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Poem by Mary Wortley Montagu


To Mr. ------


For ever blest be that prolific brain
Which can such stores of images contain!
Thus the charg'd trees, with blooming odours crown'd,
Shed their fair blossoms with profusion round;
So swells the brook with heav'n descended rain,
And flows meand'ring on thirsty plain;
Such various talents were by Heav'n design'd
Too vast a treasure for a single mind),
To please, astonish, and instruct mankind.
With a delight not to be told, I view
Themes long exhausted in your hands grow new;
Past all describing your descriptions are,
So full, so just, so bold, yet regular;
The style so varied that it wants a name,
Which, ever differing, ever is the same;
You raise or calm our passions as you please,
The human heart your powerful pen obeys.
When eager Trasimond pursues the course,
We hear the whip, and see the foaming horse;
With Sophronia we have wept and smil'd,
So soon offended -- sooner reconcil'd.
Go on, great author! that the world may see
How bright, when from pedantic fetters free,
True genius shines, and shines alone in thee.
Give new editions, with a noble scorn
Of insect critics, who'd obscure thy morn;
Neglect their censures, nor thy work delay,
The owls still sicken at the sight of day.



Mary Wortley Montagu


Mary Wortley Montagu's other poems:
  1. Town Eclogues: Monday; Roxana, or the Drawing-Room
  2. Addressed to ------, 1736
  3. To a Friend on His Travels
  4. Epilogue to the Tragedy of Cato
  5. Melinda's Complaint


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