1771 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Shenstone

William Roscoe "On Mr. Shenstone and his Writings" Town and Country Magazine 3 (June 1771) 328.



O Shenstone! fav'rite of the nine,
What sweetly varying powers are thine!
'Tis thou canst bid the soul to glow
With delight, or melt with woe;
O'er three bright Fancy waves her wings,
And strikes for thee the trembling strings,
And soft Simplicity combines
To warble through thine artless lines.

Far from the glitt'ring scenes of care,
Thou breath'dst, content, thy native air;
Too good for pow'r, too great for pride,
Thou liv'dst belov'd, respected dy'd.

When first thy genuine warblings stole
With gentlest magic on my soul,
So soft, so sweet, so clear, so strong,
The tide of music roll'd along,
That quite enraptur'd by the strains,
Methought with thee I trod the plains,
Reclin'd with thee in shady bow'rs,
Survey'd with thee the op'ning flow'rs,
The spacious lawn, the rising hill,
The rural cot, and sparkling rill.

But soon the dear delusion fled,
And left reflection in its stead.
W. R.