« ZurückWeiter »
Where now the vanquish’d, with the victors join'd,
Beneath the regal banners stood combin’d.
Th' embatteld dwarfs' with rage and scorn he past,
And on their town his eye vindictive cast.
Its deep foundations his strong trident cleaves,
And high in air th' up-rooted empire heaves ;
On his broad engine the vast ruin hung,
Which on the foe with force divine he fung;
Aghast the legions in th' approaching shade,
Th’inverted spires and rocking domes survey'd,
That downward tumbling on the host below
Crush'd the whole nation at one dreadful blow.
Towers, arms, nymphs, warriors, are together loft,
And a whole empire falls to footh sad Albion's ghost.
Such was the period, long restrain'd by Fate, And such the downfal of the fairy state. This dale, a pleasing region, not unblest, This dale possess’d they; and had ftill possess’d, Had not their monarch, with a father's pride, Rent from her lord th' inviolable bride, Rash to dissolve the contract seal'd above, The folemn vows and sacred bonds of love. Now, where his elves so brightly danc'd the round, No violet breathes, nor daily paints the ground,
His towers and people fill one common grave,
A shapeless ruin, and a barren cave.
Beneath huge hills of smoaking piles he lay
Stun'd and confounded a whole summer's day.
At length awak'd (for what can long restrain'
Unbody'd spirits !) but awak'd in pain ;
And as he saw the desolated wood,
And the dark den where once his empire stood,
Grief chill'd his heart: to his half-open'd eyes
In every oak a Neptune seem'd to rise :
He fied : and left, with all his trembling peers,
The long poffefsion of a thousand years.
Thro’bush, thro'brake, thro’groves and gloomy dales,
Thro’ dank and dry, o'er streams and flowery vales,
Direct they fled; but often look'd behind,
And stop'd and started at each russling wind.
Wing'd with like fear, his abdicated bands
Disperse, and wander into different lands ;
Part did beneath the Peak’s deep caverns lie,
In silent glooms impervious to the sky;
Part on fair Avon's margin seek repose,
Whose stream o'er Britain's midmost region flows,
Where formidable Neptune never came,
And seas and oceans are but known by fame;
Some to dark woods and secret shades retreat,
And some on mountains chuse their airy seat.
There haply by the ruddy damsel seen,
Or shepherd-boy, they featly foot the green,
While from their steps a circling verdure fprings ;
But Ay from towns, and dread the courts of kings.
Mean-while fad Kenna, loth to quit the grove,
Hung o'er the body of her breathless love,
Try'd every art (vain arts !) to change his doom,
And vow'd (vain vows !) to join him in the tomb.
What could she do ? the Fates alike deny
The dead to live, or fairy forms to die.
An herb there grows (the same old * Homer tells
Ulysses bore to rival Circe's spells)
Its root is ebon-black, but sends to light
A stem that bends with flow’rets milky white,
Moly the plant, which gods and fairies know,
But secret kept from mortal men below.
On his pale limbs its virtuous juice she shed,
And murmur'd mystic numbers o'er the dead,
When lo! the little shape by magic power
Grew less and less, contracted to a flower;
A flower, that first in this sweet garden smild,
To virgins sacred, and the Snow-drop styld.
The new-born plant with sweet regret she view'd,
Warm’d with her sighs, and with her tears bedew'd,
Its ripen'd feeds from bank to bank convey'd,
And with her lover whiten’d half the shade.
Thus won from death each spring she sees him grow,
And glories in the vegetable snow,
Which now increas'd through wide Britannia's plains,
Its parent's warmth and spotless name retains ;
First leader of the fowery race aspires,
And foremost catches the sun's genial fires,
'Midst frosts and snows triumphant dares appear,
Mingles the seasons, and leads on the year.
Deserted now of all the pygmy race, Nor man nor fairy touch'd this guilty place. In heaps on heaps, for many a rolling age, It lay accurs’d, the mark of Neptune's rage; 'Till great Nassau recloath'd the defart shade, Thence facred to Britannia's monarchs made. 'Twas then the green-rob'd nymph, fair Kenna, came, (Kenna that gave the neighb’ring town its name) Proud when she faw th' ennobled garden shine With nymphs and heroes of her lover's line,
She vow'd to grace the mansions once her own,
And picture out in plants the fairy town.
To far-fam'd Wise her fight unseen she sped,
And with gay prospects fill'd the craftsman's head,
Soft in his fancy drew a pleasing scheme,
And plan’d that landskip in a morning dream.
With the sweet view the fire of gardens fir’d,
Attempts the labour by the nymph inspir'd,
The walls and streets in rows of yew designs,
And forms the town in all its ancient lines ;
The corner trees he lifts more high in air,
And girds the palace with a verdant square:
Nor knows, while round he views the rising scenes,
He builds a city as he plants his greens.
With a fad pleasure the aërial maid This image of her ancient realm survey'd ; How chang’d, how fallen from its primæval pride ! Yet here each moon, the hour her lover dy'd, Each moon his folemn obsequies the pays, And leads the dance beneath pale Cynthia's rays ; Pleas'd in the shades to head her fairy train, And grace the groves where Albion's kinsmen reign.