1782 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Anna Seward

William Bagshaw Stevens, "To Miss Seward with the Present of his published Poems" 1782; Poetical Register for 1805 (1807) 77.



To Thee, whose magic all the Graces own,
While Pity sighs her soul into thy lay,
Fair Votaress of the Lyre! to Thee unknown,
I tremble to address this weak essay.

To wring from even hostile breasts a tear,
To consecrate the deeds of British Fame,
To bid stern Valour mourn o'er Andre's bier
And gild the path of Death with Glory's flame

Be thine; O justly Thou of every Muse
Belov'd! O bid immortal Truth again,
By Fancy deck'd in all her fairy hues,
Create new wonders from thy charmful pen!

For me, low sunk in Life's inglorious shade,
Some meaner theme befits, some woodland air;
But by thy Genius my pursuits betray'd,
I pant the spirit of thy song to share.

In some short pause of Pleasure or of Fame,
If Fame one moment can thy breast resign,
Enough for me if my ambitious aim
May wake thy feelings with a verse from mine.