
My health and active powers remain,
Though youthful bloom be thine;
Should age come on with rapid stride,
What blest retreat shall we provide?
Where soothe our life's decline i
f IVhichwood, in thy romantic shades,
Thy breezy lawns, sequester'd glades,
My youthful hours were blest!
In thy blest scenes, remote from strife,
From public cares, and busy life,
My peaceful age should rest.
• Septimi, Gades aditure racciim, &c
t Tibur Argaio positum colono, &c. Whichwood Forest, in Oxfordshire, where the Author's father had a lodge.
• But this our wayward lot denies: Then let us turn our anxious eyes
(Where late we joyed to rove) Tunbridge, to thy salubrious rill, Thy cavern'd rocks, famed Ephraim's hill,
And royal Anna's grove.
Dear chosen spot I where shelter'd vales May guard us from th' inclement gales
When wint'ry tempests blow, + Where Zephyr from the distant main Wafts his soft freshness o'er the plain
To cool the summer's glow.
There social bliss, when hearts unite,
With sweet Retirement's calm delight
(Rare harmony !) we blend,
And oft, enlivening vacant hours,
Meet in sequester'd walks and bowers
Some dear unlook'd-for friend.
• Undc si Parcte prohibent iniquae,
Dulce pellitis ovibus Calesi,
Humeri et regnata petam Laconj,
Ille terrarum mihi prater omnes,
Auguius ndet, &c.
t Ver ubi louguin, &c
* There, when the vital spark decays,
On my loved Charlotte's form I'll gaze
E'en to my latest breath;
And, if beside my couch she stand,
Grasp her with trembling failing hand,
And smile, serene in death.
Dtbitu sparges lacryma favillam
Vatis araici. Hon.
Te tencam moriens deficiente manu. Tifuix.
That the above wish cannot (alas!) now be fulfilled will be see* by the following Epitaph.
In Mary-le-bone Burying-Ground, on the Lady of
William Boscawen, Esq. who died April I4, 1804.
Kind tender Mother!—fond and faithful Wife!
Here wait the meed that crowns a well-spent life.
E'en now, perchance, thy spirit soars above,
To meet each dear * departed Pledge of Love.
Oh! may thy widowed Partner, when the doom
Of righteous Heav'n consigns him to the tomb,
Here, where his loved lamented Charlotte liesg
With her in peace repose —with her to bliss arise I
* The Author had lost six children.