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Edward! for bright heroic deeds revered,
Lo! where her pennons, waving high, aspire,
And they, who late with anguish, hard to tell,
Oh, glorious isle !-oh, sov'reign of the waves !
Is there no bard of heavenly power possessid, To thrill, to rouse, to animate the breast? Like Shakspeare o'er the secret mind to sway, And call each wayward passion to obey ? Is there no bard, imbued with hallow'd fire, To wake the chords of Ossian's magic lyre; Whose numbers breathing all his flame divine, The patriot's name to ages might consign? Rise ! Inspiration ! rise, be this thy theme, And mount, like Uriel, on the golden beam!
Oh, could my muse on seraph pinion spring, And sweep with rapture's hand the trembling string! Could she the bosom energies control, And pour impassion'd fervour o'er the soul ! Oh, could she strike the harp to Milton given, Brought by a cherub from th’ empyrean heaven! Ah, fruitless wish! ah, prayer preferr'd in vain, For her— the humblest of the woodland train; Yet shall her feeble voice essay to raise The hymn of liberty, the song of praise !
Iberian bands ! whose noble ardour glows,
Not to secure dominion's boundless reign,
He bleeds! he falls ! his death-bed is the field ! His dirge the trumpet, and his bier the shield ! His closing eyes the beam of valour speak, The flush of ardour lingers on his cheek; Serene he lifts to heaven those closing eyes, Then for his country breathes a prayer —and dies! Oh! ever hallow'd be his verdant grave, There let the laurel spread, the cypress wave! Thou, lovely Spring ! bestow, to grace his tomb, Thy sweetest fragrance, and thy earliest bloom; There let the tears of heaven descend in balm, There let the poet consecrate his palm ! Let honour, pity, bless the holy ground, And shades of sainted heroes watch around !
'T was thus, while Glory rung his thrilling knell,
Thy chief, oh Thebes ! at Mantinea fell;
Oh! thou, the sovereign of the noble soul Thou source of energies beyond control! Queen of the lofty thought, the gen'rous deed, Whose sons unconquer'd fight, undaunted bleed, Inspiring Liberty! thy worshipp'd name The warm enthusiast kindles to a flame; Thy charms inspire him to achievements high, Thy look of heaven, thy voice of harmony; More blest, with thee to tread perennial snows, Where ne'er a flower expands, a zephyr blows; Where Winter, binding nature in his chain, In frost-work palace holds perpetual reign; Than, far from thee, with frolic step to rove The green savannas and the spicy grove; Scent the rich balm of India's perfumed gales, In citron-woods and aromatic vales : For, oh! fair Liberty, when thou art near, Elysium blossoms in the desert drear!
Where'er thy smile its magic power bestows, There arts and taste expand, there fancy glows; The sacred lyre its wild enchantment gives, And every chord to swelling transport lives ; There ardent Genius bids the pencil trace, The soul of beauty, and the lines of grace; With bold, Promethean hand, the canvas warms, And calls from stone expression's breathing forms.
Thus, where the fruitful Nile o'erflows its bound,
Immortal Freedom! daughter of the skies !
Proceed, proceed, ye firm undaunted band ! Still sure to conquer, if combined ye stand: Though myriads flashing in the eye of day, Stream'd o'er the smiling land in long array; Though tyrant Asia pour'd unnumber'd foes, Triumphant still the arm of Greece arose : For ev'ry state in sacred union stood, Strong to repel invasion's whelming flood; Each heart was glowing in the gen'ral cause, Each hand prepared to guard their hallow'd laws; Athenian valour join'd Laconia's might, And but contented to be first in fight; From rank to rank the warm contagion ran, And Hope and Freedom led the flaming van: