Mary Robinson ( )

Rinaldo to Laura Maria

THOU! whose sublime poetic art 
Can pierce the pulses of the heart, 
Can force the treasurd tear to flow 
In prodigality of woe; 
Or lure each jocund bliss to birth 
Amid the sportive bowrs of mirth: 
LAURA DIVINE! I call thee now 
To yonder promontorys brow 
That props the skies; while at its feet 
With fruitless ire the billows beat, 
There let my fainting sense behold 
Those sapphire orbs their heaven unfold, 
While from thy lips vermilion bow 
Sweet melody her shafts shall throw 
Yet do not, do not yield delight, 
Nor with dear visions bless my sight. 

Grant me despair, thou mightiest Muse! 
Oer the vast scene thy spells diffuse, 
And with a mad terrific strain 
Conjure up demons from the main: 
Storms upon storms indignant heap, 
Bid Ocean howl, and Nature weep; 
Till the Creator blush to see 
How horrible His World can be; 
While I will glory to blaspheme, 
And make the joys of hell my theme. 
Hah! check this frenzy, spare my soul, 
Oer my parchd cheek soft sorrows roll, 
Subdue this vain impassiond rage, 
An atoms energies assuage; 
Nor let a mortal wretch presume 
To invocate so dire a doom. 
What tho the EAGLE sits forlorn 
And swoln and sad awaits the morn, 
When he may wave his golden wing,
From Nights detested gloom to spring, 
And with the Suns advancement fly, 
In full meridian blaze to die: 
Yet shall the chirping FINCH decay, 
Upon the hedgerows witherd spray, 
Ere the first beam of light is found, 
And drop unnoticd to the ground. 
So I alas! shall never see 
The dawn of hope awake for me, 
Still as I turn, new storms appear, 
And darker lours this mental sphere. 
Ah, who shall one short comfort give, 
Or teach my struggling thought to live; 

What hand my bleeding bosom bind, 
What MOSELEY medicate my mind? 
What Star disperse the thickning shade, 
That bids my restless Being fade?
Yet I have seen the Lord of Day 
Dart from his car the burning ray, 
And rush a hero to the fight, 
Across the pendant plains of light: 
Ive seen the bashful Moon aspire 
To bind her brow with mimic fire, 
And oer the calm translucent air 
Diffusive shake her silver hair. 
Ive pausd enrapturd at the tone 
That from the Evening Copse is thrown 
By the wild Poet of the glade, 
Who rests his wing beneath the shade, 
And I have provd th unequal bliss 
That burns upon the crimson kiss, 
When true adoring souls unite 
To perish in the proud delight. 
These now are lost to meI stand 
Alone in evry peopled land, 
No pleasure now my cold heart cheers, 
The future points a vale of tears 
Love rends my name from his bright page, 
And yields it to approaching age 
Then lead me, LAURA! to the bowr 
Where sadly droops each withring flowr, 
Where poisnous shrubs disease exhale, 
And fevrish vapours load the gale; 
There sink me to the sordid grief 
That meanly supplicates relief; 

There tell me I am most despisd, 
Een by thyself, whom most I prizd, 
So shall I gladly welcome fate, 
And perish in thy perfect hate: 
So shall I better bear th eternal pain, 
Never to see thy Form, or hear thy Voice again.

Mary Robinson's other poems:
  1. The Widows Home
  2. Sonnet 44. Here Droops the Muse
  3. The Deserted Cottage
  4. Sonnet 36. Lead Me, Sicilian Maids
  5. Sonnet to Evening

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