1785 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Peter Cunningham

William Newton, the Peak Minstrel, in "To the Rev. Mr. Cunningham" Gentleman's Magazine 55 (March 1785) 212.



Accept, sweet Bard, from me, this votive strain,
From me — the meanest of the Muses' train;
Whose lyre unstrung, while years have roll'd away,
Ne'er tun'd to Gratitude the willing lay.
Unknown to Fame, to Cunninghame unknown,
My reed has sounded to the groves alone.
My youth unblest, without a friend to chear,
My hopes to foster, or my verse to rear;
I artless try'd the sylvan song to frame,—
Spontaneous numbers at my bidding came;
But rugged still, unmusical they ran,
And Reason blam'd what Vanity began.