« AnteriorContinuar »
ENCOMIUMS ON POPE.
ON MR. POPE AND HIS POEMS. BY JOHN SHEFFIELD), DUKE OF CUCKINGHAM. With age decay'd, with courts and business tird, Caring for nothing but what case requir'd; Too dully serious for the Muse's sport, And, from the critics, safe arriv'd in port; I little thought of launching forth again, Amidst adventurons rovers of the pen ;. And atter so much undeserv'd success, Thus liazarding, at last, to make it lesi..
Encomiums suit not this censorious time,
And yet so wonderful, sublime a thing,
TO MR. POPE.
BY VR. PARNELL.
O might thy genius in my bosom shine,
Horace himself would own thou dost excel
How flame the glories of Belinda's hair,
In Fame's fair temple, o'er the boldest wits, Inshrin'd on bigb the sacred Virgil sits ; And sits in measures such as Virgil's Muse, To place thee near him might be fond to choose : How might he tune the alternate reed with thee, Perhaps a Strephon thou, a Daphnis he; While some old Damon, o'er the valgar wise, Thinks he deserves, and thon deserv'st the prize! Rapt with the thought, my fancy seeks the plains And turns me shepherd while I hear the strains. Indulgent nurse of every tender gale, Parent of flowrets, old Arcadia, hail! Here in the cool my limbs at ease 1 spread, Here let thy poplars wbisper o'er my head; Śtill slide thy waters, soft among the trees, Thy aspin quiver in a breathing breeze! Smile, all ye vallies, in eternal spring, Be hush'd ye winds, while Pope and Virgit sing. Li English lays, and all sublimely great, Thy Homer warms with all his ancient heat; He shines in council, thunders in the fight, And flames with every sense of great delight. Long has that poet reign'd, and long unknown, Like monarchs sparkling on a distant throne; In all the majesty of Greek retir'd, Himself upkoowo, liis mighty pame admir'd; His language failing, wrapt him round with night; Thine, rais'd by thee, recals the work to light. So wealthy mines, that ages long before Fed the large realms around with golden ore, When chok'd by sinking banks, no more appear, And shepherds only say, · The mines were here:' Should some rich youth (if Nature warms his heart, And all his projects stand inform'd with art)
Here clear the caves, there ope the leading vein, The mines detected flame with gold again.
How vast, how copious, are thy new designs ! How every music varies in thy lines ! Still, as I read, I feel my bosom beat, And rise in raptures by another's heat. Thus in the wood, when summer dressid the days, While Windsor lent us tuneful hours of ease, Our ears the lark, the thrush, the turtle bless'd, And Philomela sweetest o'er the rest : The shades resound with song—0, softly tread, While a whole season warbles round my head.
This to my friend; and when a friend inspires, My silent barp its master's hand requires, Shakes off the dust, and makes these rocks resound; For Fortupe plac'd me in unfertile ground; Far from the joys that with my soul agree, From wit, from learning-very far from thee. Here moss-grown trees expand the smallest leaf; Here half an acre's corn is half a sheaf; Here hills with naked heads the tempest meet, Rocks at their sides, and torrents at their feet; Or lazy lakes, unconscious of a flood, Whose dull brown Naiads ever sleep in mud: Yet here content can dwell, and learned ease, A friend delight me, and an author please ; Ev'n here I sing when Pope supplies the theme, Show my own love, though not increase his fame.