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Absence

    WITH leaden foot Time creeps along
    While Delia is away:
    With her, not plaintive was the song,
    Nor tedious was the day.

    Ah, envious Pow'r! reverse my doom;
    Now double thy career,
    Strain ev'ry nerve, stretch ev'ry plume,
    And rest them when she's here!

    Richard Jago

Roundelay

    SISTERS of the tuneful train,
    Attend your parent' s jocund strain,
    'Tis Fancy calls you; follow me
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    On Avon's banks, where Shakespeare's bust
    Points out, and guards his sleeping dust;
    The sons of scenic mirth agree,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    Come, daughters, come, and bring with you,
    Th'aerial Sprites and Fairy-crew,
    And the sister Graces three,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    Hang around the sculptur'd tomb
    The 'broider'd vest, the nodding plume,
    And the mask of comic glee,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    From Birnam Wood, and Bosworth Field,
    Bring the standard, bring the shield,
    With drums and martial symphony,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    In mournful numbers now relate
    Poor Desdemona's hapless fate,
    With frantic deeds of jealousy,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    Nor be Windsor's Wives forgot,
    With their harmless merry plot,
    The whitening mead, and haunted tree,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    Now in jocund strains recite
    The humours of the braggard Knight,
    Fat Knight, and ancient Pistol he,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.
    But see in crowds the Gay, the Fair,
    To the splendid scene repair,
    A scene as line as fine can be,
    To celebrate the Jubilee.

    Richard Jago

Avon

    HAIL, beauteous Avon, hail! on whose fair banks
    The smiling daisies, and their sister tribes,
    Violets, and cuckoo-buds, and lady-smocks,
    A brighter dye disclose, and proudly tell,
    That Shakspeare, as he stray'd these meads along,
    Their simple charms admir'd, and in his verse
    Preserv'd, in never-fading bloom to live.
    And thou, whose birth these walls unrival'd boast,
    That mock' st the rules of the proud Stagyrite,
    And learning's tedious toil hail, mighty bard!
    Thou great magician, hail! Thy piercing thought
    Unaided saw each movement of the mind,
    As skilful artists view the small machine,
    The secret springs and nice dependencies,
    And to thy mimic scenes, by fancy wrought
    To such a wondrous shape, th'impassion'd breast
    In floods of grief or peals of laughter bow d,
    Obedient to the wonder-working strain,
    Like the tun'd string responsive to the touch,
    Or to the wizard s charm, the passive storm
    Humour and wit, the tragic pomp, or phrase
    Familiar, flow'd spontaneous from thy tongue,
    As flowers from Nature s lap. Thy potent spells
    From their bright seats aerial sprites detain'd,
    Or from their unseen haunts, and slumbering shades,
    Awak'd the fairy tribes, with jocund step
    The circled green and leafy hail to tread
    While, from his dripping caves, old Avon sent
    His willing Naiads to their harmless rout.

    Richard Jago


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