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O come, and to this fairer Laura pay
A more impaffion'd tear, a more pathetic lay!
Tell bow each beauty of her mind and face
Was brighten'd by some sweet peculiar grace!
How eloquent in ev'ry look
Thro her expressive eyes her soul distinctly fpoke !
Tell how her manners, by the world refin'd,
Left all the taint of modish vice behind, .
And made each charm of polish'd courts agree
With candid Truth's fimplicity,
And uncorrupted Innocence !
Tell how to more than manly sense
She join'd the soft'ning influence
Of more than female tenderness : :
How, in the thoughtless days of wealth and joy,
Which oft the care of others' good destroy,
Her kindly melting heart,
To every want, and every woe,
To Guilt itself when in distress,
The balm of pity would in part,
And all relief that bounty could befow!
E'en for the kid or lamb, that pour'd its life
Beneath the bloody knife,
Her gentle tears would fall;
Tears, from sweet Virtue's fource, benevolent to all!
Not only good and kind,
But strong and elevated was her mind :
A spirit that with noble pride
Could look superior down
On Fortune's smile or frown ;
That could, without regret or pain,
To Virtue's lowest duty sacrifice,
Or Intereft or Ambition's highest prize;
That, injur'd or offended, never try'd
Its dignity by vengeance to maintain,
But by magnanimous disdain.
A wit, that, temperately bright,
With inoffenfive light
All pleasing Ahone ; nor ever pass'd
The decent bounds that Wisdom's sober hand,
And fweet Benevolence's mild command,
And bashful Modefty, before it eaft.
A prudence undeceiving, undeceiv'd,
That nor too little nor too much believ'd;
That scorn'd unjuft Sufpicion's coward fear,
And, without weakness, knew to be fincere.
Such Lucy was, when in her fairest days,
Amidft th’acclaim of universal praise.
In life's and glory's freshest bloom,
Death came remorseless on, and sunk her to the tomb,
So, where the filent streams of Liris glide,
In the soft bosom of Campania's vale,
When now the wint'ry tempests all are fled,
And genial summer breathes her gentle gale,
The verdant orange lifts its beauteous head;
From ev'ry branch the balmy flow'rets rise,
On ev'ry bough the golden fruits are seen ;
With odours sweet it fills the smiling skies,
The wood nymphs tend it, and th’ Idalian queed á
But, in the midst of all its blooming pride,
A sudden blast from Appenninus blows,
Cold with perpetual snows;
The tender blighted plant Shrinks up its leaves and diese
Arise, O Petrarch ! from th’Elysian bow'rs,
With never-fading myrtles twin'd,
And fragrant with ambrosial flow'rs,
Where to thy Laura thou again art join'd;
Arise, and hither bring the silver lyre,
Tun'd by thy skilful hand,
To the soft notes of elegant desire,
With which o'er many a land
Was spread the fame of thy disastrous love; .
To me resign the vocal shell,
And teach my forrows to relate
Their melancholy tale fo well,
As may e'en things inanimate,
Rough mountain oaks, and desert rocks, to pity move.
What were, alas ! thy vues, compard to mine?
To thee thy mistress in the blissful band
Of Hymen never gave her hand;
The joys of wedded love were never thine.
In thy domestic care
She never bore a share, .
Nor with endearing art
Would heal thy wounded heart
Of every secret grief that fester'd there:
Nor did her fond affection on the bed
Of sickness watch thee, and thy languid head
Whole nights on her unwearied arm fustain,
And charm away the sense of pain;
Nor did he crown your mutual flame
With pledges dear, and with a father's tender name,
O best of wives ! O dearer far to me
Than when thy virgin charms
Were yielded to my arms;
How can my soul endure the loss of thee?
How in the world, to me a desert grown,
Abandon'd and alone,
Without my sweet companion can I live ?
Without thy lovely smile,
The dear reward of ev'ry virtuous toil,
What pleasures now can palld Ambition give ?
E'en the delightful sense of well-earn'd praise, Unfhard by thee, no more my lifeless thoughts could raise.
For my dikracted mind
What succour can I find ;
On whom for confolation shall I call?
Support me, ev'ry friend ;
Your kind assistance lend,
To bear the weight of this oppressive woe.
Alas! each friend of mine,
My dear departed love, so much was thine,
That none has any comfort to bestow.
My books, the best relief
In every other grief,
Are now with your idea sadden'd all :
Each fav'rite author we together read
My tortur’d mem'ry wounds, and speaks of Lucy dead
We were the happiest pair of human kind :
The rolling year its various course perform’d,
And back return'd again ;
Another, and another smiling came,
And Saw our happiness unchang'd remain.
Still in her golden chain
Harmonious Concord did our wishes bind :
Our Audies, pleafures, taste the same.
O fatal, fatal stroke!
That all this pleasing fabric Love had rais'd
Of rare felicity,
On which e'en wanton Vicc with envy gaz'd,
And ev'ry scheme of bliss our hearts had form’d,
With foothing hope for many a future day,
In one fad moment broke !
Yet, O my soul ! thy rising murmurs stay;
Nor dare th' All-wife Disposer to arraign,
Or againf His supreme decree:
With impious grief complain. That all thy full-blown joys at once should fail, Was His moft righteous will--and be that will obey'd,
Would thy fond love His grace to her controui;
And, in these low abodes of In and pain,
Her pure exalted soul,
Unjustly, for thy partial good, detain ?
No; rather Atrive thy groveling mind to raise
Up to that unclouded blaze,
That heavenly radiance of eterġal light,
In which enthron'd lhe now with pity fecs,
How frail, how insecure, how light,
Is every mortal bliss;
Even Love itself, if rising by degrees
Beyond the bounds of this iinperfect state,
Whose fleeting joys fo foon must end,
It does not to its sovereign good ascend.
Rife then, my soul, with hope elale,
And seek those regions of serene delight,