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The spirits, when they gayest shine,
But when the sun, with noon-tide ray,
There, plung'd amid the lhadows brown,
The distant WOODMAN's echoing stroke;
While thus I mus'd beneath the shade,
SELIM; OR, THE SHEPHERD's MORAL.
Scene, a Valley near Bagdat.-Time, Morning. YE PERsian maids, attend your poet's lays,
“ And hear how shEPHERDS pass their
“ golden days, “ Not all are blefl whom fortune's hand sustains * With wealth in courts, nor all that haunt the
" Welf may your hearts believe the truths I tell ! “ 'Tis VIRTUE makes the bliss, where'er we dwell.”
Thus selim sung, by sacred TRUTH inspir'd; Nor praise, but such as TRUTH bestow'd, desir’d: Wife in himself, his meaning songs convey'd, Informing morals to the SHEPHERD MAID; Or taught the swains that lurest bliss to find, What groves nor ftreams bestow-aVIRTUOUS MIND.
When sweet and blushing, like a virgin bride, The radiant morn resum'd her orient pride, When wanton gales along the vallies play, Breathe on each flow'r, and bear their sweets away: By TIGRIS' wand'ring ways he fate, and sung This useful lesson for the fair and young:
“ Ye PERSIAN dames," he said, “ to you belong, “ Well may they please, the morals of my song: “ No fairer maids, I trust, than you are found, “ Grac'd with soft arts, the peopled world around! “ The morn that lights you, to your loves supplies “ Each gentler ray, delicious to your eyes : “ For you those flow’rs her fragrant hands bestow, “ And yours the love that kings delight to know. “ Yet think not there, all beaut'ous as they are, “ The best kind blessings heav'n can grant the fair ! " Who trust alone in beauty's feeble ray, “ Boaft but the worth Bassor A's pearls display! “ Drawn from the deep, we own their surface bright, “ But, dark within, they drink no lustrous light; * Such are the maids, and such the charms they boast; “ By sense unaided, or to VIRTUE lott. “ Self-flatt'ring sex! your hearts believe, in vain, “ That Love shall blind, when once he fires the
« fwain; “ Or, hope a lover by your faults to win, “ As spots in ermin beautify the skin: 6. Who leeks secure to rule, be first her care • Each softer VIRTUE that adorns the fair ;
“ Each tender passion man delights to find, “ The lov'd perfections of a female mind!
“ Blest were the days, when wisdom held her “ And shepherds fought her on the filent plain; “ With truth The wedded in the secret grove; “ Immortal TRUTH! and daughters bless'd their
66 love. “ O hafte, fair maids ! ye virtues come away! « Sweet peace and PLENTY lead you on your way! “ The balmy shrub for you shall love our shore, “ By Ind excell’d, or ARABY, no more.
“ Loft to our fields, for so the fates ordain, “ The dear deserters Thall return again. « Come thou, whose thoughts as limpid springs are
“ clear, « To lead the train, sweet MODESTY, appear: “ Here make thy court amidst our rural scene, “ And SHEPHERD-GIRLS thall own thee for their
queen. “ With thee be CHASTITY, of all afraid,
Distrusting all, a wise suspicious maid, “ But MAN the most-not more the mountain Dog “ Holds the swift FALCON for her deadly foe. “ Coid is her breast, like flow’rs that drink the dew, “ A tilken veil conceals her from the view; “ No wild defires amidst thy train be known, “ But FAITH, whose heart is fix'd on one alone :
Desponding MEEKNESS, with her down-caft eyes, “ And friendly Pity, full of tender sighs; “ And love the last: by these your hearts approve, “ These are the VIRTUES that must lead to love.
Thus sung the swain; and ancient legends say, The maids of BAGDAT verified the lay : Dear to the plains, the virtues came along; The SHEPHERDS lov’d, and selim bless’d his song.
ALAS! with swift and filent pace,
Impatient time rolls on the year; The seasons change, and nature's face
Now sweetly smiles, now frowns severe. 'Twas spring, 'twas SUMMER, all was gay,
Now AUTUMN bends a cloudy brow; The flow'rs of Spring are swept away,
And Summer fruits desert the bough. The verdant leaves that play'd on high,
And wanton'd on the western breeze, Now trod in duft neglected lie,
As BOREAs strips the bending trees.
As russet heaths, are wild and bare;
Nor HEALTH, nor PLEASURE, wanders there. No more, while through the midnight-shade,
Beneath the moon's pale orb I ftray, Such pleasing woes my heart invade,
As PROGNE pours the melting lay. From this capricious clime she foars,
O! would some god but wings fupply! To where each morn the SPRING restores,
Companion of her flight I'd fly. Vain wih! me fate compels to bear
The downward seasons' iron reign;
And liver on a blasted plain.
If glooms, and show'rs, and storms prevail;
And flow'rs, and fruits, and PHOBUS fail?