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Yet time life's dreary winter brings,
When Mirth's gay tale shall please no more; Nor musick charm-though Stella sings; Nor love, nor wine, the spring restore. Catch then, O! catch the transient hour,
Improve each moment as it flies;
's a short summer-man a flower:
He dies-alas! how soon he dies!
THE WINTER'S WALK.
BEHOLD, my fair, where'er we rove,
What dreary prospects round us rise;
The naked hill, the leafless grove,
The hoary ground, the frowning skies!
Nor only thought the wasted plain,
Stern Winter in thy force confess'd; Still wider spreads thy horrid reign,
I feel thy power usurp my breast.
Enlivening hope, and fond desire,
Resign thy heart to spleen and care;
Scarce frighted Love maintains her fire,
And rapture saddens to despair.
In groundless hope, and causeless fear,
Unhappy man! behold thy doom;
Still changing with thy changeful year,
The slave of sunshine and of gloom.
Tir'd with vain joys, and false alarms,
With mental and corporeal strife, Snatch me, my Stella, to thy arms,
And screep me from the ills of life.
To MISS *****
ON HER GIVING THE AUTHOR A GOLD AND SILK NET-WORK PURSE OF HER OWN
THOUGH gold and silk their charms unite
To make thy curious web delight,
In vain the varied work would shine,
If wrought by any hand but thine;
Thy hand that knows the subtler art,
To weave those nets that catch the heart.
Spread out by me, the roving coin
Thy nets may catch, but not confine;
Nor can I hope thy silken chain
The glitt❜ring vagrants shall restrain.
Why, Stella, was it then decreed
The heart once caught should neʼer be freed?
To MISS *****
ON HER PLAYING UPON THE HARPSICHORD IN
A ROOM HUNG WITH FLOWER-PIECES
OF HER OWN PAINTING
WHEN Stella strikes the tuneful string
In scenes of imitated Spring,
* Printed among Mrs Williams's Miscellanies.
Printed among Mrs Williams's Miscellanies.
Where beauty lavishes her powers
On beds of never-fading flowers,
And pleasure propagates around
Each charm of modulated sound;
Ah! think not, in the dangerous hour,
The Nymph fictitious as the flow'r;
But shun, rash youth, the gay alcove,
Nor tempt the snares of wily love.
When charms thus press on ev'ry sense.
What thought of flight, or of defence?
Deceitful hope, and vain desire,
For ever flutter o'er her lyre,
Delighting as the youth draws nigh,
To point the glances of her eye,
And forming with unerring art
New chains to hold the captive heart.
But on those regions of delight
Might truth intrude with daring flight,
Could Stella, sprightly, fair, and young,
One moment hear the moral song,
Instruction with her flowers might spring,
And wisdom warble from her string.
Mark, when from thousand mingled dyes Thou seest one pleasing form arise, How active light, and thoughtful shade, In greater scenes each other aid; Mark, when the different notes agree In friendly contrariety, How passion's well-accorded strife Gives all the harmony of life; Thy pictures shall thy conduct frame, Consistent still, though not the same; Thy musick teach the nobler art, To tune the regulated heart.
EVENING now from purple wings
Sheds the grateful gifts she brings;
Brilliant drops bedeck the mead,
Cooling breezes shake the reed;
Shake the reed, and curl the stream
Silver'd o'er with Cynthia's beam;
Near the chequer'd, lonely grove,
Hears, and keeps thy secrets, Love.
Stella, thither let us stray,
Lightly o'er the dewy way.
Phoebus drives his burning car,
Hence, my lovely Stella, far;
In his stead, the Queen of Night
Round us pours a lambent light;
Light that seems but just to show
Breasts that beat, and cheeks that glow,
Let us now, in whisper'd joy,
Evening's silent hours employ,
Silence best, and conscious shades,
Please the hearts that love invades,
Other pleasures give them pain,
Lovers all but love disdain,
TO THE SAME.
WHETHER Stella's eyes are found
Fix'd on earth, or glancing round,
If her face with pleasure glow,
If she sigh at others woe,
If her easy air express
Conscious worth, or soft distress,
Stella's eyes, and air, and face,
Charm with undiminish'd grace.
If on her we see display'd Pendant gems, and rich brocade, If her chintz with less expence Flows in easy negligence; Still she lights the conscious flame, Still her charms appear the same; If she strikes the vocal strings, If she's silent, speaks, or sings, If she sit, or if she move, Still we love and still approve.
Vain the casual, transient glance, Which alone can please by chance, Beauty, which depends on art, Changing with the changing art, Which demands the toilet's aid, Pendant gems and rich brocade. I those charms alone can prize, Which from constant nature rise, Which nor circumstance, nor dress, E'er can make, or more, or less.