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A Shepherd's Boy (he seeks no better name)

Led forth his flocks along the silver Thame1,
Where dancing sun-beams on the waters play'd2,
And verdant alders form'd a quiv'ring shade.
Soft as he mourn'd, the streams forgot to flow,
The flocks around a dumb compassion show,
The Naiads wept in ev'ry wat'ry bow'r,
And Jove consented in a silent show'r.

Accept, O GARTH', the Muse's early lays,
That adds this wreath of Ivy to thy Bays;
Hear what from Love unpractis'd hearts endure,
From Love, the sole disease thou canst not cure.
Ye shady beeches, and ye cooling streams,
Defence from Phoebus', not from Cupid's beams,
To you I mourn, nor to the deaf I sing,
The woods shall answer, and their echo ring *.
The hills and rocks attend my doleful lay,
Why art thou prouder and more hard than they?
The bleating sheep with my complaints agree,
They parch'd with heat, and I inflam'd by thee.
The sultry Sirius burns the thirsty plains,
While in thy heart eternal winter reigns.
Where stray ye, Muses, in what lawn or grove,
While your Alexis pines in hopeless love?

[Thame. Spenser repeatedly uses this form.] 2 The scene of this pastoral by the river's side; suitable to the heat of the season; the time noon. P.

3 Dr Samuel Garth, author of The Dispensary, was one of the first friends of the author, whose acquaintance with him began at fourteen or fifteen. Their friendship continued from the year 1703 to 1718, which was that of his death. P. [Dr afterwards Sir Samuel Garth, the author of the above-mentioned mock-heroic poem and a




distinguished physician, died in 1718. Pope, who in his Epistle to Dr Arbuthnot, speaks of 'wellnatured' Garth as one who 'inflam'd him with early praise,' bestows a similar epithet upon him in a letter regretting his death, where he also pays him the singular compliment that if ever there was a good Christian without knowing himself to be so, it was Dr Garth.']

4 The woods shall answer, and their echo ring] is a line out of Spenser's Epithalamion. P. [It is the refrain of that poem.]

In those fair fields where sacred Isis glides,
Or else where Cam his winding vales divides1?
As in the crystal spring I view my face,
Fresh rising blushes paint the wat'ry glass;
But since those graces please thy eyes no more,
I shun the fountains which I sought before.
Once I was skill'd in ev'ry herb that grew,
And ev'ry plant that drinks the morning dew;
Ah wretched shepherd, what avails thy art,
To cure thy lambs, but not to heal thy heart!
Let other swains attend the rural care,

Feed fairer flocks, or richer fleeces shear:
But nigh yon' mountain let me tune my lays,
Embrace my Love, and bind my brows with bays.
That flute is mine which Colin's 2 tuneful breath
Inspir'd when living, and bequeath'd in death;
He said; Alexis, take this pipe, the same
That taught the groves my Rosalinda's name:
But now the reeds shall hang on yonder tree,
For ever silent, since despis'd by thee.

Oh! were I made by some transforming pow'r
The captive bird that sings within thy bow'r!
Then might my voice thy list'ning ears employ,
And I those kisses he receives, enjoy.

And yet my numbers please the rural throng,
Rough Satyrs dance, and Pan applauds the song:
The Nymphs, forsaking ev'ry cave and spring,
Their early fruit, and milk-white turtles bring;
Each am'rous nymph prefers her gifts in vain,
On you their gifts are all bestow'd again.
For you the swains the fairest flow'rs design,
And in one garland all their beauties join;
Accept the wreath which you deserve alone,
In whom all beauties are compris'd in one.

See what delights in sylvan scenes appear!
Descending Gods have found Elysium here.
In woods bright Venus with Adonis stray'd,
And chaste Diana haunts the forest-shade.
Come, lovely nymph, and bless the silent hours,
When swains from shearing seek their nightly bow'rs
When weary reapers quit the sultry field,

And crown'd with corn their thanks to Ceres yield.
This harmless grove no lurking viper hides,
But in my breast the serpent Love abides.
Here bees from blossoms sip the rosy dew,
But your Alexis knows no sweets but you.

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that of Rosalinda. P. [Colin in the Shepherd's Kalendar generally, but not always, appears to stand for Spenser. The ingenious author of the life prefixed to Church's edition of Spenser has invented a Kentish lady, Miss Rose Lynde, for the original of Rosalind.]

Oh deign to visit our forsaken seats,
The mossy fountains, and the green retreats!
Where'er you walk, cool gales shall fan the glade;
Trees, where you sit, shall crowd into a shade;
Where'er you tread, the blushing flowers shall rise,
And all things flourish where you turn your eyes1.
Oh how I long with you to pass my days,
Invoke the Muses, and resound your praise!
Your praise the birds shall chant in ev'ry grove 2,
And winds shall waft it to the pow'rs above,
But would you sing, and rival Orpheus' strain,
The wond'ring forests soon should dance again;
The moving mountains hear the pow'rful call,
And headlong streams hang list'ning in their fall!
But see, the shepherds shun the noonday heat,
The lowing herds to murm'ring brooks retreat,
To closer shades the panting flocks remove;
Ye Gods! and is there no relief for Love?
But soon the sun with milder rays descends
To the cool ocean, where his journey ends.
On me love's fiercer flames for ever prey,
By night he scorches, as he burns by day.










OENEATH the shade a spreading Beech displays,
Hylas and Ægon sung their rural lays,


This mourn'd a faithless, that an absent Love,
And Delia's name and Doris' fill'd the Grove.

1 Very much like some lines in Hudibras, but certainly no resemblance was intended.

2 Your praise the tuneful birds to heav'n shall bear,

And list'ning wolves grow milder as they hear.

So the verses were originally written. But the author, young as he was, soon found the absurdity which Spenser himself overlooked, of introducing wolves into England. P. [e. g. in Sheph. Kal. July.]

Where'er you tread, your feet shall set
The primrose and the violet;
Nature her charter shall renew,
And take all lives of things from you.

[The familiar original of the familiar idea is of course in Persius II. 38.]

3 This Pastoral consists of two parts, like the viiith of Virgil: the Scene, a Hill; the Time, at Sun-set. P.

Ye Mantuan nymphs, your sacred succour bring;
Hylas and Egon's rural lays I sing.

Thou, whom the Nine1 with Plautus' wit inspire,
The art of Terence, and Menander's fire2;

Whose sense instructs us, and whose humour charms,
Whose judgment sways us, and whose spirit warms!
Oh, skill'd in Nature! see the hearts of Swains,
Their artless passions, and their tender pains.
Now setting Phoebus shone serenely bright,

And fleecy clouds were streak'd with purple light;
When tuneful Hylas with melodious moan,

Taught rocks to weep, and made the mountains groan.
Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs away!

To Delia's ear, the tender notes convey.

As some sad Turtle his lost love deplores,

And with deep murmurs fills the sounding shores;
Thus, far from Delia, to the winds I mourn,
Alike unheard, unpity'd, and forlorn.

Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs along!
For her, the feather'd quires neglect their song;
For her, the limes their pleasing shades deny;
For her, the lilies hang their heads and die.
Ye flow'rs that droop, forsaken by the spring,
Ye birds that, left by summer, cease to sing,
Ye trees that fade when autumn-heats remove,
Say, is not absence death to those who love?
Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs away!
Curs'd be the fields that cause my Delia's stay;
Fade ev'ry blossom, wither ev'ry tree,
Die ev'ry flow'r, and perish all, but she.
What have I said? where'er my Delia flies,
Let spring attend, and sudden flow'rs arise;
Let op'ning roses knotted oaks adorn,
And liquid amber drop from ev'ry thorn.

Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs along!
The birds shall cease to tune their ev'ning song,

Thou, whom the Nine] Mr Wycherley, a famous author of comedies; of which the most celebrated were the Plain-dealer and CountryWife. He was a writer of infinite spirit, satire, and wit. The only objection made to him was that he had too much. However he was followed in the same way by Mr Congreve; though with

a little more correctness. P.

[William Wycherley (born 1640, died 1715) was in the 64th year of his age at the time when he was thus addressed by Pope. In the following year Wycherley submitted his poems to the correction of his youthful friend; but the 'honest freedom' with which the latter exercised his office of censor, produced a coolness between the pair which prevented a renewal of friendly intercourse. The judgments of Pope's and Wycherley's biographers as to the amount of blame to be respectively attached to their heroes, vary considerably.]









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The winds to breathe, the waving woods to move,
And streams to murmur, e'er1 I cease to love.
Not bubbling fountains to the thirsty swain,
Not balmy sleep to lab'rers faint with pain,
Not show'rs to larks, nor sun-shine to the bee,
Are half so charming as thy sight to me.

Go, gentle gales, and bear my sighs away!
Come, Delia, come; ah, why this long delay?
Thro' rocks and caves the name of Delia sounds,
Delia, each cave and echoing rock rebounds.
Ye pow'rs, what pleasing frenzy sooths my mind!
Do lovers dream, or is my Delia kind?
She comes, my Delia comes!-Now cease my lay,
And cease, ye gales, to bear my sighs away!

Next Ægon sung, while Windsor groves admir'd;
Rehearse, ye Muses, what yourselves inspir'd.

Resound, ye hills, resound my mournful strain!
Of perjur'd Doris, dying I complain:
Here where the mountains less'ning as they rise
Lose the low vales, and steal into the skies:
While lab'ring oxen, spent with toil and heat,
In their loose traces from the field retreat:
While curling smokes from village-tops are seen,
And the fleet shades glide o'er the dusky green.
Resound, ye hills, resound my mournful lay!
Beneath yon' poplar oft we past the day:
Oft' on the rind I carv'd her am'rous vows,
While she with garlands hung the bending boughs:
The garlands fade, the vows are worn away;
So dies her love, and so my hopes decay.

Resound, ye hills, resound my mournful strain!
Now bright Arcturus glads the teeming grain,
Now golden fruits on loaded branches shine,
And grateful clusters swell with floods of wine;
Now blushing berries paint the yellow grove;
Just Gods! shall all things yield returns but love?
Resound, ye hills, resound my mournful lay!
The shepherds cry, "Thy flocks are left a prey"—
Ah! what avails it me, the flocks to keep,
Who lost my heart while I preserv'd my sheep.
Pan came, and ask'd, what magic caus'd my smart,
Or what ill eyes malignant glances dart?
What eyes but hers, alas, have pow'r to move!
And is there magic but what dwells in love?

Resound, ye hills, resound my mournful strains!
I'll fly from shepherds, flocks, and flow'ry plains.-

[Pope's spelling of e'er, which Warton and subsequent editors have altered into ere, was probably due to a reminiscence of the phrase or 'er, incorrectly spelt by Shakspere or ere, made up of or, a corruption of ere (=ær, before) and e'er, an abbreviation of ever.]

2 And grateful clusters etc. The scene is in

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Windsor-forest. So this image is not so exact.

[The grapes are doubtful; but Mr Jesse mentions, in his Summer's Day at Windsor, that what are now called the Slopes, extending into the Home Park, are in Norden's Map (1607) described as 'the Deanes Orcharde' &c.]

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