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And yet, fair bow, no fabling dreams,

But words of the Most High, Have told why first thy robe of beams

Was woven in the sky. When o'er the green, undeluged earth,

Heaven's covenant thou didst shine, How came the world's gray fathers forth

To watch thy sacred sign?
And when its yellow lustre smiled

O'er mountains yet untrod,
Each mother held aloft her child

To bless the bow of God. Methinks, thy jubilee to keep,

The first-made anthem rang,
On earth deliver'd from the deep,

And the first poet sang.
Nor ever shall the muse's eye

Unraptured greet thy beam :
Theme of primeval prophecy,

Be still the poet's theme!
The earth to thee her incense yields,

The lark thy welcome sings,
When, glittering in the freshen'd fields,

The snowy mushroom springs. How glorious is thy girdle cast

O'er mountain, tower, and town, Or mirror'd in the ocean vast,

A thousand fathoms down! As fresh in yon horizon dark,

As young thy beauties seem, As when the eagle from the ark

First sported in thy beam.
For, faithful to its sacred page,

Heaven still rebuilds thy span,
Nor lets the type grow pale with age

That first spoke peace to man.

Pride of the British stage,
A long and last adieu

Whose image brought th’ heroic age

Revived to Fancy's view.
Like fields refresh'd with dewy light

When the sun smiles his last,
Thy parting presence makes more bright

Our memory of the past;
And memory conjures feelings up

That wine or music need not swell,
As high we list the festal cup

To Kemble-fare thee well!
His was the spell o'er hearts

Which only acting lends,
The youngest of the sister arts,

Where all their beauty blends :
For ill can Poetry express

Full many a tone of thought sublime,
And Painting, mute and motionless,

Steals but a glance of Time.
But by the mighty actor brought,

Illusion's perfect triumphs come;
Verse ceases to be airy thought,

And Sculpture to be dumb.
Time may again revive,

But ne'er eclipse the charm,
When Cato spoke in him alive,

Or Hotspur kindled warm.
What soul was not resign'd entire

To the deep sorrows of the Moor?
What English heart was not on fire

With him at Agincour?
And yet a majesty possess'd

His transport's most impetuous tone,
And to each passion of his breast

The Graces gave their zone. Vol. II.-GO

High were the task-too high,

Ye conscious bosoms here!
In words to paint your memory

Of Kemble and of Lear;
But who forgets that white, discrowned head,

Those bursts of Reason's half-extinguish'd glare;
Those tears upon Cordelia's bosom shed,
In doubt more touching than despair,
If 'twas reality he felt ?

Had Shakspeare's self amid you been,
Friends, he had seen you melt,

And triumph'd to have seen!
And there was many an hour

Of blended kindred fame,
When Siddons's auxiliar power

And sister magic came.
Together at the Muse's side

The tragic paragons had grown:
They were the children of her pride,

The columns of her throne;
And undivided favour ran

From heart to heart in their applause,
Save for the gallantry of man

In lovelier woman's cause.

Fair as some classic dome,

Robust and richly graced,
Your Kemble's spirit was the home

Of genius and of taste :
Taste, like the silent dial's power,

That, when supernal light is given,
Can measure inspiration's hour,

And tell its height in heaven.
At once ennobled and correct,

His mind survey'd the tragic page,
And what the actor could effect,

The scholar could presage.

These were his traits of worth:

And must we lose them now!
And shall the scene no more show forth

His sternly-pleasing brow!
Alas! the moral brings a tear!

"Tis all a transient hour below; And we that would detain thee here,

Ourselves as fleetly go! Yet shall our latest age

This parting scene review; Pride of the British stage,

A long and last adieu !


Star that bringest home the bee,
And sett'st the weary labourer free!
If any star shed peace, 'tis thou

That send'st it from above,
Appearing when Heaven's breath and brow

Are sweet as hers we love.

Come to the luxuriant skies,
While the landscape's odours rise,
While far-off lowing herds are heard,

And songs, when toil is done,
From cottages whose smoke unstirr'd

Curls yellow in the sun.

Star of love's soft interviews,
Parted lovers on thee muse;
Their remembrancer in Heaven

Of thrilling vows thou art,
Too delicious to be riven

By absence from the heart.

THE BEECH-TREE'S PETITION. Oh leave this barren spot to me! Spare, woodman, spare the beechen tree! Though bush or floweret never grow My dark, unwarming shade below; Nor summer bud perfume the dew Of rosy blush or yellow hue; Nor fruits of autumn, blossom-born, My green and glossy leaves adorn ; Nor murmuring tribes from me derive Th' ambrosial amber of the hive; Yet leave this barren spot to me: Spare, woodman, spare the beechen tree !

Thrice twenty summers I have seen The sky grow bright, the forest green; And many a wintry wind have stood In bloomless, fruitless solitude, Since childhood in my pleasant hower First spent its sweet and sportive hour; Since youthful lovers in my shade Their vows of truth and rapture made ; And on my trunk's surviving frame Carved many a long-forgotten name. Oh! by the sighs of gentle sound, First breathed upon this sacred ground; By all that Love has whisper'd here, Or Beauty heard with ravish'd ear; As Love's own altar honour me, Spare, woodman, spare the beechen tree!


I'll bid the hyacinth to blow,

I'll teach my grotto green to be, And sing my true love, all below

The holly bower and myrtle-tree.

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