ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION
Albert, "Elegy on Michael Bruce" Morning Chronicle (2 June 1791).
1794: Robert Alves
1795: Dr. Robert Anderson
1804: Dr. Nathan Drake
1805: Joseph Dennie
1807: Robert Southey
1819: William Wordsworth
1821: Robert Southey
1822: Joseph Robertson
1825: Allan Cunningham
1828: James William Miller
1828: Sumner Lincoln Fairfield
1830: Rev. George Barrell Cheever
1860: George Gilfillan
1876: James Grant Wilson
1882: Epes Sargent
1783: Thomas Chatterton
1790: John Milton
1790: Philip Neve
1790: James Thomson
1791: Michael Bruce
1791: James Thomson
1792: Thomas Chatterton
Of the young Man, Author of a small volume of Poems, who is the subject of this Elegy; an account is given in the Thirty-sixth Number of the Mirror. He died of a consumption, in the twenty-first year of his age. These lines were suggested by a visit to the place of his residence.
Why vainly bid the animated bust,
Why bid the monumental pile to rise?
Too often Genius doomed by fate unjust,
Unnoticed lives, unwept — unhonour'd dies!
Too oft the Poet, in whose sacred breast
With ardour glow the Muse's purest fires,
Contemned by pride, by penury opprest,
In anguish lives, and in neglect expires!
Too oft, alas! in some sequester'd ground,
Silent and cold, the Poet's ashes sleep;
No pomp of funeral is seen around,
No kindred Bard to praise, no Friend to weep!
Such, BRUCE, the feelings in my breast that rise,
While guided by the Muse, I wander near;
Mark the lone spot where youthful Genius lies,
And give thy fate the tribute of a tear.
Obscure thy birth, yet in thy early breast
How deep and ardent glow'd the Muse's flame;
How strongly in thy bosom was imprest
The Poet's genius, and the Poet's fame!
Such was thy mind, but, ah! upon thy frame
Disease relentless urg'd its envious way;
Fled was each joy of health, each hope of fame,
And thou the victim of a slow decay.
Like some fair flower, that owes the desert birth,
Whose buds foretel the beauty of its prime,
That sinks unsheltered, sinks unseen to earth,
Chilled by the blast, or cropt before its time.
Perhaps thus blasted by unfriendly doom,
Thy genius foster'd in a milder air,
Matur'd by age, in all the pride of bloom,
Had spread luxuriant, and had flourish'd fair!
But, ah! no more the Poet now remains,
Cold is the breast that glow'd with sacred fire,
Mute is the tongue that flow'd in tuneful strains,
Check'd is the hand, and silent is the lyre!
For him, who now laments thy early tomb,
Like thee inspir'd with youthful love of lays,
Though now he mourn, he soon may share thy doom,
May soon require the tribute which he pays.