Monody on a Tea-kettle
O Muse who sangest late another’s pain, To griefs domestic turn thy coal-black steed! With slowest steps thy funeral steed must go, Nodding his head in all the pomp of woe: Wide scatter round each dark and deadly weed, And let the melancholy dirge complain, (Whilst Bats shall shriek and Dogs shall howling run) The tea-kettle is spoilt and Coleridge is undone! Your cheerful songs, ye unseen crickets, cease! Let songs of grief your alter’d minds engage! For he who sang responsive to your lay, What time the joyous bubbles ’gan to play, The sooty swain has felt the fire’s fierce rage; — Yes, he is gone, and all my woes increase; I heard the water issuing from the wound — No more the Tea shall pour its fragrant steams around! O Goddess best belov’d! Delightful Tea! With thee compar’d what yields the madd’ning Vine? Sweet power! who know’st to spread the calm delight, And the pure joy prolong to midmost night! Ah! must I all thy varied sweets resign? Enfolded close in grief thy form I see; No more wilt thou extend thy willing arms, Receive the fervent Jove, and yield him all thy charms! How sink the mighty low by Fate opprest! — Perhaps, O Kettle! thou by scornful toe Rude urg’d t’ ignoble place with plaintive din, May’st rust obscure midst heaps of vulgar tin; — As if no joy had ever seiz’d my breast When from thy spout the streams did arching fly, — As if, infus’d, thou ne’er hadst known t’ inspire All the warm raptures of poetic fire! But hark! or do I fancy the glad voice — "What tho’ the swain did wondrous charms disclose — (Not such did Memnon’s sister sable drest) Take these bright arms with royal face imprest, A better Kettle shall thy soul rejoice, And with Oblivion’s wings o’erspread thy woes!" Thus Fairy Hope can soothe distress and toil; On empty Trivets she bids fancied Kettles boil!
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