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Yet will I temperately rejoice;
Wide is the range, and free the choice
Which, haply, kindred souls may prize
For deathless powers to verse belong,
But some their function have disclaimed,
Best pleased with what is aptliest framed To enervate and defile.
Not such the initiatory strains
In Britain's earliest dawn:
Trembled the groves, the stars grew pale, While all-too-daringly the veil
Of Nature was withdrawn!
Nor such the spirit-stirring note
When the live chords Alcæus smote,
Inflamed by sense of wrong;
Woe! woe to Tyrants! from the lyre
And not unhallowed was the page
By winged Love inscribed, to assuage The pangs of vain pursuit ;
Love listening while the Lesbian Maid With finest touch of passion swayed Her own Æolian lute.
O ye who patiently explore
The wreck of Herculanean lore,
That were, indeed, a genuine birth
poesy; a bursting forth
Of Genius from the dust:
What Horace gloried to behold,
What Maro loved, shall we enfold?
Can haughty Time be just!
THE PILLAR OF TRAJAN.
WHERE Towers are crushed, and unforbidden weeds
A votive column, spared by fire and flood; -
Have never ceased to eddy round its base,
From death the memory of the Good and Brave.
Ascend, with lineaments in air not lost :
Still as he turns, the charmed Spectator sees Group winding after group with dream-like ease; Triumphs in sunbright gratitude displayed,
Or softly stealing into modest shade.
So, pleased with purple clusters to entwine
Some lofty elm-tree, mounts the daring vine;
The woodbine so, with spiral grace, and breathes
Borne by the Muse from rills in shepherds' ears
Behold how fought the Chief whose conquering swor
Memorial Pillar! 'mid the wrecks of Time Preserve thy charge with confidence sublime The exultations, pomps, and cares of Rome, Whence half the breathing world received its doom; Things that recoil from language; that, if shewn By apter pencil, from the light had flown.
A Pontiff, Trajan here the Gods implores,
There greets an Embassy from Indian shores;
Lo! he harangues his cohorts there the storm
Unharnessed, naked, troops of Moorish horse
Sweep to the charge; more high, the Dacian force,
None bleed, and none lie prostrate but the foe;
In every Roman, through all turns of fate,
Spirit in Him pre-eminent, who guides,
From honoured Instruments that round him wait;
Alas! that One thus disciplined could toil
That, when his age was measured with his aim,
And turned his eagles back with deep-drawn sighs;
* See Forsythe.