Laura Sophia Temple

Lines Written on Reading Young's Night Thoughts--

Night the Third, or NARCISSA.

Oh! mournful lyre! whose soft, yet deep-toned strains
Tremble like Zephyr o'er the list'ning plains;
Whose melting notes can pierce the coldest breast,
Waking the sorrows time had lull'd to rest.
Why did thy cadence reach my troubled soul,
And cause again the tide of grief to roll?
Why did the sweetly-warbled song arise,
Again to swell affliction's quiv'ring sighs?
To animate once more my slumb'ring woes,
And call fond Mem'ry from her short repose?
And was thy "Harmonist" as sweet as mine?
Did Nature clothe her form with tints so fine?
Could there e'er bloom another flow'r so fair?
Could e'er another loss with mine compare?
Oh human buds! that only bloom to die!
Why are ye shewn to fond affection's eye?
Why doat we on the "perishable bloom"--
Why ever taste its rich and brief perfume?
When morning mantles o'er the purple hill,
Our clasping arms the lovely phantoms fill,
But Night beholds us wand'ring o'er the wild,
Bankrupt in soul, of ev'ry good despoil'd.
Thus have I gaz'd upon some op'ning rose,
And anxious watch'd its deep'ning leaves unclose,
And fondly view'd its gay meridian hour,
And christen'd it my lov'd and fav'rite flow'r.
But ah ! the gale would rise, and scatter wide,
The fragile garniture of beauty's pride.
Borne on the wings of ev'ry wind that blew,
Some fragment of the lovely blossom flew,
And, when I strove to grasp its leaves so fair,
I grasp'd the vacuum of the shapeless air.

English Poetry - E-mail