Elegy on the death of Cleora
No more of Zephyr's airy robe I'll sing,
Or balmy odours dropping from his wing,
Or how his spicy breath revives the lands,
And curls the waves which roll o'er crystal sands.
No more I'll paint the glowing hemisphere,
Or rocks ambitious, piercing upper air;
The subjects of the grave demand my lay,
Spectator now, I soon shall be as they.
Cleora, art thou gone? thou dost not hear
The voice of grief, nor see the dropping tear;
And yet, it soothes my sorrows while I mourn
In artless verse, and weep upon thy urn.
---Tho' bright from thee the rays of beauty stream'd,
Thy mind irradiate, stronger graces beam'd;
The meteor shone so permanent and fair,
Who'd not mistook the vapour for a star?
---E'en then---when lying poets flattering breath
Pronounc'd so fair a form exempt from death;
The icy angel met her on the plain,
And bade our friend adorn his ghastly train;
The vital heat forsakes her loitering blood;
The blood stands still---the springs of life all stood;
Down sunk the fair, while nature gave a groan,
To see her noblest structure fall so soon.
But say, some pow'r, where is the spirit fled,
To wait the time when it shall join the dead?
Say, springs her active soul beyond the skies,
Or still around the clay enamour'd flies?
Or sits exalted on th' empyreal height,
'Midst deluges of primogenial light?
Or else expatiates, with enlarged pow'rs,
Where mortal man's conception never soars?
---Ah! when the brittle bands of life are burst,
To meet her on the shores of bliss. I trust;
Sure I shall know her in the realms above,
By those sweet eyes which beam incessant love:
There we'll renew the friendship here begun,
But which shall last thro' th' eternal noon:
Till then suspend my fond enquiries, where,
And with what souls she breathes immortal air;
Meanwhile, with imitative art I'll try,
Nobly like her to live---like her to die!