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The twentieth year is well-nigh past,
He shouted: nor his friends had failed
To check the vessel's course,
That, pitiless perforce,
Some succour yet they could afford;
And such as storms allow,
Delayed not to bestow.
Nor, cruel as it seemed, could he
Their haste himself condemn,
Alone could rescue them;
In ocean, self-upheld;
His destiny repelled;
His comrades, who before
Could catch the sound no more:
ifling wave, and then he sank. No poet wept him; but the page
Of narrative sincere,
Is wet with Anson's tear:
Descanting on his fate,
A more enduring date :
No light propitious shone,
We perished, each alone: But I beneath a rougher sea, And whelmed in deeper gulfs than he.
And yet poor Edwin was no vulgar boy.
the lad; Some deemed him wondrous wise, and some be
lieved him mad.
But why should I his childish feats display?
There would he wander wild, till Phæbus' beam, Shot from the western cliff, released the weary
JAMES BEATTIE (1735-1803)
FROM BOOK I
There lived in Gothic days, as legends tell,
94 But he, I ween, was of the north countrie; A nation famed for song, and beauty's charms; Zealous, yet modest; innocent, though free;
Patient of toil: serene amidst alarms; Inflexible in faith: invincible in arms.
Lo! where the stripling, rapt in wonder, roves
For aught the huntsman's puny craft supplies? Ah, no! he better knows great Nature's charms to
And oft he traced the uplands to survey,
171 But, lo! the sun appears, and heaven, earth,
From matter's base encumbering weed ?
Or dost thou, hid from sight,
Wait, like some spell-bound knight, Through blank oblivious years th' appointed hour To break thy trance and reassume thy power? 20 Yet canst thou without thought or feeling be? O say, what art thou, when no more thou'rt thee?
And oft the craggy cliff he loved to climb,
embossed! And hear the voice of mirth and song rebound, Flocks, herds, and waterfalls, along the hoar
profound! In truth he was a strange and wayward wight, Fond of each gentle and each dreadful scene. In darkness and in storm he found delight; Nor less than when on ocean-wave serene The southern sun diffused his dazzling sheen. Even sad vicissitude amused his soul; And if a sigh would sometimes intervene,
And down his cheek a tear of pity roll, 189 A sigh, a tear, so sweet, he wished not to control.
BRISTOWE TRAGEDIE; OR, THE DETHE OF SYR CHARLES
The feathered songster chaunticleer
Han wounde hys bugle horne, And tolde the earlie villager
The commynge of the morne:
Kynge Edwarde sawe the ruddie streakes
Of lyghte eclypse the greie;
8 “Thou’rt ryghte," quod he, "for, by the Godde
That syttes enthron'd on hyghe ! Charles Bawdin, and hys fellowes twaine,
To-daie shall surelie die."
ANNA LÆTITIA BARBAULD
Life! I know not what thou art,
But know that thou and I must part; And when, or how, or where we met, I own to me's a secret yet. But this I know, when thou art fled, Where'er they lay these limbs, this head, No clod so valueless shall be As all that then remains of me.
Thenne wythe a jugge of nappy ale
Hys knyghtes dydd onne hymm waite; “Goe tell the traytour, thatt to-daie Hee leaves thys mortall state.”
16 Sir Canterlone thenne bendedd lowe,
With harte brymm-fulle of woe;
And to Syr Charles dydd goe.
And eke hys lovynge wyfe,
For goode Syr Charleses lyfe.
“Badde tydyngs I doe brynge." “Speke boldlie, manne,” sayd brave Syr Charles, "Whatte says the traytor kynge?”
O whither, whither, dost thou fly?
And in this strange divorce,
From whence thy essence came Dost thou thy flight pursue, when freed
“Butt telle thye kynge, for myne hee's not,
I'de sooner die 'to-daie
Though I shoulde lyve for aie."
To telle the maior straite
For goode Syr Charleses fate.
“My nobile leige ! the trulie brave
Wylle val'rous actions prize; Respect a brave and nobile mynde, Although ynne enemies.”
92 “Canynge, awaie! By Godde ynne Heav'n
That dydd mee beinge gyve,
Whilst thys Syr Charles dothe lyve.
Thys sunne shall be hys laste,"
And from the presence paste.
Hee to Syr Charles dydd goe,
And teares beganne to flowe.
“Whatte bootes ytte howe or whenne; Dethe ys the sure, the certaine fate Of all wee mortall menne.
108 “Saye why, my friende, thie honest soul
Runns overr att thyne eye;
Thatt thou dost child-lyke crye?"
Thatt thou soe soone must dye,
'Tys thys thatt wettes myne eye.”
From godlie fountaines sprynge; Dethe I despise, and alle the power
Of Edwarde, traytour kynge.
I shall resigne my lyfe,
For bothe mye sonnes and wyfe.
Thenne Maisterr Canynge saughte the kynge,
And felle down onne hys knee; “I'm come," quod hee, “unto your grace
To move your clemencye.” Thenne quod the kynge, “Youre tale speke out,
You have been much oure friende; Whatever youre request may bee,
Wee wylle to ytte attende.”
Ys for a nobile knyghte,
Hee thoughte ytte stylle was ryghte:
Alle rewyn'd are for aie;
Charles Bawdin die to-dai."
The kynge ynn furie sayde; “Before the evening starre doth sheene,
Bawdin shall loose hys hedde:
And hee shalle have hys meede:
68 “My nobile leige !" goode Canynge sayde,
“Leave justice to our Godde, And laye the yronne rule asyde; Be thyne the olyve rodde.
72 "Was Godde to serche our hertes and reines,
The best were synners grete; Christ's vicart only knowes ne synne,
Ynne alle thys mortall state.
“Before I sawe the lyghtsome sunne,
Thys was appointed mee;
What Godde ordeynes to bee?
Whan thousands dy'd arounde; Whan smokynge streemes of crimson bloode
Imbrew'd the fatten'd grounde:
That cutte the airie waie,
And close myne eyes for aie?
Looke wanne and bee dysmayde?
Bee alle the manne display'd. “Ah! goddelyke Henrie! Godde forefende,
And guarde thee and thye sonne, Yff 'tis hys wylle; but yff 'tis nott,
Why thenne hys wylle bee donne. “My honest friende, my faulte has beene
To serve Godde and mye prynce; And thatt I no tyme-server am,
My dethe wylle soone convynce. “Ynne Londonne citye was I borne,
Of parents-of grete note; My fadre dydd a nobile armes
Emblazon onne hys cote: “I make ne doubte butt bee ys gone
Where soone I hope to goe; Where wee for ever shall bee blest,
From oute the reech of woe.
Wyth pitie to unite;
The wronge cause fromm the ryghte:
To feede the hungrie poore,
The hungrie fromme my doore:
I have hys wordyes kept;
Eche nyghte before I slept.
Yff I defyld her bedde?
Black treason onne my hedde.
“Ynne Lent, and onne the holie eve,
Fromm feshe I dydd refrayne;
To leave thys worlde of payne? “Ne, hapless Henrie! I rejoyce,
I shall ne see thye dethe;
Doe I resign my brethe.
Thou wylt kenne peace ne moe;
Thye brookes wythe bloude wylle flowe. “Saie, were ye tyrd of godlie peace,
And godlie Henrie's reigne,
For those of bloude and peyne? “Whatte though I onne a sledde be drawne,
And mangled by a hynde,
Hee can ne harm my mynd;
Mye lymbes shall rotte ynne ayre, And ne ryche monument of brasse
Charles Bawdin's name shall bear; “Yett ynne the holie booke above,
Whyche tyme can't eate awaie, There wythe the sarvants of the Lord
Mye name shall lyve for aie. “Thenne welcome dethe! for lyfe eterne
I leave thys mortall lyfe: Farewell vayne world, and alle that's deare,
Mye sonnes and lovynge wyfe! “Nowe dethe as welcome to mee comes,
As e'er the moneth of Maie;
Wyth my dere wyfe to staie.”
To bee prepar'd to die;
To Godde ynne heav'n to flie.”
And claryonnes to sound;
A prauncyng onne the grounde:
His lovynge wyfe came ynne, Weepynge unfeigned teeres of woe,
Wythe loude and dysmalle dynne.
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