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An' raise a din; For me, an aim I never fash! I rhyme for fun.

The star that rules my luckless lot,
Has fated me the russet coat,
An' damned my fortune to the groat;
But in requit,

Has blessed me wi' a random shot
O' countra wit.



THE Muse doth tell me where to borrow

Comfort in the midst of sorrow;
Makes the desolatest place
To her presence be a grace;
And the blackest discontents
Be her fairest ornaments.
In my former days of bliss,
Her divine skill taught me this,
That, from every thing I saw,
I could some invention draw;
And raise pleasure to her height,
Through the meanest object's sight.
By the murmur of a spring,
Or the least bough's rustling,
By a daisy, whose leaves spread,
Shut, when Titan goes to bed,
Or a shady bush, or tree,
She could more infuse in me,
Than all Nature's beauties can
In some other wiser man.
By her help, I also now
Make this churlish place allow
Some things that may sweeten glad-

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Poesy, thou sweet'st content,
That e'er Heaven to mortals lent,
Though they as a trifle leave thee,
Whose dull thoughts cannot con-
ceive thee,

Though thou be to them a scorn
Who to nought but earth are born;
Let my life no longer be
Than I am in love with thee.


AND also, beau sire, of other things,
That is, thou hasté no tidings
Of Love's folk, if they be glade,
Ne of nothing else that God made,
And not only fro far countree,
That no tidings come to thee,
Not of thy very neighbors,
That dwellen almost at thy dores,
Thou hearest neither that ne this,
For when thy labor all done is,
And hast made all thy reckonings
Instead of rest and of new things,
Thou goest home to thine house


And also dumbé as a stone, Thou sittest at another booke, Till fully dazèd is thy looke, And livest thus as an hermite.



GOD of science and of light,
Apollo through thy greate might,
This littell last booke now thou gie,
Now that I will for maistrie,
Here art potenciall be shewde,
But for the rime is light and lewde,
Yet make it somewhat agreeable,
Though some verse fayle in a sillable,
And that I do no diligence,
To shewe craft, but sentence,
And if divine vertue thou
Wilt helpe me to shewe now,
That in my heed ymarked is,
Lo, that is for to meanen this,
The House of Fame for to discrive,-
Thou shalt see me go as blive †
Unto the next laurel I see
And kisse it, for it is thy tree,
Now enter in my brest anon.

* Guide.


† Quickly.

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But nightingale so may they not done thee;

For thou hast many a nice queint cry, I have thee heard saine, ocy, ocy, How might I know what that should be? * Hence.


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As Memnon's marble harp renowned of old

By fabling Nilus, to the quivering touch

Of Titan's ray, with each repulsive string Consenting, sounded through the warbling air Unbidden strains; e'en so did Nature's hand

To certain species of external things Attune the finer organs of the mind; So the glad impulse of congenial powers,

Or of sweet sound, or fair-proportioned form,

The grace of motion, or the bloom of light,

Thrills through imagination's tender frame,

From nerve to nerve; all naked and alive

They catch the spreading rays; till now the soul

At length discloses every tuneful spring,

To that harmonious movement from without,

Responsive. Then the inexpressive strain

Diffuses its enchantment; Fancy dreams

Of sacred fountains and Elysian groves,

And vales of bliss; the Intellectual Power

Bends from his awful throne a wondering ear,

And smiles; the passions gently Soothed away,

Sink to divine repose, and love and joy Alone are waking; love and joy


As airs that fan the summer. O attend,

Whoe'er thou art whom these delights can touch,

Whose candid bosom the refining love Of nature warms; O, listen to my


And I will guide thee to her favorite walks,

And teach thy solitude her voice to hear,

And point her loveliest features to thy view.

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As on a boundless theatre to run The great career of justice; to exalt His generous aim to all diviner deeds;

To chase each partial purpose from his breast; And through the mists of passion and of sense, And through the tossing tide of chance and pain,

To hold his course unfaltering, while the voice

Of Truth and Virtue, up the steep ascent

Of nature, calls him to his high reward,

The applauding smile of heaven? else wherefore burns, In mortal bosoms, this unquenched hope

That breathes from day to day sublimer things, And mocks possession? wherefore darts the mind,

With such resistless ardor to embrace Majestic forms; impatient to be free, Spurning the gross control of wilful might;

Proud of the strong contention of her toils;

Proud to be daring? Who but rather turns

To heaven's broad fire his unconstrained view,

Than to the glimmering of a waxen flame?

Who that, from Alpine heights, his laboring eye

Shoots round the wide horizon to survey

Nilus or Ganges rolling his broad tide Through mountains, plains, through empires black with shade, And continents of sand, will turn his gaze

To mark the windings of a scanty rill

That murmurs at his feet? The high-born soul

Disdains to rest her heaven-aspiring wing

Beneath its native quarry. Tired of earth

And this diurnal scene, she springs aloft, Through fields of air pursues the flying storm; Rides on the volleyed lightning through the heavens;

Or, yoked with whirlwinds and the northern blast,

Sweeps the long track of day. Then high she soars

The blue profound, and hovering o'er the sun

Beholds him pouring the redundant


Of light: beholds the unrelenting sway

Bend the reluctant planets to absolve The fated rounds of time. Thence far effused

She darts her swiftness up the long


Of devious comets; through its burning signs

Exulting circles the perennial wheel Of nature, and looks back on all the stars, Whose blended light, as with a milky zone, Invests the orient. Now amazed she views

The empyreal waste, where happy spirits hold, Beyond this concave heaven, their calm abode;

And fields of radiance, whose unfading light

Has travelled the profound six thousand years,

Nor yet arrived in sight of mortal things.

Nature's care, to all her children just,

With richer treasures and an ampler state,

Endows at large whatever happy man Will deign to use them. His the city's pomp, The rural honors his: whate'er adorns

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