« ZurückWeiter »
ODE for MUSIC
St. CECILIA'S Day.
T"\Escend, ye Nine! descend and sing;
In a sadly-pleasing strain 5
Let the warbling lute complain:
Ode for Music] This is one of the most artful as well as sublime of our Poet's smaller compositions. The firji stanza expresses the various tones and measures in music. The second describes their power over the several passions in general. The third explains their use in inspiring the Heroic passions in particular. Thesourth, ssth,andsxtb, their power over all nature in the fable of Orpheus's expedition to hell; which fubjecl of illustration arose naturally out of the preceding mention of the Argo
While in more lengthen'd notes and flow, r ©
And melt away, 2 o
In a dying, dying fall. II. By Music, minds an equal temper know, Nor swell too high, nor sink too low. If in the breast tumultuous joys arise, Music her soft, asiuasive voice applies; 25
Remarks. nautic expedition, where Orpheus gives the example of the use of Music to inspire the heroic passions. The seventh and last conclude in praise of Music, and the advantages of the sacred above the prophane.
Ver. 7. Let the loud trumpet sound, etc.] Our Author in his rules for good writing had said, that the sound Jhould be an echo to the sense. The graces it adds to the harmony are obvious. But we should never have seen all the advantages arising from this rule, had this ode not been written. In which, one may venture to fay, is found all the harmony that poetic found, when it comes in aid of fense, is capable of producing.
Or, when the soul is press'd with cares.
Warriors she fires with animated sounds;
Pours balm into the bleeding lover's wounds:
Melancholy lifts her head, 30
Morpheus rouzes from his bed,
Intestine war no more our Paflions wage,
And giddy Factions hear away their rage. 3 5
But when our Country's cause provokes to Arms,
Descend from Pelion to the main.
And half unsheath'd the shining blade:
But when thro' all th' infernal bounds,
Love, strong as Death, the Poet led
O'er all the dreary coasts! 5 5
Sullen moans, 60
Sec, sliady forms advance! 65
Thy stone, O Sisyphus, stands still,
And the pale spectres dance!
And snakes uncurl'd hang list'ning round their heads.