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Poem by Anna Seward


Sonnet 74. In sultry noon when youthful Milton lay


[1]In sultry noon when youthful Milton lay,
    Supinely stretch'd beneath the poplar shade,
    Lur'd by his Form, a fair Italian Maid
    Steals from her loitering chariot, to survey
The slumbering charms, that all her soul betray.
    Then, as coy fears th' admiring gaze upbraid,
    Starts;and these lines, with hurried pen pourtray'd,
    Slides in his half-clos'd hand;and speeds away.
Ye eyes, ye human stars!if, thus conceal'd
    By Sleep's soft veil, ye agitate my heart,
    Ah! what had been its conflict if reveal'd
Your rays had shone!Bright Nymph, thy strains impart
    Hopes, that impel the graceful Bard to rove,
    Seeking thro' Tuscan Vales his visionary Love.

1: This romantic circumstance of our great Poet's juvenility was inserted, as a well known fact, in one of the General Evening Posts in the Spring 1789, and it was there supposed to have formed the first impulse of his Italian journey.



Anna Seward


Anna Seward's other poems:
  1. Sonnet 87. Round Cleon's brow the Delphic laurels twine
  2. Sonnet 56. What bashful wildness in those crystal eyes
  3. Sonnet 45. From Possibility's dim chaos sprung
  4. Sonnet 99. Remorseless Winter! in thy iron reign
  5. Sonnet 80. As lightens the brown Hill to vivid green


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