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Around her haggard eye-balls roll;
A thousand fiends possess her soul.
The artful, unsuspected sprite,
With fatal aim, attacks by night.
Her troops advance with silent tread,
And stab the hero in his bed;
Or shoot the wing'd malignant lie,
And female honours pine and die.
So prowling wolves, when darkness reigns,
Intent on murder, scour the plains;
Approach the folds where lambs repose,
Whose guileless breasts suspect no foes;
The savage gluts his fierce desires,
And bleating innocence expires.
Slander smil'd horribly, to view
Is it a breach of friendship's law-,
If I beheld some faulty fair,
If Albion's isle such dreams fulfils,
Fancy disclos'd a smiling train Of British nymphs that tripp'd the plain. Good-nature first, a sylvan queen, Attir'd in robes of cheerful green; A fair and smiling virgin she! With ev'ry charm that shines in thee. Prudence assum'd the chief command.
And bore a mirror in her hand;
Grey was the matron's head by age, .
Her mind by long experience sage;
Of ev'ry distant ill afraid,
And anxious for the simp'ring maid.
The Graces dane'd before the fair;
And white-rob'd Innocence was there.
The trees with golden fruits were crown'd,
And rising flow'rs adorn'd the ground;
The sun display'd each brighter ray,
And shone in all the pride of day:
When Slander sicken'd at the sight, And skulk'd away, to shun the light.
To his Friend, written under the Confinement of a long
W HILE calm you sit beneath your secret shade,
The sprightly vigour of my youth is fled,
Oh spare, Persephone, this guiltless head!
No virgin's easy faith I e'er betray'd,
My tongue ne'er boasted of a feign'd embrace:
No poisons in the cup have I convey'd,
Nor veil'd destruction with a friendly face:
No secret horrors gnaw this quiet breast,
I ne'er disturb'd the gods' eternal rest
With curses loud—but oft have pray'd in vain.
No stealth of time has thinn'd my flowing hair,
Ah! why so soon the tender blossom tear,
Ve gods, whoe'er in gloomy shades below,
Now slowly tread your melancholy round;
Now wandering view the paleful rivers flow,
And musing hearken to their solemn sound:
Oh, let me still enjoy the cheerful day,
Pleas'd in my age, I trifle life away,
And tell how much we lov'd, ere I grew old.
But you who now, with festive garlands crown'd, In chare of pleasure the gay moments spend,
By quick enjoyment heal love's pleasing wound, And grieve for nothing but your absent friend.