1791 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Sir James Mackintosh

William Taylor of Norwich, "To the Author of Vindicae Gallicae" 1791; The Monthly Magazine 38 (January 1815) 524.



Brave youth, thou foremost of the patriot throng,
Kneel yet awhile, and scoop with deeper shell,
And boldly quaff, and bathe thy glowing tongue,
In the pure spring-head of my hallow'd well,
While yet conceal'd, the mouldering trunks among,
Where error steeps in mist her twilight cell,
And superstition's reptiles crawl along—
But for the chosen few its waters swell.
My name is Truth — soon the blast roars amain,
Fires, lightning-kindled, the tall oaks emblaze,
Avenging thunders crash, while Freedom's fane
Arises radiant from the smoking plain.
Huge columns thou must rear — thy future days
A nation's thanks await — the Sage's praise.