1781 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Collins

William Preston, in "Epistle to a young Gentleman" 1781; Poems (1793) 1:180-81.



In mean dependence Butler's sun descends;
See gentle Gay, — the hare with many friends!
Say wouldst thou take their fortune, with their fame,
A menial bondage, with a poet's name?
No, rather wish the doom of Collins thine,
In second childhood tortur'd thoughts resign.
Sense, mem'ry, care, in bland oblivion lost,
No more the soul with warring passion tost;
Long dead to pleasure, now redeem'd from woe,
The streams of Lethe o'er his spirit flow,
The deep'ning furrows of affliction lave,
And smooth the harrow'd soul, with all-benumbing wave.