I sought thee not, O Love! wherefore
Torment me with advances rude?
I've shunned thee as a dangerous power,
And Pallas only have I sued.
Not but I know thy witching spell,
The richest gift to mortals known;
But soon I learned to know too well.
Oft where thou art, there peace has flown
Nor must the toiler, who would fight
Through strife and care his rugged way
Aspire to e'en thy blandest light,
For such burns not thy genial ray.
Thus, Love, I tried to close my breast
To all the whisperings of thy tongue.
Or, forced at length by thy behest,
Woo'd Fancy's pictured scenes among.
Then Romeo's tale I sometimes told,
And gentle Hinda oft have sought.
But most with hapless Petrarch rolled
The strain that aids the wooer naught.
Not satisfied, you still pursue,
You haunt my pathways and my home;
Then if you must this soul subdue,
First yield this prayer wherewith I come
Grant that the maid who leads my heart
May all thy richest gifts enjoy;
Nathless my vows no joy impart.
May Chloris' bliss meet no alloy.
Grant that the aged may blessings shower;
Grant that the young may guard from ill;
While maidens, curbed fell envy's power,
May own her charms the brightest still.
Grant her amid the good to shine;
Grant her each earthly bliss to share;
And make, O Love! for thou'rt divine—
Oh! make her Heaven's darling care!