1822 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Collins

Chandos Leigh, "To the Memory of Collins" Leigh, The View, and other Poems (1822) 85-87.



Great Bard, to thee belong
The spirits of the mystic song.
Thou hast found 'bove all thy race
Sweet Poesy's most hallow'd place:
Where sunbright beings veil'd from sight
To thee alone reveal their light.
In fancy's cell, in midnight storm,
Each passion has its proper form.
Glaring amid the gloom of night
The foaming flood gave thee delight:
But ah! the softness of thy lay,
Mild as the summer-close of day:
When o'er Fidele's grassy tomb,
Thou scatterest flowers of earliest bloom.
No self-complaint thy mind reveals,
But solely for another feels:
Though it has suffer'd deep distress,
How exquisite its tenderness!
Since pity, peace, and mercy, seem,
In sooth, to be thy frequent theme;
And love, that royal shepherds know
In climes where brighter suns do glow,
Bard of the East! a poet sweet
As thee, we ne'er again may greet.
Where does thy gentle spright abide
All-seeing fancy by its side?
Where sky-born forms are flitting near,
To charm it through "th' eternal year."