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Amet. And so do I; good! on—
Men. A nightingale, Nature's best skill'd musician, undertakes The challenge, and for every several strain The well-shaped youth could touch, she sung her own; He could not run division with more art Upon his quaking instrument, than she, The nightingale, did with her various notes Reply to: for a voice, and for a sound, Amethus, 'tis much easier to believe That such they were, than hope to hear again.
Amet. How did the rivals part?
Men. You term them rightly;
Amet. Now for the bird!
Men. The bird, ordain'd to be Music's first martyr, strove to imitate These several sounds: which, when her warbling throat Fail'd in, for grief, down dropp'd she on his lute, And brake her heart! It was the quaintest sadness, To see the conqueror upon her hearse To weep a funeral elegy of tears; That, trust me, my Amethus, I could chide Mine own unmanly weakness, that made me A fellow mourner with him.
Amet. I believe thee.
Men. He look'd upon the trophies of his art, Then sigh'd, then wiped his eyes, then sigh'd and cried, "Alas, poor creature! I will soon revenge This cruelty upon the author of it; Henceforth this lute, guilty of innocent blood, Shall never more betray a harmless peace To an untimely end:" and in that sorrow,
As he was pashing it against a tree,
Amet. Thou hast discoursed
Men. I reprieved The intended execution with intreaties, And interruption. But, my princely friend, It was not strange the music of his hand Did overmatch birds, when his voice and beauty Youth, carriage, and discretion must, from men Endued with reason, ravish admiration: From me they did.
Amet. But is this miracle Not to be seen?
Men. I won him by decrees To choose me his companion. Whence he is, Or who, as I durst modestly inquire, So gently he would woo not to make known; Only (for reasons to himself reserved) He told me, that some remnant of his life Was to be spent in travel: for his fortunes, They were nor mean nor riotous; his friends Not publish'd to the world, though not obscure: His country Athens, and his name Farthenophill.
Take them, 0 Death, and bear away
Thine image, stamp'd upon this clay,
Take them, O Grave! and let them lie
As garments by the soul laid by,
Take them, O great Eternity!
Our little life is but a gust,
And trails its blossoms in the dust.
Dwellers by lake and hill,
Go gladly forth and drink of joy your fill,
No crowd impedes your way,
Where the wild flocks can wander ye may stray,
The sunshine and the flowers,
The pleasant evening, the fresh dewy hours,
The grey and ancient peaks,
And the low voice of water, as it makes,
These are your joys. Go forth,
For in His spirit God hath clothed the earth,
The voice of hidden rills
And awfully the everlasting hills
Ye sit upon the earth
And a pure, mighty influence, 'mid your mirth, Moulds your unconscious spirits silently.
Hence is it that the lands Of storm and mountain have the noblest sons;
Whom the world reverences, the patriot bands, Were of the hills like you, ye little ones!
Children of pleasant song
For hoary legends to your wilds belong,
Then go forth: earth and sky
Profusely like the summer flowers that lie
GUDE NICHT, AND JOY BE WT YE A'!
By Lady Nairn.
The best o' joys maun hae an end,
The best o' friends maun part, I trow;
And I maun bid farewell to you.
For words, gin they hae sense ava,
Gude nicht, and joy be wi' you a'!
Oh, we hae wander'd far and wide,
O'er Scotia's lands o' frith and fell!
And twined it wi' the heather-bell.
The cot-house, and the baron's ha';
Gude nicht, and joy be wi' you a'!
My harp, farewell! thy strains are past,
Of gleefu' mirth and heartfelt care;
And minstrelsy itsel decay.
Nor parting tears are shed ava.
And joy for aye be wi' us a'!
WHERE HE WOULD HAVE HIS VERSES READ.
In sober mornings do not thou rehearse
The holy incantation of a verse ;—
But when that men have both well drunk and fed,
Let my enchantments then be sung or read.
When laurel spirts i' the fire, and when the hearth
Smiles to itself, and gilds the roof with mirth;
When up the Thyrse is raised, and when the sound
Of sacred orgies flies around, around;
When the rose reigns, and locks with ointment shine,
Let rigid Cato read these lines of mine.
The secret that does make a flower a flower
So frames it that to bloom is to be sweet,
And to receive to give.
No soil so sterile, and no living lot
So poor, but it hath somewhat still to spare
In bounteous odours. Charitable they
Who, be their having more or less, so have
That less is more than need, and more is less
Than the great heart's goodwill.